It’s early when I leave the house. The air is crisp and the sun is shining brightly. I hit the platform right as the subway roars into the station and it feels like it’s going to be a really good day. I stop off at my favorite coffee cart, and as I wait for my order I am struck by the fact that we are coming to the end of jacket weather. Central Park in the distance promises jacket-less lunches on the grass in the near future. Read more
The first time I saw a reenactment was a battle scene at Fort Delaware in Narrowsburg. I was five or six, and I remember it pretty fondly—the men in costumes charging up the hill toward the fort, smoke billowing out through the muzzles of old cannons and gradually a growing sea of bodies motionless on the ground. Read more
Living out of a hotel room makes time stand still. After a week, the days really start to blend together. I establish a routine; my computer rests on the desk for emails; I sit on the couch to watch TV and Netflix. Over time a few random personal effects scatter throughout the room.
Upon entry, the room always looks the same, the bed magically remade as if a reset button has been pushed. Read more
The Weather Channel dubbed it “Nemo” and said that New York City was expecting between three and 30 inches in the fast approaching snowstorm. Seems like a pretty wide swing, I thought, but what do I know about the weather?
I groaned at the “Finding Nemo” jokes that seemed to be made on repeat in the days leading up to the storm. “I found Nemo,” “I am not looking for Nemo,” and dozens of meme’s showing the Disney character barreling toward the coast. Read more
Trinidad, California is on the coast. A rock cliff lines the ocean view out of the window of the bed and breakfast where we are staying. We arrived at night, drove down from Portland, OR, and so I didn’t see the view until the morning. I was surprised when the sun poked through the fog and revealed the ocean.
Down below, huge rocks jut out from the water. From this distance, it’s difficult to imagine how big they are, but they look enormous. It’s like nothing I’ve ever seen before, otherworldly. Read more
The first days back from a vacation are always glowing. It’s warmer than I expected it to be and it’s nice to be home. The vacation is still fresh in my mind; I can still feel the sun radiating off of my skin and the soothing relaxation in my bones.
I’m happy to be home; I enjoy the familiar sights and sounds; I get back into my routine. New York is a great city to come back to. I’m always struck by that upon returning from a trip. The first few days are full of doing all of your favorite things, all the things you missed while you were gone. Read more
I’m on the beach in Costa Rica right now. The waves crash big and beautiful. A dreadlocked, tan, fit American guy is explaining that falling is a big part of surfing. That I should embrace it. I’ve spent a fair amount of time in the ocean, but I’ve never surfed before. I’m a little nervous.
There is a small group taking the lesson. The instructor teaches us how to stand up on the board. He draws a line in the sand, to represent a surfboard, and we practice popping up from lying to standing.
“Surfing is mental, right?” he says. “It’s all about going for it.” Read more
The trees near my office are wrapped tightly in blue lights. It’s surprisingly impressive and despite the fact that they went up just after Halloween (too early in my opinion), I am struck often by their beautiful simplicity.
The carolers on the subway are good and plentiful. It seems that all the best subway performers come out this time of year. It’s actually enjoyable when they enter the train, and I notice that even the toughest looking folks crack smiles. Read more
Emily and I stand in the Beijing airport looking for the Delta desk to check in. It’s five in the morning and we are on our way back to New York. We push a cart full of bags through the large terminal.
After traveling for 10 days, we are both pretty ready to be home and I am jokingly grumbling about the lack of freedom, news and manners. With perfect timing a guy bumps into me and says nothing. “You see what I’m talking about?” Read more
The first night Emily and I spend in Beijing, we sit in a restaurant with a group of friends; a bottle of Jameson and a boom box rest on the table. The Jameson was bought at the airport and the boom box is blaring rap music. Surprisingly, no one at the restaurant says a word. Welcome to Beijing.
“There aren’t any rules here,” Greg, the groom of the wedding we are here attending, explains. “Don’t just look both ways when you cross the street, look all ways,” he pauses. “Traffic laws aren’t really enforced.”
We cross the streets with extreme caution. Read more