A couple weeks ago, my housemates had a thanksgiving gathering and the girls wanted to have everyone write what they were thankful for on a cutout of their hand so they could tape them all on a poster board to make a cute little display of things that people were grateful for.
The picture is of what I wrote. I didn’t have space to write too much and didn’t spend too much time thinking about it, but I’d say the 5 things I jotted down are a pretty good representation of what I am thankful for.
I’ll try to elaborate a bit on each thing.
"My parents who continually support me in everything and have done so much to give me opportunities"
I am very very thankful for my parents. They do so much for me and my brothers.
They support me financially so much…..I recklessly spend so much of their hard earned dollars and they still decide to give me more money to spend…it doesn’t really make sense. And not to mention, they are paying for my ridiculously expensive education. That’s not something that everyone gets to say their parents do for them.
Also, they support me morally? Is that the word? Like if I want to do something, they let me do it and cheer me on in it. For example, they let me bike to Canada this summer. What parent does that? hahaha Or like I wanted to play guitar, so they let me pursue that and help made it possible by getting me a teacher (back in 5th grade). The list goes on haha
I also wrote down that they give me a lot of opportunities. I guess what I meant is that they always try to make sure that we get to do things that they wish they could have done, and also they want to make sure our lives are easier than theirs. They always pushed for me and my brothers to expand our horizons to open us as many doors for us as possible. Which is why as kids they had us learn music, and learn art, and learn Chinese. And as I grew up I realized that it was truly a blessing they did that, even though I probably hated it as a kid. haha
"My friends who so unconditionally love and care for me"
I can go on about this one for a while. I think when I was writing this I was thinking of what to write as the explanation for “My friends” and I ended up writing “who so unconditionally love and care for me” because I was thinking of a couple of specific incidents this year where people really showed they cared, but I’m thankful for friends a lot more reasons than just that haha. Friends are what make life colorful and interesting.
And I have so many of them to be thankful for. This year I’ve met many new friends that have been a real blessing to my life.
The two things that I thought of when I was writing on the hand were when Michelle and Serena on two separate occasions really checked up to see how I was doing. Like really drilled me to get me to tell them how I was feeling, which means they really care. Because they had to REALLY try to get me to share and stuff when I really didn’t want to and in the end, it always helped me feel better (I’ve been feeling pretty down pretty often this quarter and have a problem of keeping it to myself haha).
And of course there’s my housemates Harry, Nathan, Koki and NL.
Harry is like a brother…super caring, loving and so jolly all the time. He is amazing at guitar (like really really good, check out his youtube: http://youtu.be/yvZOt2Bgx5Q ) but he is so humble and whenever I play with him I don’t feel threatened by his awesomeness like I do with other people haha. He is totally cool to be really silly and stupid around, but is just as great when things get serious or when you need someone to talk to.
Nathan makes me feel like middle school me again HAHA He is the funnest to be around. Pro skater, pro hacker, pro DJ, pro baller, swag. Whenever we try to study, we never get any studying done, but it’s okay cause it’s always a good time.
Koki is also super fun….him and Nathan together like keep my youth inside hahahaha But Koki is also really caring and generous….like he let me borrow his car once to pick up a friend…and shares his food and helped me pick up furniture in Sac and yeah.. super nice guy and extremely fun to be around…. if you ever came over you’d understand hahaha
NL is a great roommate and I’m extremely thankful that he doesn’t care about all the bikes I leave in the room or the mess I make and my alarms in the morning. And I’m extremely thankful that having him live with everyone else worked out.
And of course there’s also my old friends
I am super super thankful for Jeffrey. He is a great friend in general and is super caring. I’ll never forget the time he biked to seaside himself cause I was too lazy and brought me back a croissant cause I just briefly mentioned I kinda wanted one or thought it’d be nice to get one…. that was soooo nice hahahahah
But I guess I really want to express my gratitude for him for making our FVtoVancouver trip possible. Without him it would not have been possible. I think he came up with the idea, he planned most of it, he navigated most of the way….I feel like I did nothing to make it happen. Hahaha And just on the trip he was great companion to have along the way. We did have our times of being annoyed of each other or having disagreements, but I feel like we worked through all of the bumps in the road (figuratively and literally hahah) very well.
I can’t show my thanks for him enough.
And there’s Kathy of course, and I haven’t seen her in forever. I guess one thing I am thankful for is that she still is my friend even though there is that big distance between us and we don’t talk too much..But also she has always been there and cared for me, usually more than anyone else. I remember this time during high school (I forgot what year exactly, but it was one of those periods of times where I was just sad and depressed all the time) and she saw me smiling and having a good time in the group of friends and I glanced over at her and caught her smiling at me (I think because she saw me happy….that’s what it seemed like at least…… >.>). But yeah, whenever I’m with her it’s always great. Her presence like calms me down or something haha iono I’m super thankful for Kathy.
Jackie and I aren’t really friends anymore, but I’m thankful for the friendship we had. She was the one I talked to the most for a period of time and I learned a lot from her and am really sorry for the way things turned out….but yeah, thankful for the friendship we had..Hope she’s doing alright now
I am also thankful for a lot more people, but those come to mind immediately.
"My brothers who give me guidance"
I feel like I am kind of a mix of my two brothers…I get a lot of my weirdness from Greg and a lot of like life advice(?) from Tong. They are always great to talk to about life and are always there to lend me a helping hand and experience new things with.
They are my obsession…and I guess a quick thing about why I’m thankful for them….
It’s like the perfect stress relief and escape for when you wanna be alone, but it is also really good for socializing and being with people or exploring new places. It’s a thrill but also can be relaxing. yup yup.
"God’s continual presence and Love in my life"
Lots of times very good things happen in my life and I can just attribute it to coincidence, but that would be just wrong I think. I can’t help believe that someone is behind it all….Like one example is how I live where I live now. There were so many things that could have happened (or not happened) that would have prevented me from living with my awesome house. I randomly met them freshman year at a AACF welcome week event. If I hadn’t gone I probably wouldn’t even have met them in the first place. I brought my friend Emily to that AACF event who lived in the same dorming area as all my current housemates and got close to them first. If I hadn’t brought Emily, I wouldn’t have had the foot in the door to get closer to all of them. Their fourth suitemate dropped out of living with them for Sophomore year. If that hadn’t happened I wouldn’t have even had the opportunity to live with them in the first place.
Yeah.. stuff like that makes me feel like God has to be working to make things work out the way they do. And I am very thankful for that. His eye is on the sparrow, and I know he watches over me.
I am very blessed and have so much to be thankful for, so thank you.
I started a new blog a while ago…..but only today started posting on it from my phone as I ate in the Silo…..
It’s all random stupid photos.
Check it out if you like.
Day 36: Home
We made it home! Helen drove us to the airport in the morning and her parents drive a separate car to take our bikes…..very nice of them.
Helen stayed with us a bit at the airport before we went through security.
When we did, everything went smoothly except they took our chamois creme away :( I totally forgot to put it in the check in box…
But our flight was smooth, landed at around 2:30. We got our bike boxes and built the bikes up real quick and left the boxes and started to head to the metro green line. Both the bike boxes were checked by the TSA….although they didn’t take anything…not even the dirt from Vancouver I got for Christine.
We took the metro to long beach and biked from there……I was going really fast…I was in a weird mood….didn’t really want to go home…it felt nice to be on the road. We were treated very well everywhere…..and I guess it was nice to have a schedule and something to always do.
We got to Jeff’s house and my parents were there. My dad actually did get a reporter lady from the Chinese newspaper…she interviewed us. It wasn’t that bad.
We ate…and I’m sleeping over here tonight haha
Day 35: At Helen Chan’s place again……LAST DAY IN CASCADIA
It’s the last day… it feels so weird.
It was a good day though. We woke up and ate and Helen’s friend Sean came over and we left at around 11 or something to go do stuff.
We first went to the grocery store that we went to yesterday so I can return the Twin Brooks Creamery bottle…..got my 1.95 back!
We then headed to Renton to eat some famous fried chicken at Ezell’s chicken. It was the place that Susan said Oprah likes to get chicken from……but Oprah needs to start going to the Screen Door in Portland cause I was pretty disappointed with this place……:( The skin was the worst part….not crunchy or crispy. Just didn’t taste very fresh. The meat inside was seasoned well and it was moist….but didn’t really appeal to me that much. The skin of the chicken kind of just ruined it…..I was wondering if the other locations would be any better hahaha. The roll was good though. It tasted like a Hawaiian bun and was warm and everything, but the mashed potatoes, gravy and potato salad were just whatevers.
After we ate, we went to the Jimi Hendrix Memorial. It was really nice…We brought Helen’s guitar and I awkwardly tried to play Castles Made of Sand and a bit of Little Wing…..but mostly just looked at it and took pictures. It had lots of engravings around the memorial of his face and quotes and his song lyrics. The engravings of his face had a lot of kiss marks on it….I thought that was really cool.
Iono,it was really nice to go see the memorial. Jimi was a person I had such a strange obsession with……from what I read he seemed like such a sweet guy. His family members said he was always very polite as a kid and even during the rare occasions when his tour passes by Seattle and was able to visit home. I was so amazed by him because of how he was such the perfect like……underdog…. He grew up in a dirt poor, broken family and managed to rise up to the top. And he was an absolute genius…..I always wondered what he would’ve done if he lived longer. He was constantly expanding and breaking new ground…..I think at the time of his death, he had many planned project and collaborations. He was working on an album with Miles Davis and wanted to more big band type stuff (I think). I can go on and on and on hahahah But I’m glad I was able to pay my respects a little bit today…..I left my guitar picks there haha
After Jimi Hendrix’s grave, we went to Bruce Lee’s in a different cemetery. His son Brandon Lee is buried right next to him. That was also cool to see……there was a cool quote on Brandon Lee’s grave. It was kinda sucky to see other people not seem to respect the graves as much as they should have. There was a group of people who took a large piece of paper and put it over Bruce Lee’s tomb stone and use charcoal to get the imprint of the letterings onto the paper. It just felt as if they treated the grave site as just a tourist attraction and not someone’s grave site….but oh wells…
We went to Gas works park because Helen and Sean have never been there before! I saw someone with a Bianchi Axis from the same era as my Volpe! It had the Suntour Command shifters and everything…..I tried to talk to her about it…but it turned out to be really really awkward…hahaha
Jeff, Sean and I rolled down the big hill there and that was pretty fun.
Then we got boba from a place that Perry recommended called Mee Sum Pastries. It was actually really good according to Jeff and Helen….At first taste it didn’t taste suuper good….but after they said it was really good, it tasted better for me……HMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMM
We went back and relaxed for a bit until Helen’s family took Jeff and me to an Asian buffet called Lucky Buffet. It wasn’t bad. Pretty typical Asian buffet stuff.
Went home, finished taping our bike boxes up and fooled around and talked more and did other random stuff like webcam with random people and sing songs.
I did that cover real quick while the other two were showering. Kinda sucks but we’re going home!!!
It’ll kinda suck being home……I feel like I’ll have nothing to do….but in reality I have a big list of things to do… hahaha Just can’t be lazy.
Goodnight! see you in SoCal!
Day 34: chilling with Helen Chan
Today was a fun day. Helen is really cool to be around.
We woke up, ate breakfast, and then went to go look for bike boxes at a bike shop called Greg’s Cyclery. We asked if they had any in the shop, but they only had a children’s bike box, and then just told us to go to the back of the shop and look in the dumpster. So we did and found two decent boxes. Haha
We dropped off the boxes at her house and then headed for the city. We just stopped by Pike Place market again and picked up daily dozen donuts and some sandwiches. Then we went to a boba place called Oasis and got drinks and sat there and talked for a bit. That lasted a good while until we left and Helen went to pick up some dim sum and roasted duck for her mom.
Our stay in then city really wasn’t that long. We went back to her house to drop off the food and then went to a nearby coffee shop. Sat there for a while and talked. It was at least 2 hours I think
…hahaha I ordered a coffee with vanilla and cocoa flavor, but the coolest thing was that it came with some kind of soda that was supposed to cleanse your palette……..never heard of that before from a coffee shop haha
We went back to Helen’s place for dinner…..had that dim sum and roasted duck Helen bought earlier. Was good stuff. Then she brought us to a frozen yogurt place called, “World’s tastiest frozen yogurt.” It was pretty damn good…..super creamy just like ice cream but it was yogurt. Afterwards we went to a local ish grocery store and walked around there for a long time. I bought some chocolate milk from a company called Twin Brook Creamery and they package all their products in glass bottles…..so the little thing of milk was almost 4 bucks, but if you bring the glass bottle back, you get almost half of your money back. Jeff got a burrito from a company called Evol and if you buy enough of their stuff you get a free t shirt….it’s another one of those companies that are all natural you can feel good about buying our stuff etc etc. And the Helen got a chocolate bar that comes with a love poem in the wrapper.
We went back home and packed up our bikes and then just sat around a talked more.
I didn’t feel like we did a lot of tremendously exciting stuff, but today was really nice. It’s nice to just spend time talking or doing simple things (like walk around a a grocery store) with good company.
It’s hard to believe we are going home on Wednesday….tomorrow we are going to a good fried chicken place in seattle that Susan recommended. Helen said EMP is lame so we aren’t going to be going there…..which I’m kind of bummed about………but oh well………….Susan also said it wasn’t that great. Hopefully I can stop by Jimi Hendrix’s grave though.
Day 33: Bellingham to Lynnwood
Today was a long day of biking…..it was just over 100 miles today.
We left Jenny’s house at about 8:30…ate a pretty large breakfast…………….buuuut still we went to downtown Bellingham and got half a dozen donuts from a place called Rocket Donuts. The donuts were good, but I didn’t think they were that special or great…just like normal donuts haha
We biked through Deception Pass which is the picture above. It’s the bridge that passes through an island in the middle….I think it was alright. Didn’t think it was that special.
I was pretty tired…….I thought it was just cause I was physically tired, but Jeff said it was probably just mental….I think it was…I was just over riding and was not happy at the thought of having 50 miles left. But I guess I somehow changed my mindset or something because after he told me that, I was able to enjoy myself more and brighten up a bit.
We got to the Clinton Ferry Landing at around 4:30 and got the 5 o’clock ferry to Mukilteo. The ferry ride was very short. We had about 7 miles left after we got off the ferry…….and there was a long climb right as we left the ferry landing. Both Jeff and I were very tired……we had 95 miles in our legs at that point, so we split a Clif bar….that probably saved us…
We got to Helen Chan’s house and showered and they had BBQ for dinner which was so good……………I ate way too much……….It’s just because I think my stomach isn’t used to so much meat….it’s just used to carbs now hahaha…my stomach is still kinda feeling shitty :(
But I finally formally met Helen Chan! She is pretty cool. We’re going to Seattle again tomorrow!
We finished our last day of riding!!! Just a few more days until we’re home!
Day 32: Vancouver to Bellingham
We woke up super late at 9:30. I guess it makes sense because Jeff slept at like 3 and I slept at 4.
Left Kevins place at around 11 and were on our way back to the good ol’ USA.
Ride was similar to before, except we cut out the crappy dirt trail that we took going to Vancouver.
We wanted to go to Tim Horton’s again to use up our last two Canadian dollars, but as we passed some of their stores along the way, we just said there would be more closer to the border…..we past more and more and then kept saying there would be more locations until the border finally came and we were left empty handed with no donuts :(
Crossing the border was surprisingly chill and went by quickly.
We got to Bellingham and went downtown to try a burger joint called Fiamma Burger. It was just okay…I should’ve ordered one of their more special burgers. Also tried their poutine….not as good as in Canada haha.
We got to Jenny’s (an old family friend) house and showered and she fed us and all that.
After we ate, she took us to her university that she studies at (she is going back to school!). It’s called western Washington university and it’s a pretty campus…trees are everywhere.
She then took us to an ice cream place called Mallards. Andrea from Mt. Vernon recommended it to us. It was good….good atmosphere, lots of interesting flavors. I felt our time there was rushed, but I got peppermint and was very pleased with it.
Jenny then took us to the beach by Fairhaven which is in the South side of Bellingham. Such a pretty view…..i wish i had a picture of the sunset….i only brought the point and shoot when we went out so no photos on my phone :( But we got drinks from a coffee shop that is right on the water and watched the sunset from their patio…absolutely gorgeous.
Then we pretty much went back and we are sleeping early because we have a long 90 ish mile day tomorrow! Last real day of biking!!
P.S. The past few days had incredibly pretty clouds…..I think because it’s kinda been drizzling on and off…but today I took that picture above right by Jenny’s house.