Christina Follow

A penchant for details. A thirst for words. A cynical dreamer. A budding raconteur. Blog updates daily. Maybe.

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If there’s one thing I love more than trench coat weather, it’s the rain. Whether it’s drizzling or pouring, I love them all. I love the pitter patter sound against the window sill, or clothes turning slightly translucent from the rain. Seeing the back lights flashing from the reflection of puddles, or walking insouciantly to the sound track of your choice. Playing jazz while ensconced on the sofa, the air perfumed by your favorite candle. The rain is not an inconvenience, not if you learn to appreciate its beauty.  When all else fails, remember that tomorrow is another day for you to live, and if you’re lucky, to love.
To love is either the stupidest mistake, or the greatest decision. But even the best type of love can be dotted with imperfection. Today’s rainy day reminded me of that one time when I followed a très chic old lady for three blocks in the 1st arrondissement, in a misty rain quite similar to this. Thankfully we were headed the same route, me to the former Colette, her to the pharmacy. She strolled through the rain with her black cane umbrella, trench coat, and her Kelly carelessly tossed about. I thought she was the most elegant lady I’d ever seen. Six years later, as I trampled in the rain, in my black cane umbrella, and trench coat, I can’t help but to think of her. How in those precious five minutes, I decided I’d recreate a semblance of her effortless elegance. How subconsciously, I’ve made it into reality. Well, everything besides the bag, anyway. But that’s another story on its own.
I don’t think there was ever a summer where the brutal heat overruled my life. Being irritable is obviously a prerequisite, and I now have the attention span of a zombie. Which is to say, not very high. I mean, if one of my highlights this week is listening to Imagine Dragons’ Radioactive, and gasp appropriately (and consequently forgetting how to breathe properly) during that one part, then what does that really say about my life? Still, these meatballs came through. They weren’t great, but something about the mediocrity screamed nostalgia. Did I grow up eating grandma’s meatballs in tomato sauce? Nop. Did I ever make meatballs in my life? Nop again. But I did have Subway’s meatball sub half a dozen times. That ought to have some semblance of credibility.
It’s always a good idea to appreciate the extraordinary amongst the ordinary. Like having the train stopping right in front of the staircase. Or bobbing your head to Eminem’s new song Venom 82 times. When it’s finally cold enough to enjoy the warmth emitted from the candlelight, or having someone else do the dishes. When the phone’s battery lasts just long enough for you to get into your apartment, and revives from its last 1%. When someone texts you unexpectedly, and remain a civilized chap. When you wake up with a glass of warm water, honey stirred in. When someone holds the door for you after bank hours, so you don’t fumble through your bottomless bag to find your card. When the train remains blissfully accident free, and you manage to get to work early for once. When you miscalculated the amount of spinach you throw into the blender, and it comes out better than than your usual fruit centric smoothie. When the item you’ve been eyeing on goes on sale, and still carries your size. When moviepass finally releases a movie you’ve been dying to see, just before you lose all hope. When childhood nostalgia hits you like a brick, tears of joy and sorrow roll out of your eyes, simultaneously. When you realize life isn’t half bad, and you trudge on, believing, hoping, praying that tomorrow will be a better day.
It’s difficult not to compare your sordid life, to everyone’s glossy lifestyles on social media. So and so is a globetrotter. Condé Nast, take notes. Another, someone my age, is married with a family. This calls for introspection. What have I done lately that’s noteworthy? Surely there’s something worth mentioning. Well, I did purchase a new shampoo and conditioner, and an boxful of body products, so I have that going for me. I also enjoyed a quiet Friday afternoon at home, while most people are working. Nothing major like going on a two weeks all paid vacation, but it’s the small victories in life that matter. Sometimes, that’s enough.
The best parts of life are the ones we stumble upon, not when we stubbornly wait for them to come by. I won’t dream about becoming a millionaire, or finding my Mr. Right. God knows how difficult it is to make a living, let alone to live a life. I can only trudge on, and appreciate the small things. Having matcha made by a connoisseur, home cooked meals, flower of the week. They say materialistic goods are overrated, but I beg to differ. Happiness can indeed be bought, depending on the best offer.
Cold fried chicken was surprisingly delicious, the sour dough crepe, less so (maybe it was because we didn’t pay for the $100 caviar). But that peach, jasmine rice, with sweet pepper concoction, I’m sorry to say, was simply atrocious. Still had a wonderful time regardless. Maybe next time we can rendez vous back for some fried chicken instead? Or in Paris, back to Clown Bar. In sickness and in health, in hotness and in cold, it’s a promise 🎈.
Summer heat has driven us to the bridge of no return. Cabin fever broke out of prison, hurtful words spread like a wild fire. Nothing, and I mean nothing, was off limits. I suppose that was the price to pay for trying to conquer summer without AC or fan. After another dreary day in the sun, watermelon with sea salt has never been so rewarding. May this be the last of heat wave.
My favorite phrase lately has been “I can make that at home.” Well, mainly on food, because let’s face it, as much as I’d like to recreate Frama’s lopsided chair (can’t be that difficult. It’s just pieces of wood, after all), it’s much more likely for me to shell out major bucks for it instead. But artistically chopped cucumbers, with yogurt like substance, and carrot garnishes? That I can do. The world doesn’t need another egotistical innovator, I’ll happily become a duplicator. Ps. I know I shouldn’t make fun of Copenhagen so much, especially since it was a breathtaking experience, but what’s up with the same 5 recommended cafes, Copenhagen guides ?
Summer is where humidity washes over, but it’s also where produce comes to life. Gone are the potato famine season, hello, colors. Take these doughnut peaches, for instance. Blink, and it’s gone.
The mind, cultivates. The heart, ruminates.
After speeding through the entirety of Richard Jury series (yes. All 25 of them), I hit my reading plateau. I scoured the New York Times list, and later on, Amazon’s booklist. It turned out Andy Weir, also known as the creator behind The Martian, had a new book out. This time, it was about an independent chick (it’s  2018, after all. All hail to feminism) on the moon. First it was on mars, and now it’s on the moon. Maybe the next one could be set on Jupiter ? I digress. The first 35% was repetitious. It was a book on heist, but where was the action? It was everything I’d read before, but not nearly as captivating. Come 40%, we had our first glimpse of its potential, and from there, it flourished. It was a little like the restaurant.  @birdsofafeatherbk the shrimp dumpling was a cry for help. The skin was thicker than my iPhone, the taste screamed mediocrity. The noodles fared slightly better, if only because it wasn’t as soggy as Cafe China’s rendition. Then it got interesting. Wonton in chili oil was a Szechuan cuisine staple, and it did not disappointment. Mostly due to the well spiced sauce. It was a combination of tongue tingly (or mala) goodness, relieved by the well seasoned filling. Beef with green peppers was another safe dish, if only because they didn’t skimp on either ingredient. But for the price of $18, and the simplicity of the dish, $15 seemed more adequate, especially since it was a bit oily. The distressed walls, the futuristic bar, the huge communal table in the center, and the weirdly dark tables on the side shouldn’t work. And they didn’t. But I suppose that was part of the charm. It didn’t have to make sense. #eaterny