Catherine came to visit this past week! We got to play in and around Boston and Wellesley in wonderfully beautiful weather -- God provided warmth, sunshine, beautiful friends and family, and plenty of joy and delicious food. We made luxurious ramen and healthy leftovers, ate out in small and quick places and big fancy venues, met up old and new friends, explored all the major neighborhoods of the city... lots of stuff! Here's a quick and dirty rundown of our adventures. BTW, did you know that "quick and dirty" is programming jargon? At least according to Wikipedia, the source we all know and kind of trust.
Day 1, Tuesday: Cat arrives after a long and perilous journey from Minnesota! I make it to the airport without trouble, but it's dark and formidable outside and I quickly get lost while trying to drive us back to Wellesley. The intended 1/2 hour trip lengthens to a rough 2 hours, and we take an impromptu driving tour of Boston and Cambridge. We finally arrive at my makeshift home and enjoy healthy bowls of luxurious shin ramen. It's been a long day, and we both crash - me on the desk as I try to finish my homework.
Day 2, Wednesday: Move out day! We have homemade breakfast and then a quick trip to the vil to tour and pick up tickets from the library. Then we rush back to move out and settle in Caz. Had lunch with Liz and Helen at Amarin, and then came back to have a nice devos time together with more studying and talking, and a delicious and unhealthy dinner from Dominoes. Two pizzas, one regular crust with pineapple and ham, the other thin crust with spinach and bacon. YAY! More studying and crash again.
Day 3, Thursday: This is big-day-in-Boston-number-1! Prior to this I rushed over to Bates to retrieve my sadly abandoned computer charger. Poor baby! :( But then we went to the science museum with Liz and Helen, and enjoyed the exhibits for a while until we were basically starving. Liz and Helen left to their lunch meeting and we toured our way past Government Center to Fanueil Hall, which was closed for renovation! Boo :( We were introduced to the Freedom Trail, and saw that Fanueil Hall was being used temporarily as a Naturalization Convention center - very exciting! Took a picture of a newly naturalized and very happy Joshua :) Or was it Justin? Ahh so many J-names! Next step was lunch at Quincy Market - we had delicious chicken tikka masala and boston clam chowder. NYUM. Then we went to Starbucks to keep studying, and I received news of my UMN acceptance! Happy pictures ensued. We got in touch with Heidi and made an impromptu dinner date in Little Italy, Panza to be exact. Lots of deliciously rich food, and off to the famous Mike's Pastry! Cannoli... mmm... Vowed to return. Made it back to Wellesley on the commuter rail, and crashed again!
Day 4, Friday: This was meant to be a nice day in. Woke up and worked, and then had lunch with Helen at Cafe Mangal - wonderful Turkish and Mediterranean food! I had a slab of meat with lemon on tortilla-like skin. NUM. After was studying at Starbucks in the Vil - lots of good productive work, had a photo opp from the outside, and saw Sanghee before leaving. We then left for home and had a nice romantic dinner for two under candlelight. Dinner consisted of leftover Panza, Dominoes, Cafe Mangal, and freshly made spinach tomato asparagus and olive oil salad. With water, chocolate, and cookies.
Day 5: Saturday: Day-out-in-boston-2! First, I picked up May from the airport at around 7am. We then took the 9 bus out with Helen and May to the Leows Theater at Boston Common and saw Black Swan (at once compelling and scary). Then we had dimsum at Hei La Moon, sadly without 小龙汤包 bwahh :( All ended well though, as we made it to Newbury soon after. We meant to walk all the way down but got distracted by Second Time Around, a wonderful name for an interesting store. We spent too long there, then went to Pinkberry for froyo. Helen and May had to leave, unfortunately.. we enjoyed delicious froyo - I got regular and blood orange with mochi and granola. YAY! We returned to Second Time Around and proceeded to spend way too long trying on every single outfit in the store. Phrase only slightly exaggerated. I bought a very-me shirt and cardigan, and Cat acquired a wonderfully flattering sweater. YAY! Then, we finally met with D! We tried many times to get a parking spot for Blue Ribbon BBQ, finally made it, and ate too much sandwich. I kind of crave it now though. Then we had more food, ice cream at Cabots! Ahh food! Delicious. And then hang out again. :)
Day 6, Sunday: BCEC in the morning! Jerry graciously provided a ride again for us. I fell asleep during service :( I'm sorry! Cat really enjoyed service though, and we both stayed wide awake during Trellis. Both bought a book - Life Together - wonderful! And then lunch with BCECers at Pho Pasteur. We shared an extra-large bowl of pho, too... much... Wanted to get bubble tea, but were stuffed to the brim. Or more. Then we took a quick pitstop at Harvard Square - saw the cute stores there, namely Black Ink and Kotaru (I think). Rushed back to try and catch the next bus home, almost failed bc I think we almost missed the final Riverside senate. But we made it back and had a nice dinner on campus. At pom, where we met Nia! Then we did something or another.. I don't remember. Doh!
Day 8, Monday: I had class in the morning, Cat studied in the P-level, and we ate lunch at Bates after classes! I visited another class and Cat studied in Pendleton, then we finally got to go to Prudential Center for Top of the Hub! Prior to this we had dinner on campus, but just a quick dinner. I don't remember. Before the quick dinner though, Cat did my hair awesomely! I looked amazing *gloat gloat* but really the gloating is for Cat's exemplary beautifying skills. Top of the Hub - beautiful! It was a clear night, and we got a great view. We had mussels and some tuna thing that was pricey but nicely laid out, and a pretty drink each. Delicious and definitely a night to remember :)
Day 9, Tuesday: More classes in the morning! Cat studied at Pendleton again, and we had lunch at Tower! Toured Tower a bit to see the castle like features, and then I had more class.. after class we lounged around, walked around a bit and played pool.. hahah ~ Then we took the bus out at 6 for dinner! Rebecca lent us her unlimited charlie card :D We ate with Helen at Korean Garden, had soondubu (?), bibimbap, and tubboki. I can't spell! We then went off to Mike's Pastry again for a final round of gathering goods, stopped at JP Licks for some ice cream, and then made it back home to crash again.
Day 10, Wednesday: I stopped by 215 to say hi, and then we went on epic Wellesley tour! We toured the Greenhouse, then to the Japanese Garden by the lake - we made a whirlwind trip to Stone-D, the Chapel, and then ran off to pack up some last minute things and head on the bus. We made the 1pm bus and had a lovely lunch at Flour Bakery! :D Then, we had a massively quick tour of the Boston Public Library! It was lovely, as always. We also found their temporary art gallery, which showcased 3D sculptures of famous paintings from the original painters' perspectives. AMAZING. So glad we made it there :) Finally, we headed to the airport and bid our farewells... Cat left on her flight safely, and I went back to MIT in hopes of studying. Didn't do that, ended up coming back to Wellesley straight away and here I am today. O_O
Since then, life has been less exciting and adventuresome in terms of exploration and Cat-love, but it's been filled and exploding with God's love and grace -- I've been learning so much more about His infinite worth, His unending promises, His wisdom, love, power beyond measure, and this little pot of tilled soil that is me. Ay... God is gracious, too gracious to me, I am at a place now where I am so brimming with His given grace and peace that I can't picture being filled with more, yet I am filled each day again and again, each moment, with His glorious communion. A while ago, I read a word of wisdom to write down who God is to us when we are closest to Him, and remember that He is always that way and more even in our darkest times. I am blessed to be in a place of closeness now, a place not where I am doing "well" and feeling "stable" or "steady" necessarily, though those are wonderful blessings in themselves, but where I am truly being filled with the all-surpassing gift that is Jesus Christ.
What else have I done so far? I've cleaned my room multiple times. I've done laundry multiple times, I've indulged in a lot of delicious food and also started exercising again. I decided on a few impulse classes. I slept until noon again! I went to the greenhouse again for a night show. I made tree cookies (nonedible!). I made more ramen with rice and eggs. I got a new watch from my old watch. I've been made aware and so grateful of the many blessings of beautiful, beautiful friends that I've been showered with... I'm the richest person alive.
Final words: Miss you Cat! Boston misses you too. Come back, but only with me :P BWAHAH! Also, I wonder who else reads this thing...