There are 3 things:
1. During my sophomore year in college, I was accepted to an exchange program with Kiev Mohyla Academy of Law and Sciences for the summer semester of 2006. On our 1st week there, I joined a group of other Ukrainian and foreign-exchange students to a tour in around Chernobyll Oblast and a rare tour inside Chernobyll ruins. It was amazing to be there because I've read so many works and participated in many collegiate debates on Russian nuclear arsenals, nuclear arms research and on the Chernobyll incident in 1986. But to actually be there in the former Soviet Republic and see the effects of such a liquidation, was for me life-changing.
2. Climbing down a 80 foot ravine for an ecology class that our Professor (Dr. Ostrofskie) thought would be ideal. As the class TA, I was in charge of hauling lab equipment and carrying 40 lbs of equipment down a ravine was, let's say...scary.
During the midst of our measurments, it started snowing (Lake-effect snowstorm).
I remember taking a deep breath and looked at Dr. Ostrofskie and took in his response to the snow, "Oh boy, oh boy, i guess we should get back to the bus , eh, Al?"
With my snow mask on, he did not see my facial reaction to his little comment. Since I specifically warned him of the weather situation the day earlier and requested he re-sechedule the lab trip the next week.
3. We were doing lake coring at Conneaut Lake in summer 2007. Dr. Ostrofskie and I and another student research assistant went coring. One of our cores fell into the lake and Devin and I had to plunge and dive 20 feet in cold lake water to retrieve it. When we resurfaced, all three of us were laughing. We had to dive to retrieve that core machine, the machine itself was worth a good $10,000 and a good part of Dr. O's grant money was spent on buying that machine. Thank God, it was still functional.