This is part of a monthly series in which we get to know Sifties.
Rachel Xiao is a Technical Recruiter here at Sift and has been with us for a year and four months. If she could eat only one food for the rest of her life, it would be noodles. She loves noodles – pasta, udon, dry noodles or noodle soups, she’s a huge fan of them all.
Where is your favorite place to be?
I love spending time visiting different museums. I like going by myself. I studied early modern European history, mainly Italy, and museums help bring history and the things I studied to life. There’s something really energizing about being around art and artifacts.
What are five things that make you happy?
- Drinking tea (I usually start my day with a cup of green tea)
- Podcasts; my favorites include Revisionist History, Heavyweight, and Hidden Brain
- The corner piece of a lemon bar
- Parks and Rec
- Flemish Giant rabbits. My goal is to one day own one and have the space for it to roam around
If you could pick up a certain skill instantly, what would it be?
Speaking Italian. I studied early modern Italy, and had a chance to learn the language, so I want to revisit that in the future and be fluent one day.
What’s the best vacation you ever had?
I went on my first solo trip two years ago, to Amsterdam, Belgium, and Berlin. I think there’s something really special about traveling alone, both learning about yourself as well as exploring a new culture and place. I got to visit 18 museums, which was amazing. The Jewish Museum Berlin had an installation called Fallen Leaves by Menashe Kadishman that was really powerful and left a huge impression on me. It was an installation of 10,000 faces cut from heavy iron plates covering the museum’s Memory Void. In that moment, I truly felt the past coming to life.
What would people be surprised to learn about you?
I think people would be surprised to learn that I was born and raised here in San Francisco. One of my most vivid memories growing up was how often my grandparents would talk about the 1989 earthquake, and exactly where they were when it happened.
In your group of friends, what role do you play?
The moral compass. Growing up, I’ve always had a really strong sense of integrity and honesty, and often served as a sounding board for my friends. In life, I try to make sure that not only are we doing the right thing, but also the kind thing. I’ll be honest in that it’s not always the most popular opinion of the group. 🙂