Never a Dull Moment...

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Lately, it seems as if the general activity level here in Beijing has increased even further.  The last two weeks have been packed with different tasks, projects, and adventures.  In a true collaborative effort, I have been learning fMRI data analysis from a tremendous BNU graduate student named Lijuan Zou (check out her most recently published paper in the journal, Cortex, titled "Structural plasticity of left Caudate in bimodal bilinguals").  At Dr. Li's suggestion, I have also been reading some literature on a possible project to be completed when I return to the U.S. relating to variations in Chinese-English bilingual mathematical processing.  It seems that Chinese-English bilinguals present an even more valuable population in neurological research than I originally thought! I have been asked to edit more of my new colleagues' papers for grammar and spelling, and I've been really enjoying getting the "first read" on their research. 

.  On a final academia-related note, I began helping with Ben Zinszer's research by assisting him in an area that I actually already knew a little about - moving subjects through behavioral paradigms. 

Last week, Dr. Michael Ullman visited Beijing Normal University and stayed for a little under a week.  I was lucky enough to not only meet Dr. Ullman, but to travel with him through Beijing, experience some adventurous local cuisine, listen to him speak extensively on his research, and even talk with him one-on-one and a few questions I had about the next steps in my academic career.  Dr. Ullman proved to be a daring travel partner (We. Ate. SCORPIONS!), a knowledgeable and passionate academian, and an overall good guy.  I very much enjoyed his visit, even if it did put me slightly behind on my work. 

On the more casual side of things, life in general in Beijing has become surprisingly familiar.  The twenty-minute walk back to the Home Inn, as well as early morning jogs/workout sessions with local friends from the "playground" have become somewhat habitual.  I've even started learning Tai Chi every morning from a good friend named TaoRan, who is a student of Dr. Taomei Guo.  Contrasting directly are the weekends, packed most recently with an arduous hike along the Old Great Wall followed by eating a homemade meal at a local guide's home, which was made of bricks from the wall!  I am expecting a visit from my parents next week, and I cannot wait to show them the parts of the city I have become accustomed to, and to see the looks on their faces when they see starfish and scorpion on a stick!  Please enjoy some pictures of our adventures and new friends.

Old Great Wall Panoramic.jpg

Group Pic with Ullman.jpg
Ullman and the girls.jpg

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This page contains a single entry by PATRICK JOSEPH CLARK published on July 4, 2011 12:29 AM.

Week 6 in Beijing was the previous entry in this blog.

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