travel

Travel Note- San Francisco (June 2015) Day 1

Going abroad is fun, but flying isn't. Jet Lag is one of the weirdest feelings on Earth. You feel like you are walking, but also sleeping. Sometimes you wonder where you are exactly.

After many hours of flying, I am finally in the Bay Area.

Woman standing on the street  She stood there for a while. I think she is sorting out her bag or fixing something

Woman standing on the street
She stood there for a while. I think she is sorting out her bag or fixing something

I am actually writing this on the 2nd day of my trip here in the Bay Area. First day was simple yet exciting. My friend and I went to watch the NBA Finals Game 6 at a bar near the airport. Golden State won. And everyone got so excited.

Today I went to walk around San Francisco once again. Walked on almost the same places. First the Financial District...then lunch with two of my friends...after that I walked to Mission District and was trying to look for something interesting to walk/buy.

Sabrina and CT  I met them in 2 completely unrelated occasions. Small world. It turns out they knew each other.

Sabrina and CT
I met them in 2 completely unrelated occasions. Small world. It turns out they knew each other.

I felt sick soon after I arrived Mission. I couldn't go on anymore but I also couldn't go back to where I stay (about 1 hour by train and car, but I don't have the key), so I decided to go take a rest in a cafe. Interestingly, that was the same cafe that I spent an hour resting when I visited the area in Feb. I thought of many things as I sat down, I thought of what happened to myself these few months, the changes, the challenges, as well as what I have gained and lost. This train of thoughts brought me to a strange place...as I was walking to the exact same shops that I visited, walking on the same street...I thought the day before I left the Bay Area...and I am soaked with many different fragments of memories.

Mission District  Outside the Bart Station

Mission District Outside the Bart Station

826 Valencia

826 Valencia

Chapel, God and Basketball  I like how they merge together. Awesome

Chapel, God and Basketball
I like how they merge together. Awesome

Then for some strange reason. I looked at the world clock on my iPhone, wondering what time is it in Hong Kong when it is later afternoon in California...It says 5pm 'Tomorrow'.

'Tomorrow'

'TOMORROW'

I was thrilled to notice it. Tomorrow!!! When I am still stuck in 'Today'! Is it some kind of sign to tell me that I am living in the past? Did my train of thought about these few months dragged me back this strange place of 'Today' when where I belong is already in 'Tomorrow'? I guess maybe...just maybe...this is how a time-traveller feels when they travel back and forth into the past and the future. 

And staying in Today when the world is already in Tomorrow...is how a Time Traveller deals with the pain from their memories. The Memories of the Future.

Dystopian's Dream. Memories of the Future

Dystopian's Dream. Memories of the Future

I left without making the rest of the notes...and I feel sorry that I didn't. I wasn't ready.

Going back to the reality is something not easy at all, but at the same time I want to face the reality as I want to know how much I have changed after escaping and giving myself a break from everything that bothered me. But no matter how hard I try to run away from the huge differences between the harsh reality and the sweetness of a dream, I still cannot get over the fact that my one week in San Francisco is now in the past. And no matter how many times I can go there again in the future, it won't be the same. Like many other sayings in the world, even the most simple and the cliche ones, our language is not strong enough to describe the feelings behind each of them...especially the sad ones.

Mission District

Mission District

The Church  Taken during the rehearsal the night before the wedding. It was a stormy night

The Church
Taken during the rehearsal the night before the wedding. It was a stormy night

The Restaurant  Taken at the banquet

The Restaurant Taken at the banquet

My friend Manhin got married on a Saturday..it was a rainy afternoon and definitely reminded me of the spring in England when I was in school. Looking back, I only remember some parts of the wedding, such as the church, the beautiful women and the handsome gentlemen, some dishes at the banquet, the song that we sing after the bestman's speech (Karaoke style!!!). I don't remember the details of exactly what happened (and not that I was drunk). I looked at my phone and I only found random photos here and there...is our memory really that unreliable, that we need a material (a photo) to help us remember?

On Sunday we just walked around in a mall and having a feast in CheeseCake Factory (it's fucking amazing...). And on Monday I spent sometime wondering all around San Francisco, I started in Montgomery Street and walked all the way to Mission District. I walk with a destination in my mind, but at the same time walking aimlessly, trying to explore more different shops/cafe around town. 

I got lost soon after I set off...and I sat down in a cafe, order a mojito iced coffee (recommended by my friend Janice). At that moment, tired from walking, feeling extremely lonely...I realised that I have been lost in my career in the past year. Whenever I go to travel, I always find myself passionate about work and there are many projects that I desire to do 'as soon as I am back'. But every time when I return, things remain the same, the same old lost photographer trying to live his dream. When I stopped and look at the map of where I am, it is the moment when I noticed I am totally lost. I sat down in the cafe for over an hour, stunned by what I realised...

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As I returned home and sorted out my personal matters. I finally look back and realised what a trip it was...As I said in the beginning, it will never be the same...and even today I feel upset about it. I met so many wonderful people, had a lot of amazing food and visited many great places. I miss every single one of you...

世上所有的相遇都是久别重逢...
All encounters in the world are reunions after a long separation...

Haneda Airport

Haneda Airport

one last thing...to all the beautiful women in California

Travel Note- San Francisco Day 1

Here I am. On the other side of the world.

It's strange, right? I got on the plane at 4pm on the 3rd of Feb; stopped a few hours in Tokyo; then now it's only 10pm on the 3rd of Feb in San Francisco. Time is funny bastard.

San Francisco Airport  Outside the airport in San Francisco

San Francisco Airport
Outside the airport in San Francisco

I arrived at the afternoon, took me a while to get to downtown San Fran. The BART train looks very interesting to me, like something futuristic but at the same time nostalgic. I felt like this is something how someone would imagine the future would be like back in the 80s, then design something according to their imagination, and ended up having this strange mixture of old and new.

BART train  Memory of the Future- BART Train

BART train
Memory of the Future- BART Train

Got to admit there are quite a lot of 'strange people' on the stations. They are usually in their late 50s to mid 60s, looking a bit rough, and most of them talk to themselves, mumbling. Felt like London, but a bit more dangerous.

Anyway. Jet lag sucks. I feel like my head is in two places now.

Travel Note- Tokyo, San Francisco

So here I am. On the road again. This time I am going to be a groomsman of my friend whom I have known since I was a baby.

Something about this 'Travel Note'

I am never really good at writing stuffs, but maybe since I am travelling and I don't have any big plans, I might as well just write something random to make myself feel like I am doing something. In fact, I hate writing, and I have no idea where this travel note thing is going to last, nor what I will write about. Some people say if you write it down or take a photo of it, you will remember it better.

I tend to see things differently.

A month or so ago, I was alone in the subway of Taipei, and I saw a good looking girl. I wanted to say hi to her and ask her where she is going etc. But being the nervous me as I usually am, I didn't do anything, and I just took a photo of her secretly with my iPhone. Of course the photo is there, and I can look at it whenever I wanted to, but I found myself not remembering her at all, and all I have left is how I felt when I was trying to take that photo.

Photography isn't a good medium of memory. That's what I always believe.

Miss Tokyo

Because of the flight, I stayed in Tokyo for a few hours before I transit to San Francisco. Tokyo has always been an interesting place to me. I spent a few good months there, been through many good times as well as terrible times. It's funny how I am at the Tokyo Airport again, but not being able to walk around and being nostalgic. So close. 

Anyway, again, I have no idea where this travel note is heading, maybe this will be the only note I write. Who knows.