Saturday, February 19, 2011


I went to Mexico, with 12 hours notice, I through some stuff in a bag and arrived at the airport with very little sleep. My uncle died suddenly and my father and I flew immediately to be with family. It was a hard trip, but there were great moments of laughter and love.

Friday, December 31, 2010

2010 a place odyssey

2010 has been a great year for travel, and a pause in that chapter of my life. Here are a few of my favorite moments. Feliz Año Nuevo!

Monday, September 13, 2010

the core of mans spirit comes from new experience

"The core of mans spirit comes from new experience," unfortunately for me, I believe this to be true. Does this mean I will never be satisfied staying in place, treading water or just living. I think it might. And for me, new experience means travel, learning, moving. This wanderlust I find within myself is more apparent then ever. But the other side of me feels that "Happiness is only real when shared" With my intention to settle, the lust gets stronger, to a point that just two months in to the "settling," I am already anxious for new adventures, new places, new minds to pick, new ideas. . . these two sides of me are at odds. I guess I need that person to share in new experiences. . . will that bring the two sides together?

Monday, June 28, 2010

amigos para siempre

Saying my farewells to the city I have called home for three years has been a lot harder than expected. Some days I am so ready to leave, but my love for Madrid goes a lot deeper than the city. The friends I have made here are unique, every single one of them, a little jewel to add to my already stunning collection of friends. They are what makes this city so great. We have had some perfect last weekends filled with retiro pic-nics of hummus (yummus) and salads, days filled with nothing but tinto-de-veranos and conversations that last until close. Seeing all the people in the neighborhood, the fruiteria men who call me guapa and carino, the "hummus sin acete" men at the fallafel, the Argentinian woman who sells me giant sunflowers, the bartender who gives us free top ups at the Mexican tamarind margarita place, the pinxios at our Sunday afternoon bar with chalk wall bathroom, the ladies who dance, the ones who have heart to hearts and the ones that i can't bear to say goodbye to. People living a similar life with similar values are hard to come by, and what luck I have found many. The one that I make up musicals with, the one that despises musicals, but loves to dance until the wee hours, the one who stays up until the wee hours. I am so lucky for the people who have made Madrid my home.

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Joaquín Sorolla

Sunday in June, hot and perfectly sunny. I decided to investigate a museum that I have wanted to visit for awhile, the Museo Sorolla. The Museum is the old house of Sorolla with a gated garden, the light streams through the plants and makes amazing patterns all over the tiled fountains. It might be the most peaceful place I could be on a warm Sunday in Madrid. The entrance was free today, so I went up tiled steps into this room filled with paintings of women in white dresses, blowing with shadows of purple and lilac, blue and pink, the use of color is spectacular. Going through the garden on the way begins to prepare you to understand a the way Sorolla sees the world; through shadows and light spots through unexpected colors. So much art ceiling to floor with couches and lamps and old paintbrushes. It was a beautiful museum, dare I say my favorite in Madrid. I spent over an hour drawing and investigating, in awe of his use of color and incredibly quick brush strokes.

I have been really into trying to find the perfect group to go with an artist, and today I think I succeeded. Broken Social Scene seemed to fit perfectly with beach views and trance-like state that Sorolla's paintings evoke. "7/4 shoreline" went perfectly with the room of the women in flowing white gowns on the beach. A great pairing and fitting to my sleepy mood.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

alice in A-dam

Amsterdam, a city of winding canals, buildings that are built to lean over the street, tiny stairs that make my tiny feet look giant, tall people that make me feel like I am living in Alice in wonderland . . . and it truly is a wonderland. We got in late on Thursday night, the garbage people had been on strike for 2 weeks, so their were piles of garbage, not the clean and perfect Amsterdam I remember, but still incredibly charming despite the garbage.

The first day we had amazing Dutch pancakes, mine with apples and nuts and honey . . .incredibly delicious. Then we went to Keukenhof, the largest tulip garden in the world, getting there was a little annoying, taking the train back to shipol and then a bus for an hour, but it was worth it. Disney land for adults, bright colors, pictures taken of each variety, getting lost in a tall garden maze, where is the white rabbit? An uncountable number of tulip varieties and colors and beauty. Fantastic feast for the color fairy (my new nickname).

Back to the city, Erica goes out by herself and comes back, having been hit by a bike, ambulance comes and everything, the Dutch are so incredibly helpful, the bikes are so silent and fast and the shere number is astounding. My perfect city, a city of bikes and water. . . just watch out! Later, CCD and I go out to meet Mateo, who is with Dutch royalty and a giant of a man.

Day two, morning apple pie, a fantastic market, Jordan neighborhood, bicycle seat covers, sunshine . . . then off to walk the canals to the Van Gogh museum, way further than we thought. We get to the museum, amazing collection of paintings, some of my favorites including the almond blossom, and some new favorites that I had never seen before even in reproductions. Van Gogh never ceases to amaze me, his colors are so vibrant, his strokes are so evident, there is a reason everyone loves his works, they are down right incredible in composition, color, moss, feeling, all around, little works of perfection.

This city is such a feast for the senses; Indonesian for dinner, peanut sauce and mango juice is all I need in my life. Out with Mateo and Jan, for drinks. Discussing if there are any downfalls to the Dutch, decidedly no. Everyone bikes, is relaxed and chill, the city doesn’t have the hustle of a normal city, the city is non-smoking, vintage clothes, people love antiques, kids are loved, apple pie for breakfast, great medical care, really tall people, this city is perfect, new goal, find a Dutchman to marry so I can live forever in this city.

Going back to the airport to leave, my heart breaks a little bit, this place is perfect, a city I can see living in forever. Being confronted with the fact that I am moving back to the united states, I get a little sad. Truly I think I have found a city that I belong in, a city I could feel at home in, and it isn't the city I am living in or the city I am moving to, just always only Amsterdam.

Saturday, April 17, 2010


Quaint town situated on a river, the town itself keeps growing upward, from below the city looms above, old painted tiles, churches from gothic times to more flowery blue and white tiled baroqe. The feeling that you have been plunged back in time, where old women wear aprons and men wear hats, everyone walks and smiles and says "obrigada" (thank you). The distinction between Spain and Portugal is surprising, the people so kind, they say excuse me if they bump into you, the hospitality of the people are amazing, and the warm smiles are unexpected.
We stayed in a very cute little apartment near the river, the town was a little humid, moss growing on many surfaces, wood so old and dark jets out and amazing hand paitnted tiles pop up in the most delightful places. The goal was to spend as little money as possible, and with a kitchen and a city with the cheapest wine and groceries, it sure wasn't hard. Even going out to dinner, with dessert, wine, and two entrees didn't break the bank.
It was an exercise in relaxation. Isa was my teacher, and I as her pupil was not doing a great job. I did hwoever finish a 500 page book, took a nap, sat at a cafe for hours in the sun, and walked around at a leasurly pace. We spent a lot of time cooking and finding the perfect Vino Verde (yum!). We even painted easter eggs.
Our last day, we got up at 4:00 to get to the airport for our 6am flight, we got there on time, and the woman told us, we were 24 hours late for our flight. . . no recourse, we tried to get another flight, but the price was steep, 500 euro. So we went to the bus station at 6 in the morning, bus stations are never someplace you want to be in the wee hours. It wasn't going to open until 8, freezing and upset at the prospect of not getting home, I threw on as many layers as possible, a little annoyed at Isa for making a 24 hour huge mistake (as she is the one in charge of the flights), then, she says, "at least it isn't rainning," and I burst into laughter, yes we are stranded in cold portugal at 7 in the morning and probably are going to be on a bus for the next 12 hours, but at least it isn't rainning, thanks Isa.

We did end up getting a bus, it was a long trip, but my relaxation classes helped and I read another book and looked through my pictures on my computer and exausted my podcast downloads.