Five Things We’ve Been Up To

Since we’ve been up to a hodgepodge of things, which is too hard to pigeonhole into categories, just enjoy a run-down of five things we’ve been doing recently!

1. Still photography. One of the things that I really want to do is get better at photography; I like taking a lot of pictures of different things I find beautiful, but my technique is really just point-and-shoot. The rest is the gorgeous DSLR camera my mother gave me for my birthday two years ago. Some of it has turned out nicely. Some of it looks silly enough that I don’t even want to put it up on Flickr yet. Here, have one of the more mundane samples that I like somehow!

Our makeshift utensil jar.

2. Night biking. Every other night, Steve and I have taken the free bike rental service around Kaohsiung out for a spin. The weather, which has been maintaining a balmy 80 with some humidity during the day, gets down to low 70s at night, which makes it perfect for a ride in the evening dusk. We ride around Central Park a good deal, which is close by, and also down to the Costco and IKEA. It’s our only bit of exercise, after sitting at desks all day thinking and typing hard!

3. Applying to graduate school. GUYS. This is hard. I finally finished a solid second draft of my Statement of Purpose last week, but since then have been rethinking my life. No, really. I really love the topic of public policy, and am more than anxious to learn about it in school and go through the research and internships and understand more about affordable housing, economic development, public finance, social welfare, you name it. But I really don’t want to write a lot of reports and do statistical and economic analyses; I’d much rather work directly with people, especially if I’m helping them figure out their careers and education, but I’m also not content with just the direct service because I think there are better, more systemic ways of enabling change like through governmental policy and… that’s the five second version of the self-thinking and exploration I’ve been busy doing at the moment. Anyone who wants to volunteer as a sounding board, let me know. =)

4. Cooking. Steve and I have finally tried to make use of our hot plate, which came with a wide mouthed saucepan. On one hand, it’s been a long time since I’ve only had one pan to cook with at a time. That means we have to make the pasta, drain the pasta, put it into bowls, clean the pot in the tiny bathroom sink, then prepare the veggies, and make the veggie sauce individually. On the other hand, it has been very nice to eat something that we made ourselves. It was delicious, and reminded us of the many meals we used to cook. I don’t know when I’ll get to make any other recipes here. All my favorite things require an oven, and that’s one thing we definitely don’t have. Many Taiwanese people end up eating out because it’s incredibly cheap and convenient. As a result, many apartments don’t have full-fledged kitchens, merely a hot plate or electric stove if you’re lucky.

5. Finally, postcards! If you have submitted your address, chances are, you will be getting one of these bad boys. We got these from the Kaohsiung Postal Office, which is definitely home to some of the nicest people ever! I think they’re gorgeous too. If you want one, just let us know. 

Beautiful scenes from Kaohsiung.

Signing off,

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