Day 105 - Shimou Returns (From Beijing)

Enter Epic Panflute
July 21st, 2015

I am determined to make burritos today, damn it! I said I'd cook for them Sunday, but the stores were closed. I bought the stuff yesterday, but they ate early. Not today. Today, they will eat my food and like it! The only thing I have to do is go to the gym, which I'm really tempted to skip. I remind myself that Bali is tomorrow and I likely won't be able to go again until we get back, and then only 10 more days of it until Melbourne and Beijing. Likely, there will be no gym then, either. Seize the day!

I power through the heavier weights, though my body is pretty sore from upping them the past few days. This is exactly what I want. Since before switching to the slower pace, I was no longer getting sore from workouts. Since switching it up, glorious soreness. There’s something great about feeling that “ah, I worked hard” feeling, particularly when you lay down at the end of the day.

Get back in uniform.
I return home to find Veer and Lee watching movies while I immediately crack into cooking. The food is already going to be ready later than they wanted, so it better be good. Luckily, it turns out pretty great, though they don't seem very familiar with what burritos are. I make them one and will make the rest, but I get the feeling that they don’t like me handling their food. I probably washed them at least 5 times during making this food, but whatever floats your boat. They ended up eating them, unfolded, with a fork and knife. Veer ate the one I made like a, well, burrito. It pleased me. I, on the other hand, ate all the ingredients, minus the tortilla, in a bowl. Burrito bowl salad - Dig it.

Creepy Cobbler
Shimou is arriving back in Perth tonight from Beijing. Ella, Lee, and I were waiting at the airport in his car while Shimou gathers her luggages and clears security. We’re waiting a while, all using our respective phones. They don't generally speak English, and don’t seem to want to carry a conversation in it with me. My attempts have gone down over time. Not paying attention, Lee shouts in surprise when he looks out the window to see a forklift about to pick up the driver’s side. The forklift driver then backs up, laughing, and waves goodbye. I had a good laugh, and so did Lee when he got over the shock of it.

Shimou eventually made it to the car, hating the perm she got. Two things I've learned about women’s hair: first, what they have, they don't tend to like. Asian women get perms, while non-asian women tend to straighten their hair - sometimes chemically so. Leading from the first, the second is if that person is Asian and their hair is curly, they probably did it on purpose, and the opposite is generally true with non-Asians. Mixed people kind of complicate it, but picking up on this can give you something to compliment if you're ever looking for it.

While waiting in the car, I spoke with my friend, Rochelle, from home about how she wanted to add Shimou on Instagram, but felt weird doing it. My perspective on something like that goes like this:

  1. People tend to want followers, or else they wouldn’t have a public profile. 
  2. If their profile isn't public, they have the choice to accept or reject. 
  3. Rejection costs nothing but pride, and we all have a limitless supply of that. 
  4. People tend to like having more followers, otherwise they probably wouldn't bother putting stuff out there. 

Airport Bound
All this boils down to the question: are you providing value or taking value? In Rochelle’s situation, I'd argue that she’s giving value by following, therefore it shouldn't be a problem. Using value as a compass for your actions will probably lead you right 90%+ of the time. In my current situation, it can sometimes be hard to tell if you're providing value or not due to cultural confusion.

Yuzu is back home in Japan at her mom’s place. She sent me a picture of her and her friend eating dinner, and something looked… off. I realized that Yuzu was wearing a shirt that I'd never seen her wear. Do you remember when you watched cartoons as a kid and on one random episode for a brief period, the character wore a different set of clothes? It was like that. Almost as though she was out of uniform. I told her so, and she said she continued to live out of her bag, even though she was home. For her, it’s been over a year living out of that bag and only had as much clothes as would fit in there. So strange. Like seeing a doppelganger.

Arrived Alive, Didn't Drink and Drived
Final conversation I'll mention: I said to another friend, Lucas, “man, I'm totally going to be some weird eccentric when I get older,” to which he responded that I already am. After looking up the definition of “eccentric,” I laughed for a while to myself, making my Chinese friends think me mad. Just one of my eccentricities, I guess.

Shimou ate the last burrito and seemed surprised that it was good. She also doesn't like how I present her in the blog, even though I'm pretty sure it’s generally positive. “Just eat your burrito,” I said. As I write this. I snickered to myself, making them all look at me like I was crazy, again. Tomorrow is Bali, and I feel like I might be getting sick from the undercooked steak this morning. Hopefully it’s nothing.

Current Listening: "Running" by Milky Chance

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