Monday, August 09, 2010

Back in Love & Tidbits

Biking: Seattle is a biking city and I absolutely love the fact that I can bike from place to place running errands, visiting coffee shops and bookstores. I love riding a bike that is easy to get up a hill instead of a bike that I have to walk up. My friend's bike is super light. I didn't realize that my Chinese clunker goes slow and takes more effort because it is so heavy. In Seattle, I don't care that cars don't beep to warn me that they are there because if they see you most of the drivers respect you, slow down, wait for you, and go around you. The bike lanes help too. It is not the bigger animal wins mentality. The biking makes Seattle worth moving back for.

I think if I had more of an opportunity to bike in Alabama as a method of transportation, it might have changed my interest in Alabama as a place to move back to. The heat though is really hard. Seattle has great weather for sports enthusiasts. Slight cool drizzles are perfect for athletes.

Coffee: I forgot that good coffee is not bitter. My sitemate swore by Americanos so instead of the usual latte, I've been drinking a daily Americano. They are yummy. The instant nescafe of Africa and China is ugh... I can't believe I've been drinking the stuff for the past four years. No wonder I add so much milk and sugar. Americanos are delicious black.

Food: I've been having trouble spending money. In Alabama, my parents generously treated me to restaurants and let me try to eat a dent in their stockpile of food that fills two freezers, a fridge, and a walk-in pantry. Now that I am living on my own, I have a really hard time spending more than $5 on a meal. I ate pho which was relatively cheap. Instead of getting a bagel sandwich ($7), I just ate a toasted whole wheat bagel with butter along with soup ($3). I don't mind spending money on coffee though coz it feels cheap compared to buying a cup of coffee in China. I don't know why I am feeling so frugal. I have the money. Shouldn't I be eating it up while I am here?

I think food is less interesting this time because Chinese food is pretty good. After Africa, I was dying for a variety of food. This time my palette seems to only want to feast upon American bread covered with French cheese. Desserts don't really tempt me either. They just seem way too sweet and need to be shared rather than eaten by one person.

Returned Peace Corps Volunteers (RPCVs): I've been people watching and sometimes think, hmm... I wonder if that person is a RPCV. There is something about them that is different, a piece of clothing, a bag, jewellery. I bet Seattle has a lot of RPCVs. If we loved the fashion of the countries we lived in, how long does it take for us to totally stop wearing those clothes? In China, I tend to still wear African pieces of wrapped cloth as skirts and African shirts when I exercise. In Alabama, I wore all the sundresses I had tailored made using African prints.

Jet Lag: For some reason both in Alabama and in Seattle, I feel wide awake at midnight, wake up at 4 am and then feel exhausted by noon, taking a LONG nap.

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