Alex in Transit(ion)

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sunshine in the sunshine state

Well, it looks like I’m still making good on the whole “I haven’t lived in the same zip code for more than 6 months since May 2009” thing I have going on. I’m off to Florida for a little while and I am absolutely clueless as to what to wear. 

You see, any normal person would probably be very excited to spend every day in warm weather- and don’t get me wrong, I am- but it is certainly something I am not used to. Although I am Sicilian, my skin is so light to the point that my face doesn’t get red. I actually have friends taking bets to see whether or not I’ll come back tan! And yes, friends, I will be taking before and after pictures because I’m also very curious about how my skin is going to react to all of that sun. 

I found that I have such a Northeast wardrobe that it’s pathetic. I am that girl who lives in scarves, tights, cardigans, and moccasins. Every time I look at the weather, I’m absolutely flabbergasted- 80 degrees in February? Is that even possible? What will July be like? Iiiii’m going to be an Alex-sicle.

But with this change will be a change in this blog- I will not be sharing like I used to. I’ve been thinking a lot about what I intend to use this space for- or if I will use it at all- after some thinking, I decided that I will be. Some of you know exactly why I am going to Florida. Some of you don’t- and probably will not know the reason why I’m down there. I promise it’s not because I robbed a bank ;D 

So…what are you going to see here? I’m anticipating that I will post a lot of pictures. Probably random things like some awesome buildings or a scenes from morning bike rides. I’ll post pictures of myself so my family and friends can see that I’m doing alright. By no means will this be a fashion blog or anything like that- trust me, I will barely have time to sleep, much less dress myself during this period of my life, but I’m going to try my best. I’m still going to talk about my diet- it’s not going to be pretty since I will be on the go a lot. Even though I won’t be eating like I have these last couple of months, I’m going to try my best to eat meat sparingly and cook from scratch when I can. Eating well really has become a priority to me over these last few months. A lot of my friends have been asking me what is going to go on with this crazy, curly mop that I call my hair- I’m going to be very experimental with it. I’m going to keep it long because the humidity will not be kind if I cut it short. I’ll probably embrace the ponytails, buns, and braids. And of course, the drive down is certainly going to be an adventure. 

“and I think my spaceship knows which way to go.”- David Bowie


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ultraviolet.

Life Lesson #343803483: If someone has enriched your life and worked hard to help you discover your potential- thank them. I’m the biggest believer in this. 

I’ve posted this song here before but it’s one of my favorites. Do you have a song that you play when you’re confronted with a major life change? Well, that’s what U2- Ultraviolet (Light My Way) does for me. It’s so comforting to me…and even better live with 80,000 people surrounding you in the most amazing city ever!

Disclaimer: I’m sorry but I’m always going to be a broken record about how amazing Montreal was. And how great of a time I had. And how much I would love to live there. I just really dig cities with narrow, rustic streets and expansive bike lane systems.

Sometimes I feel like I don’t know

Sometimes I feel like checkin’ out
I want to get it wrong
Can’t always be strong
And love it won’t be long…

Oh sugar, don’t you cry
Oh child, wipe the tears from your eyes
You know I need you to be strong
And the day is as dark as the night is long
Feel like trash, you make me feel clean
I’m in the black, can’t see or be seen

Baby, baby, baby…light my way
(alright now)
Baby, baby, baby…light my way

You bury your treasure
Where it can’t be found
But your love is like a secret
That’s been passed around
There is a silence that comes to a house
Where no one can sleep
I guess it’s the price of love
I know it’s not cheap

(oh, come on)
Baby, baby, baby…light my way

Oh…ultraviolet…

Baby, baby, baby…light my way

I remember
When we could sleep on stones
Now we lie together
In whispers and moans
When I was all messed up
And I had opera in my head
Your love was a light bulb
Hanging over my bed

Baby, baby, baby…light my way
(oh, come on)

Ultraviolet…


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Cooking

So- I’ve made it almost three months where I’ve only cooked pescatarian meals. I’ve never felt better and cooking has become my biggest passion. I still eat meat when I eat out because there are very few restaurants that make outstanding vegetarian meals but it’s very rare when I eat out now because I’ve become so conscious about what goes in my body. I really don’t know what goes on in a restaurant’s kitchen but I know what’s going on in mine. Every time I plan my meals, I’m always looking at how much cholesterol, fat, and sodium I’m taking in. It’s a great feeling- I’ve never felt so in control of my diet before and my body loves it. 

For the most part, I cook from scratch. It’s very time consuming but I don’t mind it- cooking is very relaxing to me. No matter what kind of day I’m having, I can retreat to the kitchen and focus on making a good meal. It’s made me think about what’s important to me in the future: for example, I would love to eventually have an apartment/house where the kitchen is the main star and everyone is helping to prepare a meal. I want to eventually bake my own breads and make my own pasta. I also want to start canning, which I really wanted to do this summer, but since an adventure is coming up very soon, I know I will not be able to. Also, since I’ve become aware about HOW MUCH SODIUM IS IN ANY STORE BROTH (even vegetable!), I’ve been collecting vegetable scraps over this past week to make my own broth. I’m looking forward to it- I can’t wait to have soup again! 

When I was speaking to my doctor about my diet, she asked if I replaced meat with cheese in my diet like some vegetarians do and I said I didn’t, more so because I’m lactose intolerant. The one thing I’m very conscious of is that I try to limit my pasta intake because it’s so easy to fall back on it on a vegetarian diet. When I collect recipes on Pinterest, for the most part I will not add it to my Recipe Board if it includes pasta. I should turn in my Italian card somewhere. I think my ancestors would kill me if they knew what I was doing.

There are some things I refuse to eat. I don’t eat tofu or the meat substitutes. Tofu is so time consuming to prepare that I’ve given up on it. As for the meat substitutes, they freak me out, to be quite honest. I know it’s not meat and my palate isn’t receptive to it. I have to coach myself while eating it and that’s no way to enjoy a meal. 

I really can’t wait to live a life where I can really focus on preparing good, healthy food. I truly feel that’s where I find my bliss.

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…somewhere I can taste the salt of the sea. There’s a kite going out of control in the breeze. I wonder what’s going to happen to you. You wonder what has happened to me.

Hudson River alongside the Corning Trail.

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…vignettes from a winter that never was.

It has been a week full of adventures.

I went to Brooklyn to visit my old roommate (hereby referenced to as Sprite) and check out Rutgers-Newark, but most importantly, to visit my Sprite! ;D I haven’t seen her in two years! I guess the Megabus gods were also on my side because round trip from Albany to NY was $20. 

As I was waiting for her, I was ogling at the bikes. It was killing me to be in the city without a bicycle!

She took me to Prospect Park, where we found this awesome tree. I’ve never seen branches stick up in the air like that. While we were in Prospect Park, I said to her how much I wished there was a park near me when I was growing up and she countered with “I wish I had a backyard!” It’s always funny how we all think the grass is greener on the other side. I loved Prospect Park so much, especially for the fact that it had a car lane, a people lane, and a bike lane. Wouldn’t it be wonderful if Albany had that for Washington Park? She took me to this AMAZING bar called Double Windsor where you were surrounded by the aroma of apple cider. They had a great beer list but since I always end up spending a ton of money in the city, I just hung out with the Champagne of Beers, Mr. Miller High Life. I was served the BEST burger I ever had- it was a little pricey at $13 but it was well worth it. The meat was from a local farm and had so much flavor. I would definitely go there again. 

I saw that my Sprite had Golden Girls on DVD which was fitting because, back in the day, my roommates and I assigned each other a Golden Girl that fit our personalities. Sprite was Sophia, I was Rose, C was Dorothy, and M was Blanche. We then had a conference call with the other roommates and it felt like old times again. We haven’t all been in the same place since we graduated. I can’t wait until we’re all together again.

Sprite and I, after watching a ton of Sh*t (insert group here) Say videos, proceeded to watch Aladdin and play with her bunny, Ginger! 

In the morning, I went to Rutgers-Newark. I’m still trying to figure out how I feel about the school since academically, it’s wonderful, but I’m still a little iffy on the neighborhood. I would have liked it feel more collegiate but it was a commuter school in the truest sense of the word. Whereas Portland and Maryland have college towns around their respective campuses, there was nothing around Newark’s campus. Although, I must remind myself, if I did end up going to any grad school, I’m just going to be commuting from school to my apartment and probably hang out wherever my apartment is. I did love the fact that there is light rail so I wouldn’t need a car and use my bike whenever I pleased. 

After I came back from Newark, Sprite and I went to the East Village to get Ethiopian food. It was my first time and it was DELICIOUS! You don’t get a fork and knife, you just scoop up the foody bits with the bread! 

 

Afterwards, we had some time to kill until Beauty and Beast in 3D started and found this awesome bar that I forgot the name of. But! They had cheap drinks and appetizers AND! All the tables had chalkboard surfaces.

Beauty and the Beast 3D, although it was very expensive and we could have just seen it for free at the Sprite’s house, was worth it. Sprite and I sang and danced (I know, you must think we’re out of our minds, but it was delightful and we were able to develop a fan base on the streets) on our way to the theater to keep ourselves warm.  During Finals Week 2009, my roommates and I decided to watch a loop of Disney movies, and Beauty and the Beast was the only movie to make us all cry at the end, so we felt that it was only right to see it together now that we were reunited. It was hilarious because the audience was comprised of 20 and 30 year olds who may have dabbled in the spirits a little bit so everyone was singing and shouting at the screen. It was almost like a Disney version of Rocky Horror!

When I got back to Albany, my friends and I went ice skating at Empire State Plaza. It was my first time back on the ice after I almost broke my arm a few weeks ago, but this time, none of that happened. I actually learned how to spin and skate on one foot, thanks to my friend, who used to be an ice dancer! We also taught my other friend how to skate and he was a champ- he didn’t fall once! We then went to the Lark Tavern- which was interesting. It’s…not the same place. It’s very sanitized and is lacking the grit and glory it was known for. My first drink there was my last drink before it burned down- a Utica Club. 

And now, I’m back in Albany. I can’t believe this weather. I’ve been able to bike every single month this winter, which is a first.