But an exciting one.
Winding down to when I stop my shameless recreating, playstation 2ing, warcrafting, beading, and so forth, dive headfirst into a slew of books, notes, advice, mp3s, and videos, and cram like I've never crammed before.
Krash and I had a conversation about whether medical school can be crammed, and the answer is yes... kind of. Cramming, as she pointed out, starts earlier in medical school, so what was a 36 hour coffee-addled stress fest in college, in medical school, lasts two weeks. But does that mean it's not crammable? Ask most of the people who passed micro whether medical school is crammable. Sometimes. Kind of. If you plan it right.
So the USMLE kind of proves the ultimate cram session for terminal procrastinators like me. 7-9 weeks in which I must recapitulate the entirety of my basic sciences, and then be tested on them against a national scale, meaning if the school dropped the teaching ball on genetics one year, gotta fix it. If I decided biochem was way more important than embryology and as such, COMPLETELY blew off the later for the entirety of the final exam, counting on my anatomy to coast me through, now's the time to pay in blood by having to learn, pretty much for the first time, the entire formation of the human nervous system. Didn't read the antivirals in pharmacology because you didn't get to that packet in time, and it was only 5 questions on the second midterm in a curved class? Ha ha sucka, time to learn it now. Only the stakes are higher.
So how am I going to study... uhhh... videos, Goljan lectures, a mishmash of review books, particularly those from which I could not be separated during basic sciences (BRS physio and Lippincott biochem, I'm looking in your direction), and a possibly misguided dependence on the First Aid. Hopefully that'll work out since I decided that given my attendance history in lecture over basic sciences, signing up for a 4000 dollar class in the hopes I would resurrect as a completely different person and cheerfully skip off to 8 hours of high yield lecture beginning at the crack of Starbucks opening was a complete pipe dream.
Time will tell.
On the plus side, I'm in a quiet pretty town with some good walking areas, which will facilitate being jumpy by allowing me to listen to lectures on my ipod, I have my own room with a set up study center, and even my own printer! After two years in Grenada, I've come to view having my own printer like most people view getting their first car.
My room has a view of the river from one side, and city hall from the other, which is one of those old class small town brick models with colored lights on the clock tower. It's very nice.
And since it's America, it's also got a Walmart (fortunately NOT in view of my window) where I can buy more printer cartridges, paper, and chex mix at 11 PM. Or grab fast food at 3 AM. Awesome.
Sooo, my Dad's been here since right near Christmas, and surprisingly, has enjoyed watching me play God of War while taking out my frustrations for having it take 90 minutes for me to kill a hydra by having my avatar destroy inanimate objects. And yes, I'm immature.
I spent New Year's in Carolina Beach, since I refused to spend the evening glued to the Times Square feed again, and I'm hoping to be IN Times Square (for the first, and probably last, time) next year. Carolina Beach was a pretty cool time though. We watched the lighted beach ball drop from the ladder on a fire engine (small town), a surprisingly impressive display of fireworks over the pier, and best yet, found a honky tonk bar right near the water that even featured the requisite jukebox featuring a disproportionate ratio of Journey and old time Aerosmith. Don't ask. Oh, and I'll say it, to anyone who complains about Grenadian brews, Budweiser is still 10 times worse than Carib.
Drove dad back over to Winston Salem yesterday, stopping by Greensboro to retrieve some of my textbooks from Krash, who magnanimously took about 20 pounds of them into her luggage when I realized that my estimations of my bag weight was hideously optimistic. So I've been reunited with my Netters, and there was much rejoicing. It was also weird/cool to see someone from the Rock in the real world, since I still am carrying this sort of sadness about wondering which people from Grenada I'm going to get to ever see again.
Needed a Nawab's curry fix in Winston Salem. Holy crap, that stuff is good. I thought Grenada had ruined my taste for anything remotely resembling Indian food, but I was wrong. Now I have to spend the next three months not only studying, but getting rid of the results of my beer, meat, wine, ethnic food, fast food vaccum impression. Gods.
Good luck to all you other exam takers, and good luck to all you SGUers heading back soon!