Where last I left you, the sky looked like this:
Ahoy, Shelter Island!
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Salut tout le monde! Hi everyone! To prevent you from photo overload, I’m going to split my road trip recap into 2. Today, we start at the beginning.
The great paradox of being unemployed is that you finally have time to travel to your heart’s content, but you no longer have the money. But when Rose suggested we take advantage of a deal for a night’s stay on Shelter Island, I jumped at the chance to get off my couch and get in a car. (I didn’t even know where it was; I didn’t actually care.) Road trips are about the only kind of travel I can afford right now, and it’s such a beautiful time of year to be traveling, with all the fall foliage.
We got a little bit later of a start than we had planned, but we lucked out with the traffic. She picked me up in Brooklyn and we headed out to Long Island. Of course, us being us, there was going to be some kind of detour. That day’s was for a bathroom stop at an outlet mall, where we saw they had one of the cosmetics outlet stores. Of course we had to stop. Rose got the burgundy lipstick she had been craving for fall, so it worked out pretty well.
Back on the road, we were headed for the city of Greenport, where we would get the ferry over to Shelter Island. We only had one time constraint: We had to find a place to watch the Real Madrid match by the latest 2:45. We beat that time by a great deal, getting to Greenport before 1 pm. Good thing, since this gave us time to walk around the tiny, quaint, seaside town. It was a grey, overcast, drizzly day, but it was still an adventure.
It’s so cute!
As a means of coping with the almost-constant wanderlust I’m consumed with, I decided to immerse myself in some of the wonderful things living in NY has to offer. I was born in Brooklyn, raised in Brooklyn, and still live in Brooklyn. Yet, somehow, I had never walked across the Brooklyn Bridge until last Sunday.
I’d walked across the other two Manhattan/Brooklyn bridges before, out of necessity, though. (The Williamsburg Bridge on 9/11, and the Manhattan Bridge during the blackout of August 2003.)
Don’t get me wrong. I’d always meant to. I mean, it’s my favorite bridge in the world (so far). And it’s in my city. But it’s just like all the other things you don’t do in your own city that are kind of touristy. You just don’t get around to it. And I have a mental list of things to do with friends visiting from overseas, and it was always on the list, but the friends visiting never materialized. And so the bridge went unwalked.
The entire day was a NYC love affair, actually. It started off at Lincoln Center, where my friend Rose and I waited in line for and procured tickets to the live streaming event of the Metropolitan Opera’s opening night performance of Eugene Onegin.
We couldn’t have chosen a better day weather-wise to do it. The sky was a beautiful cerulean blue, with enough clouds to make it interesting, and the sun was shining. Stopping every few feet to take photos, I knew I was going to have a lot of fun playing around with some HDR shots and Snapseed. But even the straight-from-the-camera shots look like they were amped up, the day was so beautiful.
A glimpse of the ships at South Street Seaport.
Unfortunately, this also meant that a million other people were there, having had the same grand idea, so getting photos was a bit frustrating. But I think the trick is to just incorporate random strangers into your photos, and you wind up with stolen moments that tell whatever story you want.
Also, I know that upkeep of old bridges is very, very important, but white tarp over most of the walkway really ruins photos. Sigh. Well, this means I’ll just have to make sure to do it at least once more when the construction/upkeep is complete, n’est-ce pas?
Hmm. Would you say “de septembre”? Any French speakers out there?
Anyway, Mini Road Trip September 2013!!
Okay, readers. This is the entry that is going to test whether my blog experiment is going to work, because this is the first one in which I bring in one of my divergent loves: football. Take a deep breath. I promise, it will be okay. There will be things to redeem it. I promise you. Photos will prove it.
Anyway, months and months ago, I bought tickets to see the international friendly match between the Portuguese and Brazilian national football teams, two of the best teams in the world. Also, two countries from which a few of the players on “my” team originate from. Cue excitement at the rare chance to see them play on American soil, even if it did mean I had to trek up to Foxborough, Massachusetts from New York to do it. Also, cue disappointment when two of my favorite players got injured before the match and had to pull out.
Actually, that shouldn’t have really mattered, since due to monetary difficulties (I’m currently unemployed), I thought we were selling the tickets. One deadbeat eBay buyer later, it was the day before the match, and a different friend (with a car!!) stepped up and the most spontaneous mini road trip ever was spawned.
Even though it’s not quite autumn yet, it is always a special thing to see autumn in New England, so I was quite excited. When I was younger, my family and I spent many a Thanksgiving up in Boston, and I have a dear friend in Worcester, so I was very glad to get back in the neighborhood. My friend, Rose, also went to university nearby, so we were going to stop off at her college town on our way back.
The match was a lot of fun, no surprise. I was rooting for Portugal, but alas, they lost. Here is why football is nothing to fear:
Here I am, missing one of our players who was injured, Cristiano Ronaldo. (He also happens to be one of the best players in the world, nbd.) I scavenged this wondrous thing after the Real Madrid v Chelsea match in Miami in August during the ICC tournament. Can you believe someone left this on the floor after the match?! Thank you very much to the several guys who felt the need to tell me that he wasn’t with the team that night, because I’m a girl and I obviously know nothing about sports or the players. And to the guy who offered me a whole dollar for my Cris head: Dream on!
Football has scenarios that play out like a Shakespearean tragedy. On the left, staring at a body on the floor. In the middle, praying to the heavens. On the right, well, I don’t think they looked like that in Shakespeare’s time, but you get my drift. Also, the guy between number 17 (Nani) and the abs, I adore your expression.
Football has handsome, well-dressed managers (Paul Bento) who suffer in the heat for style.
Football has some of the best hair you could ever want to see. On the right, beautifully full (Nélson Oliveira. In the middle, curls out of control (David Luiz). On the right, mohawk (Raul Meireles). There is something for everyone!
It also has players that travel faster than the speed of…my camera. :p (Hélder Postiga)
And football is nothing if not based on tradition.
And that’s without the exciting play! (That’s a lot harder to photograph. That’s all it is. Really.)
With the sport part of the trip under our belt, we set off the next morning for Amherst, Massachusetts to revisit some of Rose’s old university haunts.
Now, if you’re an American like me, you absolutely adored the film Amélie. (The French are amused at our mass infatuation with it.) Many years ago, I won a rubber duckie playing skeeball in Coney Island, and he became my travel companion, à la the garden gnome in Amélie.
I have been trying out a replacement for him, which you will see below. I’m still undecided. On the one hand, it’s a plastic cutout of my favorite player’s face (Xabi Alonso), and, so, naturally adorable. Still, he’s no Dirk. And he needs to be propped up. He can’t just sit places on his own like my Dirk. (Oh, Dirk, I hope you are happy in Paris, I miss you so!)
Anyway, back to the trip. As one must, we pulled over to the side of the road for some natural splendor.
Our first stop in Amherst was at the Lone Wolf, where Rose has fond memories of chowing down.
Next stop was at Rao’s Coffee, for a really fantastic cup of Joe. We may not be university students anymore, but we still need our coffee!
Our last stop was at UMASS Amherst itself, so we could go into the student shop for Rose.
After that, we stopped off for some yummy ice cream, and that was it. Time to hit the road for good. It was really fun for me to relive Rose’s nostalgia with her, because I stayed home for college, and so I never had this experience.
I always get sad when fun things are over. I had thought it was because of the anticipation involved, but this trip had no anticipation, ha. But we had a great time on the trip home, listening to music and being dorks.
Hey, Rose, I’m ready for the next one! 😉 C’est parti!
(Please note: All photos are mine. Please do not use without permission.)