Sunday, September 30, 2012

Travel to VI

The concept of getting up at 3:30am in order to catch an early flight to USVI was much more rosy than the actual doing of said get up.
I woke to an alarm and was quite alarmed! Thank goodness Franklin (car service driver) is reliable and arrived promptly. I had realized how many people are actually arriving home at 4am- Truly the city that never sleeps was also late at getting some rest.
I got to Newark in plenty of time- thank goodness. As I checked in where I always go and then had to change terminals as I was flying to Washington Dulles first- a domestic flight and a little smaller plane. This meant going back through security and then taking the air train- up and down many steps and finally to the gate. I little wait and then I was on the plane and asleep before we took off. I have no idea if anything was offered for our comfort (unlikely I think) and next I know we're landing at Dulles.
I have some very ghastly memories of Dulles airport- not from anything other than my own blood sugar levels being low and very bad decisions being made. However this time it wasn't so bad although it was one of those going from terminal to terminal and using trains and locating the gate right at the end of the terminal. However an upgrade truly perked me up and I didn't have to go off and find my own breakfast as I knew I'd get one on the plane.
The trip to San Juan passed very well as I am in the process of catching up on Homeland. Hooked!
The small plane from San Juan to St Croix sort of finished off the flights pretty well and my bag made there this time. Yay! In fact it was first out onto the carousel and fell off the carousel which had me flying down the luggage area trying to shuffle my feet into my sandals as I had been taking that opportunity to de-layer myself.

Saturday, September 29, 2012

A day roaming...

 Tatzu Nishi (b. 1960, Nagoya, Japan) is known internationally for his temporary works of art that transform our experience of monuments, statues, and architectural details. His installations give the public intimate access to aspects of our urban environment and at the same time radically alter our perceptions. For his first public project in the United States, Nishi has chosen to focus on the historic statue of Christopher Columbus.

The marble statue, which rises to more than 75 feet atop a granite column, was designed by the Italian sculptor Gaetano Russo. It was unveiled in 1892 to commemorate the 400th anniversary of Columbus’s first voyage to the Americas. Despite its prominent public location, the statue itself is little known, visible only as a silhouette against the sky or at a distance from surrounding buildings.

Nishi’s project re-imagines the colossal 13-foot-tall statue of Columbus standing in a fully furnished, modern living room. Featuring tables, chairs, couch, rug, and flat-screen television, the décor reflects the artist’s interpretation of contemporary New York style. He even designed wallpaper inspired by memories of American popular culture, having watched Hollywood movies and television as a child in Japan. Discovering Columbus offers both a unique perspective on a historical monument and a surreal experience of the sculpture in a new context. Allowing us to take a journey up six flights of stairs to a fictional living room, Tatzu Nishi invites us to discover for ourselves where the imagination may lead.

I need to book for this one!

I walked up 8th avenue and did a bit of shopping at Sabon.

Friday, September 28, 2012

Friday when it rains

What does one do on a Friday when it rains and one is lucky enough to be able to be at home?

Get packing! That's what I needed to do so that i can make my way back to the US Virgin Islands for work next week.

It doesn't take much effort really to do the washing- it's time consuming but at least i don't have to lug the washing down to the rivers edge and bash it with rocks to get it clean- not that that would work on the banks of the Hudson- it'd only serve to make it all that much filthier.  Doing the washing merely involves gathering it together, taking it via the elevator to the laundry, placing it and the washing liquid in the machine and letting the machine do it's thing. Then 38 minutes later taking it out of the machine and placing it in the dryer and forty five minutes later taking it back to the apartment via the elevator. Folding and putting it all away takes about another 20 or so minutes. Not rocket science nor hard rock thumping labour, so why does it seem a chore? Once it is done it's great but there are many stressors along the way...
  • carrying the bag of washing can be a bit like weight training
  • will there be enough machines free?- during certain times of day it's tricky
  • remembering to get back to the laundry before your loads of washing are turfed out of either the machine or the dryer- that's what timers on microwaves are for i have discovered
  • hanging around for it all to be done
  • finding space to put it all away- how is it that when you take something out of the cupboard the space it occupied has been taken over by something else
  • looking for that lost sock in the laundromat of oblivion! one thing seems to go missing or some interesting little thing appears amidst ones washing- I don't think I own little metal clip thingies but two appeared as i took the washing out of the machine?!

But now it is done and the bags are packed to the extent they can be. I now have Saturday free to relax and enjoy before the early journey to St Croix.

And I had time to get some of my scrapbooking homework done!

Symmetrical- and from the African Safari trip

Sublime to the ridiculous....
asymmetrical- I hope- from last week's walk through High Bridge Park

Thursday, September 27, 2012


NEW YORK — Apple CEO Tim Cook apologized today for the company's error-ridden new mobile mapping service, pledging to improve the application installed on tens of millions of smartphones and, in an unusual mea culpa, inviting frustrated consumers to turn to the competition.
In a letter posted online Friday, Cook said Apple "fell short" of its own expectations.
"Everything we do at Apple is aimed at making our products the best in the world. We know that you expect that from us, and we will keep working nonstop until Maps lives up to the same incredibly high standard," Cook said.
Apple released an update to its iPhone and iPad operating system last week that replaced Google Maps with Apple's own map application. But users quickly complained that the new software offered fewer details, lacked public transit directions and misplaced landmarks, among other problems.
People have been flocking to social media to complain and make fun of the app's glitches, which include judging landscape features by their names. The hulking Madison Square Garden arena in New York, for instance, shows up as green park space because of the word "garden."
Until the software is improved, Cook recommended that people use competing map applications to get around — a rare move for the world's most valuable company, which prides itself on producing industry-leading gadgets that easily surpass rivals.

All a bit late for me on my Thursday!

Got a train to an unknown area in Brooklyn. Got off the subway and the map wouldsn't even show the area I was in let alone have inaccurate information.

It started to rain...of course and then I eventually found a town car/ taxi but couldn't show him a map of where i wanted to go- read above- and eventually my written notes from the meeting with the principal meant we found our way to the school and I was on time!

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

What does one do...

 .... when one has a day at home and has some scrapbooking homework?
Get it done and uploaded of course.

The pages from some of the walk in High Bridge Park

The leaves were on the top of the three flights of stairs

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Looking around

Looking out the window I spotted a row of these vehicles- they were up to the organge sign on the left but by the time I got down to street level thay had gone- who knows where.

I'm so lucky to have the chance to go to different schools around New York (and VI). This particular school has lovely stairs cases i just had to snap a couple of shots of the details of them.

And what makes them even lovelier is that the school is only two floors! No climbing to the fifth floor in this place.

I'm so proud of my little chicken pies- they taste great hot or cold.
Thanks Mich for the suggestion to take for lunches they are perfect.

Monday, September 24, 2012


Thai chicken pies
one of my 60things in 600 days was to make little pies. When I was home in August I did some work at a school that had a fabulous canteen.
On the day I visited the manager/chef of the canteen had made little chicken pies.

I bought a Woman's Weekly Pie cookbook also while I was home and so made these almost from scratch. I didn't make the pastry- that's asking too much of my talents I think.

The pies were yummy!

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Walk through High Bridge Park

It was a 2 mile walk from 155th St. to Dyckman St. (200th St.) through woods on the east side of Manhattan with views of the East River and the Bronx. Along the way we saw natural Manhattan woodlands, rock outcroppings, views to the east, the High Bridge Tower and High Bridge. The trail is mixed, both paved and unpaved trail through the woods and three flights of stairs to climb. Like Inwood Park, it's another natural view of Manhattan.


High Bridge Park, named for the bridge, runs from 155th St. to Dyckman St. on the east side. The High Bridge was built in 1848 and is the oldest standing bridge in the city. High Bridge served as an aqueduct for the old Croton Aqueduct, bringing water to New York from upstate. 

High Bridge is currently closed, so we were only able to take some pictures of the bridge, but  not walk on it.

Because of construction at a few sites in the park and limited access on the trail, we  left the nature trail at High Bridge Tower (around 174th St.) and walked along Amsterdam Ave for about 8 blocks, returning to the nature trail around 183rd St.


Saturday, September 22, 2012

Got it back

 My view and my room that is... Andrew and Lynne and Nick and Kate headed off on their journey to Vegas and then LA so I got my room back.

But at a cost.... they're not here... the downside of my getting my room back... darn! Miss them.

Friday, September 21, 2012

Another busy day of touring

Walk through Brooklyn
I started the day heading off to Brooklyn to meet up with a new school. A relatively short trip on the subway and into a lovely part of Brooklyn, enjoying the company and the weather and the stroll through the leafy streets. 

Love the brownstones

Love the colour

Home and a quick text to Andrew and finding their location.
We met up down at the Staten Island ferry. Great way to see "the chick with a stick". Leisurely- other than the surge to get on and off the ferries.

Amusing ourselves between the ferry rides involved yet another opportunity for Kate and Lynne to connect with furry creatures. This time the "explosives sniffer" dog.

And then Nick mucking around avoiding having his photo taken- gotcha though!

The trip on the subway to City Hall made a speedy connection for our walk onto the Brooklyn Bridge.

The day ended with a trip to the theatre- Spiderman- turn off the dark which gave a bit of a recap of sights in NYC for the tourists with me.

Thursday, September 20, 2012

The museum mile and the park

Nick and Kate outside the Met

One of the million squirrels that Kate insisted on talking with during the walk through Central Park

We all had an ice cream- different ones of course and the mst frozen hard ice cream I've ever had

After exploring FAO Schwarz

Andrew got in on the act
We started out at the Guggenheim- I remembered it's closed on Thursdays as we approached the front door.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Playing tourists

They went to the Top of the Rock while I went to meet a new school and then I met them at the bottom of The Rock.
Lunch was a vain search for a sandwich that met everyone's taste criteria- indeed a vain search. But enough food to sustain us and then off to the Lego store.

A walk down 5th Avenue and into Grand Central. The walk down the Library walk on 41st St to the library entrance and then up 5th Avenue to 44th St to see the New York Yacht Club (the sailors amongst us did take note) and then into the Algonquin to look and locate the cat. She has her own business card.

Back to Bryant Park a coffee, a rest, a look at the chess games, then the walk to 33rd St and a game store for Nick and then across to Macys and a clothes shop for Nick and Kate and finally the subway home.

Packing it in!

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Things that happen in a day

The building that is being built on 49th Street has reached the top now and i guess the slower part is getting the bits done internally and getting the outside wall done. At the time the slower part seemed to be the drilling preparing the site.

This morning the light shining through the building, illuminating the (minimal) orange safety nets caught my attention and then with that wavering attention span of mine it was the activity or in some cases lack of activity that caught my attention.

Yup- taking a break and talking on his phone whilst resting on the flimsy wooden rail 30 floors up!

Working together to sort something out.
There always seems to be someone offering advice about some aspect of work

...... And the Meehans arrived

A good book, a comfy chair....

Monday, September 17, 2012

Getting back into it...

... the craft challenges and things that seemed like a great idea at the time that is.

I completed the little book that I began in Dina's class on Sunday.  I just need a corner cruncher to round off the corners. The scrapbooking ones just don't have the muscle.


A peek at the pages


And I finally completed the ATC's for the swap with Manhattan Scrapbookers. I did 10.

The theme was Circles. I managed to get a few on there.

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Back in NYC

“Our great and glorious masterpiece is to live appropriately.”
-Michel de Montaigne


This was a quote from the Happiness Project  daily quotes. It kinda summed up my day. 
What is a great way to spend part of a weekend in NYC and thus live appropriately? Go to a class with Dina Wakley and get inspirations left right and centre. 

Sorry Dina about the bad photo
Getting to the venue , Westbeth Gallery involved a train trip to W14th St. In the same carriage as me on the subway was a man carrying a standard lamp, tourists tracking their journey on subway maps and me carrying art supplies. Who knows what other interesting things were going on in the relatively crowded carriage at 10am on a Sunday. 

Walking through the streets of Greenwich Village along cobbled streets and paved roads taking the twists and turns that Map Quest guided me through it was delightful just to look around at the lovely brownstones and the wrought iron rails and fences as well as the occasional window boxes.

The class was fabulous- as one would expect of Dina. 27 participants, all intent on getting their piece of work done. She showed us a range of techniques for backgrounds for art journaling or for anything really. It was messy and speedy- so that in the three hours I have a nearly completed little book.
Continuing to live appropriately for the city I stopped at a little Italian restaurant and had a delightful lunch of spaghetti carbonara and some lovely bread and olive oil at a little restaurant called Malaparte. I have since checked their reviews which are mixed but I loved it. 

I had a brief respite back home and continued to live appropriately by going to a singing lesson with a meetup group called Vocal Brilliance. There were only 5 of us in the beginners’ lesson that went for two hours. I learned a lot and have some things that I can try to practice if I can begin to be more serious about trying to improve my singing. Is it ever too late to do something about that?

Back home and I was truly exhausted. I perhaps am leading and over stimulated life but then that is appropriate for NYC.

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Working on a Saturday

Got back to NYC late last night. Work was on for the day. The first professional development day for the year. A chance to catch up with other consultants and find out what our work will look like for the year give the school year plans. 
The contrast in views from the past week has not been lost on me.

Friday, September 14, 2012


I guess every photograph one takes could be termed a view however this mix of shots are ones of the views I had while in the Virgin Islands during some mealtimes.

Lunch time view in St John
Lunch time view at a school in St Croix
Breakfast view from my room in St Croix
View at dinner time on St Thomas
After dinner view waiting for the transfer plane in San Juan, Puerto Rico