Old Flame

This past weekend I’ve been playing host for my cousin whom I’ve never met until last Saturday. I took him around Madison and it actually invoked some great memories. Truth is I never liked playing host because it’s inevitable that the most that any tourist would want to get out of a place they visit are photo evidences of the whole ‘I was here’ crap. Most people I know never bothered with the history and culture of the locals, let alone reflect on the trip itself. Sometimes I tried very hard to fill them in but knowing it will probably bore them to death I try to talk less. For me though it’s different, when I visit somewhere new I want to take in as much as I possibly can and writing a post-trip travelog has always been my favorite thing to do so when I want to relive those moments I could through not only photos, but in writing too.

This weekend, I revisited the reason I fell in love with this place – early morning stroll around the campus, sunset watching by the lake, dirt trail along lakeshore, sipping tea while people watching in Dobra Tea, dining by the capital, and looking down an empty but lush greenery on Bascom Hill while overlooking the state capitol from Abe’s perspective, and ending the day with concert by the lake is simply blissful. Like and old flame, I suddenly fell in love with Madison again.

Yes I’m also proud of the fact that Madison has the second largest capitol building in the country, the best stem cell research in the country and extremely gay friendly. For a campus town, it’s awfully vibrant and engaging. If you don’t go to school here you would probably think there’s nothing to do here, which is absolutely not true. There’s so much to love about this amazing place and I actually feel sad that I only have another year left.

Madison will always have a place in my heart. This is where I found love, lost and found again, where I met people that I will treasure for a lifetime, where I truly discover who I am. I sometimes forget how beautiful this campus because I’m too caught up with pursuing life after graduation or fretting over very silly social conflicts, causing me to almost stop appreciating the things around me. Last Summer I got very used to waking up very early in the morning, I would roam the streets 6 in the morning while finding my way to work. I’ve captured some of my favorite moments in the break of dawn because it’s exceptionally quiet and peaceful. Summer was rather different then, it was not as hot and humid, while I don’t go out as much I get to appreciate a lot of things that are uniquely Summer. I canoed, hiked and explored the surrounding areas of Madison. I miss biking around town really and it’s unfortunate that I haven’t been doing much exploring this Summer – heck I don’t even take as much photos anymore. But this weekend was sort of an awakening for me, I don’t have a lot of time left here and I really should make the best of it.

Here’s a list of things I want to do within this week or two:

  1. Participate in the Restaurant Week from July 24-29 this month! Since eating is something I love to do this will be perfect. Planning to dine in Fresco, The Icon or Capitol Chophouse – I’m spoiled for choices! More additions to Shrine of Gluttony, which by the way is growing steadily!
  2. Bring my camera everywhere so I can capture moments that I wish I had when I didn’t bring it with me.
  3. Jog along lakeshore path once a week. It’s a commitment alright!
  4. Take a picture of the sunset for two consecutive weeks from different locations. Maybe every two days, we’ll see.
  5. Cook at least five different main courses based on recipes found from food blogs. I’m thinking Steak Diane, grilled salmon, variety sushi rolls etc.
  6. Help my bff with her photoshoot since she’s leaving town soon! This will be fun.
  7. Sing while playing the guitar on State St. and once I’m comfortable enough it’s time to make my debut at the Open Mic on the terrace!
  8. Blog and read more.
  9. Go to work CONSISTENTLY. I think I’ll bike to work so I won’t have to sweat as much.
  10. Record more songs, write an original.

There, my top ten things to do. It’s a short term goal so hopefully I’ll have more than half of it crossed out before I go to New York!

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