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Is it simply me, or did this month majorly pace up? March 2020, the month that coronavirus ramped up enormously, was the longest month of my life. I do know it was for a lot of of you, too. By comparability, April appeared to go by in 10 days.
This month the toughest resolution of my life — whether or not to remain in Mexico Metropolis or go residence to Boston — got here to its conclusion. I actually don’t need to relitigate that call, because it was agonizing, however I do really feel like I’m a lot much less wired now than I used to be at the start of the month.
I do know I’m fortunate that issues didn’t take a flip for the worst this month — not for me, not for my household. Let’s break all of it down.
- Mexico Metropolis, Mexico
- Studying, Massachusetts, USA
Everybody I really like is wholesome. No one in my household has had COVID-19; whereas a few of my buddies have, they’re in varied levels of restoration. Actually, every little thing else this month pales compared to that, and I sincerely hope this can stay the case.
A enjoyable and profitable Patreon launch. It went quite a bit higher than I anticipated. Extra on that under.
A elaborate dinner at residence in Mexico Metropolis. Charlie and I sadly didn’t get to eat at Pujol and Quintonil like we deliberate, however he did uncover a particular occasion on the town — 4 high-end eating places had been working collectively, creating a elaborate multi-course tasting menu to get pleasure from at residence!
The meals was SO good, and there was a ton of it (in addition to two wonderful bottles of wine and a shock bottle of tequila). We ate it over two meals. Burrata, ceviche, beets with goat cheese, salmon, beef mole, cheesecake, chocolate truffles…
Watching a tree get taken down. We had a windstorm in Massachusetts and one of many casualties was an enormous evergreen tree subsequent door. It fell on our fence; we’re insanely fortunate it missed the home. That being stated, watching the tree get taken down, chainsawed, and flown, spinning by way of the air from a crane, was truthfully probably the most thrilling motion the neighborhood had seen in months. I needed my little might-as-well-be-nephews had been there; they might have liked it!
Springtime walks. Lovely spring climate in New England normally lasts a few week, sandwiched in between months of gloom, so I’m having fun with the flowering timber and sunshine as a lot as I can. Earlier than that, I liked our walks round Avenida Amsterdam in Mexico Metropolis.
Absolutely the uncertainty of this time. Greater than something, the horror of this pandemic will not be understanding something — when issues will open up, when my earnings will return, when borders will permit foreigners to go by way of. Once we’ll have a vaccine.
It was moreover tough being in Mexico with Charlie, making an attempt to determine when to depart, and worrying consistently about whether or not our flights can be canceled and the way a lot worse it was going to get. By the point we left, we weren’t in a position to go grocery purchasing collectively anymore, although we left earlier than the hospitals grew to become overcrowded. I received the final noon flight to Miami; Charlie received one of many final flights to Europe.
The worst half is being separated from my dude and never understanding when I will return to the Prague and begin the method of getting a Czech commerce license for my enterprise. The Czech Republic is doing a LOT higher than many different international locations, and so they’re slowly starting to reopen, however no phrase but on when foreigners will have the ability to enter once more.
Occasions being canceled. Together with a marriage of two pricey buddies.
Flying residence from Mexico Metropolis to Boston. It was a difficult and sometimes scary journey, and I nervous the entire time. I’ve written about it on social media and I’ve taken a ton of video clips, so I’m going to place collectively the video as quickly as I discover ways to correctly video edit…
Strictly quarantining for 2 weeks. Whereas there isn’t any legislation mandating it, Massachusetts asks folks from residence to remain of their residence for 2 weeks after worldwide journey and to trace their signs. It wasn’t tough for me (regardless of all of the journey, I might simply be a hermit), however being minimize off from the skin was onerous. I’ve plenty of sympathy for my NYC buddies caught of their tiny residences.
Mind fog. Since getting residence from Mexico, I’ve been having a really tough time working. I can’t concentrate on something; beginning a workday is SO onerous. I’m being type to myself and accepting that that is an impact of trauma, however I hope it eases up quickly.
IT SNOWED ON APRIL 18. Critically! It snows in April every so often, however by no means this late!!
Extra grey hairs. Three new ones noticed on my crown, one proper on my half. I’m at peace with it. No extra plucking them out; they’re right here to remain. I simply hope I can go for awhile earlier than needing to paint my hair.
Embroidery! I’ve been considering of making an attempt embroidery for awhile, and that is just about the right time. I discovered a cute cactus patch to attempt! You can order the kit here on Etsy. It’s by Embroidery Artwork by Nat, a Ukrainian embroidery artist, and now I help her on Patreon.
It’s enjoyable, calming, and ideal to do with a podcast. The one factor — don’t overdo it at first. I overdid it, and the repetitive motions led to soreness in my thumb and ache all the best way up my arm to my shoulder. Take it straightforward!
Child foot. Have you ever heard of Baby Foot? That is the right time to do it! It’s a foot peel, and whereas it takes days to take impact, it’s extraordinarily efficient.
You placed on the plastic booties for 1-2 hours, and after 3-7 days with each day soaking, your ft begin peeling. HARD. Like, the entire outer layer of your pores and skin dangles off your ft like cheese from a grater. It’s each gross and satisfying, and the method takes 1-2 weeks to completely peel.
My ft had been insanely dry as a result of local weather in Mexico Metropolis, and this returned them to smoothness. Extremely really helpful! It’s $25; Google round and you could find a $5 coupon.
Korean skincare. I’ve lengthy heard that Korean skincare merchandise are so a lot better for you, greater high quality, and nice worth for cash. Would possibly as effectively check out 10-step Korean skincare! (I’m justifying the expense by running a blog about it sooner or later.)
It’s plenty of steps…however I like it. My pores and skin is wanting superb. I’ve really been utilizing sheet masks each night time and so they’re not only for enjoyable — they’re insanely moisturizing!
I’m ordering my merchandise from YesStyle.com, which is affordable and secure. You may take 10% off your first order with the code ADVENTUROUSK. Supply took solely every week from Korea to the US. (Don’t order Korean skincare merchandise from Amazon — they’re usually counterfeit.)
Cooking. This month I made Alison Roman’s internet-famous caramelized shallot pasta, which was very straightforward and turned out scrumptious! Sure, it has anchovies, however they add salt, not fishiness.
What Occurred on Patreon This Month
Patreon is the platform the place I create unique content material so that you can learn, together with tales I’ve by no means advised earlier than, in change for a small month-to-month charge. You can see my Patreon here.
For those who join, you get one never-before-shared long-form story monthly, in addition to a number of shorter private posts, a personal Fb group, and free entry to the Ebook Membership. In greater tiers you get entry to month-to-month movies and personal video calls with me. I’m additionally engaged on a NEW perk for the $10 tier that’s popping out quickly.
We’ve TWO long-form tales to date: the primary is The Ghost of Montenegro, a narrative of me being haunted for 5 days in Kotor, and the second is Antarctica Lovers, a group of affection tales that occurred among the many passengers on my journey to Antarctica (some candy, some type of disturbing).
Up to now 153 of you have got joined, which is FANTASTIC — I used to be anticipating round 100. After Patreon’s charges and taxes, this earnings stream is offering sufficient cash to cowl my medical health insurance premium IN FULL every month, in addition to 60% of my hosting.
Healthcare in america is grotesquely, immorally costly, so I can’t inform you how grateful I’m that you just’re serving to me cowl that expense throughout a well being disaster.
If I get about 52 extra patrons, it ought to be sufficient post-fees and post-taxes to cowl my medical health insurance and many of the weblog’s month-to-month bills that I’ve pared right down to: my internet hosting (preserving the location on-line), ConvertKit (my email list, which I’ve been ROCKING this month), Gsuite (my enterprise e mail), Zoom (so I can have calls longer than 40 minutes), Calendly (for reserving paid One-on-One with AK appointments), and Adobe Artistic Suite (for picture modifying).
And excellent news! I stated that I’d publish the ghost story publicly on the weblog if I hit 100 patrons and stored them for one month. I hit 100 on April 7 — so the ghost story might be revealed right here subsequent week!
But join and you’ll get access to the Antarctica story, in addition to different tales and the group. I’m LOVING this outlet, writing the sorts of artistic tales you’re keen on and had been lacking.
Be a part of a Vacationers’ Evening In Name!
Bored at residence? Wish to have a “night time out” with cool, travel-loving folks? Join a Travelers’ Night In call! They happen on Tuesdays and Thursdays at 8:00 PM Japanese Time. I maintain the teams small to facilitate good dialog, and we normally find yourself telling tales and laughing for hours! I ask for a $5 donation.
Listed below are the upcoming calls:
Ebook Membership This Month
The primary-ever Adventurous Kate Ebook Membership assembly is going down on Sunday, Could 24, 2020 at 1:00 PM Japanese Time.
We might be discussing If I Had Your Face by Frances Cha this month. It simply got here out in April. UK and European readers, it is out there — but it surely’s completely at Waterstone’s till July, so that you’ll have to purchase it there.
I’ve already picked the e book for June’s assembly, and it’s a lot simpler to obtain. It’s by a queer lady of coloration and it takes place in a rustic that doesn’t get sufficient consideration. Particulars at Ebook Membership!
You can sign up here. Tickets are donation-based.
Humorous Second of the Month
My pal Alexa (you may keep in mind her from that concert in Dallas with the singer I wasn’t allowed to name) had a birthday and we had a Zoom name for her, together with 4 buddies and two toddlers. The mother of one of many toddlers advised him to “Blow a kiss to Auntie Alexa!” and he ran to the Amazon Echo (a.ok.a. “Alexa”) and blew it a kiss!
Most Widespread Publish
Breaking Up with Amazon — WOW, this publish went loopy! After I’ve determined to cease utilizing Amazon as a lot as potential, I used to be delighted to listen to that so lots of you’re feeling the identical manner.
Two Weeks in Mexico: The BEST Yucatán Road Trip Itinerary — For those who’re contemplating Mexico for subsequent winter, it is a GREAT highway journey that’s straightforward to do, but off the crushed path.
Which of These Comforting TV Shows is Right for You? — All the very best exhibits to binge on Netflix and Hulu throughout troubled instances.
Most Widespread Picture on Instagram
The primary leg of the journey — an Uber from La Condesa to Mexico Metropolis’s airport. I had no thought what awaited me, and I wasn’t feeling so good as a result of Charlie and I killed the bottle of tequila the night time earlier than…
For extra real-time updates, follow me on Instagram at @adventurouskate.
What I Watched This Month
Ozark — all 30 episodes, begin to end. Ozark was a kind of Netflix exhibits I had been which means to look at endlessly. It was time! Jason Bateman performs a cash launderer who’s pressured to maneuver his enterprise and household to the Ozarks in Missouri, a ravishing trip spot with a seedy underbelly residence to weird characters.
It’s in all probability the closest inheritor to Breaking Unhealthy — a “regular”-seeming household the place the daddy is engaged in crime, set in a lesser-known scenic location and shot exquisitely. Ozark is darker in plenty of methods — there’s much more violence and within the first two seasons, it’s stuffed with extraordinarily darkish, barely lit scenes (glad they backed off that within the newest season).
And watching all three seasons positively pays off. Season three begins sluggish, however the closing two episodes are excellent. The performing is excellent.
What I Learn This Month
Now that I’m not linking to or shopping for from Amazon, I’m linking to Bookshop.org when relevant, and IndieBound or the writer’s website when not. Bookshop.org compensates small native bookstores once you make a purchase order. And I get a tiny fee when you occur to purchase something by way of my Bookshop hyperlinks.
It does appear to be an moral approach to buy books. I’ve heard from native bookstore house owners that whereas they earn much less from Bookshop.org than they might in-store, they don’t need to deal with the delivery — which makes it a very good trade-off.
In Pursuit of Disobedient Women by Dionne Searcey (2020) — Feeling ennui in Brooklyn, New York Instances journalist Dionne Searcey determined to exit on a whim and apply to be the paper’s West Africa Bureau Chief. She moved to Senegal together with her husband and three younger youngsters, and spent three years reporting throughout West and Central Africa, breaking extraordinary tales about Boko Haram and the ladies they pressured to be suicide bombers.
I completely LOVED this e book and am recommending it to everybody! What an thrilling profession; I need to learn extra books by international correspondents now. You guys understand how a lot I really like studying memoirs about work. I liked studying about completely different components of West Africa, and the Boko Haram tales particularly had been unbelievable. I additionally appreciated that Searcey wrote candidly concerning the toll a job like this may tackle a wedding and household, even once you and your partner have a robust relationship.
Girl, Woman, Other by Bernadine Evaristo (2019) — This novel tells the intersecting tales of 12 black British girls. They’re high-powered executives, avant-garde theater administrators, and home cleaners; they’re queer, straight, cis, and nonbinary; they dwell within the coronary heart of London and on farms in Yorkshire; they’re immigrants from Nigeria and St. Lucia and British-born with roots in Guyana and Jamaica. This e book received the 2019 Booker Prize.
I really like the tales that Evaristo wove all through this e book — together with some surprises that completely paid off on the finish of the e book! It is a uncommon e book that not solely facilities black girls in Britain, however facilities so many queer girls within the narrative. It’s additionally written in an uncommon manner, a poetry-meets-prose kind the place every chapter varieties a single sentence. Positively an attention-grabbing and worthwhile learn.
Essentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit of Less by Greg McKeown (2014) — What occurs when you pare your online business right down to the work that will get outcomes? It might result in development, income, and happiness. Essentialism is all about eliminating the nonessential work and specializing in what makes an impression. Not everybody can try this of their work, however plenty of entrepreneurs can, particularly in the event that they’re in a position to outsource.
This e book was nice — probably the greatest enterprise books I’ve learn. I wasn’t certain how useful it could be, as I’m presently in a throw-everything-at-the-wall-and-see-what-earns stage, however I discovered it enormously useful and it received me considering of all of the work that’s time wasted. In reality, as quickly as I learn the chapter about how necessary it’s to get a very good night time’s sleep, I closed the e book and went to mattress!
I additionally appreciated its emphasis on main a significant life, not simply what earns you probably the most cash. I do know plenty of journey bloggers say that it’s not value writing a publish that received’t herald web optimization site visitors long-term, however I disagree — month-to-month recaps like this one earn me little or no cash, however they’re the posts you guys benefit from the MOST. My loyalty is to my established viewers first, and I plan to maintain it that manner.
Carrie by Stephen King (1974) — Carrie is an outcast at her small highschool in Maine. She has no buddies and is cruelly mocked by different college students; at residence, her religious-bordering-on-insane mom retains her from dwelling a traditional life. All of it comes to move at a college dance, the place Carrie will get revenge on those that wronged her by way of the facility of telekinesis.
That is the primary Stephen King novel I’ve ever learn! (I’ve learn his memoir, On Writing, which is superb.) I requested my buddies for suggestions and so they had tons — however Carrie, being his first novel, appeared like an ideal place to begin. I loved it and browse the entire thing in a day.
Although I’ve to say that it has plenty of awkward #menwritingwomen moments, particularly with regards to menstruation. Granted, it was revealed in 1974, and I ponder whether he’d make the identical errors at present. And I loved the sluggish, suspenseful lead as much as the motion rather more than the motion itself. Will I learn extra by him? Positive! Perhaps Misery subsequent.
Coming Up in Could 2020
Extra of the identical, people. Extra of the identical. And persevering with to attend and monitor the state of affairs within the Czech Republic. Hopefully it lets up and I’ll have the ability to e book a ticket again.
Massachusetts is peaking proper now, and whereas the stay-at-home advisory expires Could 18, there might be few adjustments. New Hampshire, which is about half an hour from my home, is about to loosen up a ton of restrictions — and naturally, they’re afraid of too many Massholes arising!
Till then, persevering with to remain at residence. Hoping that issues get higher.
What did you get pleasure from this previous month?