So, I know it may seem like I am in Southeast Asia right now, as I’ve been posting about Thailand, Cambodia, and most recently Laos. The fact of the matter is that I returned from Asia back on December 17th. At the moment, I am in Brooklyn, New York. Confusing, I know!
How did this happen? That’s an easy one to explain. During the first week of my four weeks traveling around Thailand, Cambodia and Laos, I was on a boat, sailing around Thailand’s Andaman islands, with not a drop of Internet connectivity. Hence the delay effect of my posts! Considering the fact that I just started this blog in November, many of my future travel tales will be retrospective, picked from a vast cache of experiences I’ve collected throughout my life.
I’m not done with Laos, to be certain. I’d say that I have another three to four posts left on that lovely little land-locked country.
That said, I’m excited to bring you- New York City!!!!!!!!
New York, New York, known and loved by many, is one of my favorite cities on Earth. I’m sure many folks share my sentiment.
During my eight years living in Washington, DC, I was a frequent visitor to New York. I came here with friends, to visit friends, and I even went through about a two-year period where I considered myself a pseudo-New York resident (It’s a long story, but there’s a fella involved. With a flexible schedule during my tenure at grad-school, I was able to split my time almost 50/50, NY/DC. That was a really exciting time!)
Empire State of Mind (So cliche, I know!)
I LOVE New York for so many reasons, and they are reasons you hear cited by others often: The city’s boundless energy, the bottomless pit of entertainment options available, the shopping, the urban vibe, the people…..
People/culture/geography are the focus of this blog and what I’ve studied and made a career around for the last 15 years. So, I love New York mostly because of the eclectic mix of people and cultures overlaid onto a dynamic, AMAZING urban environment.
I love boarding a plane to NYC and hearing a plethora of languages, seeing an array of religious beliefs represented by people from different ethnic backgrounds. Visiting New York is the traveling equivalent going to candy land – if you like that sort of thing!
As it goes for most cities, but especially New York City, the sheer exposure to human brilliance and creativity is nothing short of inspiring.
On my first night in town, I was invited to a laid-back dinner at a converted store-front loft. The inhabitants, a wonderful mix of artists and entrepreneurs from Miami (via Louisiana- hey hey!!), Russia, Peruvian American, and Nicaraguan-Jewish American. These people, it didn’t take for me long to realize, were the beez neez.
John, our chef for the night, shot a deer while hunting in Lousiana (he went to LSU, like me!) and brought it back to NYC. The previous night, he hosted an epic, venison with sides, Thanksgiving-style feast. He boiled the leftovers down into a rich, delectable stew, which I was fortunate enough to partake in!
Is that a skull in your carry-on?
The story of the deer transport is the best, though. He checked the deer carcass in his luggage, but was faced with paying exorbitant over-weight fees. The solution that the airlines provided him? Remove four pounds from the ice chest and put it in your carry on. Hmmm, raw meat in my carry-on… Wait, it doesn’t matter if the head spoils. So what does John do? He takes the (well-wrapped) deer head and places it in his carry-on bag. The TSA agents were all “WTF” when he went through security. He said that the image on the X-ray screen of clothes surrounding a . . . head . . . was bizarrely hilarious. The head was the center piece- and conversation piece- of their feast that first night.
And here is a video of Cesar explaining his new app “1 Second Every Day” to me and Laura. Amazing. Inspiring. Epic.
Check out Cesar Kuriyama on TED!
I love this city.
And what’s on the docket for tonight? We’re going to use a little Scout Mob action and hit the potentially divine, Franco-Mexican (Frexican?) Santos Anne in Williamsburg, followed by a potentially mind-blowing Cat Power concert.
No, I’m not excited AT ALL!
Thanks for stopping by!
*Please excuse the crappy photos that were taken on my dinosaur iPhone 3G without a flash!