This is my third week in the Philippines, and every weekend so far we have tried to do something exciting. This week started off on Sunday with a climb up an active volcano. If you don’t remember from last week’s blog, I ended with a trip to Cagbalete. The day after, my IRRI group met up with some student that are in Food and Nutrition Research Institute (FNRI) and the nursing internship, and we decided to climb a volcano. Already exhaust from the previous trip, we drove 2.5 hour to Batangas and then took at 20 min boat ride to Mount Ta’al. Mount Ta’al is a 1020 foot tall active volcano that is surrounded by a lake and has a small lake in it. As soon as we got to Mount Ta’al, we had the option to hike up a 4 kilometer volcano or ride a donkey up the mountain. Of course we choose to hike it. I kid you not, it was one of the hardest hikes of my life but it was completely worth it. The entire walk was mostly up hill, there was no shade, and it was the hottest time of the day, but it was worth it. Some of us didn’t make it. From our group 2 people gave up and decided to get a donkey ride up the rest of the volcano, which was a smart choice. As soon as we reached the top, we were mesmerized by the beauty of the volcano.
The rest of the week we went to work and relaxed after our fun weekend. At work I read more articles on separating lipids using HPLC and polished up my methods section. On Tuesday, I followed around a different Ph.D. student and learned about his research. He works on the texture and rheology of rice and rice powder. I learned how to use 2 different machines. I’m so am so glad I got the opportunity to learn about his research. I also meet a student my age that should us a cool restaurant called Selena’s.
On Friday we went to Makati, Manilla to visit our friends at FMRI and Make A Difference (MAD). We were able to go to the mall of Asia on Saturday. We spent 3 hours at the MOA but didn’t 1/8 of the mall.