Reflections of the 5th Month

Posted: February 1st, 2014 | Author: | Filed under: Thoughts | No Comments »


Wow, I can’t believe 5 months have passed.  I’ve absorbed so much over the past 5 months and become so inspired.  I have tons of ideas for future projects, to the point that Rick fears I’ll be a workaholic even while I’m on vacation.  (psst, random self-promotion, but if you’re interested in my different interests, they’re all gathered together here.)  I’m not sure if I’ve changed as a person, but I’m still learning.  Here are some things I’ve realized in the last month or so:

I’m happy

Rick and I keep telling each other that this trip is "so worth it".  And, a couple days ago, I was hit with the realization that I’m happy in a soul-deep sort of way.  I feel like the last 5 months have been fuller and more satisfying and more real than almost any other 5-month period in my life.  I’ve finally understood the concept of "living life to the fullest". 

Shopping isn’t quite the same anymore

I love shopping.  Clothes, books, office supplies, groceries.  You name it, I’ll probably enjoy perusing the aisles for it.  On this sort of trip, though, I’ve had to seriously cut back on shopping. Every piece of clothing I’m contemplating must now answer the question "is it unique enough that I need to buy it now and sturdy enough to hold up to constant travelling and light enough (or foldable enough) to fit in the remaining spaces of my luggage and classic enough that it’ll stand the test of time?"  Every book I buy is weighed in my hand and carefully perused to ensure of its worthiness to be a part of my personal collection and/or whether it’s fit to be entertaining enough reading material until I can trade it for something else.  Each gift we consider must attempt to fit its intended recipients taste and interests and (maybe?) personal style, plus be light enough to lug around until we can get around to shipping it.  And we’re not souvenir sort of people in general.  Let’s just say, it’s a special item that makes it to the check-out counter.  Shopping just isn’t the same anymore. 

I’m getting very good at mental math

Well, I’m getting very good at division while doing currency conversions in my head.  I wonder, is there anyone out there that writes out a long division problem mentally in their head like me?  Also, to ensure we’re paying the right price, Rick and I often add up grocery or restaurant charges in our head and compare it to the final bill.  I’ve noticed I’m becoming quicker in mental math and I pat myself on my back. 

There are nice people everywhere

An employee at our Goreme hotel told us about his travels to Hong Kong and his restaurant there.  While waiting for a movie in Tel Aviv, a large young man stopped for a chat and ended up giving us the scoop on everything Tel Aviv had to offer.  We met a past Olympian in Croatia who said he competed in the 1984 Olympic games in Los Angeles for swimming (the 100m butterfly).  His young daughter (granddaughter?), clutching onto his hand, smiled up at us.  Another older man, Ante, gave us an impromptu and exceedingly enthusiastic history lesson on Split, Croatia.  Wherever we go, we’ve met more good people than bad, and I’ve become convinced that, deep down, most people want to do good in this world. 

Los Angeles is a land of NBA, movies, and crime

Whenever we’ve said we’re from Los Angeles, we generally get three basic answers.  1. "Oh!  Kobe Bryant!  I like him."  2. "Hollywood.  Movie stars." 3. "Cops! Can you get guns in LA?"  Considering I grew up in the suburbs, it’s so amusing for me to hear of how Los Angeles portrays itself to the world.  We actually had one guy in Mongolia who kept asking us about the gangs in LA and if it was like the video game, Grand Theft Auto.  We’re like "I guess, in parts of South Central?  We have no idea…"


Onwards towards the 6th month and whatever it brings!

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