Random Observation/Comment #210: I’ve taken a lot of pictures of myself in the same position with the same smile, but with different backgrounds from places all around the Europe and Japan. I even used the SL flash for all of them so it makes me look brighter, and gives the slight possibility that I could have been photo-shopped into this background. Bridget claimed that I was spending my time in my basement photo-shopping myself into these backgrounds for 6 months without ever needing to leave New York. I think that would be an interesting social project (or anti-social project). Because everyone thinks this is true, I’m going to use the aviary tools to cutout one of the good pictures and put them on some of the backgrounds in my edited photos to see if you can tell the difference. I’ll do this when as another side project from making SkyNet and taking over the world with my robots. Apparently, this is what James has told everyone I am doing.
Q: What happened to your constant update of notes?
A: This is what happens when I’m home in NYC with friends I haven’t seen in 6 months. Chaos. Wordlife.
New York continues to welcome me with open arms and an endless amount of laughter. Coming back from such a long vacation made me realize how amazing this place is and how many incredibly good times I have here. Yes, I definitely miss many aspects of Europe, which will be discussed in later entries, but this place is where I call home. Combining my travel-mode and enthusiasm to catch-up on my missed summer, I packed all of the great things about my version of NY into a week. I was officially on vacation until after the Labor Day weekend, and it isn’t until now I relaxed to reflect on my journeys and get some things started with my career (which is another story all together).
For the sake of those who mostly skim this blog (and probably my older-self reading this to relive some memories), I will the list of things I’ve done in NY in the past week that I missed doing in Europe. This was the perfect transition back into the real world, and in some ways I felt like I never left. It makes me smile knowing that I was missed, like a well worn groove on a sofa – I could just sit down after a long while and get comfortable again. Anyway, I’ll highlight the few things I missed most:
- Eating a Mom-cooked meals at home in my usual spot at the dinner table was fantastic. If there was a camcorder that recorded every dinner I had with my family at that table, this glorious night coming back from the flight was exactly the same as the ones before – and that’s exactly how I wanted it. Delicious food, smiles, and a lot of chopstick-action. I had changed from my travels, yet so many newly-learned, well-mannered habits just reverted as I felt the comfort of being a little spoiled by my parents’ attention. It’s like when you grow up, have a well-paid career, married, and children, but once you step foot in your old house you feel like a little kid again. Even after being away for so long, it all just snapped back into place. It was nice to be missed – even by an old routine.
- James’ mannerisms and his completely new addition of words to the English language (James’ scrip flow). Much of it was forgotten when speaking some normal English in Germany, but after coming back, my use of vocabulary in certain situations has significantly changed. For example, “the streets” are now “the scrips”, and “walking down the street” is “flippin’ a scrip.” Don’t ask me how this came to be because I don’t even think James knows what flop scropping business he’s doing. His obsession with dogs and graffiti just brought me back to the good old days.
- Jake has a sense of humor all in his own and exudes this air of creepiness around girls that I’ve grown to always love. It took a while to get used to the silent stare and awkward faces he makes, but it was all fine after a night at the club. When I think about it, he’s just as much of a nerd as I am, but I don’t think he actually looks like one with his 6 pairs of Diesel jeans. It’s a phenomenon and I’m glad we each balance each other in the friendship.
- Although Justin can be a little bit crazy as times, I missed some of the terrible advice and suggestions he gives in certain situations. He is the religious one in this group, but seems to say the most immoral things (which are absolutely hilarious). It was nice catching up an old friend. He’s got a bit more stubble and pessimism, but I can tell he’s the same friend I’ve known for 15 years.
- NYC restaurants are absolutely amazing. I missed my regular spots like pho & shabu or yuki for sushi buffet. I spent most of my time meeting familiar waiters and doing my local thing. I don’t understand why I left to try new food when every street is filled with at least 6 different restaurants for any set of taste buds. Europe’s food was alright (Spain had some really incredible stuff), but The City just fuses everything to my personal preference. I do feel like Americans care much more about portions than quality, but I’m sure I’ll rebuild my appetite.
- I remembered NYC girls being gorgeous and the same with European girls, but I guess I just didn’t share it the same inappropriate and manly ways as with my close friends. In all honesty, we’re just noticing a pretty girl (and we’re sure they blush and smile knowing we notice them), but we could be a little bit more discrete about it. I guess that would defeat the purpose of telling them we notice them. “Dayyyyum” (the more y’s the better) is generally a huge compliment.
- Understanding what everyone says makes me feel more at home. It could be just English natively, but I am referring to the intricacies and expressions that people use that make their personalities. It was more difficult to read people’s personalities while traveling when English wasn’t their second language because I missed the little phrases and expressions they would normally use in their native language. After returning in a few days, I began appreciating how everyone chooses their own vocabulary to express different things. I could dive deeper into personalities communicating with locals than presenting myself to strangers at hostels.
- A phenomenon happened with my clothes. I thought I would miss them (and I definitely did to a certain extent), but I began throwing away the non-essentials. It’s either my style changed or I’ve lost that fashion touch, but it’s just not as important as I remember it being. With only 2 or 3 weeks of clothes for 6 months and not buying new stuff, I just felt like it doesn’t matter as much (it was sort of like I shaved my head). I think I was trying too hard at certain times and I should change my life to fit a more organized and clean life style.
To be honest, the only reason NYC wins my favorite city is due to these people that make it so lively and entertaining. If all of my faves could move with me, I think I would be happy in any city (as long as they have awesome bars, always filled with transportation, and lots of alcohol). If there was anything Europe taught me (and there are plenty that will be published in a later entry), it’s that the people make the place – home is where you’d be missed.
~See Lemons Back in NYC