Tuesday, August 18, 2009

One week down, some large number to go....

First of, for any of you detail-oriented folks, you may have noticed that I changed the layout of my side column again. I've added a new widget, "Kellogg at a Glance", that displays a random "Kellogg" picture from my Flickr account. Given that a picture is worth 1000 words, every time you reload the blog, it will be like I've just posted a new 1000-word account of my time at Kellogg. I rock!

In addition to the pictures, I've also moved the Kellogg content to the top of the column. This is a result of my desire to position my blog for 2 audiences: 1) my friends and family (who may not even read it!) and 2) anyone interested in obtaining a glimpse of the Kellogg program. Although I write primarily for my friends and family, I recall how useful it was to find Kellogg blogs when I was deciding between schools. If a blog had actually been maintained the entire 2 years, that was like finding 3 peanuts in a 2-peanut shell; you know what I mean. I apologize in advance if you fall into the latter category, and I post something that you have no interest in. I know what it's like to be in your position, and I wish you the best of luck with the application/decision/grad school process.

Now, for the juicy gossip! I've been in Evanston for over a week now, and during that time I've managed to get settled in, take care of most of my To-Do list, and walk as much as a professional walker might through Evanston, the Northwestern Campus, which has a minimal amount of campus maps (to confuse people no doubt), and Chicago.

For anyone considering ridding themselves of most earthly positions for the trip up to Kellogg, be warned; a car is extremely useful, if not essential, initially after arriving. Fortunately, I had my parents and their SUV available for my trips to Wal-Mart (dropping $600 in the process), Target (around $400), and IKEA ($400), which is a solid 45 minutes away from Evanston. If it weren't for their SUV, I don't know how I would have managed as well. Once you have acquired all of your requisite items and furniture, I don't think you'll need a car very often at all. The El and inter-campus bus are very convenient, and there are a lot of stores within walking distance.

Another pitfall for us non-car students, is that the only grocery store within walking distance, Whole Foods, is expensive. If you restrict yourself to items on sale, then it will probably cost around the same as a "regular" grocery store. I've tried to circumvent this problem by stocking up on items from Target that I use often. Hence, my Kashi Tower.


After I was all settled, I visited Chicago to do the tourist thing with the parentals. I highly recommend taking some time out to visit, because it is a beautiful city, and they have some great attractions, such as the Field Museum and Shedd Aquarium. You may be tempted to also visit Navy Pier, but unless you are going there for fireworks or some other big show/festival, I would avoid it. It was very disappointing; classic example of a tourist trap. Sears (now Willis) Tower is a must see. They recently installed glass enclosures on the side of the building at the sky deck that offer a thrilling view of the city. It took me a moment to step out all the way to the edge.


I've also managed to spend some time with my fellow classmates, via large organized events (screaming at bars) and more personal events (chatting at coffee shops). As expected, everyone I've met has been very amiable and interesting. Yesterday, I had a 6-hour chat with fellow bloggers Stephen, who recently unmasked himself, and the Modern Business Cow. I'm looking forward to more of these relaxed interactions throughout the next couple of years.

That's it for now! I hope that all of you with Kellogg aspirations will one day find yourself seated in the Kellogg chair. It. Is. Nice.

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