Tag Archives: Travel

4 months of travel, 2 overweight suitcases, 1 passport.

25 Aug

jones, my sister soulmate, this one’s for you.

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you steady your gaze as the quintessential california landscape coincides with the miles and miles of patriotic interstate beneath you.

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your consciousness weaves amongst the thick layer of chilly sea fog and scattered oak trees and purple-hued wild flowers, all rolling seamlessly over the summer-drenched hills.

with a tight grip on your vacant passport, you realize your dreams are so vivid and curiosity is at your fingertips.

you’re fully aware that you’re about to enrich your life beyond belief.

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and suddenly, your room, in our two-story home, tucked away on our proud little flag lot, warrants an american cliché of sorts.

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you’re filled with every ounce of hesitation and exhilaration, tipping the scale ever so slightly to the later.

but any sort of fleeting moment is, alas, behind you.

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eventually, once you’ve settled in to your everyday routine, leave room for spontaneity.

because i hope that one night, when the mediterranean rain grows heavy outside your new bedroom window, that you race like hell down the narrow staircase out into the cobblestone street and dance barefooted like that beautiful foreigner you are.

and just you watch:

the next four months are going to become a continuity of long bus rides and strong cappuccinos, drippy gelato and wine-stained lips, scenic countrysides and quaint, seaside towns.

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and before you know it, you’ll be returning home with insatiable wanderlust and a longing to do it all again.

so.

don’t fear getting lost. or for that matter, getting embarrassed. i guarantee you’ll be misunderstood, and you’ll automatically be perceived a certain way simply because you are an american. just…embrace it.

there will be certain times when you gotta just roll with the punches. things, inevitably, will not go according to plan. for this exact reason, always have extra euros (and snacks). also, patience is a virtue. whatever predicament you find yourself in will probably make for a hilarious story later.

pack like a boss. overpacking will only get you in frustrating tiffs with ryanair when they scoff at your oversized carry-on. i promise that if you can prioritize your suitcase, you’ll learn the difference between what you actually need…and what you can live without.

frame your study abroad in hundreds of photographs, but widen your lens. put an emphasis on capturing people and their interactions, not things. you’ll actually see life in your photos this way.

you’ll discover that through your travels, humanity is far more diverse than you could possibly imagine. you’ll come across people in all sorts of circumstances, faced with limited rights and poverty and it’ll ignite something inside of you. my hope is that you’ll come home (counting your blessings) and inspired to make a change.

finally, leave pieces of your heart in the destinations you travel to, as well as with the people you meet.

be safe, always.

i love you.

(signed, the post-grad.)

this summer: on the importance of adventure.

15 Aug

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when sky blue gets dark enough
to see the colors of the city lights
a trail of ruby red and diamond white
hits her like a sunrise

she comes and goes and comes and goes
like no one can

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i think that after awhile, we become entirely too caught up in living strictly by routine.

because sometimes our chronic workdays are suffocated by monotony, and we can’t help but feel this torrential downpour on the things that once electrified us.

but, with a bit of concerted effort, we’re able to wander off the beaten path. a temporary halt, per say.

and suddenly, voila! we find ourselves in a moment so full of appreciation for simply being alive.

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i’m not saying you need to travel outside the realms of your ‘hood to feel this sense of appreciation.

for once, unwillingly roll out of bed just before dawn, and watch the dark sky become a hazy prism of soft, picturesque colors.

(i promise you it’s worth it.)

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or maybe you decide to buy a cup of mediocre coffee from somewhere besides starbucks.

like from that cozy shop overflowing with borrowed books and worn sofas, vintage posters and amateur philosophers eating overpriced, gluten-free pastries.

you’re enamored by the vibrant, caffeinated space around you. but there’s no sense of urgency.

only an intrinsic feeling that your little heart is so content it could burst into tiny pieces and scatter across the floor.

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tonight she’s out to lose herself
and find a high on peachtree street
from mixed drinks to techno beats it’s always
heavy into everything

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as fall begins to approach, i can say with certainty that this summer has been really good to me. like, really good. 

i’ve continually departed from the comfortable nook that is my routine, to collide momentarily with new and old places alike.

it’s as if i’ve recently watched my life become a continuity of change and adaptations and uncertainty.

and well, unexpected adventure.

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i’m grateful for the places i’ve travelled to (and across) these last two months: exploring the colorado countryside, relaxing beachside in los cabos, and music festival-going in chicago.

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and finally, after i’ve returned to the current place i call home, back to the confines of familiar objects and people and places, i have to remind myself that the journey is far from over.

because if you’re like me, your suitcase remains packed for a week or two too long.

and you find your consciousness drifting in and out of the places your passport has yet to be stamped.

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she comes and goes and comes and goes
like no one can
she comes and goes and no one knows
she’s slipping through my hands

so in that sense, the journey is a continuum. your spirit yearns for the unknown, but at least your heart is content with the memories it now holds.

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so. with all of that being said, i’m having withdrawals. which is sort of inevitable. and i’m definitely not ready for summer to end.

but who is, really?

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i like that the warmth of the day lingers well into the late evening,

that the line for ice cream at the little tin man wraps around the block,

and that i can drive with my windows down so that my hair tangles around my bare shoulders.

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but i do love that the seasons change here.

and i love the glowing city lights right outside my bedroom window.

i love that my neighborhood is alive and bustling with noisy construction and 20-somethings walking in and out of the convenience store beneath my building.

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she’s always buzzing just like
neon, neon
neon, neon
who knows how long, how long, how long
she can go before she burns away

(“neon,” john mayer)

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most mornings, i wake up with a sleepy sense of contentment. grateful for a life that is so full of potential adventure.

and with a little bit of confidence, i can totally venture outside of the norm. and in turn, i find that it’s easier to lessen the tug. to stop enduring the ‘everyday’ and actually seize the moment.

to live a little recklessly. to take a few more chances.

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so, cheers!

(signed, the post-grad.)

p.s. i was convinced that my absence here went unnoticed…i didn’t want this space to feel like a chore, so i chose to neglect my little blog. and i’m sorry! so to those of you (you know who you are) who asked when i’d be posting again, thanks for the extra push.

i promise i’ll attempt to be a little bit more consistent.

but no guarantees.

35,000 feet.

10 Apr

[to preface]: this was supposed to be my first blog post.

but then by some fate of the universe, i lost it.

(huh?)

you know. like i wrote it and then it disappeared. like my computer said, BYEEEE! right after i finished.

ihearyouawkwardsilence.

anyway. i thoroughly convinced myself that i DID in fact write it. and that i DID in fact save it. and that i saved it ON my desktop.

so, i stared.

at my desktop.

and let me just mention that my desktop has like, 5 things on it. one of which is this:

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go me, go!

turns out i DID save it. and ON my desktop, nonetheless.

(facepalm)

SO. if that wasn’t the most intriguing, i-can’t-WAIT-to-read-whatever-else-she-has-cluttered-in-her-post-grad brain introduction, i don’t know what is.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

current cruising altitude: 35,000 feet.

and just to put things into perspective, i stand 5’0 on a good day (height-challenged jokes, commence).

anyway, it’s more like +/- 35,000 feet with all this buckled-in-i-think-i’m-gunna-puke-my-cereal turbulence.

MOTION SICKNESS COMIN’ IN HOT! but let’s not get technical.

flying is kind of a therapeutic. and SOunnecessarily stressful at the same time.

case in point: i arrived the ‘recommended’ two hours before my flight (high five!) and i STILL found myself running to gate 76A with a strong cup of coffee in my right hand, ludicrously-priced magazines in left hand; while simultaneously texting my roommate, checking the weather, scrolling through instagram, reading e-mails, and cursing myself for not charging my phone longer.

^run-on sentence comin’ in hot.

anyway. starting this blog somewhere between the golden gate bridge and the rocky mountains is a bit fitting.

california is my ‘home.’ it has (a lot of) my heart. it has my family. my childhood. my high school friends. my frizzy hair and my braces. my swim meets. my road trips. my backyard. my sleepovers. my accomplishments and my failures. my firsts.

colorado has another piece of my heart. it has my college experience. my closest friends. my work. my passions and my hobbies. my vulnerability. my independence. my optimism. my unknown.

as if walking across the graduation stage in a baggy gown//oversized-cap would lead to an enlightening iknowEXACTLYwhatiamgoingtodofortherestofmylife! revelation.

news flash: i got a business degree, not a bachelors in finding clarity.

but if i’ve learned anything in the last few months, it’s about embracing the transition. finding a job and a new place to live and making new friends and loosening that superTIGHT grip on ‘knowing,’ just enough to find solace in the unknown.

so for now, let’s just enjoy the ride. because really, we’re blessed to be where we are. and where we’re going.

(signed, the post-grad.)