westcoast to midwest
By: Nikki Munsayac
Nikki Munsayac is from Tracy, CA and graduated in 2016 from St. Mary’s College of California where she majored in Allied Health Science. This year Nikki is working as a Wellness Coordinator at Family Care Health Centers in St. Louis.
Looking back at this time last year, I was a couple months into my senior year of undergrad. Currently, I’m a couple months into my service year as a Loretto Volunteer.
Here is what I have gathered so far:
I love exploring and St. Louis has been my little playground.
I have always known that I love adventures. Luckily for me, St. Louis has a lot to offer! There are many places for me to visit and coffee shops for me to try. So far, I can cross off the Science Center, Art Museum, Busch Stadium, Cherokee Street, the Grove, Del Mar, and a few other spots I can’t remember. Another great thing about St. Louis, MO is that it’s close to other states! I have an odd appreciation for license plates and I loved when we took a trip to the Motherhouse in Loretto, Kentucky because I got to see a variety of different kinds of license plates. I’m also very appreciative of the traveling I will be doing later on in the year.
Sports fans here are different and I seem to believe that the rivalry is a bigger deal to us in California than it is to the people of St. Louis.
Well, the only rivalry really is the hockey (St. Louis Blues) team and baseball (St. Louis Cardinals) team while I’m a San Jose Sharks and San Francisco Giants fan. I’m used to seeing black and orange for the Giants *ahem #BeliEVEN or green and yellow for the A’s. Now I see Cardinals gear (red) everywhere I go. I have been living here for almost two months now and I wear my Giants hat almost every time I go out. I expect someone to call me out on my hat, but instead I usually get responses like “oh, are you from California?” Like no! I want some friendly rivalry and for someone to boo at me because I’m now living in enemy territory (which finally happened a couple weeks ago). I even went to a Cardinals game the other day with a Giants shirt, which I hid under a jacket because it was really cold at the game and unzipped it once the game was over. Still, nothing. However, I’m really excited for basketball season to start. I’ve been seeing a lot of Cavalier fans here *insert eye roll emoji #DubNation.
Weather here is fun they said….
Ok, warm rain??? How is it warm outside and it’s raining?? Whenever it’s raining back home, I think “Perfect! It’s time to layer up, put a scarf around my neck, and beanie on my head.” No, that’s not applicable here (yet, maybe?). It’ll rain when it’s 90 degrees outside. Now lightning storms and thunder.. I was told I’d fall in love with them, but after experiencing a couple of them in the middle of the night, I don’t think I’m close to loving them. Also, humidity isn’t a joke here. I thought I was prepared from living in 120 degree weather for the past fifteen years, but it’s nothing compared to humidity. Wow! Lastly, tornados… I’m terrified of them and have never done a tornado drill. I’ve done earthquake drills but they weren’t utilized as much when I was in school because big ones rarely happened around me.
Cooking is now something I enjoy.
I used to be afraid of knives and did not like to cook or bake for myself, let alone others, because I am afraid of disappointing mine or anyone else’s taste buds. Things have changed now that I have prepared meals and helped make dishes. Sometimes when I am at a restaurant now, I look at what I ordered and think “I could probably make this myself.” One recipe that I am happy I found was making my own granola bars. I won’t eat breakfast sometimes because I am in a rush, so lately I have been making coconut granola bars made with agave syrup, which is better for my blood sugar, and they’re amazing!
I’m a people person.
Before I was contemplating if I wanted to get my Masters in Public Health, apply for Medical School, or Physician's Assistant School. I’m currently working at a clinic called Family Care Health Centers and noticed I enjoy interacting with patients more than I do sitting at my desk. Most likely somewhere down the line I’ll apply for a post bacc program, attend either Medical School or PA School, and proudly own that white coat.
Most importantly, I’m realizing that the things I have encountered and will experience during my time with Loretto are unique. I’m excited to see and share these stories!
10/12/2016 03:45:39 pm
Nikki, great commentary on much of St. Louis which you have explored. It's probably better that you were left to discover St. L humidity, and nighttime thunderstorms. Both are hard to explain, and easy to understand once through them.
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In Their Own Words
We invite you to get to know Loretto Volunteers and the program here. Volunteers introduce themselves and reflect on their experiences.