Adam Buttrill- Hong Kong
There's a certain thrill that I feel when I wake up every morning and realize that I'm in California. Usually I would moan and curse the world for making me get up earlier than I want, but that bitterness can't sustain itself when I open the blinds and get a face full of sun in the morning. I mean, it's California: The Land of Milk and Honey. It's the Golden State.
It's freaking California.
Just that fact seems to make my morning awakenings tolerable. The state feels like a weird home for me. I was born here, but only lived in California for a couple years before moving to New York and then Hong Kong, where I've spent the last nine years of my life. Living here again after all this time makes me feel at peace somehow.
Things are different though, that's for sure. My unfamiliarity with the American way of life continues to put me in awkward situations. Cars stop for me on the street now, which never happens in a busy city like Hong Kong. I often find myself waiting for a car to pass even when they're waiting for me to cross, leading to embarrassed me quickly shuffling across the sidewalk. Strangers strike up random conversation with me, surprising me and forcing me to quickly spit out half a sentence. People actually use #'s, and not in an ironic way. I am thoroughly perplexed.
I'm slowly learning though, and at the end of the day, when the cold desert night rolls around, I can't help but feel that I'm home.