Catching Up

It’s been quite some time since I last posted on this website. To tell the truth, my life has been nothing but full of new experiences. I made this personal blog because I find it to be an effective platform to remain an open book as I always try to be in person, and I think that keeping a record of this time will help bring perspective to my future endeavours.

Here’s my effort to sum up the last five months in a few exciting bullet points:

– The house that I had moved into in early April was flooded due to the heavy rainfall in ATL and poor water control structure of the house itself. Living in the house taught me a lot in terms of self-sufficiency. After more than a decade of living in various shared accommodations, I thoroughly enjoyed having a place I could call my own homebase. Inspired by my friends in 42 Hollywood Street (shouts out to Amelia, Caleb, and Juliette!), I also fostered a cat named Catelyn for a month.

Sharing my bedroom with Catelyn, like any momma would with her child

Because I am the luckiest person in the world, I had the best support from friends with moving heaps of belongings of which quantity was comparable to that of a gypsy family.

Théo helping with the move (merci beaucoup mon amie). Round 1
Round 2
Round 3: Fred to the rescue

Consequently I had to move out of the house and I have been extremely lucky to temporarily move in with Fred. With all due honesty, I have enjoyed this new living because I can come home to enjoy his company at the end of the day, to share a meal and, many times, engage in unparalleled banter. More than anything, I am grateful for the opportunity to rekindle a friendship that laid dormant due to the hustle and bustle of both of our schedules.

Therefore in ATL, I currently live on my pull out couch which I brought to Fred’s apartment, of which its versatility has allowed me to convert Fred’s living room into a bedroom in the matter of day and night. Yes, sleeping in a pull out couch for several months is not the most ideal, but it’s a huge relief not to have to deal with housing insecurity for at least a little while. Fred, you already know this, but 진심으로 고맙다, 나의 하나뿐인 베프!

Living room by day
Bedroom by night

– On a different note, I had sustained a couple of injuries towards the tail end of my trail season back in August, which resulted in two months of crutches and limited physical activity. From 8 hours a day of physically challenging wilderness lifestyle to a semi-sedentary metropolitan lifestyle was a tough transition. I took newfound interest in yoga (which has been wonderful for strengthening my core and compensating for the herniated lumbar discs) and indoor cycling, in preparation for the upcoming racing season.

Early morning spinning also gave me a new sense of structure to daily life. Pedaling away while seeing the pitch black horizon explode into beautiful dawn was far more rewarding than slapping snooze on my alarm clock

– In order to mitigate the grand adjustment of a lifestyle I filled up my semester with six engaging courses and 10 hours weekly of part time internship.

My internship, which I aim to remain committed to until graduation, involves market research of the specialty coffee industry through assessing pricing patterns in global auctions and gathering data on the currently available farmer support programs throughout the agriculture sector. I truly enjoy what I do, especially because I think the specialty coffee market has a lot of potential to fix the broken market whereby disparity is rampant among the stakeholders in various stages of the supply and value chain. In fact, coffee is one of the most prominent commodity/ product within global trade, which means a vast number of people are affected by fluctuations of this delicate market.

More than anything, I am fascinated by international development, and my steady earnings from this endeavour has also allowed me to fund my dream trip to Patagonia (Stay tuned for this!). I could go on and on about my internship, but I think it could be better if I make it into a separate post in order to keep to the original intent of this particular blog post.

One of the best perks of my internships is the ability to attend various events through the organisation I work for (Social Enterprise @ Goizueta), and to meet a wide range of key players shifting the paradigm of social enterprise

– Once my injuries got better, I was able to hop back on my bike saddle to commute to and from school. However, as if I couldn’t ever have it any other way, one morning I crashed in ongoing traffic at rush hour, which rendered my right wrist incapable of daily regular functioning for two months.

Cracked glasses and grazed chin. Because I landed on my chin and wrist, I was unable to move my jaw for a week, which physically prevented me from smiling and laughing- the simplest pleasures of life!

This gave way to further complications because not only was I unable to enjoy the highlights of my daily life that was my bike commute, but I couldn’t cook nor meal prep, which I had been perfecting throughout my brief introduction to homestyle cooking.

Sautéed green beans were always a regular participant on my meals. One of the easiest vegetables to cook and to buy in bulk
Brown rice, baked broccoli, carrot cuts, green beans, asparagus, soysage. Lunch of the champions

Looking back, it’s certainly been a thrilling journey. Despite evident times of hardships, I have learned not to let them get in my head too much and to not to take life so seriously. This year being my third year in the States, I have been lucky to discover a new family here (shouts out to Rene and Peanut, with whom I spent the most welcoming Thanksgiving of my brief Northamerican lifespan so far). With all things considered, it’s been a life that cannot be approached by anything other than by gratitude.

Happiest of Thanksgiving with Rene and Peanut

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