older / next adventure

I’m leaving on Monday for another month-long adventure in Hong Kong and China. This is my first time doing winter travel with a 22L pack (I did 19L for a month in Southeast Asia in the summer, and 50L for my last trip to Europe and Canada), and also my first time shooting exclusively film for more than a week. I’ll be off of all social media for the duration of my trip, so hit me up on WhatsApp, WeChat, or good old SMS if you want to reach me.

Reading list includes:

  • From the Ruins of Empire by Pankaj Mishra

  • How to Change Your Mind by Michael Pollan

  • 21st Lessons for the 21st Century by Yuval Noah Harari

  • A Tale for the Time Being by Ruth Ozeki

  • Very Good Lives by JK Rowling

  • Gweilo by Martin Booth

Will probably toss in a few more things depending on my mood, but I’m excited to just disconnect for a bit, think about life, write, read, and absorb the world around me.

Yay, packing pics:

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moonlight

A beautiful song and some of my favorite pics on Fuji 400H and Portra 400 over the course of my travels this past month. I am constantly falling more in love with the process of film, and will attempt to do a month in Hong Kong/China film-only this upcoming month.

hot heavy summer

(New Ben Howard song - absolutely in love with this one.)

Sometimes I don’t know if I write because I want to convince myself to feel a certain way, or I’m actually writing about the way I feel. I suppose it doesn’t really matter. 

Tomorrow is Friday, September 14. In two weeks, I will be moving out of Boston. It’s hit me, sort of. I’m counting down the days, but I’m not sure the reality of it has truly set in. 

Boston is the only place I’ve ever lived in as an independent adult. It’s the place I learned to take care of myself and a place that has forced me to grow faster than I ever imagined possible. Each year in Boston has felt like a distinct adventure. I love Boston for it’s size, it’s intellect, it’s autumn colors, and it’s spring breeze. It’s a place that can be painfully beautiful and utterly depressing, sometimes within days of each other. 

I know that I’ll miss it here. Despite all the hate I give it for it’s terrible weather and it’s distance away from most of the people I love, everything else about the city is genuinely lovable.

I’m scared to leave. I’m nervous about living in a place that isn’t so walkable, so small, so safe, so convenient. I’m nervous that I won’t fit in with the culture of Los Angeles anymore, or that I’ll lose some of the values I’ve had instilled in me here (an intense curiosity and desire to learn). I’m scared to leave, but I know that it is the best for me. Boston, despite all that it’s given me, has also been the place I felt the most trapped. When I moved here, I gave up a lot of what I enjoyed and wanted for things that I thought I needed, or things that I thought I should be doing. Moving to Boston, or more specifically MIT, is when I started falling into the traps of peer pressure. It’s the place where I started devaluing myself, and constantly wishing I liked different things. Sometimes, even wishing I was a different person. 

I don’t feel that way anymore, but I’m still living in the aftermath of many decisions I made under the pressure I felt at MIT. I haven’t given myself any opportunity to reconsider myself, what I want out of life, and what I have to give to the world. I’m fortunate enough to have the opportunity to do that now, and I’m taking it. In two weeks, I’m leaving for Ireland, London, Toronto, Jasper, and the Pacific Northwest. I’m taking that time to read, observe, reflect, write, and potentially rediscovering parts of my brain that I have left dormant for the past several years. I’m scared of what my brain will come up with without bounds, but I’m also incredibly excited.