On Tuesday we left Stanford to return home. However, just before we left my dear friend, Chris, at Palantir sent me a message asking if I was still in the area and wanted to grab lunch. Let me tell you this: Palantir is freaking awesome. Man, I've never doubted my major so much. If that's what Course 6 (EECS) folks have in store once they graduate, geez, I'd never leave my job! It got me thinking though, why can't course 2 have neat start-ups like that? I think we do some extent, but it's certainly not as common as with course 6. Man, I gotta find a job like Palantir. Not-so-starting start-ups are AWESOME.
When driving home though, we dropped off our two friends who live in the Central Valley. It had been, I think, 8 years since I had driven through there. It was weird. Immediately I was reminded of my childhood. The concrete, pale, brick walls with the white metal gates so reminiscent of the hispanic neighborhoods I grew up with. Signs in Spanish and then English. The constant sense of drought with so little greenery around. The heat-- so inescapable. It was odd how uncomfortable I grew simply driving through this region of California, especially because for as long as I could remember I thought fondly of my childhood in Porterville. (I grew up there and moved to Cayucos when I was 7.) And for the longest time, Cayucos didn't really feel like my home, even though this summer I have lived here for 14 years as opposed to Porterville, 7.
I wonder, how many of my memories that I think back on fondly, are so drastically distorted from the truth? And what causes that? I was genuinely surprised at how grateful I was to not live in the Central Valley anymore because of two things: 1) I thought I still thought fondly of my childhood, and I think I still do, so that seems contradictory and 2) I hadn't realized how much I actually associate Cayucos with home, and how much living with the ocean in sight affects my happiness.
Addressing the first point, I think this sort of runs into a common theme with friends/family members. You can like who someone used to be one way, and cherish those memories, but perhaps given how you and they have changed you no longer enjoy their company. That's not anything new to understand, right? It's just, when you think about liking something that doesn't change (e.g. a place doesn't change all that much) and you liked it when you were younger, to go back and no longer like it is rather shocking. I suppose it all boils down to perspective, but still... I mean, I didn't go back to Porterville, so maybe I'd think differently going back to the town I grew up in. But I was just so filled with this sense of "GET ME OUT OF HERE." I was totally shocked. More so, I guess it reflected some internal changes that must of taken place that I had no idea about nor any idea of how greatly they would change my perspective. I guess it is a good thing though, to realize how much I appreciate where I live even if it's not by admiring it in itself, but rather seeing what I do not like in other places.
Meh, my thoughts. In case you haven't really caught on, my blog is rather stream of consciousness and mostly for my own memory collection I 'spose. I love having readers, don't get me wrong! You guys are the best! Just don't be expecting profound pieces of literature every time. Hah.
As always, thanks for reading!