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Alumni blog: Pushpanjali Giri in New York

Pushpanjali Giri came to Pestalozzi from Nepal in 2008 and graduated in 2010. She is currently majoring in Chemistry at Williams College in Massachusetts, USA.

At the end of last semester, things became very busy and demanding. I was giving my finals and writing an extensive lab report for one of my classes (organic chemistry) until 21st December. Then somehow I became sick right after I finished my report! With fever, cough and dizziness, I stayed in bed for five days.

But I am fine now, and we came to New York City yesterday evening. This is my second time in New York City. It took us two and a half hours to reach to my friend’s uncle’s place in Brooklyn. We went to a pretty famous Japanese/Korean buffet restaurant situated right in between Queens and Long Island, and had a nice dinner there. Today we drove to Manhattan and went to Times Square and Rockefeller Center. As I was waiting in queue for restroom in the restaurant where we had our lunch, I met a lady from London. When I told her that I had stayed in Pestalozzi International Village for two years before I came to the USA, she said she knew about Pestalozzi!

Pushpanjali in Times SquareWe wanted to watch the famous ball drop in Times Square, but there were already so many people by the time we drove there (around 2pm), and it was pretty cold in New York because of the wind. In the end, we decided it was better to watch the ball drop on TV, so instead we walked around Manhattan for a bit, had a nice lunch and then went for the view of the Manhattan from Atlantic Avenue in Brooklyn. We went to nice Indian/Pakistani restaurant and had dinner. Now though, as I saw PSY doing his Gangnam Style in Times Square on TV, I wish we had stayed on Times Square!

At college for the whole month of January, we have something called Winter Study, where you take only one class (and it’s not like a regular class) on anything that you like. Sometimes, you can even do Winter Study off-campus. Last year, I went to Portland, Maine where I lived with a refugee family from Somalia and volunteered in a health center in Portland. Portland has a big refugee community for people from places like Somalia, Kenya, Rwanda, Iran, Iraq and Bhutan. While I was volunteering at the health center, I shadowed different physicians and saw how they interacted with such a diverse array of patients, not only in terms of their ailments, but also in terms of their nationality and race. There were so many patients who didn’t understand English, so the doctors used interpreters. It was an incredibly rich learning experience for me.

This year though, I am staying on campus. I am doing a research in biochemistry together with a professor. Though I am not sure what I’ll be doing exactly (I will know that at my first meeting on Thursday), I think we’ll be working to investigate the interaction between proteins and RNA and DNA. I’m really looking forward to this research!

Pestalozzi Alumni, please keep in touch!