Silent Hill and 我的好朋友

21 August 2022

Today, we start the day at the Lord’s table.

House of God in San Bruno

I grew up at House of God in San Bruno. Most of the people at this Church have known me since I was born.

In this day and age, many people have varying views on religion. Some people think it’s culty, other people think our country is going to shit for lack there of. Religion to me is both spirituality and community. Being Christian is something I can have in common with any other Christian even if I have nothing else in common with them. There’s an instant bond and sense of community basically out of nothing. You can also never stop being a Christian. If I got injured, I wouldn’t be a climber anymore until I recovered. Nothing really stops you from being Christian. Always having a community to fall back is great for mental health. I don’t really care what you practice or if you practice at all. That’s my view of religion.

My church is located right in down town San Bruno. It’s not much of a down town, just a single street, but it’s my hometown downtown.


Little known fact: parts of Silent Hill 2 were modeled after San Mateo Ave in San Bruno.

New Well

So I basically grew up and go to church next to a video game.

”Would you like to try our new tortillas?"

"Are they gluten free?"

"No, they’re made of wheat.”


Today, I’m having lunch with a new friend, in Palo Alto, at Izzy’s Brooklyn Bagels.

Izzy's Brooklyn Bagels

The bagels are good. I’m not a huge fan of bagel sandwiches but these were pretty darn tasty. My go to for bagels is usually a blueberry bagel with plain cream cheese. But today, I skipped breakfast so I needed the calories. I did get a blueberry bagel today as ‘dessert’ but sans cream cheese. Can’t have too many calories.

Clara planned well since there was also a farmer’s market going on right at that very street. Farmer’s markets remind me slightly of Costco. Most of the stalls have some sort of free sample for you to try.


Cauliflower reminds me of tripping on acid. The pattern on the florets is vaguely similar to the geometric visuals of psychedelics.

Zombie Coffee

Can’t forget about my daily ritual. Today’s cup was a nitro cold brew from Zombie Coffee. I’m enamored with neon signs albeit this one was about as plain as they come. By the way, you can see my reflection in the photo.

Iced Coffee

I rarely drink iced coffee. First, it’s hard to make at home since I rarely keep ice cubes. Second, I usually keep my caffeine consumption to the morning. In the early hours, I’d much rather wake up to a hot beverage than a cold one.

Nevertheless, I can distinctly remember two other times I’ve had iced coffee.


The first is the summer of 2018 when I went to Tokyo. We stopped by Rostar after a trip to an Onsen in Odaiba. I heard about Rostar through a Buzz Feed Worth It video on Coffee. I can verify, Rostar’s iced coffee is really good for ¥100.

Now I’m nostalgic… 2017 - 2019 really did have some good YouTube content.


The other one was somewhere near Yong Kang Jie in Taipei. I visited in the summer of 2017 with my brother. My mom had business around the area so my brother and I tagged along to hang out. Soon enough, we realized we needed to find an escape from the sweltering, humid summer heat. We found shelter in a little coffee shop tucked away one of the side streets. They had cold brews and other coffee drinks made from elaborate brew towers.

Taiwan is a bit famous for these brew towers. Ice goes in the top and as it melts, it brews coffee. I’ve only ever seen these cold brew machines in Taiwan and at Never too Latte (in San Bruno, on San Mateo Ave!). I guess you gotta come up with some innovative ways to make good cold coffee when it’s boiling outside half the year.

We ordered in Chinese but somehow the waitress knew we were American. I asked her how she knew and she said it was the way we dressed. I guess that’s fair. At University, I could usually tell who the international Chinese students were by the way they dressed.

Unfortunately, I can’t remember what this coffee shop was called. There’s a plethora of coffee shops in this area on Google Maps so it’s hard to pin down which one it was. For all I know, it may not exist anymore after the pandemic.


Today, we’re having Korean food for dinner, with some old friends, in San Francisco.

Han IL Kwan Sign

We got dinner set A, a meal for 6, but our table only had 5 people. Spoiler, it was a lot of food.

The server asked us if we wanted to have our meat cooked in the kitchen or if we wanted cook it ourselves on the grill. Without much thought, I asked if we could cook it ourselves.

Korean food for Dinner

I haven’t done KBBQ style self cooking since I left Irvine. There’s not many KBBQ style restaurants up in my part of the Bay Area.

Red Castle

Back in Irvine, we used to go to this place called Red Castle. In terms of quality, it was pretty mid, but in terms of value, oh man. It was like less than ~$20 for all you can eat meats. For a bunch of half starved college students, that’s basically meat heaven. I always left feeling disgusted but I have fond memories of the place.

Today was a long day but it was fun.

I met a new friend. I saw some old friends.

I might not be writing for the next few days. I’m planning on working from home so I may not do any walking. But maybe I can get something in. It’s our interns’ last week so I might have a couple days in the city to see them before they leave.

(P.S. I don’t have the Chinese keyboard enabled on this computer, so I was dead ass just typing the English translations into Google translate and copying the resulting Chinese.)