← Back to articles
How my summer went.
2022-08-16 · 7 min read
It's always nice to tell people how your summer went when your summer was exciting, and I don't have anybody to tell it to at the moment, so I'm just going to do a little bit of journaling here and say that so far, it's been great!
I actually had two jobs over the summer, but that just really meant that I was working 40 hours a week. You know, the average amount.
- Cashier at a fast-food restaurant
- Intern at the city's HR department (yes, apparently city governments have HR departments)
These two jobs were rather mundane, but they were the first real jobs I've ever had, so! Also, I got to bike to work every Monday through Friday, three and a half miles each way so it was great exercise. Of course, it doesn't feel so great when you're actually riding up a steep hill that could definitely rival the steep hills in San Francisco.
Oh! Now that I've mentioned San Francisco, did I tell you about Assemble, a IRL hackathon that I was able to attend in San Francisco from August 5 - 7 (so my trip was August 4 - 7)? It was the most fun I've ever had in my entire life. Also, I think independence really starts becoming more of a priority as you grow older (especially in one's teenage years), and I was stuck thinking that sixteen would be better when I got a car, but look! I freakin' traveled across the country in a plane (actually, four of them - I had a thirteen-hour layover on the way from Massachusetts to San Francisco in Denver that lasted 13 hours and involved me lying on an airport seat trying to get sleep, which is why they probably have those stupid arm handles so I can't lie down and go to sleep on the airport seats... why am I going into a whole rant, at least the layover in Minneapolis on the way back was only an hour), got to visit San Francisco, and took a bunch of super awesome pictures! I got to meet other kids my age who were programmers, and I just... I just have no words except for awesome, which I've probably used at least three times already, to describe the experience.
Plus, I didn't even have to pay for my round-trip airplane tickets, as Hack Club, the organization behind the event, did! If I did, I wouldn't have gone, since it's simply not something I can afford. So I'm super grateful to Hack Club for that. (Oh, and I'm planning to start a Hack Club soon! Wish me luck!)
One thing I do wish was that my social anxiety would get better. Even though these were people I could relate to, I still found myself having trouble talking to them and interacting with them like a normal human being. Still, everybody I met was super welcoming and nice!
Anyways, I took a bunch of pictures, so here's a neat slideshow of them (too bad I can't include them all). For pictures taken on an iPhone 6 (yes, six - that is not a typo), they're really pretty:
Flying from MA to SF
And flying from SF to MA back, in Minneapolis!
Sunrise in Denver!
I literally slept five hours and walked around to see the sunset at 6.
First stop in SF: Yerba Buena Gardens, in the middle of the city!
Moscone Center is right next to Yerba Buena.
Place I stayed at: Figma HQ!
Pic of the event!
Mission Dolores Park, right outside of the Mission, one of the worst places in town.
Nearing the Castro with some fellow peeps!
Pride flags abound in the Castro!
A freakin' rainbow sidewalk!
The Castro Theater
Pink Triangle Park. I have a rose quartz from this place.
Dragon's Gate - the entrance to Chinatown! Here with some friends.
Reminds me of Chinatown in downtown Manhattan, but less busy.
Waking up at 6 to go see the sunrise with some people at Ferry Marketplace!
Here's the cloudy sunrise! That's Oakland-Bay Bridge in the pic.
Can't miss the iconic "Port of San Francisco" sign.
On the bus to the Golden Gate Bridge! This is near Lombard Street, and it's gorgeous.
A shot of the bridge! Walking around with my friends, it was so windy.
Walking the bridge. Pictures can't describe the moment I looked up.
Walking Fisherman's Wharf before I have to head to the airport.
God, the sunset is so beautiful in SF and probably the rest of California.
One last shot of palm trees.
Yes, I got to see the seals in SF!
Now that I just mentioned iPhone 6, I got to buy a new phone with my hard-earned money. I got a Google Pixel 6a. Don't let me brag about the specs, since it was a budget buy of $500. Personally, I don't do a lot on my phone, but during Assemble I talked to a lot of people on Slack, and I couldn't install it on my phone, so I'd be opening my laptop every five seconds. It was super awkward when I had to sit in SF's Union Square with my laptop open, trying to tell people that I was in Union Square waiting for them so we could visit the Golden Gate Bridge together.
Oh, now I remember why I decided to write this in the first place. I was just sitting there, working on a programming project, when I thought, "Huh, I don't think I've finished a lot of the projects that I wanted to finish this summer." In other words, I thought, "Huh, I don't think I've done a lot of programming this summer."
Well, I mean, I've done a decent amount of programming. I've just been jumping over the place and working on a bunch of different projects. This is literally me when doing everything. I read the books I was going to use for my summer reading homework at the very beginning of summer, but I still haven't done my homework at the time of this writing. Now I have calculus homework to do too, so that's always fun.
Anyways, as I mentioned, I did read a couple of books this summer! I read maybe around ~10ish, so that's good? Just check out my bookshelf.
Hm, okay. What else did I do? Oh, I also went to the beach. Obviously. It's not a summer unless you go to the beach, somehow get sunburned even though your skin tone is darker than the majority of the people on the beach, and wait for it... learn how to swim! Yes, I finally learned how to swim. How impressive...
Okay, that's about it now. It was a great summer.
Signing off, Jianmin (Amanda) Chen
Okay, now I'm actually going to finish my programming projects. Totally. I'm not going to get sidetracked or anything by the next shiny thing that comes my way...