Monday, August 3, 2009


One of my favorite places in the world is Berkeley... I'm not planning to move there or settle down there or even go back to school there, but every now and then I need to feel refreshed and a bit inspired and I get that in Berkeley.

Last week, I spent the day in Berkeley with my family and future in-laws. Having a different perspective of Berkeley than the average person makes me feel a bit special for having this mysterious appreciation of the city. I'm not sure what the draw is and maybe if I lived there, I would have a different perspective, but as of now, Berkeley is one of the few beautiful cities in this world. You can find any type of cultural treasure there, from the arts and theatre to sports to academics to graffiti "art".

I've traveled to many different cities and many different countries but the strange feeling of familiarity juxtaposed with its raw nature makes Berkeley a bit more special to me. It is one of the few cities where I can walk down its main street and not feel "different". There are so many different faces, ideas, races, perspectives, and backgrounds that you can meet on any given day... that you can feel incredibly unique in comparison to this crowd of people who are all different from you but also feel accepted for being just as different as everyone else. It is one of the few places where I don't feel as immediately judged (or maybe just judged as immediately as any other stooge) for being an Asian, a woman, a student, a non-student, a liberal, a patriot, etc. How many times have you walked down a street or into a room and felt the eyes in your periphery staring at you, sizing you up and down, and judging your for your ideals, for your face, for your color, for your small eyes, for your breast size for your skin shade, for your waistline... ? And how many places can you visit where you don't feel those eyes, where you don't feel judged for being different, where you are just as different as everyone else there and that makes you all the same?

I feel lucky to have a place I can feel like that about. There are many big cities in the world... and there are many small towns... but there is only one Berkeley.

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