Blogs: Living in Boston/Cambridge

Getting into gear

The grad student’s survival guide to biking in the Boston area

July 2020
Biological Engineering
Living in the south of the US for most of my life, where the distance between locations of interest are large and biking infrastructure is almost non-existent, biking as a primary form of transportation never seemed like a serious option. Moving to Boston, I knew I wouldn’t be able to bring my car...

How to Walk (or Bike, or Bus) a Mile in My Shoes

The Joys of My Daily Commute

July 2020
According to Apple Maps, my apartment is exactly one mile from the entrance of MIT’s campus. I just moved to Boston last August and was able to find a great place in the neighborhood known as “Cambridgeport.” I love this area. It’s quiet, close to a Trader Joe’s, and there is a freedom to how I can...

In Defense of the MBTA

You don’t know how good you have it.

July 2020
Technology and Policy Program
Trash littered across the floor. Stifling, oppressive heat in a poorly lit space. Loud screeching. The smell of burning… I don’t even know. No, I’m not at a damp college party. I’m in a T station. Man, I love the T. And I mean it. Let me explain why. One, my research revolves around combating...

What’s Your Grocery Strategy?

Feeding yourself in Cambridge without a car

July 2020
MIT Sloan MBA Program
Good food has long been my main vice. Before moving to Cambridge, I lived in DC and loved taking advantage of the diverse food scene. My Sunday ritual was going to the farmers market, heading to Whole Foods, and then coming home to cook for the afternoon. I knew once I was on a graduate student...

Changing Your Habits One Sunrise at a Time

How to become a morning person through photography

Jun 2020
Biological Engineering
In my third year of graduate school, I decided to become a morning person. I had fallen into a group of friends who regularly got up at ungodly times of the day to go on various wilderness adventures, like climbing and skiing. Since I wasn’t getting up early on weekdays, my morning wakeup times...

My Journey Home

How I Came to Love Cambridge

Jun 2020
Mechanical Engineering
I am a California girl. I love walks on the beach, wearing shorts in January, cultural acceptance of athleisure wear as commonplace dress, and every restaurant having a vegetarian option. As a result, moving to almost the furthest state possible for at least half a decade came with some concerns....

Two cats move to Cambridge

How—and why—to relocate with pets

JUN 2020
Every night, when I come home, I’m greeted by the hungry calls of my two cats, Kiwi and Clem. Clem, the tortie, usually weaves in between my legs as I walk in, while her sister Kiwi, the calico, leads the way to the kitchen. After dinner, the cats loaf around in their usual spots―Kiwi on the couch...

A Thermodynamic Model of Friendship

Keeping up with friendships is energy-intensive

MAY 2020
Disclaimer: I have not taken a physics class in years, and the unavoidable inaccuracies in the discussion that follows should in no way reflect poorly on the professors/department that bestowed a physics degree upon me back in the day. Friendships take energy to maintain. Entropically speaking,...

Terraforming Friendship

How friendship started to flourish after a game of Terraforming Mars

MAY 2020
Electrical Engineering and Computer Science
My friend recently flew back to visit his grad school friends. All of us used to do many things together. Since he was back, we decided to play a game we enjoyed — Terraforming Mars. The game...

The Bright Side of Isolation

A few positive aspects of social distancing

MAY 2020
Mechanical Engineering
Being a graduate student whose work mostly takes place on a PC, the changes in MIT policies related to COVID-19 have not impacted my academic work by a large amount so far. On the other hand, the social impact of it has been much more profound. From an exponential increase in the discussions (...