....avoiding writing my thesis....
I was thinking today of all the people who've had an impact in my life. Of course there's the major influential ones like: Dr. Larry Mink (the first scientist who actually saw some potential in me, and yes tried to convert me into a Chemist by actually setting up interviews with various professors), Dr. John Tate (first scientits who let me work in his lab...yes he was a Chemist, and yes it was due to Dr. Mink's influence), Dr. Greg Grether (first Biologist who saw potential in me and who inspired me through his enthusiasm for Biology), Dr. Gita Kolluru (the post doc in Grether's lab who really took time to talk to me about the field and guide me), Dr. Colleen Talbot (who introduced me to graduate life).
Then there are those people who don't even know they made a difference... yes...my friends of course who I have countlessly thanked and praised....but also the anonymous people like the man on the plane about three years ago. I was on my way to New Mexico and it was the first time I was flying since 9/11. As I buckled my seat belt I thought about the countless times I had done that with no imminent danger. I sat back in my seat and stared out the window. Soon the plane was ready for take off and I FREAKED OUT! I was crying and breathing way too loud, I'm sure. The business man sitting next to me asked if I was ok and I told him that I felt silly because I had done this countless times and had no reason to be so nervous. He was great. Talked to me about his job, asked me where I was going, kept my mind off the flying....and soon we landed. When we got off he made sure that I knew where I had to catch my connecting flight by walking me over to the gate before he left. I was so thankful! I think about him all the time. Sadly time has allowed me to forget what he looked like so if I ever wanted to thank him personally I wouldn't be able to. So instead I send good thoughts to him every day that I can and I hope that his life is filled with happiness.