Thursday, May 3, 2012

piece by piece

this week i have basically been making MEC (mountain equipment co-op) my second home. i go in on my days off and listen in on tutorials being given about the pack i already own, or ask to try on just about every backpacking boot they carry in my size. i am slowly acquiring all of the pieces needed for my trip.
over the past two weeks i have purchased a sleeping bag, tent, compression bag, 3L camelbak, and backpacking boots! about $600 worth of gear! AHHH
on the night i bought my tent, i set it up in my room, and slept in it. two days later when i bought the sleeping bag, i slept in it. and today when i bought my hiking boots, i skyped my parents to show them. and i have been wearing them around my room ever since.
i also made a pit stop at the library today to return some books and to pick up some others. okay, well...a lot of others.
i left with an audio book of 'super freakonomics', 2 learn to speak mandarin audio cds, 1 learn to speak russian audio cd, a documentary on year long backpacking trips called a map of saturday , a first time asia guide book, a lonely planet guide to china (to add to the frommers and nat geo one's i already have), and paul theroux's ghost train to the eastern star.
as i am typing i am loading the audio cds onto my ipod so i can listen to them while walking to work, or more likely for when i am waiting in airports and meandering around beijing. i also watched the documentary a map of saturday and loved it. i related to everything they talked about. i laughed at things i forgot about backpacking. about how sick you get of the first five questions people ask you.
1. where are you from?
2. where are you going?
3. how long are you traveling for?
4. how long are you staying here for?
5. how old are you/what is your name?
i forgot how annoying those questions become. you answer them each time you meet someone new. which usually happens several times a day. but the film also reminded me that one of those questions isn't  'what do you do?'. people don't want to know where you spend your days working at your job. they want to know where you are from and where you are going. i guess when i look at it like that, i am okay with the redundancy of the five questions.

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