I am folding up my fluffy down coat and burying it in the farthest corner of the closet under the stairs. I don’t care if it snows again, I REFUSE to wear it. It’s April for crying out loud!! Enough is enough. Sarah has spoken. Y’all, I don’t know if this northern thing is for me. In my world, Spring is supposed to start right after Valentine’s Day. Isn’t that the whole point of Valentine’s Day? Celebrating the coming of Spring; coaxing her out of hiding with hearts and candy and flowers, writing her love letters, letting her know how much you’ve missed her? Oh – it’s not? I think you’re wrong.
Anyways, this past weekend I finally did some Spring cleaning! There’s nothing like having a nice, visible floor and some semi-functional surfaces. Kidding aside, I was pretty excited to blast some JT and get down with my vacuum. Also, I had guests coming, which let’s be honest, is usually my main motivation for cleaning. What guests, you ask? Complete strangers! Yup, that’s right, I invited two randos into my home on Saturday. Okay, not complete randos, they were actually two awesome Couchsurfer chicks who were coming to Philly for a C2C concert and needed a place to crash. I was planning on going to the show, so I thought, what the heck – I should give this thing a shot! Boy am I glad I did. Like most things that seem a little scary or uncomfortable, this turned into an amazing experience. We all had a lot in common, and it was so neat to just welcome strangers with open arms and hear about their lives. One of the girls has done a lot of traveling using Rideshare and Couchsurfing, and she had only good things to say.
This got me thinking. Obsessive media coverage of crime and the culture of fear have been such a detriment to our society. I’m not trying to say that bad things don’t happen, but we fixate on the bad so much that we’re afraid to put ourselves out there. People are so isolated nowadays. If I really wanted to, I could go months, maybe even years, and never interact with another person. We are so focused on self-sufficience, and we build up these huge walls to protect ourselves from the seemingly inevitable “what if.” Even simple hospitality and courtesy seem radical. The weary traveler passing through town can stay in a hotel. The hungry beggar on the street can go to some food-distribution center. We create systems to deal with these people who bombard us with… with… what? Their presence? Their basic human needs? How did we get to this point where meeting someone new produces that kind of worst-case-scenario, what-do-they-want-from-me anxiety? I am so grateful for all of the experiences that have helped me shed that mindset, because getting out of your comfort zone ROCKS. People, all people are worthwhile. Everyone has something to teach you.
Anyways, obviously this weekend was a huge success. We walked around the city a little, met up with some other friends and local CSers for drinks before the concert, then went to the show. You guys. C2C. It’s a group of four French DJ’s, and they were out of this world. The music was just sick, but they were serious performers too. They synchronized all of their movements, switching turntables, battling back and forth, and then they came out and rapped along to Beastie Boys. We danced our asses off. It was incredible. My only complaint was that they finished around midnight (which is just too early). They’re a pretty new group and only have one album out, so we weren’t too upset – we just didn’t want the night to end! So, we mixed and mingled outside the venue until we found what sounded like the best after-party plan: a house show in South Philly with three local DJ’s and free booze. Perfect, right? I guess the title of this post was probably a spoiler alert. After wandering down a quiet, residential street, expecting to find a basement rager, we got to the correct address and there was nothing. We knocked anyways, and were welcomed in to find a couple bros drinking light beer in a dark room with Saw playing on a big screen and some odd droning music in the background. Trying to make the best of the situation, I made some small-talk, thinking surely things would pick up – until they pulled out some illicit drugs and it was clear that this was not my scene! Needless to say, we called it a night. Despite this disappointment, it worked out perfectly so that we could get enough sleep and still squeeze in a delicious meal before my surfers headed back to Virginia. Brunch for the win! Good times.