Wooooo summer can’t be better.
Since last post, I set off to California for a 23 days vacation. I was beyond thrilled to start the journey and also beyond excited to move forward for the new semester as a sophomore.
I remembered it was such a long flight flying over there with one layover. I could not wait to see all my friends who I haven’t seen for an entire year. Shortly after my arrival, I drove the car we just rented to pick up the last friend who were coming by train. That was my first time officially driving in US and I didn’t even realize how to use the foot brake. It took me a while to figure out stopping the alarm from beeping. The night was quite creepy that most roads were closed which were supposed to lead to the train station. Three of us just on the car, happily joking about each other. The moment we successfully found the spot and greet our last friend, it was such a defining moment for our trip. No tears, no dramas but purely happiness of each and every one of us.
We started to explore the city of Irvine, which is indeed very nice. I had countless great Chinese food that I believe are even better than actually China’s. Admittedly, they are quite expensive but it was time to spend some money and gain some enjoyment from the delicious food. I never really had any non-Chinese restaurant as I did realize that I have a very typical “Chinese stomachache”. All exotic food are just for fun experience and Chinese food are in effect the food for life.
What’s more, we went to all-you-can-imagine beaches in California. I wouldn’t say they are better than those of east coasts’ but I did get a chance to watch fabulous sunset along the coast. The light, the dark and the shade during the dusk were amazing in all means. The famous 17 miles drive also amazed me with how azure the ocean is and how plentiful the layers of ocean are. It was such a pleasure to drive along this famous road.
Talking about the most unforgettable memory from the trip, it must be the entire clear Milky Way with numerous stars in the sky above Sequoia National Park & Kings Canyon. I had never seen that many stars and that kind of sky in my entire life. It was mind blowing. I ended up driving back around 10 and it was dark and scary on the winding mountain roads where not even one car passed by for 50 miles.
Inspired by one of my friend, I became much more adventurous during the trip. I climbed up to the top of the Yosemite Lower Fall, dived into the cold water with normal shirts and shorts. I enjoyed it very much. Also inspired by another friend, the greatness of the nature always reminds me of how great and powerful our God is.
There are also Humanistic elements along the coast. Solvang, Hearst Castle, Salinas, San Diego they are all great cities / towns that bring joys.
Apart from what I have seen , I also grew in terms of essential life skills. Driving over 2000 miles, handling all housekeeping stuff myself, plan everything on my own, these are all invaluable experiences that cultivate how I interact with the world and be what kind of person.
A strange feeling I have for the trip is that I not really miss it or wish it could be longer since I do have had everything that can have. I am fulfilled in terms of this matter and won’t regret on anything.
Also I realize I do love the suburb living styles just as Durham area. I hate SF, LA very much and won’t even consider living near those mega cities if given a choice.
Alright, it’s time to kick off a new semester and embrace new challenges in academia, life, work and faith.