Kempen 2012.

When I landed on Friday night, I hit the ground running. I have pretty much been experiencing what it’s like to be on amphetamines, while actually not being on drugs. When asked how I was feeling on Saturday I said, “Great. Jet lag is my bitch” which ended up not really being true. Sunday I woke up at 4am and couldn’t fall back to sleep so I went running at 5:30. Do you know that there’s no one out at that time on a Sunday? I saw two people while I was out, the first was a runner who I didn’t see until I was already on my way back home and then the second was a kid with a bookbag on who was about 5 minutes behind the other guy. He jumped over the divider onto FDR and I watched him run across the empty lanes of traffic and then whip out a can of spray paint to tag the median. I wanted to scream at him, “If you get hit by a car I’ll be the only witness. PLEASE DON’T DO THIS TO ME!” But I didn’t. I just kept running. That’s what I do. When weird shit happens I just keep going. Like when some guy high fived me on my way home the other week, he stuck out his hand, I high fived him, and I just kept walking.

Yeah.

Anyway. Germany was an adventure. And by adventure I mean, I worked a lot and barely did anything else. I was in Kempen, which is about 30 minutes from Dusseldorf, and very country. Last year after I went I told everyone back in New York that I wanted to move there. People thought I was insane. Think about New York, and then think of the complete opposite of that. That is where I was. What’s not to love about being in a novel place? With a VILLAGE and cobblestones and people look at you funny because you’ve got a really loud laugh and you’re Asian and you’re traveling with an Indian chick.

Anyway, my trip started with a stretch limo picking me up from school to go to Newark. They didn’t have another car available, so this is what they sent. I know. It’s so wasteful and disgusting but I sat with my legs stretched out as far as I could and it was just really amusing.

Car service was supposed to pick me up in a sedan to go to EWR. A stretch limo showed up instead. I felt luxurious but also like a wasteful bitch.

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Then I flew.

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I love flying. Most people hate it, but it is one of my joys in life. I especially like looking out the window. I have a fascination with dioramas and tiny things, so looking out the window is like my own personal porthole into a dollhouse.

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I arrived in Germany on Thursday afternoon. Headed to the office via the large, green fields.

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Then we went to Hotel Papillon, which Anshana and I came to think of as our own personal mansion.

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I enjoy a lot of things about being in Kempen:
1) We have a car.
2) There is a skylight over my bed and it makes me feel cozy but luxurious and like I am close to outer space.
3) I do not cook or clean while I’m there. I don’t have cell service so I barely talk to anyone. I just work. The intensity would kill me if it was prolonged, but I feel like it’s a solid way to switch up your life for a week or so.
4) The quiet. The quiet is amazing.
5) The weather last year and this year is a little bit cooler than it is in New York, and it really feels like fall. Plus, there are a lot of trees around so one can really enjoy the essence of fall foliage.
6) The sunsets, provided it is not raining, are always very colorful.

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Also, we went over to Ulrike’s house for dinner on our last night. I had my annual Magnum ice cream bar while sitting at her kitchen table and then we hung out in her living room. I’ve not been boozing lately, but she announced after dinner that she had Austrian schnapps and we were going to have some. Did you know that not all schnapps tastes like shit? I didn’t. Anyway, there I am, laughing maniacally, as usual.

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Also on our last day, one of the editors made us personal apple pie. I had absolutely no complaints about this.

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I had a late Friday afternoon flight from Dusseldorf to New York with a layover in London. DB was in London that week. It took extra self restraint not to be all “fuck this shit!” and leave the airport and go prance around London with him. Maybe next time… when I’m not in graduate school and having nightmares about doing layouts in InDesign.

I took all my photos with VSCO Cam.

You can see all 19 photos here.
And you can see 73 photos from my trip last year here.

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