07 January – The First Exam !

Alina cutting Lisa's hair

was probably the most stressful day of our stay here in Jamaica. Our
practical exam was scheduled for after dinner and we had about 4 days (in
between collecting and identifying organisms, attending lectures, and creating
PowerPoint presentations) to learn all 10 lectures and memorize 85 scientific Latin
names and their classifications. Breakfast consisted of Eggo waffles, bacon,
and fruit salad. I fell for the trickery of Professor Warren when he asked me
how I was doing this morning and I said I was doing great, not remembering that
this is how he chooses the blog writer for the day. After we ate quickly,
everyone retreated to their rooms for a massive cramming session referred to as
panic time on the daily schedule. To try and soak up as much Jamaican sun as
possible, I decided to have a study picnic outside and shortly after, Anna
joined me and we quizzed one another until lunchtime. Because the Latin names
of all of these organisms are almost impossible to just remember, we came up
with a word association game, turning the Spotted Sea Hare, Aplysia dactylomila
into Apple-I-See-Ya Teradactyl-Oatmeal-A. During a study break I wandered into
Anna, Kristin, and Lisa’s room, where I was immediately asked by Lisa to cut
her hair off. Naturally I was confused and reluctant at first, but when I was
shown the baseball-sized clump of matted hair at the base of her head, I agreed
under the condition that she state clearly in front of a witness that she was
fully aware of her request and in a normal mental state at the time.  So, Kristin, Anna, and I proceeded to cut off
Lisa’s massive dreadlock with the only tool available to us, a pair of
dissecting scissors (see above photo).

lunch they served seasoned salmon and baked potatoes. At this point, we were
really feeling the pressure and some were beginning to get a little unstable.
We presented our PowerPoints at 4pm, each group showing their pictures of
adventures on the coral reef and identifying organisms that were collected or
seen. The species most commonly seen in Discovery Bay
was the Red Stripe, also known as Raphaelus Bergmanis. After our presentations we
had a pop quiz on tropical fish identification and then studying resumed until
dinner. We had a stir-fry chicken and beef selection as well as string beans
and salad. Upside-down lemon meringue cake [Ed: Looked like lemon custard merinque pie to me…] was served for dessert, which was
when Will, Raphael, and I quizzed each other before the exam. After filling our
brains to maximum capacity, we headed to the wet lab, where Professors Warren
and Peterson set up 50 stations with questions on the study material. The
intense studying caused intense release in the form of volleyball and late
night game of Catch-phrase (see photo below). Needless to say, the always animated Brian caused a lot of
laughter with his over-the-top dramatics. Altogether, the day was long, we worked
hard, but we partied hard too.

-Alina (aka Appletini)


6 thoughts on “07 January – The First Exam !

  1. thanks so much alina for cutting that annoying thing off of my head… you decreased my stress for the day tenfold 🙂

  2. HEY LINKSYS!!! nice post!! obviously you were studying… did you drink tea too?
    Sounds like you guys are having a great time! I wish I was there too!! Love the pictures and posts.. keep them coming!
    Leens… did you see dolphins?!?!

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