Re-discovery


Yesterday, I came back from Miami. I woke up at 5am, since my flight was bright and early and I got ready and went to the airport. What a difference from a week ago. Everyone seemed to know where they were going, there weren’t any crazy lines anywhere, and everyone seemed civilized for the most part. I got to my gate on time. I boarded the plane and to my surprise…YES!!! My plane was a 777. I love this plane. I have flown on this plane several times, but I wasn’t aware that American Airlines redid the layout of all the seats. They made Coach Class have similar seats as the ones in First and Business Class. Each seat has their own area and they have three different reclining positions, including one where you lay flat as a bed. Each seat has their own area, so you are never in the way of anybody else. You also have your own TV that allows you to select what you want to watch or listen to on the radio.

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My Super Amazing and a Little Messy Seat

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A view of beautiful Miami from the plane

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Beautiful puffy Florida clouds

It was early, and truly I was not in the mood to watch TV. As soon as we were up in the air, I reclined that baby, laid flat as if I was on my own bed and went to sleep. Truly, truly, I have never seen such a happy flight in my life. I don’t think anybody expected this plane and people were just smiling the whole time. Even the kids were happy because they had ample room to play without bothering their neighbors. It was truly a great experience.

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Thick New England clouds

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White Boston

Once I woke up and we landed in powdery white Boston, I quickly got off the plane and went over to my car. To find it buried in snow. My car is black, but at that given point it was white. Thankfully, I carry a scraper, took the snow of my windows, turned it on and let it warm up and started on my way.

Driving to Providence was funny. As I was driving, chunks of ice were flying off and hitting other cars. In response to the flying chunks there was a car free zone around my car. Truly they were evading me. I can’t blame them a lot of ice flew off. Then when I arrived at my work’s parking lot, the ice was almost all gone, and I had to brace the cold one more time…ahhhh…New England…thank you for the cold homecoming…hahahahaha

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Driving to Providence

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Ice on the hood of my car flying off

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I am in Los Angeles this week until Thursday, when I will fly to Miami so I can spend turkey day with the mother. I must confess I am happy to be here. I missed LA. I didn’t even realize how much I missed it until now. So I decided to compile a list of the top ten things that I missed about LA…here it goes…

1. I missed the radio stations—LA has some of the best radio stations in the country probably…KCRW, KROQ, 107.1…among others…even the Ryan Seacrest show is entertaining from time to time…

2. Breakfast places…hmmm….Miami, Providence, New York, Boston, all those cities have good breakfast places. But for some reason, LA has great breakfast places…there are tons of good places in Santa Monica, Manhattan Beach and Venice Beach to name a few

3. Santa Monica…need I say more…I just love Santa Monica…its gorgeous, the beach, the mountains…ahhhhhhh….

4. The Marine Layer…I never thought I would say this, but I like it…the nice cool moist breeze it brings in…I just missed it…

5. The fog…today I was driving amidst the thick fog and I just loved it…never seen such thick fog like here

6. The traffic!!! Can you believe that I am saying this??? Yes, well, in Providence I am in the car for maybe 5 to 10 minutes…it’s frustrating!!! I like being in my car for long periods of time…and that stop and go…lets me think about whatever…I missed it…

7. Downtown LA—the skyline…ahhh…I don’t know why but I have this fascination with LA’s skyline…I just love it…

8. TACOS!!!—love the tacos…King Taco is amazing…even Del Taco is pretty good…you can’t get that anywhere else…

9. The shopping!!! I know…so superficial…but I think every store in the world is here…it’s great…so many options…

10. There is always something to do…just as an example…you can go to breakfast, go on a hike, then go get a Thai massage, go to a museum and go to an amazing dinner all in one day…it’s great…there is always something going on…

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Break ups. They are inevitable sometimes. Man do they hurt. Ahhhh…my heart is still aching. It has been 8 months and 4 days I’m still bleeding. It feels like a hemorrhage that will never cease to bleed.

Regardless of the reason, it is that feeling that stays with you after. The emptiness. The void. The knot that forms in your throat and you cannot swallow. The feeling that your stomach is going to be sick but you haven’t even eaten anything to make it sick. When will it end? When will I feel numbed to all of it?

That sense of loss. The feeling that it will never be again and you have reached the end.

The famous Brazilian Jazz composer, Antonio Carlos Jobim, once said in one of his songs that the saddest thing is when a love affair is over. There might be things that are sadder in this world, but break ups are torturous. Why? Because you actually do not die from them. You might feel like you are but you don’t. You just feel the pain. For a day, a month, a year, a lifetime. But it won’t kill you. And if you really put your mind to it you can even learn to love again.

Love again? Hmmm…seems like something I want to do. But still so scared of being neglected or rejected or not wanted or just plain hurt. Facing that fear. Will I ever be strong again? Will I ever be able to bring down the barrier? I think so. But it’s like the sequels from war. Every time you go in and get out, you deal with more issues. The question that I ask myself, am I just too afraid to love again? To just give myself a new chance…

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Following my previous post from LiveEarth, below is an article published by Reuters. The moral of the story: Don’t buy an apartment at the beach.

Antarctic ice thawing faster than predicted
By Alister Doyle, Environment Correspondent

NY ALESUND, Norway (Reuters) – A thaw of Antarctic ice is outpacing predictions by the U.N. climate panel and could in the worst case drive up world sea levels by 2 meters (6 ft) by 2100, a leading expert said on Wednesday.
Millions of people, from Bangladesh to Florida and some Pacific island states, live less than a meter above sea level. Most of the world’s major cities, from Shanghai to Buenos Aires, are by the sea.

Chris Rapley, the outgoing head of the British Antarctic Survey, said there were worrying signs of accelerating flows of ice towards the ocean from both Antarctica and Greenland with little sign of more snow falling inland to compensate.

“The ice is moving faster both in Greenland and in the Antarctic than the glaciologists had believed would happen,” Rapley told Reuters during a climate seminar in Ny Alesund on a Norwegian Arctic island 1,200 km from the North Pole.
“I think the realistic view is that we will be nearer a meter than the 40 cm” in sea level rise by 2100, Raply said. The U.N. climate panel in February gave a likely range of 18 to 59 cm this century, for an average around 40 cm.

Asked at the seminar what the upper limit for the rise might be at a probability of one percent or less, he said: “At this extremely unlikely level the maximum would be two meters.”

Skeptics often dismiss such low probabilities as scaremongering. But many scientists note that people take precautions such as to insure their homes against far lower risks, such as fire.

HIMALAYAS

The U.N. panel said that rising temperatures due to more and more greenhouse gases from human activities led by use of fossil fuels were melting ice.

Antarctica stores enough ice to raise ocean levels by about 57 meters if it ever all melted. Greenland has about 7 meters, according to U.N. data.

All other glaciers on land, from the Norwegian Arctic to the Himalayas, are tiny by comparison and contain only enough ice combined to raise sea levels by about 15-37 cm.

Glaciers around Ny Alesund, which calls itself the world’s most northerly settlement, are also retreating fast.

The U.N.’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) in February hedged its forecasts by saying that “larger values cannot be excluded” but said there was too little understanding of how ice sheets react if water seeps beneath them and lubricates their slide.

Rapley said there were worrying signs of an accelerating thaw both in West Antarctica, where much of the ice sits on rocks that are below sea level, and on the Cook and Totten glaciers on the fringe of the far bigger ice mass to the East.

“The East Antarctic ice sheet is always dismissed as the big bit which sits on rock above sea level and so is much more stable. But the radar altimeters show significant discharge going on,” he said.

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I love to travel, and hence, I love the Travel Channel. While taking a break this past weekend from my GMAT studying, I started watching my adored channel only to find a new show I hadn’t seen. Anthony Bourdain No Reservations. It is a show hosted by renowned New York City chef Anthony Bourdain about travel and the search for the perfect dining experience.

If you do not know anything about Anthony Bourdain he is regarded as “‘the bad boy of cuisine’ for his rock-star look and blunt observations about the world of restaurants, chefs and cooking, Anthony Bourdain is not your typical celebrity chef. A 28-year veteran of professional kitchens, Bourdain is currently the executive chef at New York’s famed bistro, Les Halles.”

The episode that caught my eye was Anthony Bourdain in Beirut. It so happens that when the show was supposed to tape in Beirut, the Lebanon-Israel conflict started in July 2006. The episode depicts the arrival to the country, the first peaceful meal (that looked delicious) and then the beginning of the “July War”. Luckily, Bourdain and the crew were able to escape the country. But at the end of the episode Bourdain said something interesting. He went on to say how he had been able to cross all cultural differences just by sitting at a table and sharing a meal, and how he finds that “war” destroys that principle. The simplicity of just being able to share a meal with whoever be it your neighbor, brother or enemy is simply just broken by “war”. And that made me think. When the ability to share a meal is taken away, all conversation ceases. Is this the main cause of war??? Is this what causes us to think of our enemies as monsters??? The inability to converse and share a meal??? Maybe. In the gift of a meal one creates the environment to converse and share ideas. Whether you agree with your dinner companion or no, the interchange of ideas could be stimulating. Yet, if no interchange exists and only lead bullets and bombs are the source of conversation, what is to become of us???

I have shared some of my most memorable moments on the dining table, with friends and family. And so the meaning of a dining table and a dining experience goes far beyond the food being shared. For maybe, that is the source of peace for all people. These meals, at the end of the day, enrich our tummies and our lives.

Anthony Bourdain No Reservations
On the Travel Channel
Mondays at 10PM ET/PT

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This past weekend was the anniversary of my birth and I went back home to celebrate it with the people I love. The celebration took place at Transit Lounge in Miami, Fl, with some of my closest friends. The soundtrack to our lovely evening was, Elastic Bond, a wonderful mixture of electronic beats intertwined with Caribbean rhythms. All in all a beautiful and steamy night of sound, rhythm and dance.

As part of that night’s repertoire, Elastic Bond, had a special song for all the birthdays that were celebrated that night. “It don’t mean a thing, if it ain’t got that swing” originally composed by Duke Ellington. That has to be one of my favorite songs of all time. It reminds me of my childhood and mostly of my dad…so when I heard Elastic do a modern/Caribbean rendition of that song, I felt as my daddy was celebrating right next to me.

So…to Elastic…thank you…for the perfect soundtrack…to my friends…thank you for the perfect night…

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The Vatican published yesterday the 10 Commandments for the Road. Now this is not about religion or the Catholic Church telling us what to do, it just a mere suggestion. Every year more than a million people die in car accidents (I think that is the accurate statistic—heard it on the news this morning)…being in part from Miami I feel this suggestion is important. Just from high school there have been several people that have perished due to car accidents and it hasn’t even been 10 years since I graduated. So a little courtesy when we drive will not be a bad thing…getting there a minute earlier is not really going to make a difference and getting all frustrated is only going to make you look older…

I. You shall not kill.
II. The road shall be for you a means of communion between people and not of mortal harm.
III. Courtesy, uprightness and prudence will help you deal with unforeseen events.
IV. Be charitable and help your neighbor in need, especially victims of accidents.
V. Cars shall not be for you an expression of power and domination, and an occasion of sin.
VI. Charitably convince the young and not so young not to drive when they are not in a fitting condition to do so.
VII. Support the families of accident victims.
VIII. Bring guilty motorists and their victims together, at the appropriate time, so that they can undergo the liberating experience of forgiveness.
IX. On the road, protect the more vulnerable party.
X. Feel responsible towards others.

Source: http://www.vatican.va

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