Not an Adventurist.

Thoughts of a quixotic weirdo.

To Those I’ll Never See Again

To those I’ll never see again:

It’s weird when you think about how many millions and millions of people there are on the earth. Everyone knows it, we’re all taught it, we understand that the world is a big place that can hold an enormous amount of people but it’s a hard concept to wrap your brain around, you know? There are about 7.1 billion people living on earth, 317 million people in the United States, 38.04 million people in California, 3.858 million people living in Los Angeles, 30,243 people enrolled in my university, 250 in my biology class, 4 in my college apartment, and only one of me.

There are people we see one day that we will never see again. How crazy is that? How many people out there have I been in an elevator with that I’ll never see again? How many people are going to watch me trip on the sidewalk and glance away before laughing again? All these human beings that I glance at, talk to, smile at, doesn’t even make a dent in the population of the world and yet I see so many people each day.  I was thinking about this a while ago when I was people watching. Obviously, each one of these people has their own life and their own experiences and sometimes I really wonder what their stories are.

So, this is dedicated to the people I’ve met, but will never encounter again.

To the man I held the door open that one time when leaving work: You looked important and busy, I hope you made it where you needed to be.

To the group of people in an Anaheim hotel elevator a few years ago who saw me get stuck in the closing doors: You probably don’t remember laughing at me but we had a good time, you and I.

To the girl who asked me to take a picture of her and her friends: I hope the pictures turned out okay. (And don’t hate me if they didn’t.)

To the guy I made eye contact with that one time on campus who smiled at me: I was having a crappy day and that was really nice.

To the freshman girl I met at the college orientation last year: Surprisingly, I never saw you on campus but I hope you figured out the best way to get back to your apartment.

To the guy who held the door open for me and told me I had beautiful eyes: Thank you and you made my day.

To the couple I saw walking down the street while holding hands: I hope you’re still going strong.

To the girl I met while sitting for 7 hours at jury duty: I hope you accomplish your dream of becoming a lawyer. Also, please bring something to do next time you have jury duty.

To every person I’ve talked to while waiting in lines at theme parks, waiting for a class to start, walking to class, anything: Keep going and be you because everyone’s different and that’s absolutely amazing.

You all have a story, a life, an adventure. Sometimes I feel really stupid because I can be so self-centered that I forget other people are living their life differently than me in their own way, using their own methods, dealing with their own problems and obstacles in whatever way seems best for them. We each have a different path we’re taking and it’s extremely interesting to see when and how our paths cross.

Above all else, I hope all is well.

Sincerely,

The girl who you’ve (probably) forgotten about and it’s okay.

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I’m Writing a Book

You probably already read the title, but I feel the need to repeat it because it’s the purpose of this post.

So…I’m writing a book.

Yep, you read that correctly.

I have decided to start writing the book that I’ve been meaning to start for over a year now. I was in bed, just about asleep when I decided that yes. I’m finally going to do it.

Well, I actually haven’t started writing it, but I have thought about writing it. AND I’ve taken some quick notes on the subject of which my book will be based around. I’m determined.

I’m planning to start writing said book soon. As in the next couple days.

I will keep you updated.

You’ve Got Mail

Let’s talk about You’ve Got Mail, aka one of the best movies ever made in the history of film. Ever.

This is what goes on in my head every single time I watch it:

  • “So, if I meet a guy I absolutely hate, we’ll probably end up falling in love.”
  • “Which guy have I hated from the beginning?”
  • “No.”
  • “Can I be Meg Ryan?”
  • “This soundtrack is the best.”
  • “This movie is the best.”
  • “I want to own a cute, little book store. Romantic comedies thrive on them, therefore, I should be able to thrive there.”
  • “Until Fox Books up opens down the street.
  • “Romantic comedies are the best.”
  • “I should have a Meg Ryan marathon.”
  • “If I play the soundtrack in the background of my life, will I trick the universe into believing I’m in the movie?”
  • “I love this.”
  • “Wow, where are the tissues.”
  • “GETS TO ME EVERY TIME.”
  • “Let’s watch it again.”

Basically, I just wanted to express my love of this film, as I usually do whenever I watch it.

Until next time, old friend. (And by “next time,” I probably mean “next month.”)

Faith & Mindy Lahiri

After two blog posts that were mostly designed for comedic relief, this one takes a different turn.

This title is an interesting one and I’m sure some of you are curious about how these two things are going to work out, so here’s the background. The idea for this post came to me while I was watching The Mindy Project, thanks to my 2-week free trial of Hulu Plus. On the episode I was watching, Mindy’s boyfriend is once again changing his profession; he was first a minister, then a DJ, and then an event planner, claiming that each of these changes was God’s plan for him.

During this discussion, she said something that really got me thinking about some of the events that I’ve seen go on around me, in the news, in my personal life and in other things. This is what she said:

“Sometimes I feel like when God is telling you to change everything, there’s a little part of you talking, too.”

Coming from a television show devoted to Mindy’s quest to find her own romantic comedy-esque love life, that has no real emphasis on religion, this is actually very applicable to people with faith.

For instance, I’m sure a lot of people out there are semi-familiar with the movement that was started by a woman in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. If not, here’s a quick summary: there is a very small group of people within my church that believe that it isn’t fair that women do not hold the priesthood, which is authority given to the male members of the church. Many of these people have posted their own personal experiences, asking God about a variety of questions and have said that they know they are right and that with time, things will change.

Yes, things can change, people make mistakes, however, God doesn’t.

I really don’t want to get into this debate because there have been so many posts, opinions and comments seen over the past week, so I’ll be brief. By changing the foundational beliefs of this church, it would be changing everything, which brings me to my original quote. Sometimes these things can just be your own feelings projecting into your mind/heart, persuading you to do whatever it is that you want to do.

I understand that some people may have the impression to uproot their families and change where they live, their job, their lifestyle — I understand. I completely get it. Sometimes change is needed. Sometimes God wants these changes to happen. But here’s the catch: if it keeps happening, and you feel like all these different things HAVE to be rearranged, changed, and flipped upside down, it’s a tough call between inspiration and personal thoughts.

Don’t get me wrong, I find it incredibly difficult to discern between my own feelings and the inspiration that comes from prayer and faith, so it makes sense. I get conflicted on tough decisions because I’m stubborn and want things done MY way, but I have to remember to be patient and strive to be in tune with God. I have to remember that I need to keep my thoughts of escaping a difficult situation or high stubbornness from intertwining what God is telling me to do. Escapism has become incredibly prevalent in society, which is understandable with everything that goes on around us, however, escape isn’t the right way to approach things.

When faith is there (and even when it’s not), God is there listening and He knows what is right for you. Sometimes what is right you may agree with, other times you may not, but either way, God is the same yesterday, today and forever. We are the ones who are constantly changing and adapting, our opinions can evolve, personal beliefs may cause conflict and because of this, we need to be able to lean on someone who is there no matter the circumstances.

This is such a difficult subject and I don’t know if I’m even making any sense, but hopefully you understood somewhat of the message I’m trying to convey. God is good, He loves you and He knows what you need. Trust him.

Brutal and Repetitive Honesty

Honesty is a trait we all say we love, cherish and hold to a high esteem when searching for good friends. We find comfort in knowing that we have put our trust in people that are going to be honest with us. We turn to them when we need an opinion on something because we know they will speak their mind (or at least, we hope they will). Our honest friends will tell it like it is, without trying to hurt us (or not. Let it all out!). However, the only people who can really achieve the highest level of honesty are children.

Children can be brutal when it comes to telling the truth. They tell it like they see it.

I’m not saying that it’s a bad thing by any means, but after a while, it can get repetitive. I’ve realized that no matter how many children I meet or babysit, I will get some pretty honest to goodness comments directed at me.

And at the top of that list: My height. Or lack thereof.

Here are a few highlights from various conversations I’ve had with different children:

“Are you a little grown-up?” Kind of.

“I like you because you’re little like us!” Well, that’s good.

“We need to get that game up there. Oh wait…maybe you can’t reach it.” After 19 years, I think I’ve learned the power of a chair.

“You’re not very big.” I’m not.

“I’m almost as tall as you!” If by ‘almost as tall as you’ means we’re going by your measurements of ‘I’m-going-to-stretch-my-arm-as-far-as-possible-and-say-that’s-how-tall-I-am’, then yes. You are. But also. Yes. You are almost as tall as me.

It’s always a topic of conversation with kids, even if it’s already been discussed at length before. That’s fine. I get it. They probably look at me and think, “Gee. She isn’t much bigger than I am so why does this make her old enough to babysit me?” Or “Maybe, since she’s short, we can get away with murder!” Either way, it sparks a bond. I love it when I have conversations with kids, even if they turn into an incoherent slew of words. They’re so fun, they mean well and I love them!

And I get it. I’m short. I embrace it. I would shout it from the rooftops, but I think that kid down the street already has.

Poetry

The following is my breakout entrance into the poetry world. Please enjoy.

photo

Sometimes I think that maybe I could write poetry, but then I think I probably shouldn’t. Because a) I don’t think I have the patience for it and 2) most poems would end up like this.

 

Summer Senses

Have you ever longed for summer and then when it’s FINALLY there, it doesn’t quite feel like it really is summer? I’m pretty sure I feel like that every year. The build up is so great, second semester feels like it lasts a lifetime, and I can feel the season coming. Eventually it does come and it’s not initially what I had imagined.

You’d think I’d get the idea. Every year, summer is this milestone of sorts. It proves that I got through another year of school. It also means spending time outside, enjoying the sun, breathing in the warm Californian air. But it takes a while to get to the point where I can sense summer.

It finally feels like summer.

The sun has finally begun to stay up later and the days have become longer. June gloom brings a feeling of the coast as the mornings are breezy and relaxing and as the day grows long, the brightness of the sun sends everything into an evening haze, seemingly emphasizing the season. Birds, as annoying as they can be in the middle of the night, chirp themselves (and myself) awake and something about that sound is weirdly reminiscent of summer. The air is warm and when you breathe it in, it tastes like happiness. A trip to the beach is refreshing and I relax as I wiggle my toes into the sand, watching the waves until I find myself asleep. (And then wake up realizing I forgot the sunscreen.) Washing the car becomes an activity, not a chore, and the hose recalls memories of childhood shenanigans running around in joy, screaming as the cold water from the hose squirts out at me. As I take a walk around the neighborhood, I recognize the familiar scent of charcoal burning as the neighbors dust off their barbecues for the perfect dinner. Sprinklers water the grass as as the water hits the hot pavement and another smell arises that I wish I could bottle up to keep with me. The decision to wear shoes is a no brainer — don’t do it. There’s something about walking around barefoot that just feels right in the summer, as long as you avoid stepping on some kind of insect. At around 6pm, after a day of work/relaxing/cleaning/whatever, I take a drive with the windows down and radio on with the evening haze setting the glow over everything in sight and it’s the perfect summer moment.

What a beautiful, refreshing, relaxing, and wonderful season this is.

Deleting 2048

Sorry for the lack of posts over the past couple weeks. I’ve been “busy”. I say that lightly because that’s always someone’s excuse for not doing something. It always works well and no one questions you. 

Last week I took a major step towards bettering my life. I deleted the 2048 app off my phone.

This might not seem like a big deal. But it is. That game had taken over my life. Any spare moment, the game was open. While I was watching something on TV, the game was open. When I had better things to do with my time, the game was open. I realized this a while ago, I was just so set on winning the game, I couldn’t delete it. I finally got to 2048 and it wanted me to get 4096. It’s a never ending madness. I realized this and after a few days (in actuality, it’s been more than a few days), I deleted it, along with some of my other time consuming apps that I figured could be removed from my phone.

It’s crazy to think how dependent we’ve become on our cell phones. I know, we’ve all heard this rant before but it’s true! After I removed the first app, I figured it would be okay to delete some other ones because I really do have better things to do with my time.

With this being the case, I’ve set a mental goal for myself. I’ve seen myself get sucked into turning to my cell phone for a scapegoat in various situations, whether it be when I’m waiting for someone, for the crosswalk to change, when I’m sitting on my couch at home and it’s bugging me. I don’t want to be that person who is obsessed with checking her phone countless times a day to find nothing new on social networks. When you refresh the page and nothing new comes up, it’s probably because you’re checking too frequently. The time I’ve spent looking at my phone could have been spent doing something that would have actually benefited myself. I’ve decided that slowly, I will remove the time-wasters and replace that time with something else. I want to be able to have the patience sit down and read, write, exercise, draw (even though I can’t draw to save my life), whatever it may be, without worrying about my phone.

This is the first week that I’ve had this mindset and it’s working well for me. I’ve made the time to catch up on some reading, put together a book list, cook a decent breakfast and write. (Now, don’t get me wrong. Some of these things I do while the TV is on because it’s time for Rachel’s annual Gilmore Girls rewatch marathon. I know TV can be a time-waster too but please. One step at a time.)

I hope I can keep this up because there’s so much I want to do and I don’t need a cell phone to do it. I’ve learned that I’d rather have a relationship with an actual human person rather than their social networking feed. (Again, another disclaimer. I do not shun my phone. I do use it to communicate and make it a point to be available if someone needs to talk to me.)

Again, I love social networking, obviously. I’ll probably keep those apps on my phone. And, heck, I don’t have anything against a good time-waster game every once in a while, but it doesn’t need to be every hour. I’m just trying to choose to do something a little better with my time.

Last week, I found this old essay I had written about time when I was about 11 and it was quite an interesting read. So, I’ll share with you the wise, awkward, philosophy-attempted words of sixth grade Rachel Erickson.

“It takes time to do something or nothing. Wasting time does you no good. Time is limited. Use it wisely. Take time to do important things not useless tasks.”

Brilliant. Don’t you feel enlightened? Thank you, awkward middle school self.

The People of the Airport

Every time I enter an airport I know I’m going to face some interesting people, to say the least. And every time I sit at the gate waiting for my flight to get in, I observe said people because, let’s be honest here, you can’t really get anything done in an airport terminal. Yeah, sure, I pick up Pride & Prejudice expecting to get at least a couple pages read, however, I always fail to move past the page I started on. So, I always end up with my book open, bookmark in hand and a lack of interest, no matter how fantastic the novel may be. It’s okay. Sometimes people watching is more interesting. Actually, it’s always pretty interesting. 

As I was sitting in the Burbank airport waiting for my flight, I began to notice how a lot of these personalities I’ve seen in an airport before. I began to take note of them and this is what I’ve come up with. 

When in an airport, these are the types of people you always end up seeing: 

  1. The business man who can’t afford to take his Bluetooth out of his ear. Heaven forbid he doesn’t speak so loud. Everyone can hear you complaining about whatever it is you’re complaining about.
  2. The family. There’s always at least one family waiting for your flight, more if you’re flying to/from Utah. It’s inevitable.
  3. The concerned elderly mother. I’m pretty sure I see one of them every time I fly. This older lady was waiting for the plane while chatting, very concerned-like, on her cell phone. Her other hand was being used as an ear plug so she could actually hear what was being said on the phone.
  4. The guy who would rather be sleeping. He’s kind of slumped over in his airport chair without much to do. Quite honestly, I can see where he’s coming from.
  5. The woman with her chihuahua service dog. Explanation not needed, apparently.
  6. The guy who can’t take off his sunglasses. It’s too bright in the airport.
  7. The “crazy” man who wanders around the terminal, making unintelligible comment to the annoyed travelers he comes in contact with…all while I hope he doesn’t sit next to me because I’m obviously a terrible human being.
  8. The average traveller. You can find them alone or with a friend. They aren’t talking, even if they are with a friend. This is me. I fall into this category along with most of the other people on my flight.

Maybe I’m a horrible person for remembering all these people. Maybe I fall into a different category: the girl who sits and stares at everyone. Or the person who always end up people watching. Or the weirdo who writes about it afterwards. 

I don’t know. But I feel like this is true and I’m probably missing a couple more token characters of the airport terminals, but let me know because I can’t really think of any more. 

Being Home & Becoming Me

Returning home after being away at school has brought me a sense of peace, along with this weird sense of adulthood and independence.

I’ve been home for a little over a week now and I must say, it’s rather nice to be able to come back to a city that you know and love. It’s great to step out of the car and breathe in that air that is so memorable — and also so terrible. It’s extremely nice to go to a Californian In-N-Out because a cheeseburger and fries just don’t taste the same in a different state. It’s not so nice to go outside and feel your skin begin to sizzle at the summertime-like temperature. But I’ll live.

In addition to these little things, including the relaxing and calming feeling of being home, I’ve begun to recognize my own transition into adulthood. Yes, you “technically” become an adult the moment you turn 18, the day you leave the house to move into your own place, or the day you start college, but personally, none of those things brought me the same sense of adulthood. I was extremely content at doing all these things and I loved every second of them. I was excited and oh-so ready for new experiences — I found them and I am grateful. However, there’s a different stage that people don’t tell you about and that’s coming back home after your first year at college.

Four days after getting back, I started my job. I didn’t really have time to do anything “fun” except for go shopping at Target (I’m not even kidding — that place is the BEST!). I realized that my co-workers are all older than me; there isn’t really anyone my age. It’s a little weird to think that I have a real job in a real company and get to have my own company ID. It really struck me that I was developing my independence even more so now because, even though I’m back at home for the summer, I have responsibilities that I have to do. Nobody is in control of my schedule, I work by myself, I have my own office (for the time being) and I can determine when and what I get to do.

Now, obviously, I had the same mindset when I was at school but somehow it’s DIFFERENT being here. School, classes, college — that’s all fulfilling and you do learn a lot about being independent when there, but even in the week or so that I’ve been back, it’s really all coming together.

When you return for the summer, you are a different person than when you left for school. You’ve developed different skills and strengths. You’ve let things go and moved on. You’ve learned how to deal with different things. You have a different set of friends, along with the few that you’ve still managed to keep in contact with. Your interests may have changed, or they may have been reinforced. You may not know the exact path you want to take for the rest of your life, but you’re a step closer to discovering what it is than when you left. You’re you, but you’re a different you. A good you. A more developed and independent you. Someone you’ve been working your whole life to become and, finally, you’re beginning to see it. And it’s good.