2007-10-29 11:01 in /life/travel
I spent half of last week in Manhattan — the first time I’ve been there in a bit more than 6 years. A series of observations:
I am always amazed at the infrastructure of the city, and that it is possible to sustain a city on this scale at all. Walking around, you can’t avoid noticing the volume of trash being generated, and removed, each and every day. One is constantly walking under scaffolding. Less visible is the constant stream of food into the city’s restaurants, and surprisingly little road work. Among other things, it makes me thankful for modern health and safety practices.
Walking around mid-town, I find myself having that out-of-place, but trying-to-fake-it feeling. Staying in a hotel that’s way more expensive than I could afford, surrounded by luxury stores and swanky clubs, I wonder how many of the people I see really belong in this lifestyle and how many are just pretending for a bit.
I’ve lived in the part of the universe where “coffee” means “espresso” for so long that the dominance of drip coffee in New York seems like some sort of stubborn affectation.
They recently opened a Whole Foods on the Bowery.
There seems to be some sort of economic ideal achieved here, wherein people out-source virtually everything: cooking, laundry, driving, etc. I don’t claim to really understand the local economy, but I wonder if in part it’s just so damn expensive that you can’t afford not to fully realize your comparative advantage, whatever it might be.
This was my first time flying JetBlue. Not too shabby, but there’s just no way around the fact that red-eyes suck. At least I got a couple mindless movies to entertain me on the way home, since I forgot to bring a book to read on the flight.
2005-08-16 23:19 in /life/travel
I alluded recently to stopping in Ashland on my way home from OSCON to see a play at the Oregon Shakespeare Festival. It was excellent. To start, the performers are top-notch. But, I also had a phenomenal seat:
While I did buy my ticket a month in advance, I’m still amazed that I got this seat. I attribute it to lucky batch allocation and buying just a single ticket.
It’s hard to fully explain how much this changes the experience, but it was almost like having a private showing of the play. For the most part, I could ignore the fact that there was anyone else in the theater. There were times when a performer would end up sitting on the edge of stage, barely 4 feet in front of me. Amazing.
To quote a hero of mine, if you have the means, I highly recommend picking one up.
2005-08-07 20:31 in /life/travel
After 5 weeks and 3300 miles of driving, I am home!
2005-07-10 17:25 in /life/travel
We have arrived in Vancouver (actually last night) after 8 days on the road. I’ll have more to say about the trip over then next day or two, but for now I just wanted to make a quick post to announce our arrival. I also need to sort through photos, and decide if there’s any point in getting the film I shot developed while we are here; I’m not sure if I’d be able to scan any photos in.
I’ll just say that it’s definitely nice to be out of the car and generally stationary for a while.
2005-06-14 20:49 in /life/travel
I’m getting ready to head off tomorrow on my first work overnighter in a long time; since before family and such, in my carefree, single days. My stomach is flipping out a bit (which granted may also be partially due to hunger and my OSCON slides being due in 2 days and it being only a week and a half until I start what I’m now referring to as my 6-week North American tour, but is definitely a bit about tomorrow).
It’s a little hard to tell how the little one is going to take this. I’ve been trying to explain that I’m going to take a trip and I’ll be gone for a night, and that she and mom are staying home. She’s been getting upset at that point and insisting she wants to go, but I’m unclear if she’s confused and thinks that I’m talking about the big trip to Vancouver, which she is going on. I guess we’ll just see how it goes. *crosses fingers*
2005-03-28 23:19 in /life/travel
A very belated entry...
In January, we spent 10 days in Mexico, mostly in Puerto Vallarta. Actually, we were staying in Neuvo Vallarta, a few miles north, because my mom was able to trade for a time-share unit there. While our resort was very beautiful, I don’t really recommend this route if you plan to spend your vacation doing anything other than lounging around your resort. While the town sounds close by, the cost of getting back and forth is too high: either $20-30 each way for a taxi, or 90 minutes each way on two different buses.
The other sad thing is that I forgot my film camera, and we were soon to discover that our current digital camera does very poorly with low-light conditions. As a result, we have few decent pictures from the trip.