Cheese in Philly, Turducken in DC

December 1, 2016

Thanksgiving Moments

Okay, it wasn't exactly Philly and DC. I was within a 10 to 20-minute drive around the area. As with all the struggles international students from the other side of the world have to deal with, Thanksgiving is a holiday that is too long to do nothing and too short to go home. The last two Thanksgivings I spent alone in my dorm, trying to ration out my food supply; so this year, I made a very last-minute decision to go to (around) Philly and DC.

Tuesday before the break, as people were packing their stuff and leaving, as classes were getting called off or only half the class showed up, I felt like I didn't want to be here. If I stayed, it would just be me, going to the same old coffee shop, watching same movies and eating trashy food with the same people, basically same old everything. I was getting too comfortable; I wanted to try something new, step out of my comfort zone, but didn’t really have the guts too. But cost analysis says I should. Thinking in terms of benefits vs. costs (a friend told me this), the cost probability of the trip being a complete disaster is 50/50. The benefits probability of trip being amazing is also 50/50, but that of seeing a new place is a full 100. Going to a new place, meeting new people, getting inspired, and not regretting the "what-ifs"--I went ahead and called my friend an hour before we left.

The trip was amazing. It was a 7-hour long drive, but junk road-trip food and coffee got us awake the entire time. And of course, no one follows the speed limit, but that's another story. We stayed at my friend's aunt's place in Philly for a couple nights, then went to the DC vicinity and stayed at my friend's aunt's friend's place. We had thanksgiving at my friend's aunt's friend's friend' place. Sometimes, I had the feeling that my friend was a plus-one to this trip, and I'm the plus-one of the plus-one, the little extra hanging around the corner. I got to eat good cheese with crackers, fresh fruits, and good wine, and home-cooked meals, not Sodexo food. I tried the mythical Turducken (the duck was my most favorite). I slept on air mattresses and in basements, but it was super quiet, and when I wake up, I see people up and about, either making or eating breakfast, not college kids complaining that they're going to die.

One little side note-the shower was amazing. We played various card games, and as a Finance and Accounting major, I confirmed that my investment strategy is on the more conservative side, because I was playing my cards really lean. Most importantly, and I know it's a bit cliched, I had the chance to meet new people and see new places instead of hanging out by myself in my comfort place. These are all invaluable experiences, and I was so glad I had the guts to grab this amazing opportunity.