After an exhausting twenty-hour flight, I was glad to have finally arrived at LAX. It was five in the evening and I headed straight to Karen’s apartment where I was going to be staying my entire trip. Although a little nervous since I had only met Karen once before this, I was ecstatic to see her as we really hit it off the first time we met. And of course, Bel was going to be there too and just a few weeks before this she had stayed with me in Bangkok for a whole month! I knew there was a lot in store for me on this LA trip.
I had arranged a meet up with my cousin whom I haven’t seen in eight years and it was the first time I was going to meet her husband and her baby boy. They had picked out a real cute restaurant in DTLA called Urth Cafe where we spent almost the entire afternoon having a good catchup on the past decade. I couldn’t be more happy to see how well she and her beautiful family were doing! This was most definitely the perfect start to my week.
Karen (@iamkareno), Bel (@prettyfrowns), Nicole (@nictrick) and I spent most of our days together, going around shooting endless amounts of outfit pictures. Mind you, a lot of acrobatics were necessary in most of our shoots as we were going up fire escapes, crawling into small spaces, balancing on surfaces, and sitting (shaken!) on ledges, all for a good photo. The LA sun combined with the cool breeze was just so beautiful. I was truly having an urban adventure with my friends, doing what we love most.
Most of other days was spent taking more pictures (of course) and meeting up with different friends! After almost two years of talking to each other solely online, Essy (@essynoir) and I finally met up. An outfit shoot together with matching outfits was not to be missed.
(A separate blog post on this outfit will be going up soon! Keep your eyes peeled!)
Bel and I also had the chance to crash Karen’s workplace (Ipsy Studios) to watch Karen doing what she does best!
[watch it here!]
Seeing my (‘derpy’) friend work was extremely inspirational as both Bel and I agreed that a different Karen surfaces when she works. I could feel her deep thoughts and her passion just resonate within the room. It was that moment that I realized how lucky us three were, to be able to wake up and do exactly what we love every day. And you know what the best part is? We all understand and support each other.
I never really noticed this before this trip but I seem to have a lot of family members living in LA! So despite my jam packed schedule, I wasn’t going to miss seeing Check, my childhood friend (I like to think of him as the brother I never had!) who moved to the US over a decade ago.
He had brought his lovely girlfriend, Dao, with him as well and we pretty much all spent the entire day together eating food, checking out LACMA and then eating some more food. Just like when I met up with my cousin on the first day of my trip, this meet up too did not have a single silent moment between us. Trying to catch up an entire decade with all my loved ones within twenty-four hours seems like an unfairly disproportionate amount of time. Nonetheless, I appreciated seeing everyone as it was both nostalgic and comforting to know that good friends really are forever.
Werkin’ it with Jayvee (@jayveelondon)
Outfit twinning with Mary (@marycake)
Everyday, there were always things to do, people to see, more outfits to shoot. Every night I hated going to bed because I was having too much fun having girly talks and giggle fits with Karen and Bel – and every morning I’d fly out of bed, not wanting to waste a single minute lying in. I have never felt so energetic, so positive, so ready to take on the world.
It wasn’t until the trip had come to a close that it registered with me that there was a very clear ‘theme’ to my trip.
This whole trip was revolved around me rekindling old friendships, and creating strong bonds for new friendships.
I have always grown up socially awkward, never really quite sure where in this world I fit in. And finally, after all of twenty-five years of wondering and feeling unsure, today I now know that friendships will happen when they happen. Friendships cannot be forced and friendships cannot be planned. And just because you haven’t found anyone yet, doesn’t mean there aren’t people who get you. It has taken me all of my life up until now and literally traveled halfway around the world to find what I have always been looking for.
There is no doubt that one day, in the near future, I shall make LA my home.
~ Nün ❤