something interesting is happening in the dorm in the last few days and i think we're all moving from just being random roommates to actually choosing to be friends and hang out together. during the normal school week, everyone goes their own way and we may hang out in the living room while we all cook dinner, but we haven't gone anywhere together in a big group.
this evening justin, dena, noe, chris, danielle, lesley, steve and i went into taipei for lesley's birthday dinner at an indian restaurant. on the bus ride over, lesley asked noe, steve, justin and i to tell her our life stories while we were all sitting within earshot.
i'll be honest and say that i didn't initially think lesley was really my kind of girl and i had no plans of trying to get to know her, but tonight i found out that she's also the oldest of 3 with 2 younger brothers who are almost jeff and matt's age. and she's my age. the more i talk to her, the more i think she and i could be relatively good friends. i think it's just that she's really independent and set in her ways and i'm social and whatever else.
anyway dinner was amazing. it was real indian food and it was a bazillion times more authentic than ali baba's. although.. the guy who works at ali baba's (and who has memorized my order) is a legit indian guy and does seem to know what he's doing. but tonight dinner was served in cool metal bowls and trays that really looked like they could have been bought in some indian market. and the food was delicious.
i ordered some kind of vegetarian platter. everyone else had one little bowl of curry or whatever and i had a huge platter of rice, a somosa (is it samosa or somosa?), curried paneer, yogurt, something else, cucumber salad aaaand naan. it was incredible.
after dinner we headed to a jazz bar that lesley wanted to go to because she apparently has a thing for live jazz. unfortunately, when we got there, the owner told us that the band had cancelled so although they would normally have been there, we were out of luck tonight. dena went home because she doesn't drink, and the rest of us headed down the street on the recommendation of this betel-nutted out man who was creepily hovering beside me when we were trying to figure out where to go.
we ended up at a bar called roxy junior and we played cards for a while in this cool little area all to ourselves with comfy khaki couches and pretty halogen lights beaming down. there is more fluorescent lighting in taiwan than you can imagine. even in people's living rooms in their houses. the buzzing alone would drive me insane, but the greenish tinge it casts is unbearable.
we played a card game called presidents and assholes and i won 5 times in a rowwww. people underestimate me because i'm girly and bubbly, but i don't mess around with cards. we spent many a night in high school/college summers and winter breaks playing hours and hours of cards.
at the end of the night, a mai tai and a cosmo later, i felt like i knew everyone a little better and some people considerably better. i think i'm going to go back to not spending any money on alcohol though. it's expensive and i don't miss it when i don't drink it. i think i deserve some credit for not bending to drinking more than i know i should and doing anything else i'm offered that i know isn't for me. it can be really difficult not to give in to a bunch of people who are doing things you know you don't want to do. but i'm an international lady and i do [or don't do] what i want.