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European State of Mind

In my continuing quest to separate myself from the typical/stereotypical American, I’ve discovered that the things I want and even do on a daily basis is inherently European. Sure I’ve been told I have a stick up my ass about certain things which I can say isn’t very European but as for everything else, I’m not sure I’m so far off. Since this will make more sense as a list, I’ll stick with that as the format for presenting my justification.  

1. I prefer Nutella over peanut butter any day of the week. Actually a European co-worker of mine one day came into my office, saw this, and straightened me out.

2. One of my dreams is to sell my car, buy a Vespa, and live in SF. I’m sure many people say that San Francisicans are incredibly smug by thinking that it’s the closest thing to being a European city but I’ve also heard this from actual Europeans so I don’t think it’s BS anymore. 

3. I specifically chose to support endeavors that are European or apps that are made by European companies over American companies (Pop-Up City, Endomondo). And if you think about it, that’s crazy because I live in Silicon Valley and I know at least 30 startups that are primarily there to make apps.

4. I love sitting in cafes/coffee shops reading or getting work done in all hours of the day. Sure it’s something I picked up from being a college student but I don’t know anyone who would actually enjoy doing something like that by themselves. When I was in Barcelona, my parents and I ate late at a restaurant (around 9 pm), I saw business men and locals conversing and having dinner. Restaurants stay open till 2 am so the idea of being able to hang out in a restaurant late at night is lovely. 

5. I’m not sure if this is a European thing as much as it’s a Spanish thing but I tend to eat dinner later than the usual American. This is all thanks to my mother who always prepared late meals (8-9 pm) so once I finally move to Spain, this really won’t be much of a culture shock.

6. I’m attracted to cities/towns that have tons of European immigrants. SF, Palo Alto, Chicago, etc…

7. One of my European friends said he never makes friends with Americans so I’m actually his only American friend. He told me he usually never gets along very well with Americans so I’ll take this as a major compliment!

I’m sure there’s other small points I can make but I find these pretty valuable in itself. I wonder what I should label myself as now…   

My extracurricular activities are making me poor

I think I’m beginning to be obsessed with outdoorsy clothing. 

  • Mountain Hardwear Jacket……………… $70
  • Hiking Pants………………………………  $45 
  • Nike Running Jacket …………………….. $55 
  • Billabong Wetsuit Jacket………………… $65
  • TYR Competition Slice Suit …………….. $25
  • Nike Swim Pants………………………….. $35                                                                                                                                                   

I’m not going to even bother with the total because it’ll just depress me to no end. Damn it, why does being active cost so damn much?! Forget the fact that I need to purchase a suit for my upcoming triathlon as well :(                                                     

Huh, well that sucked

It’s been just about 6 months since I stopped using my legs entirely in any workout/exercise I’ve done, including swimming, and on the spur of the moment (mostly because it’s my week back) I finally started using them today with horrible results. I completely forgot how dizzy I used to get when swimming especially when I’m forced to do shit loads of flip turns in short course. Unlike my usual over a mile workout just pulling, I fell short while struggling to use my legs again. And let’s not forget how I’ve trained myself for the past 3 months to do flip turns without touching the wall which because of that, I’m missing the wall completely and never push off properly in streamline. Ugh, what a disaster this turned out to be. I was super stoked about how I’d be able to do a mile in just under 35 minutes but I realized I can’t make that pace if I’m actually forced to swim. Such a disappointing realization. Someone needs to buy and feed me a whole cake. 

On the plus side though, both my butterfly and backstroke improved dramatically but don’t really understand why. IMs no longer seem that bad….

If I actually skated, this would definitely be the board. 

If I actually skated, this would definitely be the board. 

Running Woes

I can’t describe my melancholy this entire summer. Last Summer, I explored the south bay in it entirety but this year, because I was injured at the very beginning, I couldn’t do any of that, forget even exercising. Even something as simple as walking was painful. At the beginning of this year, I was amped to start seriously running, training for races and getting into doing triathlons because I’m basically half way there. But then the same exact injury I had 3 years ago which forced me to stop running altogether came back. Fucking stress fractures. Not only that but when I see others running just outside my windows I can help but feel jealous that I can’t be out there doing that. Feeling that adrenaline I felt right after a 6 mile run. Running, out of all the exercises I’ve done, was the most challenging and was the best for stress relief. It’s been 3 months since I’ve done any running and it’s torture. I’ve basically replaced running with swimming, all the pulling my arms can handle and apparently it’s doing a mile in 35 minutes. I miss that, I miss being in the best shape of my life. 

However, I can look forward to early December the most because it’ll be my first time back to running after my extremely long recovery period. Hopefully I can couple it with surfing (which I also couldn’t do for a while because of my legs) but I’m super stoked to be back to running in about 3 weeks!! :) And of course signing up for all those races and competitions. I deserve it after all this!    

My relationship with Instragram

Unlike most people my age, I hate any social networking website whatsoever. (Except for LinkedIn and Instragram of course!) But for the year and a half I’ve had it, I’ve never had any “followers” or anyone “liking” my photos even though I pride myself greatly on being a decently good photographer. I’m starting to notice that more people internationally tend to use Instragram and the majority of my followers are indeed people from other countries. They also seem to hold more contests specifically for it than the US, where the very inception of this wonderful app began. Next, I also noticed that when I was traveling around Europe, I posted pictures at awkward times of the day (since I was 9 hours ahead of time) and seemed to get more likes than I ever did before in the US. The following week back from my trip, I had restless nights and sleep at random times (jetlag) but I still seemed to maintain the same amount of likes I did back in Europe. Now that I’ve finally gotten over the jetlag and post at seemingly “normal” times of the day, the amount of likes has greatly dropped once again back to my normal, norm. Not to mention how excited I got when I finally got some recognition but now I’ve become unpopular once again. So sad. It’s really just another indication I should move to Barcelona. 

Life Changes & Revelations

The minute I stepped into Barcelona, I knew I wanted to live there. It was this immediate connection that drew me to the city, it’s friendly people, and of course, the very funny culture. I feel like here in the US, everyone is always reaching for a goal, whether it be to make more money or get their dream house but it’s as if we don’t ever stop to enjoy life. It’s always about work and money, it’s really quite depressing. I’m also guilty of thinking this way because for a long time now it was always about getting my PhD. Nothing changes the fact that I still do want my PhD but I realized that I’m not truly living my life. I’m just following a path that I know I should and that doesn’t fit with my personality. 

I used to look down on people who went aboard to teach English as a second language because they had no direction in life and decided to waste their time before actually growing up. But I find myself more and more in that very position. I hate the idea of squandering my youth by fitting into this American Dream model. Some may say that it’s immature/stupid/not practical how I feel but I realized most people I know who say that are stuck in their own mundane life, like I once was.

If anyone has ever known me very closely, they would realize exact how uptight I am. But I’m beginning to realize that some of it maybe the country I grew up in. My constant pursuit to find a boyfriend and to get into a decent PhD program has taken over my life. But with an opportunity to go to Barcelona, all that pressure I’m feeling to get ahead in life will just dissipate and for the first time, I can actually LIVE, enjoy life and I want nothing more than that. It would be like a year long summer vacation/holiday where I can just let go and actually be young. I think with all I have done, I deserve at least that and I really can’t wait to start my new life in Barcelona. 

Anonymous asked: You have an interesting tumblr. You haven't posted in awhile but you should get back into it. You seem like an interesting person: a surfer grad school researcher. Get back into man!

That’s so sweet, thank you! I was under the impression that no one reads my blog— therefore there was no point in updating but I’m glad to know there is at least one person! To be honest, I’ve been traveling around Europe for about a month now so I couldn’t update then but definitely will now, thanks again!

European State of Mind

In my continuing quest to separate myself from the typical/stereotypical American, I’ve discovered that the things I want and even do on a daily basis is inherently European. Sure I’ve been told I have a stick up my ass about certain things which I can say isn’t very European but as for everything else, I’m not sure I’m so far off. Since this will make more sense as a list, I’ll stick with that as the format for presenting my justification.  

1. I prefer Nutella over peanut butter any day of the week. Actually a European co-worker of mine one day came into my office, saw this, and straightened me out.

2. One of my dreams is to sell my car, buy a Vespa, and live in SF. I’m sure many people say that San Francisicans are incredibly smug by thinking that it’s the closest thing to being a European city but I’ve also heard this from actual Europeans so I don’t think it’s BS anymore. 

3. I specifically chose to support endeavors that are European or apps that are made by European companies over American companies (Pop-Up City, Endomondo). And if you think about it, that’s crazy because I live in Silicon Valley and I know at least 30 startups that are primarily there to make apps.

4. I love sitting in cafes/coffee shops reading or getting work done in all hours of the day. Sure it’s something I picked up from being a college student but I don’t know anyone who would actually enjoy doing something like that by themselves. When I was in Barcelona, my parents and I ate late at a restaurant (around 9 pm), I saw business men and locals conversing and having dinner. Restaurants stay open till 2 am so the idea of being able to hang out in a restaurant late at night is lovely. 

5. I’m not sure if this is a European thing as much as it’s a Spanish thing but I tend to eat dinner later than the usual American. This is all thanks to my mother who always prepared late meals (8-9 pm) so once I finally move to Spain, this really won’t be much of a culture shock.

6. I’m attracted to cities/towns that have tons of European immigrants. SF, Palo Alto, Chicago, etc…

7. One of my European friends said he never makes friends with Americans so I’m actually his only American friend. He told me he usually never gets along very well with Americans so I’ll take this as a major compliment!

I’m sure there’s other small points I can make but I find these pretty valuable in itself. I wonder what I should label myself as now…   

My extracurricular activities are making me poor

I think I’m beginning to be obsessed with outdoorsy clothing. 

  • Mountain Hardwear Jacket……………… $70
  • Hiking Pants………………………………  $45 
  • Nike Running Jacket …………………….. $55 
  • Billabong Wetsuit Jacket………………… $65
  • TYR Competition Slice Suit …………….. $25
  • Nike Swim Pants………………………….. $35                                                                                                                                                   

I’m not going to even bother with the total because it’ll just depress me to no end. Damn it, why does being active cost so damn much?! Forget the fact that I need to purchase a suit for my upcoming triathlon as well :(                                                     

Huh, well that sucked

It’s been just about 6 months since I stopped using my legs entirely in any workout/exercise I’ve done, including swimming, and on the spur of the moment (mostly because it’s my week back) I finally started using them today with horrible results. I completely forgot how dizzy I used to get when swimming especially when I’m forced to do shit loads of flip turns in short course. Unlike my usual over a mile workout just pulling, I fell short while struggling to use my legs again. And let’s not forget how I’ve trained myself for the past 3 months to do flip turns without touching the wall which because of that, I’m missing the wall completely and never push off properly in streamline. Ugh, what a disaster this turned out to be. I was super stoked about how I’d be able to do a mile in just under 35 minutes but I realized I can’t make that pace if I’m actually forced to swim. Such a disappointing realization. Someone needs to buy and feed me a whole cake. 

On the plus side though, both my butterfly and backstroke improved dramatically but don’t really understand why. IMs no longer seem that bad….

If I actually skated, this would definitely be the board. 

If I actually skated, this would definitely be the board. 

Running Woes

I can’t describe my melancholy this entire summer. Last Summer, I explored the south bay in it entirety but this year, because I was injured at the very beginning, I couldn’t do any of that, forget even exercising. Even something as simple as walking was painful. At the beginning of this year, I was amped to start seriously running, training for races and getting into doing triathlons because I’m basically half way there. But then the same exact injury I had 3 years ago which forced me to stop running altogether came back. Fucking stress fractures. Not only that but when I see others running just outside my windows I can help but feel jealous that I can’t be out there doing that. Feeling that adrenaline I felt right after a 6 mile run. Running, out of all the exercises I’ve done, was the most challenging and was the best for stress relief. It’s been 3 months since I’ve done any running and it’s torture. I’ve basically replaced running with swimming, all the pulling my arms can handle and apparently it’s doing a mile in 35 minutes. I miss that, I miss being in the best shape of my life. 

However, I can look forward to early December the most because it’ll be my first time back to running after my extremely long recovery period. Hopefully I can couple it with surfing (which I also couldn’t do for a while because of my legs) but I’m super stoked to be back to running in about 3 weeks!! :) And of course signing up for all those races and competitions. I deserve it after all this!    

My relationship with Instragram

Unlike most people my age, I hate any social networking website whatsoever. (Except for LinkedIn and Instragram of course!) But for the year and a half I’ve had it, I’ve never had any “followers” or anyone “liking” my photos even though I pride myself greatly on being a decently good photographer. I’m starting to notice that more people internationally tend to use Instragram and the majority of my followers are indeed people from other countries. They also seem to hold more contests specifically for it than the US, where the very inception of this wonderful app began. Next, I also noticed that when I was traveling around Europe, I posted pictures at awkward times of the day (since I was 9 hours ahead of time) and seemed to get more likes than I ever did before in the US. The following week back from my trip, I had restless nights and sleep at random times (jetlag) but I still seemed to maintain the same amount of likes I did back in Europe. Now that I’ve finally gotten over the jetlag and post at seemingly “normal” times of the day, the amount of likes has greatly dropped once again back to my normal, norm. Not to mention how excited I got when I finally got some recognition but now I’ve become unpopular once again. So sad. It’s really just another indication I should move to Barcelona. 

Life Changes & Revelations

The minute I stepped into Barcelona, I knew I wanted to live there. It was this immediate connection that drew me to the city, it’s friendly people, and of course, the very funny culture. I feel like here in the US, everyone is always reaching for a goal, whether it be to make more money or get their dream house but it’s as if we don’t ever stop to enjoy life. It’s always about work and money, it’s really quite depressing. I’m also guilty of thinking this way because for a long time now it was always about getting my PhD. Nothing changes the fact that I still do want my PhD but I realized that I’m not truly living my life. I’m just following a path that I know I should and that doesn’t fit with my personality. 

I used to look down on people who went aboard to teach English as a second language because they had no direction in life and decided to waste their time before actually growing up. But I find myself more and more in that very position. I hate the idea of squandering my youth by fitting into this American Dream model. Some may say that it’s immature/stupid/not practical how I feel but I realized most people I know who say that are stuck in their own mundane life, like I once was.

If anyone has ever known me very closely, they would realize exact how uptight I am. But I’m beginning to realize that some of it maybe the country I grew up in. My constant pursuit to find a boyfriend and to get into a decent PhD program has taken over my life. But with an opportunity to go to Barcelona, all that pressure I’m feeling to get ahead in life will just dissipate and for the first time, I can actually LIVE, enjoy life and I want nothing more than that. It would be like a year long summer vacation/holiday where I can just let go and actually be young. I think with all I have done, I deserve at least that and I really can’t wait to start my new life in Barcelona. 

Anonymous asked: You have an interesting tumblr. You haven't posted in awhile but you should get back into it. You seem like an interesting person: a surfer grad school researcher. Get back into man!

That’s so sweet, thank you! I was under the impression that no one reads my blog— therefore there was no point in updating but I’m glad to know there is at least one person! To be honest, I’ve been traveling around Europe for about a month now so I couldn’t update then but definitely will now, thanks again!

European State of Mind
So forgive me for bitching so much but……
My extracurricular activities are making me poor
Huh, well that sucked
Running Woes
My relationship with Instragram
Life Changes & Revelations

About:

Hey I'm Ale.



I'm a self-proclaimed wallflower that lives life based off a poem. In my real life, I'm an engineering grad student but secretly wishes to be a beach bum and surf the day away and I love water, thus, welcome to my tumblr :)

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