It had been a long time since I went to a house party.
I almost didn’t want to go at the end of a long work week. Just the idea of 50th street exhausted me. Thirty four blocks west –and then north? Man, I should just go to bed, I thought; but I went because it’s good to meet new people in a new city, and I’m glad I did.
There’s nothing like coming home at 4am to make you feel socially productive.
Ran into some old Pittsburgh crowd. A roommate’s ex-girlfriend, the Black Action Society’s ex-president (I think she was) who remembers me, but with much shorter hair. The birthday girl of the party, whom I met on a porch in South Oakland, and the friend I’ve been friends with since sophomore year, our friendship having interestingly seemed to transplant itself to Philadelphia without changing.
And of course there were the new people, but accessible people. Easy to find a group of soon-to-be-not strangers to stand and talk with. A lot of “How long have you been in Philly?” “What do you do?” “Where did you move to Philly from?”
(A month and a half, I do graphic design for a nonprofit, and short answer Pittsburgh, long answer Korea.)
“Do you have culture shock being back?”
People, I really wish I could tell you. Sometimes it feels so strange not to have a single occasion in the day to use the Korean language that I fantasize about saying “gamsa hamnida” to the cashier at the Convenient Food Store. But a lot of the time, my day passes so naturally that it feels as though I never went at all.