January 19, 2013

It all happened in California

Soon, I will have been living in California for 2 years; 2 whole years, people! I can hardly believe it myself. I feel time has gone by so slowly and so fast at the same time; does that make any sense? But anyway, the longest I'd ever lived abroad before moving to the States was a little over 1 month (once to England and once to Japan). Those experiences were very fulfilling and taught me a lot. I stopped for a little bit wondering what things I have learned by living in California. I guess the fact that I'm not going anywhere anytime soon led to my forgetting that I'm constantly discovering new things (but, aren't we all, regardless of where we're living, actually?). This is the kind of shit that goes on in my mind as I'm shelving books or commuting, by the way, haha.

So, I've written down quite a few things that have happened and that I've learned here, most of which are probably not amusing at all, but I decided to make them a blog post.

* I got to see a man-made colorful mountain. Geez, visiting Salvation Mountain was such a unique experience! 

* I set foot on a ghost town. For reals. And a Renaissance fair, too (a very Gilmore Girls experience if you ask me).

* I've tried foods I'd never eaten before: chili and Mexican food in general, real pancakes and waffles, peanut butter, American candy (Jelly Bellies, jaw breakers, dots, candy corn, etc.), marshmallows, Pop Tarts, Twinkies, buffalo wings (why are they called that?!), Sriracha (I'm addicted to it!), pumpkin. Foods I am yet to try that I'd never heard of before moving to Cali: Korean BBQ, Pho, Pay Day, Ding Dongs, Lucky Charms.

Sriracha goes with everything. I use it on polenta, rice noodles, beef ...

The best chili cheese fries from The Hat.

Raspberry M&Ms, coconut M&Ms ...

* I wore sunglasses for the first time. Seriously, I had never needed/worn sunglasses before. One of the first things I noticed when I moved was that the clouds look completely different, like real cotton clouds that pop out from the sky! And the sun is oh-so-shiny; like insanely shiny.

* The 101. Oh, had I heard about it in songs (like Phantom Planet's) and movies! We've experienced it with and without crazy traffic; I prefer the latter, naturally.

* The weather. Dry summers and bearable winters? Yes! They do exist. The weather is something I definitely do not miss from Buenos Aires.

* I now have dinner at 6:30 pm. Geez! I thought I was never going to get used to that. In Argentina, I ate whenever I got from work sometimes at 9pm, sometimes at 11pm, never earlier than 9pm. Now, at around 6 I start getting hungry :/.

* You can find the most creative products here such as the cutest sidewalk chalk ;). (More examples to come in a later post)

* There are drive-thus & drop-off boxes everywhere! You practically don't need to get off your car at all. Aside from the typical fast food drive-thru, the post office has a drive thru, the libray I work at has one, too, and it's common to see drop-off boxes like the one below for clothes and shoes. I wonder if it's the same in all American states.

* Vintage stores are the best! Love Melrose Avenue.

* Dimitri moved from being anorexic (that's what his medical history states!) and having a chronic kidney disease to being a chubby, healthy kitty :p.

* I got to meet Meiko. She was really cool and down to earth; there's a picture of us together, but unfortunately I don't like the way I look in it :/. Speaking of music, I think I now hate the Red Hot Chilly Peppers, well, hate might be too strong of a word, but they play them so freaking much on the radio! Why?! Whyyy?! I'm so sick of listening to their songs. I bet you're ruining it for a lot of people, radio stations!   

I guess I've experienced a lot of neat things! It's funny how sometimes you get caught up in a weird spot where you tend to focus on what you want and don't have instead of realizing that you actually have a lot of good things going on. Now that I have a job, I feel more laid-back and can look back and enjoy things I've done in a different way. Funny, huh?

And before I leave, here's a video from an SNL skit called The Californians; have you even seen it? I really didn't think Californians had a funny accent; if anything, I feel it's one of the mildest American accents there are. But after watching these skits, I guess they do kind of talk like that, haha! I say "they" because I have a weird foreign accent of my own, ha.

Hope you're having a wonderful weekend! ;D



TheVagabondStudio said...

I live in Georgia, all the way on the other side of the country, and we have drive-thru everything as well. I live in a tiny little town, so our post office isn't drive-thru, but we have those drop-off boxes and drive-thru everything else, including liquor stores.

I can tell you that the weather in California is unmatched in the US, except for maybe Florida. Even in Florida, it rains in the summer (almost the same time, every day, for about an hour) and is extremely humid. Georgia is warm mostly year round, but has fairly grey skies through Fall and Winter, and the humidity here is something like 80% and higher in hot weather.

Cali is beautiful - you picked a perfect place to live!

Laura said...

Interesting post Miki. Dimitri looks great! He must be enjoying California too. ;)

Buffalo wings are called Buffalo wings because they were created in Buffalo, New York originally. That's actually where my family is from, and is currently about 3 hours west of where I live in New York state. The Anchor Bar in downtown Buffalo is the birthplace of the chicken wing. ;)

Not many drive through places here in New York state but there is a drive through cigarette/tobacco place down the street from me. Ewwwww...I don't smoke and can't for the life of me figure out why people do.

I agree with you that it's a good thing to remember all the good things we do have on a regular basis. It's easy to get caught up in the I don't have but want it frame of mind.

Sian said...

i love this post! california looks so good and i love that dimitri feels better!

Jenstar_Blonde said...

Hi Miki!! So glad you love California!! I cant wait til my holiday there!! Its great that Dimitri has become so much healthier!! I love seeing his little tummy :D ooo and we are difinitely visiting the Calico ghost town cant wait!! lol I am so excited about seeing all the drive thrus lol

Jen xxx

INDIGOBEANcreations said...

salvation mountain is on my list of places to see, it looks awesome!

Chrissy said...

Gosh, I can't believe how time goes by, I can still remember when you were on that flight! So glad you like and and are happy where you are! Isn't that the most important thing, to be happy where we are!
Love that Dimitri is doing so well, too!
SNL, I so miss it! Thanks for sharing this, its hilarious!
Happy Sunday, sweetie! xxx

Roville said...

No! por favor, que lindas fotos, que lindo paseo! que lindo todo! =)

me encanta tu blog Miki, aunque ne cesite traductor! :P



Maria said...

This post has left me hungry and wanting to shop!! :) so great you got to experience so many wonderful places and foods! The ghost town looks like so much fun...I love it!! Love the ice cream chalk too!! And the kitty pics. :)
Hope you're having a wonderful weekend! Xoxox

Katrin said...

Aww, love that post, Miki! I did not know that Dimitri had such problems before! I am so glad he is doing fine now!
And for me it is weird that Americans have dinner so early too! In Germany I always eat dinner around 8 but never at 6. :) Plus I really like to have a lot of time for dinner. I don't want to feel rushed in restaurants.
Have a great week, my friend! Hugs!

Cindy said...

I'm a native Californian and haven't done hardly any of this stuff, haha. But maybe because I'm a Northern Californian? It's almost like a different world from down south.

seelvana said...

qué diivina review, me alegro que te veas tan adaptada y que recuerdes las cosas nuevas y buenas que viviste en estos dos años-

Ahora, para una final-adaptation, cuándo te veremos con el pelo rubiooo??

Anonymous said...

That mountain looks amazing! I've never been to California.


Kirsten Renz said...

i want to be able to explore a new country! while most of this stuff is familiar to me, i'd love to know what your life was like in south america. you're so brave to make such a move! 'd love to travel, but moving to another country intimidates me!

Bethany Kellen of bunnypicnic said...

this was so cute to read! i had never thought about any of these things as strange, because they are all so common place to me. especially being born and raised in california. instead things regionally are different and weird to me. i'm still learning things about sacramento, and i've been here a year and a half! i can't believe you've only been in california that long!
this was a very cute post!

lisa said...

I love that SNL skit- as a lifetime west coaster I find that super funny :) It's cool to see the unique perspective from someone not from here! What an amazing adventure you've had! Glad your kitties are loving it too!

Nena Nadine said...

I love seeing your view of America. It's nice to know what it's like 'on the outside'. We have alot of drop offs in my town but alot of them you need to park and walk to. I didn't know we had clothing drop offs like that in our town until recently. I saw one on a walk and was like what in the world is that. I never use them though. I still opt for goodwill. A charity store that doesn't have a religious association.

Dus Katrina said...

looks like so many fun times!! what a huge change for kitty, glad you could nurture him to health! salavation mountain looks so cool too, i'll have to visit some day.