Lost in LaLa Land!

AAAAHHHH!

Pretty close to how I’ve been feeling most days around here.

I haven’t updated my blog in forever and a day :(. Or at least since I moved to Los Angeles (the AAAAAHHH fake monster up there is me at a shop on Sawtelle, the Little Tokyo of LA’s Westside).

Not that anyone expects me to, since I’m pretty sure that anyone who used to read this anyway knows that I have now entered a universe parallel to the one I used to live in, and that strange alternate universe is called Grad School at a Prestigious and Difficult University. At which, I feel like I am failing on most days :-/. Every spare moment not studying is spent worrying about not studying, or worrying about something or another period. I probably don’t need to really explain. You’ve been in school before, you know how it goes…

But, perhaps due to a bit freer of a mind and schedule now that midterms are over (though of course with finals on the fast-approaching horizon), I’ve been aching to fill the world in on what’s new through these colored glasses of mine! Bulletpoints, I like you today:

  • Like I said and you probably already know or have been able to figure out by now, I moved to LA. I’m doing a joint masters program at UCLA, and though it’s sort of kicking my butt right now I’m still entirely grateful to be here.
  • Specifically, I moved into a pretty awesome little apartment in Palms (about 20-30 minutes from campus) with two very cool, very sweet girls who were once strangers but are now my new friends and roommates.
  • I painted my room an amazing orange. After that, I lost all time and energy to decorate any further. You may recall my big plans to do a Moroccan thing with my bedroom, conceived many miles and lifetimes from here before I admitted to myself that I’m just too lazy and messy to ever have a room that nice. Oh well. Martha Stewart’s “Butterscotch” sets enough mood by itself on most days.
  • Because I must really love bright colors, I purchased a 2012 Ford Fiesta in “Lime Squeeze” to navigate these congested streets and freeways in. Fortunately, the gas mileage is incredible. I love my new car!
  • Speaking of new things money can buy (I swear I’m not usually this materialistic), I bought the new iPhone 4S, which I also love! If it’s any consolation, this is my first smart phone ever (well, unless you count that uninsured Blackberry Pearl I had for like a month before I left it at a bus stop in 2008), and I patiently waited for the new iPhone to come out for 2.5 whole months after returning to the country, using the cheapest T-Mobile prepaid flip phone in the mean time. So at least I put a lot of thought into this?
  • And speaking of new things money CAN’T buy, since getting home from Japan I met an amazing human being whom I’m lucky enough to be able to call my partner (but only to irritate him :P). He is amazing, especially since he lives 400 miles away and still likes me. Long-distance is not everyone’s cup of tea (myself included), but we’re making it work so far. Happy two months, honey!
  • I enrolled in a Tahitian dance class at UCLA, which is a little flickering light in my stressful school schedule. It’s so nice to spend just one hour and fifteen minutes a week doing something that I absolutely love and have convinced myself I will pursue more seriously when I’m not so busy (one day…).
  • I signed up for my first full marathon, scheduled for 2/5/12–which, if I’m able to complete, I will fulfill my once not-so-serious-eventually-turned-serious goal of running 26 miles for 26 years of life! However, if I fail, it’ll unfortunately have to wait until I’m 27 (which is just a month later). This has unfortunately become a valid possibility, since in spite of all my hard efforts to train seriously for this race by joining up a couple of running clubs here, while walking to catch the bus two weeks ago I managed to step wrong off a curb and sprained my ankle :(. It’s feeling a lot better now, but I’m still not sure when it’ll be up to running long distances again. Cross your fingers for me that it’s soon.
  • I’m verrrryyy sloooowwwly discovering the LA food scene. Lack of money, time, and friends with similar tastes and schedules account for the snail’s pace of my foodieness, but I eat when I can (this new ramen place in Culver City has an amazeballs tsukemen, by the way). I take comfort in knowing I will be here for at least three more years…  which should be more than enough time to make some decent rounds in NOM.
  • I miss the people I met in Japan and the life I had there that I know I can never get back, every day. It’s the breaks of life that I haven’t been able to keep in touch with all of them nearly as much as I’d like, but I think about them often, and I hope they know that. I’ve never been one to get over things easily, and these folks are no exception.
Ok, that’s about all I have time for before getting lost again. I can’t promise that I’ll write again soon or even often, but I can leave you with one more photo to illustrate my new life, which I’m not liking every day but am certainly grateful for every day.
The roomies and I up at Griffith Park Observatory, on a particularly smog-free Saturday afternoon!
Ja ne?
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