After waking up from a nightmare at 4 in the morning, I proceeded to pack my bags and head downstairs in the middle of the night in Toronto. It was pouring rain again, traffic lights were out, glad that I was leaving this grey dreary snowy mess behind for a while.
On the plane I took the window seat as usual. My normal breakfast time came and went. I didn't realize how hungry I was until I downed my cereal and granola bar in two gulps. By then the plane was passing through Ohio and Nebraska. Beneath me, flat, brown tracts of land. Wholly human imprints but a ghostland humans had abandoned to go live in cities. The roads snaked and twisted alongside the rivers but there was nary a car to be seen. The square fields soon turned into rounded fields. I closed my eyes for a nap.
Soon, just as the sun was breaking through this region of the world, I could see the mountains of Colorado in the distance. We sailed over the snow-capped bumps for about two hours, then...
The Bay Area. The snow had given way to the green mountains of the bay area. After a while I saw the bay and San Francisco's downtown. The ships in the bay were like sentinels of the sea welcoming us home as we travelled southwest towards the airport. It's sunny. It's as if I've been sent on a mission by hibernating/stranded Torontonians to find life again, and I've found it here in sunny California.
In the city, the weather (for now) is dazzling sunlight with a cool breeze. Perfect springtime-like weather. Green, large lush billowy canopy trees. Stucco houses with Spanish-tile roofs. Spanish Chinese English trilingualism. Wide boulevards. Colourful houses in many shapes and sizes. Hills all around.
Monday, 28 February 2011
I've learned that getting through the airport process quickly requires patience. And patience includes not speaking unless told to. I got through US customs and immigration in a record time, in less than 20 minutes and now I'm here waiting for the next few hours. It's weird to be able to log into my own laptop and acess the Internet at an airport when I don't have a smartphone and had no Internet for about a year at one point. I feel like I'm living in the stone age in terms of technology. I guess having no Internet access also perfects patience.
Sunday, 27 February 2011
Procrastination comes with such ease. I've just finished packing and I still have articles to write, edit and hand in. I have the Oscars to watch. Most of all, I can't concentrate on something for more than 5 minutes at a time because of the adrenaline and caffeine. I'm boarding the plane tomorrow...excited! Toronto is snowy, San Francisco is rainy and Los Angeles (from what I see on the TV right now) is sunny!
Thursday, 3 February 2011
It's been a while. Well, I'm going to California (and I'm going to live the life!) Unfortunately without a car I won't be travelling around the state much. I'm going to be based in San Francisco and I'm planning to attend Amnesty International's AGM/50th Anniversary near the end of my stay. My plans, surely to change, will be: daytrips to Napa/Sonoma, Santa Cruz, maybe L.A. and San Diego, going to see some redwoods.
After having done some guidebook research, I can tell you that California ain't cheap! But I'm excited.