i found this poem i wrote in a small notepad i sometimes carry with me. maybe this was written when i was on the train
the humidity is inescapable
the love affair is strong
wandering on connected roads
eating fresh fruit off trees.
and learning about my life.
absorbing every bit of difference
as sweat on my skin appear after my walk
It’s been a while since I thought about how it was to be there. Time goes by and I don’t really think actively about being away from home for that long. But this morning, after I peed, I came back to bed. It was light out a little but my room was still sort of dark. After I closed my eyes, I could hear the noises outside. The birds chirping, the wind blowing and a faraway wind chime chiming away. I felt like I was in Taiwan again. I had left my window opened last night and the cool breezes from outside made it all so calm. When I was away, I always had this background feeling of something unfamiliar, but comfortable. Where I could lay in bed and feel really relaxed, but having no attachment to the things around me; only feeling connected to the sounds and…
people seemed really laid back, calm and peaceful here. they kinda do their own thing and let others do their own thing, too. they’re not mean or overly friendly; a good in-between. it reminds me of the vibe of albany new york with harvard square massachusetts with local small businesses and lots of good food and every place being walkable.
check out some nice architecture, casco bay, too many photos of buildings and cute seating:
let’s talk about food! when i was doing some research before visiting, i could already sense that it wasn’t going to be one of those trips in which i hike or window shop. it’s an eating trip. if you’re a foodie, then you should think about coming here (do some online research and drool over some food pics). i’d also suggest selecting the places you want to go because we just sort of winged it regarding time, so now i want to go back and try more restaurants and different foods :) i didn’t take photos of everything we ate, but here are a few (restaurants pics from top to bottom: the holy donut, fuji restaurant, otto & ramen suzukiya)
alligator maki, fuji restaurant
lunchbox, fuji restaurant
i believe this is miso ramen (SO GOOD!), ramen suzukiya
beef and fish don, ramen suzukiya
my favorite regarding vibe was at ramen suzukiya. the owner is so nice and the whole aesthetics of the restaurant was very clean, smooth and simple. overall, the food of portland is simply fresh and delicious. some more highlights from my trip are:
Every so often, my urge to travel comes so suddenly and I find myself feeling a tiny bit nostalgic. Quick glimpses of images, words and feelings of my travels appear out of nowhere; such as how freeing it felt to sit behind a motorcycle as the wind and I became one through the blurry night of lights and cars or seeing faces of the wonderful people I met and remembering the conversations we had. They were all simple, yet cherished experiences for me. My appreciation for new experiences has never left it seems.
It’s difficult for me to describe the feeling I get from traveling. Feels similar to meditation and anticipation; acknowledging that there is the unknown and embracing it. It’s like when my father told me I wouldn’t understand what falling in love would feel like until it happened. I understand that now. I guess, essentially, traveling teaches me to embrace the freedom to feel, to act, to learn, to be and to change. There’s a vulnerability, innocence and blind trust involved when staying at a new place and learning to live there as a visitor.
It’s worth it. One of the memories I often remember is the night I came home from a six month adventure abroad. I was meeting my family at the luggage carousel and I didn’t see them. I was so used to looking ahead and being on my own that I forgot to look beside me. I heard my mom yell out my name and to my left was where they sat waiting all along. My sister had said I looked so different that she almost didn’t recognize me. I understood what she meant because that’s how I felt about myself. As days passed, it was how I felt about life, them, home and everything around me. I am grateful for all of it.
“We travel not to escape life, but for life not to escape us.” – Anonymous
having sweet thoughts about road trips again.. here’s a post i wrote about all the fun things i learned while embarking on a journey with four wheels and the open road. im currently gearing up this blog for next month on some creative fun.
hello everyone and good day, im enjoying this summer while it lasts. summer always goes by so quickly. here’s one of the video projects i did. it’s short and sweet. this was posted and made for the couple’s blog i write for fun when i’m not here doing fun things. you can check it out here. the post for this particular Lake George trip is here, if you’re interested. yay to film and the beauty and freedom of creativity and self-expression. smile <3
hi everyone, i’ve been working on some video projects and felt inspired to create one of the first black & white film roll i used throughout last year and combine it with a poem i wrote, titled “35mm.” the photography post is here if you’d like to see it. here’s my film/video section if you want to see more.
As I put this song on repeat, over and over, I think about how it was. The sound of the guitar strings immediately ushers me back to that little guitar club in Taiwan. It wasn’t “little” in the size of the group; it was actually rather large. The actual space they had for storage was limited though. The school club was lead by a third year undergrad at the school I was attending (for a short time). I remember feeling a kind of peace that can perhaps only be created when I’m abroad in unfamiliar lands and taking time exploring. I don’t know exactly what drew me into this place. I was wandering around campus and I heard someone playing guitar. It reminded me of my campus back home in the States and I so very missed the familiarity of it.
I decided that I wanted to learn to play. I couldn’t really play and I can’t now. But I guess it wasn’t the point. I made friends and they were so welcoming. They signified a very valuable, vulnerable and young time in my life; a certain kind of innocence. I only know this because much time has gone by since then. And so this song brings me back there. To how it was and how it always will be in my memory. I’ll remember how simple the interactions were without any underlining meanings or passive aggressiveness or forced inclusion; it was very natural. They accepted the foreigner that I was and my cultural background. They held out a hand of friendship and that’s a pretty fantastic occurrence in life. I couldn’t have asked for more.
I recall one real distinct memory of my last day. I thought I was going to stay longer, a week actually, but due to abrupt illness, I had to depart the next day. It was surprising, shocking and heartbreaking for me. I felt like I was being taken away from a place I was fond of; where I found a place for myself, finally, with friends I wanted more time with. I was never good with goodbyes. But as I was putting my possessions in the car; to see this place as I’ve known it to be for the last time, I saw one of my friends across the way. I’m not sure if he saw me, but I looked at him for a moment and he was casually sitting. I felt grateful. He may not even know that this even happened, but he gave me a kind of peace with leaving. A peace with the kind of innocence that him and I and others shared while we played guitar, ate delicious foods, laughed about stupid jokes and chilled out through the warm nights.
Shortest month of the year and yet, Feb., I love you. I wanted to post something before March comes by tomorrow and turns everything long again. February is short and sweet. It’s cute and whimsical.
I woke up this morning feeling sort of in a daze and sort of in a sour mood, but having seen a few smiles from strangers, I realized that there’s really no reason to frown. If they’re going to smile at me, then I’m going to smile back. Your smile makes you more beautiful than any of your other accessories.
Visited New York City. City has style, fame and intensity more than any other place I’ve been to in the last few years. This trip taught me to stay open-minded and to leave the judgements and comparing-tendencies home. Every place is different for a reason and each one will offer different things. Highlights of the trip include Grand Central Station, random flea markets, savory burgers with perfect fries and taking photos just because. Get out there! I’m sure you’ll find appreciation for travel, for your home and for your thirst in discovering the unfamiliar. Tell me, where are you going to go?
For all of us on the train, it was a regular commute back home. The crowding cart, the crying baby, the hipsters, the elderly, the serious businessmen and all, were the usual suspects. However, you somehow, by your sweet, genuine laugh startled us a little. Is someone actually happy and awake; at this hour? Wow! I was barely staying stable as the train rocked on and the person behind me pushes me with a bag bigger than me as I silently apologized to the obese woman sitting in front of me. I look over at you and you smiled. The intercom came on with that voice again, and this time you giggled. Your giggle made the two men next to you chuckle,which made me giggle and before you know it, the whole train was in on the joke. Thank you for focusing on the funny of the ride than the annoyances of the ride. I guess I should say thank you to the voice on the intercom, too, for his monotonous and repetitive voice brought us all to a good ol’ Ferris Bueller moment.
It’s been a while since I thought about how it was to be there. Time goes by and I don’t really think actively about being away from home for that long. But this morning, after I peed, I came back to bed. It was light out a little but my room was still sort of dark. After I closed my eyes, I could hear the noises outside. The birds chirping, the wind blowing and a faraway wind chime chiming away. I felt like I was in Taiwan again. I had left my window opened last night and the cool breezes from outside made it all so calm. When I was away, I always had this background feeling of something unfamiliar, but comfortable. Where I could lay in bed and feel really relaxed, but having no attachment to the things around me; only feeling connected to the sounds and the feelings. I like that memory can work like that a lot of the times. Without me having to look through pictures or talking about Taiwan or even thinking about it, I can have a fulfilling memory come into fruition.
Yesterday was a very strange day. I came upon reading my horoscope on the train about how someone I know will need my help but will be too embarrassed to ask for it, so I should offer it anyways. Not even putting the two together at the time, the stranger sitting next to me tapped on my shoulder and asked, “What stop is this?” Before I knew it, I was directing her exactly where she wanted to go and I even had to get off because I was afraid she’d be lost since she was still confused. I was delayed about 10-15 min. but that didn’t really matter. She wasn’t from here and if I could at least make her feel okay about traveling around, she might like this city as much as we do.
But aside from that, the whole day consisted of many see you laters. I woke up today comforted with the fact that if things got missing, or broken or lost, the memories, the experiences, the love for those things or people can’t be taken away. No matter what. I don’t need a secret stash to keep them safe. I don’t need passwords or pin numbers to get to them or protect them. I just have to close my eyes and there they are.
7am.alarms.waking.birds already up.
i’m up. i[m uP!
my feet go tap tap tap
i get there before the teeth of doors close
i get there!
This week flew! Last Sunday I smelled the morning’s warm smog of the cars and buses and I was ready. Riding the trains in the other direction was new. Finally getting there was only a small part of this adventure. It sort of set the tone for this week’s happiness. Friends we laugh, sing and dance with and also share embarrassing, childhood stories are people we need in our lives. Overpriced french fries, extra sugary ice cream and over-stuffing ourselves with other good foods and waiting for the delayed trains makes life wayy more interesting and worthwhile. Way more. You might bump into one of the greatest people in your life during these flying times.