Sunday, December 19, 2010

it's 12°F in beijing.



so my friend tells me. that's -11°C. that's pretty damn cold.

i need to figure out how to keep warm next week. these uniqlo heattech leggings are not doing the job.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

we like lists because we don't want to die.



it's a powerful thought: that all along, we've been writing our lists to evade death. but i also want to think that we make lists because we are hopeful. umberto seems to agree.

so here's a starting list of the places -- because i'm a big ball of hopeful hope -- that i plan to marvel at.

1.   reykjav√≠k, iceland

2.  cinque terre, italy

i never liked using the term "before i die" as i find it pretty much implicit in everything we breathe out. don't you ?

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

light as air.



when i finally became serious about travelling more lightly (that would be last week), i mentally inventoried all of my travel essentials. from there, i assessed the items by weight. it took all of two seconds to realize that my macbook and canon rebel xti were my pride and joy, but, at 7lbs were my biggest setback.

i often go around the city carrying both, and my back dies a little more each time.

any sentimental attachment i had to my macbook has recently been trained to disappear on command. after losing a year's worth of photos from my iphone last month, and realizing that, yes, i could actually live without one for two weeks, i've felt the freedom to detach myself from a lot of other things.

last week, i decided to lay my 5-lb white macbook to rest and purchased the macbook air 11' (officially my first purchase on the starwood preferred guest amex).

is it a surprise that it's quickly becoming my most coveted thing i own ? it does everything my previous macbook did, but is lighter, and in some ways, faster. it boots up lightning quick, stays quiet, and never heats up. day after snowy day, it passed the "wandering around new york and hopping coffee shops" test. next week, i'm putting it through the "wandering overseas and getting lost in asia" test. too excited about the possibilities.

if you're thinking about getting your own, here's my very first affiliate link. i like to think that one day i'll make enough to sail around the world a couple of times, but for now, i'm just happy i can afford a steaming cup at gorilla coffee on a spectacularly cold but beautiful day in brooklyn.

and maybe a sleeve for the 11 inch, after the current selection grows, oh, about 10x bigger. that'd be nice.

living light.



i can't remember when it started, but one year, i stopped being a rat pack. i stopped wanting to keep every movie stub, every receipt, every certificate that reinforced what a special child i was (i needed a lot of reinforcing). few things escaped my sudden cold shoulder. only letters from friends overseas or across the classroom, diary entries, little novellas i had written, could stay. if you had soul, you stayed. that was my rule.

it wasn't too soon until i developed a gnawing guilt for the things collecting dust around my parents' home, waiting to be thrown out like expired milk. old programming books, a massage chair, the tv in the room noone ever goes into. every trip home resulted in a plea to the parents to let me organize a yard sale because i couldn't bear this cluttered existence. i felt so heavy, like i was stuck at the bottom of an angry sea wave and couldn't swim my way out because plastic toys were flinging themselves at me.

you don't have that dream, too ?

around about the same time, i nurtured a growing appreciation for using products to their end, and disposing of them promptly. there was no better satisfaction for me than to get that very last minty squeeze out of the toothpaste tube. i was brilliant at rolling them into wheels. in anticipation of being able to throw it out seconds later, and knowing that it had done its job. that we had served our purposes, that we were suddenly free of each other, and that we could now move on to the next good-looking tube on tom thumb's shelves.

i've never written so much about toothpaste in my life.

but i feel lighter. i think i'll keep at it.

Monday, December 13, 2010

i know what i want.

i dream a new dream every night, but this, i've wanted all my life. it's not going to be easy, but i have to give it a try. in the end, i'll gain more than i'll lose, i think. oh but what of the end ? getting there is half the fun. :)