I can’t believe I’ve already lived in the states for almost two weeks. Time flies by so fast and at the same time I feel like I’ve already lived here for a while now - time is a funny thing.
The first week was dedicated to getting all the practical things sorted - I’m not gonna bore you with that. Between cleaning, moving in and getting adjusted to American life we’ve done some fun stuff as well and I’ve written a bit about that. The second week we attended a few introductory events as well as explored a few places (I still haven’t been in downtown San Francisco) which are way more fun to write about.
I arrived in San Francisco Tuesday (July 30th) evening and was welcomed by the sweetest roommates who picked me up in the airport… and they had even made my bed.
We mostly did practical things these days but I really enjoyed some slow days to get over the jetlag and just having time to explore the neighborhood with walks, runs, and bikerides in Golden Gate park and along Ocean Beach. It is so fun spending time getting to know my roommates who are all amazing people. On day 4 we went to a night club in Oakland (the hip hop center I’ve been told) and wow that’s just something different than anything I’ve seen in Denmark. I don’t think I’ll ever be a fan of night clubs but it was a fun way to explore a new culture (and clubs already close at 2 am here so that’s a big plus)
We woke up late and returned our rental car (Jasmin’s beloved Jeep) in Oakland and afterwards had lunch by a lake Marriot where there was music, people dancing and just a very cozy and happy atmosphere.
On Tuesday, we had a bike tour of Stanford University and I can’t even describe how impressive that place is. The architecture is amazing and so thoroughly made and the whole area is beautifully decorated with flowers and palm trees.
Steven (associate dean of clinical and translational research and part of the DARE team) who gave us the tour told us the beautiful story of how the Stanford family fought for the place and build it to what it is today.
After the bike tour, we were introduced to other Danish students who are also in the San Francisco area now.We were about 15 I think and some of them are moving to a house close to us.
A week after my arrival we had the official welcome dinner at a Thai cottage next to our house. There is a lot of people working on giving us the best possible experience and I feel so honored to be part of this fellowship.
While I can’t officially start working until August 26thdue to my visa my roommates have now started on their research projects. Last week I went to Stanford with Jasmin and Aleks since it is the perfect environment to study (I have a lot of reading to do before starting at UCSF).
In the afternoon, Jasmin and I went for ice cream and a beautiful walk to the dish in Stanford – and yes, we got lost but it was so worth it.
On Friday I had the first meeting with my mentor at UCSF – the kindest person, so I feel that I’m in very safe hands here at UCSF. We are meeting a few times before I start working just to get me settled into the new working environment.
In the evening, Jasmin and I went for another walk – and of course we got lost again and Aleks had to pick us up when he came back from Stanford. But honestly everything was so beautiful that we just kept walking for hours. This time we explored the beach a few hundred meters from our house. When you walk along Ocean Beach you’ll get to see Seal Rocks, the beautiful Lands’ End hiking trail and if you keep walking you’ll get the most beautiful view of the Golden Gate Bridge (if Carl the fog hasn’t completely covered the view).
We spend all day Saturday studying and Sunday we attended Outside Lands Festival in Golden Gate Park. The festival was so much fun (even though all the weed makes me quite anxious) – Dean Lewis and Kygo was especially good.
This turned out to be a bit long but I hope you enjoy following my time in San Francisco. I’ll try to update you more often a make it a bit shorter. I’m writing this after I’ve just watched the sun set over the Pacific Ocean from our balcony. The perfect view when I feel a bit homesick since it is just as stunning as the sunset in Løkken.