The First Inch

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I’ve officially set foot on campus! It’s bizarre, after having lived in a city for so long and longing for a backyard, now all the big open space in upstate New York is making me feel mildly agoraphobic. A backyard is nice but why is there a mini field in between each building? After twelve years in taipei and a year in shanghai, I’ll say that this needs a little getting used to, to say the least. And the cows? Out of this world. There are cows right next to my campus. Many cows. That is all.

But before I get too far into that, it would be a shame not to at least mention the very best home cooked meal of american food I’ve (quite possibly) ever had. I know I mentioned Boston and its food earlier but it was not like this. I’ll let the pictures speak for themselves.


Thank you, cousin ^.^

It was a relatively pleasant four hour drive up from Boston. And then it was another cozy day spent with just the parents. There’s only ever one first day on campus and I’m glad I got to spend it with the two most important people in my life. Meandering about the large acreage, staying in old farm houses, climbing trees, drives into town, and obligatory target runs. The car is quite full and so is my heart. ^^ They’ll be leaving tomorrow but I’m confident that after a good, long cry (let’s be realistic here. It’s going to happen.) I’ll shape up alright.

It’ll be moving in, getting settled, and very likely getting lost all day tomorrow so I’m looking forward tucking into a relaxing night of just watching a movie with the parents (:

–inch by inch–


I think I love New England

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This is the first time I’ve properly been to the East Coast. First time if you don’t count my coming five years ago for five days and being sick for three of those said days.

And I love it here.

The food, the buildings, the people, the sprawling parks, I’m in love. Although I’m told my feelings will change after the first dozen (or so) snowfalls but at this point I’ve never even seen snow so for now I’m still really looking forward to it. Staying with the best cousins also sweetened up the one day in Boston quite a lot. You know you’re loved when she has hung up on her wall the pre-k “masterpiece” you gave her more than a decade and a half ago. Or when she wakes up early the next day to make and bake a delicious batch of “going to college” chocolate chip cookies for you. But then again, you knew all along you were loved.

Who knew I could feel so strongly about a place that I spent barely more than twenty four hours in.


inch by inch




Spent the afternoon with a little boy who, when i asked whether the orange model he had just constructed was his spaceship, replied very adamantly: “no! it’s a bad-guy, good-guy spaceship-ufo!”

“oh okay. then what’s that other one?” indicating the identical purple model he held in his other hand.

“it’s a bad-guy, good-guy spaceship-ufo!”

“and they’re fighting each other?”

“yes! you have to fight the bad guys!” <– which struck me as funny but then the more I thought of it…

i was incredibly impressed by this four year old’s fairness of mind. no taking sides here. both spaceships were allowed equal parts good and bad. And, if anyone was curious, they both ended in a equally equal demise –> “crash into the sea! but we’ll save them with this ship-boat!”

Another adorable thing about this afternoon. my little playmate was incredibly generous with his nouns. Not superfluous; oven-dishwasher could hardly be described as that seeing as the two terms are hardly redundant. But very interesting. I thoroughly enjoyed my hour of making plane-cars, pitching spaceship-ufo’s against each other, and parking them in garage-houses.

Considering that I’ll be leaving mama and papa for college (*shivers) in three (!) days; it was a nice, nostalgic, bittersweet afternoon spent in my old neighborhood with a four year old mind and building blocks. Finished up the day with the absolute best italian food with the sweetest old family friends. A trip to california never seems complete without meeting them so it was the perfect closure to these past ten days.

inch by inch

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Inch by Inch

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It’s been about an entire year since my last post and about the thousandth time I’ve asked myself why I couldn’t devote at least five to ten minutes a day writing a little nibble of a blog post. Particularly when time now has me completely and utterly baffled. I’ve done so many things this year and yet I still can’t fathom how the past three hundred days have past. Thinking about it makes me feel carsick. Or rollercoaster sick. Slightly.

And so I’m back at it. Of course this surge of inspiration hit in the midst of a shower as these inspiring moments generally do. Showers = thinking time.

And as I sit here staring at this as-of-now-still-empty page I’m coming to realize that if I could blog in the shower all my world problems would be solved. Probably. Or all my problems here at least. But what are little problems and big problems right? The most immediate problem is always the largest. Because if you’re devoting your time to it than something up in the attic is telling you it’s worth it.

I have exactly seven days till university begins and I’ve promised myself that I’m going to document document document these next years.

I want to be someone I can look back at and admire. And at this point in my life where I’m picking at my own fickleness, I would admire very much someone who is persistent enough to engage in something, however little, for an extended period of time. And I have, for the time being, decided that it will be blogging. I toyed with the idea of creating a whole new blog but I decided I quite like the idea of having all my old posts here. As a little foundation to grow on.

A few little things that happened since arriving back “home”: birthday celebration, baby chicks (no not the yellow kind), blue skies (haven’t breathed so deeply in a whole year), salad fix, selfies, MacBooks, crab cakes, and pho (every day.)

So, to however many stray little paths or long straight roads this leads me onto…

inch by inch 


*that little college tag? i.n.s.a.n.e. Never thought I would see the day; won’t believe it’s actually happening before I actually set foot on the campus. probably not even then. give it time.

III. Here’s to Summer 2014

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Here’s a little bit of sunshine and a lot of flowers to celebrate the last bits of summer 2014. You’ve been a great one and a busy one; I’ve never had one quite like you.
From moving to a new country (always a biggie) in a frenzied three part move (old house —> grandpa’s house for 2 days —> china for another 2 days —> new house in china) and then the three week backpacking trip to Japan (which you can see in the new travel diaries series) phew! Hands down my busiest summer to date. But do you know what the best part is? It was balanced out with plenty of fun and relaxing. And I’m talking serious relaxing with all the appropriate amounts of tv dramas, reading, and naps all measured in. As for fun, well I only need to mention the homemade noodles and dumplings we’ve been making here. I’ve had loads of mother-daughter time in the kitchen and the homemade stuff is real. And it’s insanely delicious. I’m not sure I ever mentioned my love for chopping up vegetables — but this summer has been that and way more. Just this morning I was up and kneading a fresh batch of dough by 8 in the morning.
Which is another point. Thanks to my father for being such an early riser, I rarely sleep past 8/ 8:30 now and can quite often coax myself out of bed by 7. Not because I have to but because I want to. In the summer. This has never happened before. And I love how it makes the days just so much longer. I even managed to convince myself to go out on more than a few morning runs.
From trying out new things to letting go of the old; I think I’ve grown a lot this summer. Not saying that this maturity is manifesting itself in my actions right now but I assume that’ll come around in due time. (:

I know I’m making this summer seem like all daffodils and marigolds now so I’ll acknowledge that there were definitely stuffy bits where I was a little difficult what with adjusting to the new country and all. But now that I’m at the end and looking back, I can say that it was a great summer. So thank you summer 2014. You were fun. And now, onwards to the new decade.










previous post in the series: II. Leather and Pearls


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