The Hoover Tower is a sight to behold. Being the tallest building around campus for many miles, it commands the attention of visitors to Stanford. Naturally, we gravitated towards the tower to see the magnificent structure up close. We made the decision to go up the tower as learnt that it is free as long as you are a Stanford student. The attendants at the reception was warm and friendly, and led us to an elevator, where we were brought up to the 14-storey observational deck. Stepping out into the deck, we were awed at the 360-degree view awaiting us. Looking down, the campus is a sprawling mix of buildings and greenery, rugged but yet at the same time beautiful.

From up there, the Hoover Tower spurred excitement with the members of our group. From the deck, we technically could see where our halls are, but it still took us a minute to identify the location after much hand-waving and second-guessing. We also surveyed a number of idyllic spots that seemed interesting, and we all made a mental note to explore in the future. The Hoover Tower instilled a sense of appreciation of how vast Stanford is. Compared to SUTD where everything is a stone throw away and everywhere can be seen in a day, Stanford is the complete opposite—the campus ground is so huge that it is easy to get lost without even trying. Looking ahead, even though we can’t feasibly explore the entire campus grounds, we are still determined to explore as many places as possible—not just the big buildings, but the nook the crannies as well .The Hoover Tower has indeed served as a starting point for our adventures ahead!

On the weekend, our group attended the San Francisco Pride parade. The largest in the world, the parade stretches two kilometers along one of the busiest street in San Francisco. Parade participants from hundreds of organizations, disadvantaged groups and corporations gathered to march down the street, proudly proclaiming their support for the LGBT people.

Eager to see the parade for ourselves, we had an early breakfast and made our way to San Francisco before the parade started. The pride parade happens once a year and we certainly do not want to miss it. As expected, the parade drew attendees from all over the world. Before the parade even started, a huge crowd had already gathered and positioned themselves right behind the fences which straddles the two sides of the street.

The parade was indeed spectacular. True to the rainbow flag, participants don their vibrant and robust costumes as they paraded down the street. The motorcades fill the atmosphere with music and singing amidst the crowd’s cheering. There were also performers of all shapes and sizes: singers, dancers, skaters, performers, and even political leaders marched down the street. No matter their background, every single one of them poured their hearts out towards supporting their cause in their own way. True to its name, we were all proud to be a part of the celebration.

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