Wednesday, November 17, 2010

New Concept

UN holiday, not a NY holiday = best time to shop.

We enter a new store in Chelsea on 5th Avenue. Loud club music, tapa plates scattered around with free food for everyone.

Him: Why aren't there any clothes on the main floor. Is this a bar?

Me: It's a concept store.

We walk around, sales people offer champagne, more tapas.

Him: No I just want some pants!

Everyone giggles.....

I love this man.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Fortune Cookie

Why some New York Japanese restaurants offer fortune cookies I will never know.  But I love the excitement of getting something in return for my 15% tip, even if everyone else on the table think the 'fortune' is a farce.  I subscribe to serendipitous possibilities - after my sukiyaki I will have the wise maitre'd serve me my future in 10 words.

And so eagerly, like the usual ritual we have had many times before, as six pieces of fortune cookies land with the faux leather folder that carries our bill, I gather them up and distribute them around to my friends except for two pieces. The last two pieces I then keep on my open palm for my friend to pick his and whatever is left behind is the fortune cookie of my destiny:

"Live out of your imagination instead of out of your memory"

Well said.

New York

Thursday, November 04, 2010

Arrivederci Italia

The trip is almost done now. Two and a half weeks of an adventure to a land that I have only read about, where I do not speak the language (even if I tried) and for most of it on my own. There had been some minor mishaps but generally I would say it has been quite an experience - a very memorable one. 

The journey began in Milan and ends in Milan. It has taken me behind the ancient walls of Bergamo and Tuscany, the charm of Florence and the ethereal beauty of Rome. I have met up with friends and have had the chance to experience a genuine Italian family dinner. I have learned each city's local transport system and traveled like a local except in Tuscany where I based myself in a small town called Colle di Val d'Elsa, rented a car and with the gentle guiding voice of a GPS maneuvered hairpin curves through vineyards, olive farms and picture perfect little towns. 

I have walked around with my camera and captured people, places and things in photographs which I will share when I am back home and settled in the familiar comfort of my apartment. For this trip I have  traveled with my iPad, and survived on the wifi from my hotels. So far I have had the chance to share some images to my family and friends to ease their worries about me and this adventure. 

I realize now that my itinerary still has a lot lacking. There were places I had planned to see but did not have the chance. Definitely two and a half weeks has not been enough to enjoy Italy. But since it is the most time that I can take off from work for the meantime it would have to suffice. Maybe not even a lifetime is enough to enjoy this beautiful country, so definitely I would be back. 

Roma, Lazio, Italia