a bellyful of gratitude

—so this post has been hanging around in draft mode for a while and we no longer want to tinker with it so here it is for your enjoyment—-

mmm! J and I are at the French Broad Food Coop in Asheville, NC. We are setting strict budgets for every meal until Europe, so we had a lot of fun picking out what to eat for lunch after leaving Florida at 8:30 this morning. There’s a lot of vegan deli items here (dumplings, kale salad, some buckwheat noodley dish, “chicken” sandwich were some of the highlights and an all organic salad bar of course!). We chose the macro sushi (brown rice, wild rice, sweet rice, seaweed, carrots, daikon, tofu, and kale- danggg!)- 6 big sushi nuggets for $6. It feels great to eat lightly and to spend lightly too!

(After I wrote this, Julian persuaded me to get some Whole Soy yogurt for some probiotics. $1.29. well… okay!)

Anyways, the point of this post was not to bore you with the mundane details of our first day on our trip (!!) but to share our gratitude for all of our friends who have helped us thus far. If you’re reading this, you’re probably one of them! I’m going to attempt a list but please don’t send me sad emails if I forget you!

here begins a very long thank you note, one which will probably never be completed or finished…

we are grateful for you!:

Karen- for leaving us the sweetest voicemail that we listened to at the Denver Airport
Dads- for a great ride to the airport, and selling J’s bike
Matt- for wishing us well at our last lunch in town and for volunteering to sweep our porch
Chris- for returning my almost-overdue library books
Paul- superhero alert! he shipped our boxes, returned our cable box, hosted a misplaced shirt, picked up special paper and shipped it to me, and took a bunch of stuff out of our hands. phew. what a guy!
Abbie- another superhero alert! she bagged up the free porch leftovers and hammer time donations and ran deliveries with donations all over town. she also helped us clear out the fridge and pantry, a task that we completely! underestimated.
Angle- ahhh! took all the animal activists literature, posters, buttons, and t-shirts which surely caused her to relinquish her own precious closet space… she’s also hosting our very special cookie jars until we return.
Melanie- buying Julian’s school books so he stopped feeling so bitter that I was selling all of my books and he wasn’t!
David K- yet another superhero alert! mover extraordinaire, etc. he moved many many many carloads to his house to bring to the free store. and took a bunch of stuff we didn’t know what to do with the morning we were moving out! david saved us lots of time.
Kurt- waited on us for our last meal at Tasty Harmony
Michelle- for giving me an incredible massage for my birthday and right in the midst of moving when my body really needed it. and for creating Malu who is the cutest creature I have ever known
Free store participants and porch sifter friends: you took our stuff! yay!
Christy- for being a really kind and understanding landlord, also for shipping us boxes that got mislabeled (and not charging us postage! aw!)
Kramer- for leaving us an incredible send-off note on our porch our last evening in town, and for giving us the first fruit he dried with a dehydrator that we sold to him. so sweet! we are saving the fruit until we are back with Travis just so you know (also a big help at the garage sale!)
Phil- for being a huge help with our many garage sales and for saying a heartfelt goodbye when we ran into him on the street
Travis- for leaving us with the best memories of Fort Collins (dancing at La Chamba, sales, eating at Ras Ka, ugh, too many! we cannot wait to run into you again!)
Hannah- many delicious last meals
Party makers: school friends, Coop friends, Hammertime! friends, friend friends! including music players (Chris and those sweet guys from Choice City Deli)
Sarah- taking our grill and volunteering a promise to only grill veggies. aww!
David & Martha- for storing the lingering remains of our material selves (will we want any of it in a year??)
Sara J- sweeping, and getting J’s Vegan World Fusion Cuisine book signed
Elizabeth and Jon- for lending us that fabulous mixer to match our kitchen (and for other obvious reasons), and arranging for someone to get it so we didn’t have to donate it
Bishawjit- for inspiring us to go to Germany first on our trip, and for becoming a great friend
Razz- yoga kula in Boulder
Hanuman Festival- a brief break in the heat of the summer
Happy Heart Farms and Dennis and Bailey- I think of you both every time I dance. Your relationship inspires me!
HT!- the first radical space I was involved with, I love you all!
Kelsey- being an inspiring person
Sam- many good conversations
Charlotte- going on walks with you kept me healthy and calm during the busy summer! I am sad you are leaving Colorado
Leah- so cheerful and positive!

going back a little further… to the finishing of my thesis (forgive me, this is starting to feel like an acceptance speech… except that I am really just feeling extra lucky to live a beautiful rich life)
Sandy and Maureen at the CSU poli sci department- helped me print out a super fast copy of that annoing signature page for my thesis when I forgot it at home
my friends for coming ALL ACROSS THE COUNTRY (Florida, Washington and Oregon) to attend my defense (so maybe there were other motivating factors…) but Beth, Shivani, and Amanda, wow, I am so lucky to have you as my friends!! (and I am happy that Travis and Theresa from within town also made time to attend!)
and of course, my advisor Dimitris for his encouragement, and Brad and Elissa for having such insightful suggestions and provocative questions at my defense.

finally, my incredibly generous and patient parents who let Julian and me visit/live with them for a month while we finalized our plans. oh and also our cats Piggie, Shakti, Shiva, Persephone, Ollie, Fiona, and the floppy-eared, dopey, yet loveable dogs Lexi and Aiden for giving us a good dose of feline and canine love.

UPDATE (8-29):

SO many more kind people in the world!!

Mariana and Travis- hosted us for two nights in Asheville. Thanks for showing us around and hanging out! dude, your little kitty was too cute.
Jackson- arranging a sweet TRiPpy reunion
Kimi- letting us crash at her apartment in NYC and for giving me a sweet chico bag (I have used that thing non-stop since you gave it to me! it is sitting next to me right now full of the day’s carry-along items)
David- hosted Julian in NYC after I left and showed him an awesome time with dumpstering vegan baked goods, potluck-party and advice about India (and advice for me in Israel!) I still remember those heirloom tomatoes you left us in Colorado. wow.
Andrew- for being such a good friend and travel partner, and for checking in on me after I left Israel. He even took pictures for me when I was busy vomiting at the Western Wall. awwww! Seriously, we had so much fun! Oh yeah, thanks for letting me be a Heat fan by borrowing your hat. Though, you did take those chocolate wafers…
Ariel- for being a really good roommate and friend on our birthright trip, showing me around Tel Aviv, especially the market in Jaffa, and her sweet sweet sweet parents who let me do laundry!!! and crash at their apartment in Tel Aviv
Christoph- welcomed us into his apartment in Berlin, showed us around, and had us eat some yummy veggie burgers while we were in town. yay for German vegans (pronounced ‘wee-gans’- too cute!)
Fred- host at our first farm in Heidelberg, we miss you already! Fred is hilarious with his subtle and not so subtle German humor.
and Bishawjit and his adorable family- inviting us to stay with them in Karlsruhe, showing us Rhein Falls, and Lake Konstanz, taking us to an Eid celebration, and feeding us Bangladeshi kitcherri, kootchuri, achar, banana fritters, and other delicious meals!


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