May 15, 2014 will forever hold a special memory for me and the other Brown cohorts. This evening was our dinner at One Market in San Francisco. Going after the AP World test was just a relief since I knew that I could make this a "celebration." My mom and I arrived at the El Cerrito Plaza BART around 5 o'clock. We met up with Maria Llose and her mom, and we walked to the station. It was a relief to find that everyone was already there dressed in very fancy shmancy clothing. On the BART ride to SF I sat with my W&L friend, Izabel Rodriguez since we both agreed that we didn't know each other too well. We talked about our future ambitions, school, and classes we will be taking next school year. It was a fun talking to her because she just has this uplifting aura around her.
As we made our grand entrance, we all our walk to the restaurant. When we arrived at One Market, I was blown away by the beauty of the place. The workers were so nice and caring that I just fell in love. We mazed our way through the restaurant to find ourselves in a room. For 45 minutes, it was time for all of us to go and mingle with the alums and parents. I talked to many alums and learned about what to expect at Brown University. One of the alums, Simon Hong graduated in 2005. He was a really interesting guy and actually worked at the place above the restaurant ( ha ha, how convenient). I also talked to different parents and even fellow Brown cohorts. Kevin Mahoney was someone new and surprisingly, we had few things in common. We both are musically talented and know Elaine Hseish, a senior cellist at Hercules High. The 45 minutes was so uplifting and educational as I went to different groups and talked about various topics. Once the time was up, Charles Ramsey told us to take our seats.
To my surprise, I was sitting next to Simon Hong to my left and my mom to my right. Within the group I had, Arnold Dimas and his mom, Jing and her mom, Jennifer Gilbert, Hunter Stern, and Donna Chung. Hunter Stern works for the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers, and Donna Chung works as an elementary teacher for Ferment Elementary. I believe my group was amazing as we talked about teaching, and colleges. I really liked the ambiance of the group and how social we were as we talked about different things. Jenny, Simon, and I were actually talking about books we read in high school. The chats were not as scary as it seemed, and I felt the flow of the conversation.
As the evening progressed, speeches were made and food was being brought. Both Arnold Dimas and Yeonsoo Cho were the representatives for their group. Both speakers did a wonderful job telling their speech and expressed what they wanted to gain from this amazing opportunity. After their speeches and a few more, Charles Ramsey took the spotlight. He talked for awhile and expressed the importance of stepping outside of one's comfort zone. I truly agree with him yet one quote is stuck with me. He said that " the frontier has been cleared." I'll let you all think about its meaning. As he finished, everyone began to eat dinner and life was just wonderful. The dessert was probably my favorite part of the dinner since I'm in love with sweets. The presentation at One Market was quite spectacular and their service was high quality. I must thank the waiters and waitresses for making this all happen. As I may say my thanks to Paula Portillo, William Verr, and Kai Solin for making this night so wonderful.
As the evening progressed, the dinner was at its end. Everyone left the restaurant and made our way to the Bart station. It was quite an adventure as I continued to talk to the beneficiaries. The beneficiaries are by far the nicest people and I hope I made a good impression. The BART ride home was crowded and stuffy as passengers from the Giants game were coming home. On our last train, I talked to Sierra Lee about sports and extracurricular activities. We had a nice chat about the elections coming up on Monday. It was finally our stop and everyone left to go home for the night. The drive home was full of excitement and happiness.
|Evening with Elegant Elephants|
|Left to Right : Cynthia Ramirez, Paula Portillo, and Me|