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Sailust | Florida

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Couchsurfing, Plaid, Et Cetera

Saturday, February 28th, 2009

plaid marI leave for Bogota, Colombia, tomorrow, early Sunday morning at 6:30 am. I’m going to Miami tonight with Adam and his friend Allison. I’m probably going to stay up all night. No real sense in going to bed. My ticket was ridiculously cheap: $150. I don’t know why, but I’m not complaining.

I’ve tried to connect with some couchsurfers in Bogota but to no avail. 2 of the 4 people I emailed wrote back that they weren’t going to be in town. I’m guessing that that’s a common white lie when they don’t want to host anyone. I got the same types of responses when I tried it in Mexico City. One girl said she had too many surfers already. It’s just like getting a job online. I guess you have to send out a lot of emails. But then people complain about cut-and-pasted inquires. I think people also like at least a week’s notice, which is hard to give when you don’t know where you’re going to be. You lose all the flexibility of free travel. With all the hassle involved in reserving a couch, it’s almost worth it to just go to a hostel. That’s kind of what they’re set up for.

The past few days I’ve been working on an online plaid making website (instead of filing for an income tax extension). I added a gallery and a saving function most recently. Pictured above is a plaid I made using the same palette that I used to design this site.

Finally, I’m changing my blogging strategy to be, well, more like blogging. Shorter posts, but updated more frequently. Opinionated. Topical. Links to other stuff. I’ve been too wrapped up in trying to write these comprehensive essays of all things I’ve been doing, when I should just quickly write about whatever’s on my mind. Updating more frequently also relieves the burdern of feeling like you have so much to write, which can be a deterent to writing. Just as I was thinking this, my life-long friend, Michael J, write me, “I’ve been loving the blog entries lately, I kind of like the shorter but more ones that are posted more often.” So there you have it.

Not Miami but Boca Raton

Tuesday, February 24th, 2009

Disc golfing at Tradewinds ParkBoca Raton. The Rat’s Mouth. It sounds better in Spanish. I think the name is supposed to describe the shape of the bay. Boca is a 1 hour, 4 minute train ride from the Miami airport. Adam picked me up from the station and drove us back to his apartment. I lived with Adam for two years in college, before I moved to San Francisco. He’s been living in Florida for a little under 2 years. He works for a capital management company and he’s studying for his second CFA exam. He’s doing well for himself. After work he helps coach junior high basketball. He didn’t know anybody when he moved out here, which is always a difficult move to make. But he’s pretty well settled now and even kindling a new relationship with a girl who also works at the junior high where he coaches.

It’s weird being back in the States. Miami would have been a good buffer zone from which to transition myself back into the American lifestyle. In fact, some people say that Miami isn’t even the US. Here in the suburbs I find an eerie silence and an agoraphobia-inducing surplus of space. Vast, mostly empty parking lots. Wide streets. Stretches of well groomed grass. The passing cars carry only one person and I can barely hear or smell them go by. Everything is stretched out. There are many stores on the main streets, all of which are trying to sell me cheap wares I never realized I didn’t need until I’ve lived without them. Everyone seems to be on a schedule and going along with the master plan. Maybe they’re just not on vacation.

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