For the last couple of months, I’ve been experiencing a creative block where I had a hard time being creative and finding inspiration. I didn’t pick up my camera much and didn’t have many ideas on my next photo or video project. It’s not uncommon for this to happen, but I felt a bit stagnant and stumped, and was itching to do something artistic.
Last year, when I told my friends I’m heading to Seattle for a few months starting in October, their first reaction was ‘Why?! Winter is worst time of the year to be in Seattle!’ I’ve heard winters can be melancholy here, but despite everyone’s warnings, I booked my Airbnb and drove up from sunny California shortly after. Fast forward to present day, it’s been over four months here and I wanted to share how winter in Seattle has been like.
In the last 6 months, I’ve lived in 4 different cities and have driven along the entire West Coast. I never expected to be doing this in 2020, but with so many surprises this year that have derailed everyone’s plans and uprooted people’s lives, this was actually a pleasant change of events that kept me sane. I guess the nomadic life up and down the coast is the silver lining amidst all the chaos that 2020 has brought.
During this pandemic, I find myself with a few extra hours every day from not commuting to work and no social gatherings to attend. While this time is great to catch up on all the responsibilities I’ve neglected as I was ‘living life,’ there comes a point where I’ve fulfilled those obligations and have extra time to do… anything. I’m at that point.
As some people may know or have suspected, I’ve been living in San Diego for the last two months. The always-sunny SoCal weather has been a great change of scenery from the usual cold and foggy San Francisco and it’s given me more energy to explore new places and be creative. I have two more weeks here so I wanted to share my thoughts about the city and some of my favorite places.
Time has always been a scarcity. Before the COVID-19 pandemic when we followed rigid routines that left us exhausted at the end of each day, all we yearned for was more time. More time to pick up an extra hobby, more time to learn a new language, more time to start a side business, more time to explore new places. Fast forward to present day, four months into shelter in place with social interactions still limited to a minimum, how many of us can confidently say we’ve achieved what we wanted to do with all the extra time we have now?
From going through multiple airport securities, experiencing foul weather, or struggling to get the perfect photo, I’ve developed a checklist to make my travel experiences as smooth as possible. Here’s a couple of travel hacks that I consider most useful.
2017 has been a year of making big moves (literally) and trying new things that I’m afraid of doing. There were lots of big life changes and decisions made, but I think and sure do hope I made the right choices to be where I am right now. From moving to the west coast to several international trips, starting a new job at Facebook to shooting engagement photos, I think I can safely say that I made the most out of this year and accomplished more than I would have imagined.
Man, what an incredible and emotional weekend at the Northern California International Dragon Boat Festival two weeks ago. It was a culmination of what the team has trained for all season, all the sacrifices every paddler has made, and the selflessness and trust we have in each. This was the final race of the season for me and it makes me so happy and proud to be paddling alongside people who are so passionate and committed to the sport.
‘Paddlers are you ready? Attention. Go!”
73 strokes, 200 meters, and 50 seconds later we were done. It all happened so fast there wasn’t any time to think. There was just barely enough time to catch a couple of breaths. CDBA Sprints was my first West Coast dragon boat race and first with SF Dragon Warriors. And it was a blast.