The semester is now over (meaning having a short break to observe Xmas and New Year). Hope to catch up on some work so that can try and submit something worthwhile for some conferences. Also I need to hit my head on a sink so I can solve some research questions, but more on that another time.
Semester being over then I also had an interesting project for my Pattern Recognition class. We were tasked to predict when it is best to buy airline tickets for local flights in the US. The Class Website has all the info you need on this but I have also put up the data we prepared for the project. So if you are interested in an interesting data set with an interesting goal you can go to my Research page on my website.
Well what can I say. It was great. No Snow. Good friends, good catching up and overall good South African company. It was an all nerves day for me as I was anxiously awaiting and coordinating someone getting to the US. But once she was in the air from Johannesburg I could actually enjoy the day. I got invited to share Christmas lunch with the world famous 🙂 Mavundla sisters in NYC and was also joined by a fellow Fulbrighter and Witsie Lebogang.
It was good company and good conversation. We have a great deal to learn from each other if we can all sit to share meals together. Simple but true. Fox News did not ruin the holiday for me either. I said "Merry Christmas" and Happy Holidays, haha.
The Winter, It was Cold
So my better half finally arrived in the great old U S of A. It was a great day picking her up from JFK International Airport. I woke up in NYC at about 10 am on the 26th and I had known that the storm was approaching but after looking into the heavens I knew the day was not going to end well. Well the heavens did open up and the blizzard was legendary. You can follow the report here and here. And it seems some people are looking to explain the blizzard as having some higher purpose (Again not going to ruin my day, as they say Haterz going to Hate). Least to say we ended up having to hunt out a hotel near New York Penn station as our attempts to get anything near JFK where futile. Then as we were heading to our lodgings we had to cross two streets as a cab was out of the question the roads were now just white. And when crossing the second road the wind picked up and thats when you feel it. You cant see, you are being pelted from all sides and all you wish for is warmth, but all you get is more snow on you. We made it back to NJ.
Getting back to NJ we had to catch a taxi and venture into the unknown while on our way to our apartment. We passed by Police pulling out stuck cars and then had to swim to our apartment from where the Taxi dropped us off. This was a cool (haha) way to welcome someone to the US. Snow, Its beautiful, Dangerous and unforgiving. The East Coast definitely felt that last night.