31 March 2007

photos from amazonas, brasil

i haven't written much about my trip, so let me start. i first went to manaus, which was a real dump. the only highlight was the pre-carnaval party, which was pretty fun (and at which i drank a caipirinha com fruta e crema) and danced. however, the real highlight of amazonas was going on a jungle tour. i spent three days in a remote region of the amazonas--we took a van ride, boat ride, another van ride and another boat ride--several hours of traveling. however, when we got there, it was worth it. we went swimming in the river (our lodge was on a remote river in the amazon), chatted with people, drank caipirinhas, hiked in the jungle, slept in the jungle, met local families, went piranha fishing (i didn't and i was glad no one caught anything b/c i don't like fishing!), canoed, went through aquatic forests, saw pink dolphins, saw fruits and plants and birds that exist only in amazonas--in short, had a great time. here are some of my fave photos.

17 March 2007

knitting quote

"Jose brought up the blueprints for a new ranch house. I have this strange feeling that the blueprints and the knitting instructions got switched. I may be knitting a ranch house!"

--Holly Golightly, Breakfast at Tiffany's

14 March 2007

dear city of new york,

please turn on your water fountains. i know we still have a bit longer until spring, but runners across the city are thirsty.

and many, many other runners


there are several disgusting men who regularly sexually harass me, hit on me, stare me up and down in my neighborhood. every so often, i see them with their children--it seems to be daughters usually--and they look the other way, shy, meek, silent. i want to ask them, "do you want men to treat your little daughter like you treat me?" i find it ironic that they have daughters--that they do this--that they who are probably oh-so-protective of their little ones, wrapping their large hands around the miniature ones, feel the need to harass other women.

12 March 2007

my favourite song from carnaval

pick which version:

quebra 1

quebra 2

quebra 3

i think my favourite time singing this was pre-fat boy slim/dj marky/layo e bushwacka bloco where this supercute gayboi, felippe and i just started singing this at the top of our lungs!

quebra ae asa!

i don't know them

two people pass me--tightly holding hands.
my heart crumples.
i ignore it, alone, and continue walking, fast.

09 March 2007

nothing bonds new yorkers like a crisis

coming home from work today on the G train, my train suddenly stopped in the station and i heard a cluster of voices, rising. i pulled my headphones out of my ears (sometimes, you don't want to listen to your ipod) to see what was going on. the train operator was leaning out the window and i heard someone say, "someone has a bomb on the train."

"what?" i got up, and went to a middle-aged guy standing by the door in a grey sweater with an open leather jacket. "what? did he say a bomb?"

"a bong?" someone asked.

"oh, a bong."

"no, a bomb. not a bong--" gesturing like he is holding a bong--"a bomb. b-o-m-b."

"shit! should we--evacuate?"

at this point, the train conductor leaves the train and begins walking. "someone in the last car says he has a bomb. a disorderly passenger. not sure..." the conductor says, walking towards the last car that may or may not have a disorderly passenger with a bomb. people start leaving.

"shit..." a twentysomething woman with lovely brown hair and i exit the train and begin walking up the stairs. "i didn't want to die today," she tells me.

"me neither..."

"i don't feel like i'm going to die," she says.

i don't know what i feel but i know i'm scared.

"oh the police," she says, pointing at the precinct inside the station that i usually ignore. "do you think they know?"

"i don't know," i respond, "but i'll tell them." i walk towards the precinct, which, incidentally, is in the direction that the last car that may or may not contain the disorderly passenger with a bomb. it's below me, but in the same direction.

inside, two police officers are talking. "sorry to interrupt, but i think someone might have a bomb on the train," i blurt.

"oh, don't worry," another police officer tells me, smoothing her hair. "there's cops on the platform."

um, okay. so it's safe?

"what do you think?" the girl with the lovely brown hair asks me. she really is quite pretty, and her eyes are frightened, like mine probably reveal.

"they said there's cops on the platform...so maybe it's safe?"


we walk towards the stairs and go down them. we see the train operator in the front again.

"is it okay?" we ask him.

"yeah, the cops are getting him."

people are watching the cops through the television on the platform, but i can't see what is going on. a minute or so later, the train departs.

we start chatting--about how we're so relieved, what craziness people can be--all bonded by a crisis. while i don't like scary things like threats to my life, i always like the way people become so friendly in new york

where should i move?

i recently read on curbed that not only is there a starbucks opening in greenpoint (now we're really gentrified!) but the building across from me is going to be a mega-condo with over a hundred apartments. great, just great.

i'm getting sick of greenpoint and have been hoping to move on for a while. but where should i move? i need someplace where i can go running and that limits most places in nyc. i will only live in brooklyn or manhattan, and don't want to live far. yeah, who doesn't? oh, and i have cheap rent.

my lease is up late may but i may extend for six months, and then figure out what to do. that building will be open in a year no doubt.

i wish i was in brazil for this

no, i don't.

sometimes, i like to forget about shitty things are.

but i will be at this.


yes, i miss where i've already been.

but i also miss where i haven't been yet, and i really miss where i will one day be going.

my favourite chai recipe

Venessa passed along this recipe to me from Bon Appetit. However, I didn't like it as they had it, so I made some minor adjustments to suit my taste.


1 1-1.5 inch piece of fresh ginger, peeled, cut into thin rounds
(the original recipe calls for a 2 inch piece; if you are a huge ginger person, add that much, but i think it becomes overpowering. i prefer a 1 inch piece or a 1.5 inch piece if my ginger is quite thin.)
2 cinnamon sticks
2 teaspoons (heaping if you like) of black peppercorns
11 whole cloves
(i may try adding even more than i do, as i like cloves)
7 cardamom pods
6 cups cold water
6 bags black tea, preferably darjeeling
2 cups organic milk
(i add 2% but whole would be excellent as well)
1/2 cup packed golden brown sugar
2-3 teaspoons of vanilla extract
(my secret ingredient for everything!)

  1. Lightly crush first five ingredients with a mallet in large saucepan, or use a mortar and pestle (my way) and transfer into a large pot.
  2. Add 6 cups of water; bring to boil over high heat.
  3. Reduce heat to medium-low; partially cover pan and simmer gently 10 minutes.
  4. Remove from heat. Add tea bags and steep five minutes. (If you want more of a caffeine buzz, leave the bags in a bit longer.)
  5. Discard tea bags. Add milk, sugar, and vanilla.
  6. Bring tea just simmering over high heat, whisking until sugar dissolves.
  7. Strain tea.
This recipe makes enough for six servings. It stores well in the fridge, and you just pop a cup in the microwave (or you can warm it up on the stove as well) to have another day. I just had some leftover chai and I loved it! This time came out my best--I added less ginger, more vanilla, and it was just lovely!

08 March 2007

when human contact makes you want to cry

today, everything just hit me so intensely.

i was waiting for the light to change when this guy stole this woman's cab. "i was here first," he told her. "i didn't see you," she responded. "well, i was here first," he said, getting into the cab. she leaned in, "can we share it?" "i was here first," he said, sliding the cab's minivan door shut.

how cruel and selfish people are.

i was carrying a package from paragon, along with a large bag of cat food (for my large cat!) when the l train came. i was listening to my ipod (standard for rush hour) and reading dh lawrence's women in love. the train doors opened, and this guy came out and my earphones were ripped out of my ears and he was moving, with my earphones. "hey!" i shouted. he looked disturbed, and then relieved. he gave me my earphonoes and a weird, sensitive moment passed through us. i got onto the train and read.

i went to the lab as i was supposed to get a test. this guy ran up to the counter and wrote his name ahead of me. the receptionist left. i couldn't take it. i left.

quiz from the guerrilla girls

07 March 2007


a morning run
slippery sidewalks
frozen face mask


a morning run
slippery sidewalks
frozen face mask

06 March 2007

good ways to spend your sunday afternoon

  • at the colombian cafe with a colombian hot cocoa (and yummilicious double chocolate pecan cookies), studying spanish.
  • enjoying art in a museum.
  • post-run, post-shower, post-brunch, with lover in bed, snuggling, talking, dreaming, loving.
  • taking my cat on a walk (only in the warmer weathers!)
  • making a big delicious soup or stew or meal
  • reading in the park
  • reading at the beach
  • drinking tea with grandma
  • poring over a large map with a head full of dreams
  • piling books in my arms from a local library--like shopping, but free, and books!

the rain always follows the sun

i had a brilliant time in brasil. here are the crappy things that have been following me:

  • my computer completely crashed. being the numbskull that i am, i haven't backed up my data in months. i brought it the computer repair place around the block and my hard drive is completely destroyed. they can extract the data, but it will cost me. plus the repairs. i hate money headaches. that is a huge one.
  • in brazil, some jerks stole my bank data and sucked $3100+ out of my bank account. hsbc rocks and i'm getting the money back, but it's going to take another week or so before i get it. in the meantime, i have little cash.
  • i'm sick. i picked something up in brazil--probably from the amazon--and i've been feeling awful lately. my doctor can't figure it out so i'm going to an infectious disease specialist.
  • it's really, really cold. cold like "feels like minus 15F." put a sweater on.
  • i spent too much money on groceries. at least it's good food and i won't need to spend much in the near future. but damn, i needed to buy milk and juice.
but i have to look for the sun:
  • 2 weeks i go to florida to see my grandparents and for the winter music conference!
  • crista and i run the eugene marathon next month!
  • i have good friends close by.
  • i'm starting to study spanish again.
  • my data wasn't lost. thank goddess.

02 March 2007

back from brasil

yes, there will be more posts. but i've been feeling ill, and finally headed to the doctor today. his diagnosis? "i don't know what." but they took blood tests, and i'm getting more tests monday, and i'm going to take cipro, and if no clue, then i go to his associate, an infectious disease specialist. "oh, and sometimes the malarie medicine doesn't work." you don't say....!