It’s not about the destination..

It’s about the journey.

Last year was probably the hardest year of my life. I had no car. I did have a car until the night it was mysteriously grand-slammed to shambles. 
Shittin you not.

Hemet, CA. Y’all.

Fortunately, no one was inside my car when it happened. It was parked along the curb in front of my house. Although, that barely stopped me from seriously flipping a bitch. Since then, I literally felt I was stuck in a bad dream. Eventually I’d wake up to my life as it was before the accident. Didn’t happen.

What was worse was not having a job or money saved. I didn’t even have insurance. Back then, I was only focusing on Amazon e-book publishing at the time, which racked in some money, but not enough to the point it would help me buy a car anytime soon.

I was set on doing whatever it took to get a new car. I felt so powerless without one and feeling powerless sucks. I felt trapped staying at home, living with my parents, in a city that depressed me. 
What I needed was a change of scene.

My plan was to find work immediately
I barely cared what job or where as long as it wasn’t anywhere near Hemet. 
So I settled on working full-time at a liquid-nitrogen ice cream parlor. 
Far away from home. 80 miles far in the city of Costa Mesa.

“If there’s a will, there’s a way”

I looked online for alternative means of travel. 
Sure enough, a GMaps search revealed to me the awesome scope of public transportation.

So I went for it.

4-hour bus ride vs 1.5-hour car ride.

It went a little something like,

3:30 AM — “Dear lawd, my body is not ready for this. But yolo.”
3:45 AM — “No coffee, no work-ee.” “No work-ee, no car-ee.”
3:49 AM — Caffeinated! ❁_❁ Now for a 1.1 mile walk to the bus stop.
4:12 AM — Grab the bus connecting me to another bus.
Riding the bus wasn’t as bad as people imagine. Just make sure you’ve got music to get you through the trip!
4:33 AM — Catch the upcoming bus connecting to my next mode of transportation.. the train.
I found the bus pretty relaxing. I let the driver be my chauffeur. Meanwhile, my mind drifted away or I’d gaze out the window. Super chill. (In the gif: some kdrama guy)
5:38 AM — ALL ABOARD the Metro-Link Train! *horns*
The train was the highlight of my trip. It was a lot smoother than the bus. There were tables to sit at. I’d usually take this opportunity to catch up on reading or any work I felt like doing.
6:43 AM — Ok. Just one last bus til my destination!
Sitting down would get pretty tiring after a while. I learned nobody really bothers to sit next to/disturb a sleeping body.
7:00 AM — Too early for work? Go explore.
11:00 AM — Time for ice cream making! Got to make that BANK! (Haha jk not at minimum wage, yo.)

After clocking out, some nights I hung out and stayed at my good friend Michael’s house. Most other nights, I rode the bus back home again. It’ be about 10 PM by the time I arrived home. I was usually tired, by the time I was back but I felt good.

I was making the most out of my day and that’s all that really mattered.

That routine lasted until I was able to afford space at an apartment near work. Finally moving out of my parents house in Hemet was soo very gratifying. It was the beginning of the next chapter in my story. Soon after, 
I picked up a part-time job as a server for a Korean BBQ. (I was still paid min. wage, but got to make pretty good tips.)

Car ride = 20 minutes. Bus rides = 1 hour and 24 minutes. A major improvement from almost 4 hours, I must note.

Present Day

I finally met my goal of getting a car after tedious hours of work, struggling and frustrations.

Thanks mom and dad for the help.
At every chance, you two constantly told me things like:

“You’ll never go anywhere in life.”
“You’re a disappointment.”
“Why can’t you be like a normal kid?”

Those words stayed with me and really fucked me up — I was only trying to follow my passions and live the best way I knew how to.
But I still love you both. I know I’m still loved
Hopefully we’ll grow closer while we still are all here.

It’s not what happens to you. It’s how you handle it.

“People think my life has been tough, but I think it’s been a wonderful journey. The older you get, the more you realize it’s not what happens, but how you deal with it.”
-Tina Turner

The most important thing I’ve learned in my 20’s is that goals change. Life is unpredictable. It’s gonna throw you curve balls, but you don’t become a great batter practicing the same swing. Stay strong, but flexible.

Now that I’m behind the wheel again, I realized I treasure the experience gained on my journey as much as I cherish my new car
A car is virtually something you buy with money.

Invaluable experiences and life lessons have no price tag.

We dream of the perfect wave, the perfect job, the perfect house, the perfect love, and when we get there, we dream of something else, and the journey goes on.
-Rob Machado

Now onto the next journey.

Special thanks to my crew who’ve always been supportive of my goals and kept believing in me. Ya’ll know who you are.

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