April 17, 2014
Travel Blog #2: On Making Friends

The odd thing about backpacking is that you hardly ever stay friends with the people you meet for too long, unless you run into each other repeatedly, or you instantly connect.

But the variety is astounding. Most people seem to be very chill and have their own plans and their own itineraries and often they’ll keep to that and themselves.

But others still enjoy the traveler culture and revel in the fact that there are no such things as strangers; only friends you haven’t met yet. It’s almost as if you’re attending a never ending mixer. All it takes is a smile, an exchange of names and a handshake in order to start to get to know one another.

Everyone has their own stories and their own experiences. It is fascinating to see what others will pick up that you do not.

But like I said, such friends seem to be of a very transient nature. You meet them in the city you’re staying in, and as soon as you leave, they’re gone as well.

There’s room for all kinds of sorts. Just need to know how to properly deal with the hello-goodbyes when it’s all over.

April 17, 2014

She is the sun
And he is the sea

Is warmth
And the source of smiles

Is coarse
crashing and boundless

He only ever knew
How to be blue

Until she kissed his face
And shone
Like gold.

April 16, 2014
Wherever You Go, There You Are

"Wherever you go, there you are."

I heard this phrase sometime after coming to the Philippines. The way I interpreted it was that no matter where you move, all you ever have is yourself to offer. After a few years in the Philippines, I found that to be completely true.

Right now, I’m barely 3 days into a month long trip through Southeast Asia, and again I’m finding myself running into this phrase.

Like a lot of people who idealize the concept of traveling the world, I fell into the trap thinking that it was supposed to be some life changing experience. That you’ll be someplace else and you’re suddenly going to reach this point of enlightenment. Doesn’t happen.

Nope. Not automatically. And not without some work, at least.

What travel DOES do though is put your life in perspective. Getting to see all kinds of different walks of life; the innumerable possibilities that might’ve been you if you’d been born in a different country, family, or culture. What could’ve existed based on the choices you didn’t make, or what could exist based on choices still to be made.

There is an infinity out there; a great wealth of maybes and perhaps in a limitless expanse of happenstance.

You will get a feel for how small and comfortable your little corner of the world has gotten.

Some will find comfort in the familiar things. Others will want to run away from what has grown mundane and full of nothing but the same.

But regardless, you will have an intuitive feel for what you want to keep, and what you’ll wish you could change.

Travel will strip you to the barest iteration of yourself, as you navigate language barriers and lose the ability to communicate effectively. You will find yourself naked in the face of seeking the next thrill and defining what fun is for you.

But you’ll be most surprised by what you feel you could do away from the eyes of everyone you know.

This is frightening, but this is still you. And there is no truer self than who you are when there is no one to judge.

You will know who you really are.

What parts of you to keep.

And what is just baggage.

In travel, you take what is useful and discard what loses its value as you go along. Life has this in common.

It becomes exhausting to be someone you aren’t comfortable being. Or having wants and beliefs that don’t need to be carried with you.

You will find what the bare necessities are. And finding out what weighs you down, you will wish you were lighter.

If life need be a journey, all that anyone needs is a clear destination, and the endurance to get them there. But you don’t need to be the same person at the end as when you started.

Wherever you go, there you are. Take only what is needed.

April 16, 2014

Miles between us
And thousands of faces

Adventure leads me
To the friendship of many

But when they ask
Where I’ve been
And where I want to go
I always come back
To your name.

This is how I know

Home is with you.

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April 9, 2014


With a projected settlement date of 2025, the Mars One project has received over 200,000 applications for the one way trip to the Red Planet. But creating a living, sustainable community on the distant planet for the select inhabitants will require not only unique technological and engineering solutions, but also novel architectural systems. Bryan Versteeg is a conceptual designer who’s been working with the Mars One team in anticipation of the planet’s eventual colonization. (via SpaceHabs: One man’s architectural vision for colonizing Mars)

March 27, 2014
Random Thoughts While Showering

Contrary to popular belief, an architect doesn’t only design in 3D. Such would simply be sculpture. But rather, in 4D, 3D over the progression of time as an architect must consider not only their project’s effect and experience of the users in the present, but also as such concepts and intentions would be sustained over the expected life of the structure.

To further extrapolate this concept, the structure also has social ramifications as it assimilates into the unique locality and community of its adjacencies and thus contributes to the social tapestry, eventually trickling its effect into the national community (and ultimately the global community at large).

All of this doesn’t happen within a single moment, nor even in the span of months. But years and decades as the sociopolitical and economic landscape of the built environment evolves and interacts within itself; each structure being an addition to (or even possible subtraction from) the microcosm, that would inevitably shift the global macrocosm as a whole, even if such shift is of small, statistically irrelevant magnitude.

I really should just concentrate on soaping and shampooing.

March 26, 2014

Somethings I just remember. Like the first time I rode a bike, or when she first kissed me. It’s so naturally a part of me, and it’s so integrated there’s not even a moment where I need to consciously accept it as truth.

But with you, it’s like waking up and learning all over again that you’re gone. Sometimes, I can’t even believe that it’s been over a month. I can still hear mom crying as she gives me the news.

I wake up every day, and I get out of bed. And every day, I’ve woken up, and had to accept this as truth.

It still doesn’t feel like it’s a part of me, and every day I have to convince myself that it really is.

March 25, 2014

I don’t think I’ve been 100% emotionally, mentally, or physically, for even just a second in the last few months.

Life on hard mode. 

March 13, 2014

I didn’t just lose my father; I lost the one person in the world who believed in me the most.

Part of what sucks about it is that I didn’t even know it was him until after he was gone.

February 24, 2014

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Filed under: dad 
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