El Casa & da Burgh

This is where I live
(click for a link to Google Map)

I rent a room in Walnut Street. This is a really quiet street for a city like Pittsburgh. It’s situated on the Shadyside of Squirrel Hill. We have a beautiful backyard, with a large oak (I think it’s an oak) and a big family of squirrels.
Like Steven said, they probably liked the name “Squirrel Hill” and moved in :D.

Welcome-card from Mark
(click on it to enlarge)

I rent the room from Mark Tierno; it’s a room in his apartment. He made me a welcome-card, which still puts a smile on my face if I look at it. See for yourself: the guy should be a comedian!

I unpacked my bags today, and with my stuff in it, I feel really at home in the room. After unpacking, I talked to some of my friends and my parents over the internet. It feels funny to be so many miles away from home, but the weirdest of all is the six-hour time difference. In The Netherlands they’re about to go to bed now, and I haven’t even had dinner!

Anyway, around noon I went for a walk to Carnegie Mellon. It’s quite a long walk, but for me there’s a lot to be seen here. It’s just totally different from the Netherlands. I’ll try to explain to my Dutch friends… If you ever played The Sims knows what I mean: The houses are big and spacious. They have a large driveway, and they look… picturesque. Like they’re Playmobil or something. Furthermore, the roads are wider, and the cars are bigger.

Oh, and it’s about 30¬∞C here!

The UC (main building, background) and The Cut (lawn) with “Walking Up The Sky” (big pole :D)
Click on the image to enlarge!

I first went to 300 Craig Street, where the administrative department of the Human Computer Interaction Institute is situated. First I coudn’t get in, but luckily someone let me in. I met Victoria, our temporary coordinator. She answered my questions, and I got a map (very useful), some flyers, and a keyring/clip (great, now I won’t lose the keys to my apartment!)

As expected, the university itself is big too. The University Centre (which is the main building) has a small supermarket, a fittness room, several squash courts, and several of the largest presentation rooms I’ve ever seen. The book shop mainly sells CMU merchandize. I bought an embroidled Carnegie Mellon t-shirt.

I learned from the flyers that this part of pittsburgh has two shopping streets, Craig street and Walnut Street (a few blocks down the road of my apartment). I walked home via the Walnut Street shops, and accidentically found myself buying a Bose speakerset at the Apple store :P.

Well, that’s about all I’ve got. Tomorrow starts the international students orientation program. Victoria send me the e-mail adresses of the international MHCI students. I’ll try to team up with them tomorrow.

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