Sunday, October 23, 2011

Blog-tober twenty-third

There are times when one just has to stop and get organized for what is ahead and that is how the day panned out. Planning for the working week which involved getting plans in place for people I am to work with both here and in NYC as well as catching up on my blog a bit. Nearly there!

What a difference a day makes?! Or should I say a year or two....
On this day two years ago we were having dinner at Annie's place looking out at this...

View down Broadway from 56th St
 And today here I am in St Croix looking out at this....

View from my balcony

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Blog-tober Twenty-second

The relaxed Island time!
The view from the breakfast table
Two of my breakfast companions

My plan was to have a bit of retail therapy after breakfast. First a swim  in the pool and then the reliable Big John taxi took me into Christiansted.

Not sure if this is referring to the where the drive here or to the wonder of left handers
It was so hot in town that it took me much of the afternoon to get over it!

Friday, October 21, 2011

Blog-tober Twenty-first

The day was a journey back to St Croix in the Virgin Islands.
This year I have been allocated work in the Virgin Islands- it seems that some people can be very lucky sometimes!
It is in total four weeks work and involves traveling to and from NYC for blocks of time. I have been back in NYC the past two weeks and flew down to St Croix today to prepare for my next week's block of time. ( Hope this clears up some confusion Barb).
 The journey was a tad adventurous again- it would have been less adventurous if i had remembered to pack my passport before I left home. Fortunately Franklin (the car service driver) was able to find an exit in New Jersey that linked straight back onto the freeway back into NYC and also fortunately I had allowed sufficient time to get to the airport and it was not rush hour so I made it back in plenty of time for my flight.
It was the first time that I have ever been comfortably seated in on the plane coming to terms with the fact that I hadn't been successful in getting an upgrade. The door was being closed on the plane and they announced my name to identify myself to the flight attendant and I was upgraded to "first class". It certainly made the journey much more comfortable.
A view from the bar
So after delays in San Juan and locating my luggage (yay it arrived this time) I made my way back to Club St Croix and finally to the bar with a G&T and a view over the pool and the palm trees.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Blog-tober nineteenth

The chicken pie

Bernadette whipped up the chicken pie for our dinner

And the veges

Monday, October 17, 2011

Blog-tober seventeenth

 It was a day of work but things didn't quite work out the way it was planned so I came home. The cleaner was here so I decided to try out the little Japanese place that I had noticed ages ago on one of my walks to Grand Central. Katsu Hama- Michele will immediately know what was on the menu - yep ton-katsu!All well and good for Michele to know I realize this Barb but here is a little more research information...
invented in the late 19th century, is a popular dish in Japan. It consists of a breaded, deep-fried pork cutlet one to two centimeters thick and sliced into bite-sized pieces, generally served with shredded cabbage and/or miso soup. Either a pork fillet (ヒレ, hire) or pork loin (ロース, rōsu) cut may be used; the meat is usually salted, peppered, dredged lightly in flour, dipped into beaten egg and then coated with panko (bread crumbs) before being deep fried.
It was introduced to Japan by the Portuguese. It was originally considered a type of yōshoku—Japanese versions of European cuisine invented in the late 19th and early 20th centuries—and was called katsuretsu (cutlet) or simply katsu.

And so I entered and enjoyed a wonderful Japanese lunch. I learned things on the way. I was sitting next to two Japanese business men (good choice of restaurant by me!) When the bowl with roasted  sesame seeds and pestle  was presented to me I watched what they casually did...

Sesame seeds with pestle and bowl

so I ground the sesame seeds and then added some of the katsu sauce using the little scoop from the little pot already on the table...

Katsu sauce
 Then the ton katsu arrived...

It was the most tender and delicious ton katsu I have had outside Japan.

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Blog-tober Sixteenth

I decided to take advantage of the early waking and the pleasant weather and took  a stroll through the city as has been my wont in the past.
In my serendipitous walk along 51st St I hadn't noticed or known of this building or organization.

 Perhaps it was the lack of parked cars that enabled me to notice it and then the decorative building was interesting. A little research ....
The present building was planned in the early 1930's designed by noted architect, Frederick Rhinelander King, and built at 3 West 51st Street on the site of the former home of Andrew Carnegie. The cornerstone was laid amid much fanfare and press attention on May 22, 1933, and the new clubhouse was formally opened on March 26, 1934, at ceremonies attended by national, state and local Republican dignitaries.

Then further along in the environs of the Rockefeller Center and Radio City Music Hall my own architecture tour or at least building decoration tour.
By the time I got to 5th Avenue I was on a roll and went into St Thomas'- walked past many a time but never been in.
I continued to be on the lookout for the things I hadn't noticed before and there on a pillar at the front of the Plaza Hotel was....
The Plaza Hotel Barometer- is it social change it records?
One can't be so close to the park and not go in...

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Blog-tober Fifteenth

 I didn't have any suitable photos for this day so i went back twelve months and there you are a Jack 'o' Lantern- I think it was in an alcove in a restaurant in NYC.

I had also taken photos of some art work in a school. The work was interesting and was on display all year.  I may even have done a post about it then.

Friday, October 14, 2011

Blog-tober fourteenth

 Living in New York City provides so many opportunities to learn.

The sign in our building lifts (elelvators) appeared on October 13th.

 A sukkah (Hebrew: סוכה‎, plural, סוכות, sukkot; sukkoth, often translated as "booth") is a temporary hut constructed for use during the week-long Jewish festival of Sukkot. It is topped with branches and often well decorated with autumnal, harvest or Judaic themes. The Book of Vayyiqra (Leviticus) describes it as a symbolic wilderness shelter, commemorating the time God provided for the Israelites in the wilderness they inhabited after they were freed from slavery in Egypt. It is common for Jews to eat, sleep and otherwise spend time in the sukkah. In Judaism, Sukkot is considered a joyous occasion and is referred to in Hebrew as Yom Simchateinu (the day of our rejoicing) or Z'man Simchateinu (the time of our rejoicing), but the sukkah itself symbolizes the frailty and transience of life and its dependence on God

 So when I walked past these two restaurants on 47th St I knew what they were!

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Blog-tober thirteenth

 Reflections in windows in Manahattan.

One need only walk out on the balcony or not even that really and these wonderful colours and patterns are there waiting to be photographed.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Blog-tober twelfth
Chop Suey

 I really love Edward Hopper's paintings. What I like about them, as in this one, is that they are a "snapshot" of life- interior scenes, giving insight into a small part of a whole view and capturing the essence of that scene or moment. 
I was asked during the week what did I like to photograph and explained using Hopper's work as an example. I don't try to tell a story as many of his paintings do but I do want to capture the essence of what I am seeing...that being said here are my photos of the Fort at Christiansted, St Croix.

The path and entrance.
 Christiansted is so obviously influenced by the Danish "occupation". The colours of buildings and the design of many things around the city.

The shapes and colours and lines

The arsenal of rifles from a former time

The storage of powder and bullets?

The markings on the canon

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Blog-tober Eleventh

The beach near the apartment in St Croix- looking one way...

Thanks to Wikipedia I have compiled some relevant aspect about the source of the seaweed....
The Sargasso Sea is a region in the middle of the North Atlantic Ocean, surrounded by ocean currents. It is bounded on the west by the Gulf Stream; on the north, by the North Atlantic Current; on the east, by the Canary Current; and on the south, by the North Atlantic Equatorial Current. This system of currents forms the North Atlantic Subtropical Gyre. All the currents deposit the marine plants and garbage they carry into this sea.
The Sargasso Sea is 700 statute miles wide and 2,000 statute miles long (1,100 km wide and 3,200 km long). It stretches from roughly 70 degrees west to 40 degrees west, and from 25 degrees north to 35 degrees north. Bermuda is near the western fringes of the sea. The Sargasso Sea is the only "sea" without shores. The ocean water in the Sargasso Sea is distinctive for its deep blue color and exceptional clarity, with underwater visibility of up to 200 feet (61 m).
...looking the other way
 The Sargasso Sea is home to seaweed of the genus Sargassum, which floats en masse on the surface there. The sargassum is not a threat to shipping, and historic incidents of sailing ships being trapped there are due to the often calm winds of the horse latitudes.
A huge chunk of the Sargasso seaweed was torn off during the hurricane...
 Owing to surface currents, the Sargasso accumulates a high concentration of non-biodegradable plastic waste. The huge North Atlantic Garbage Patch is similar to another ocean phenomenon, the Great Pacific Garbage Patch.
It was in evidence on all flights to and from St Croix
From above I think it made for pretty pictures!

Monday, October 10, 2011

Blog-tober Tenth

Waiting for the fery to depart
 The early morning commute from St Thomas to St John.
The ferry left at 7:30 from St Thomas- the sun was up, it was warm and a tad steamy.
I sat outside to make the most of the sunshine, the warmth, the great view and the 20 minute ferry ride.
A great way to start the day- the wind wreaked havoc with my hair but a comb set that in order.

The view from my seat on the ferry

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Blog-tober Ninth

I am certainly back in the "big smoke"!
The day was a day of grabbing on to moments and sharing great and simple times with friends.
The street market was on in 8th Avenue I spotted that- hard to miss really- on my way to get breakfast. So what else was a gal to do but get a banana crepe and a pineapple and mango smoothie!
Friends joined me as I found my way up 8th Avenue to Columbus Circle where we had a coffee and a long chat. They left and I met up with another friend to have a picnic in Central Park. Easily organized after we shopped for food at Whole Foods.
Lovely chats sitting on a rock in the park eating and watching the baseball game and kids at a party playing on other rocks with "swords" and all manner of costumed and casually dressed folk going by.
We walked back to have an iced tea in a cafe and then went our separate ways at the subway- she to explore more me to meet up with the first lot of friends to go to see "The Ides of March"- good movie- what did he say in the end?!
Home for a home cooked meal- how different a day from that on St Croix- photos later

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Blog-tober Eighth

Today is three years on since Maddy (my step mother) died. I have flicked through some of my photos and want to share those aspects of her that are  in me or why i do and notice certain things...

She introduced me to an appreciation of art and galleries especially on our trip to the Guggenheim exhibition in Sydney  years and years ago.
Getty Museum in California
 The times we sat and waited to go into an exhibition or made use of the facilities in the gallery or knew that you could get a good soup and lunch in the gallery.
Getty Museum
 The love of theatre- she got me started through subscribing to MTC and taking me to the theatre to see ballet and drama and the occasional light opera. Art House movies were things I'd accompany her to.
Kevin Spacy often does the kind of films and plays she and I would attend. This bad photo was at the TONYs a red carpet
 When traveling in Ireland she told me I should start acquiring "nice things". The patchwork rug is a result of that conversation albeit two years later.

My rug from Rhodes
 A gardener and birdwatcher. I take photos of flowers because they are lovely but she is always there looking too.
 She taught me how to remember the street order of the Melbourne grid and we'd meet under the clocks at Flinders Street.
Flinders Street Station Melbourne

Always on the hunt for a bird picture
 She loved succulent plants- but only in her "later years". She once told me she couldn't understand why her aunts used to love them s and that she found she too had begun to love collecting them.
Her love of succulents is why I took this photo

And this one too
 She was a teacher librarian and I became one too... loving kids books is her gift to me
Shaun Tan at the PEN writers festival
 She helped Michele and I buy our first home..
This has changed since the renovation


 Her garden as it was but is no longer.