Thursday, April 28, 2011

Night Rider

Where do you go when sleep takes you away from me?
Even as I speak, the blinds are falling shut.
Failing against the inexorable escape, you slide into the deep;
simply a body beside me, tossing off the gathering heat,
murmuring in somnolent tongue –
I almost catch a word before it folds up
behind the minuscule distance between here and there,
between me and you in a place where lions become horses
and gallop around in a city in which you have found yourself
lost and unprepared for the journey.
I could call you back when your brow furrows
and your teeth make the sound like marbles
rolling against each other in a small sack made of orange netting,
but suddenly you laugh and turn away, hand on your heart and a smile.
This is how the sun discovers you in its first light
and slowly brings you back to steady breathing,
softly stepping on the surface of what divides us.

by Blessing Musariri


Are you a King or Queen, Warrior, Magician, or Lover?

I've been thinking a lot about friendship lately and reading research on it. Aristotle believed that there are three types of friendships; utility, pleasure, and virtuous friendship.  He argued that friendship should be so highly valued because it is a complete virtue - above honor and justice.

A virtuous friendship is, Aristotle argues in Nicomachean Ethics, one of the most glorious attainments one can achieve. This type of relationship is based on a person wishing the best for their friends regardless of utility or pleasure.

"... a complete sort of friendship between people who are alike in virtue." -- Aristotle.

Aristotle also argues that this type of friendship is long lasting and hard to come by because it takes a lot of time and care.

But what about personality fit in friendship? I recently read in psychology today that those who are best friend potential for us also tend to be our opposite in personality style. Take a look at this quiz that helps people decipher who they are in friendships/relationships.  

I took the quiz and its results show that I am predominately a lover (38%). My perfect opposite is an assertive, analytical warrior. Hmmmm, that is Mr. DID in a nutshell.

Clearly there are other variables involved in a successful friendship and I've only scratched the surface of what is vast research out there. But like Aristotle, who examined friendship extensively, I believe it is a complete virtue and one that should examined closely.


Life as a montage

When preparing for a big trip or trying to learn something difficult (or boring!!), I wish I were viewing my life as a video montage like in the movies. If I could fast forward through the 10,000 hours that Malcolm Gladwell says we need to become an expert in something or blink and already be across the world, I would. Not because I want to fast forward through my life, but because that would give me more time to try new things (and move on if I choose). 

Then I think about those moments or life events that, in my head, already play out as a montage. My times spent laughing with close friends, planning for my wedding to Mr. DID (and all that led up to it), my trip to Asia with Myra, watching buttercup grow up, and plenty of other events. 

My reason for writing this post is to remind myself and my readers to savor life - enjoy it completely. 

(picture in Phuket by Myra)

Monday, April 25, 2011

If you were wondering, this is what I've been doing with my free time

Hanging out with McGruff the crime dog (not his real name, but he requested anonymity).  I have a big time confession: I've always thought city folks with pets were a little strange or perhaps a bit narcissistic. I mean really, I'm sure you have noticed that most people pick pups that look just like them. But after doggy sitting for McGruff - I GET IT.

Take a bite out of crime.

Souvenirs for the stylish travelers

If you like shopping, Asia is the ultimate destination. Giant shopping malls and unique boutiques fill the streets. Thailand is no exception. Myra and I spent full days of our vacation scouring fancy Thai shopping malls and weekend markets filled with brand name designers and unique Thai fashions.

Designer duds from Thai designers meant unique keepsakes.

Some of favorite designers included Vickteerut and Boudoir by Disaya.

Vickteerut's effortless looks uses premium fabrics, unique shapes, and daring hem-lines. Bringing together a collection of minimal, understated pieces. Unfortunately, most of the looks were too short for my 5'10 frame. I mean "is she wearing pants?" short.  I brought home a washed silk number (shown above) that would bring Elizabeth Taylor (circa the 1960's) to her knees.

Boudoir by Disaya is a lingerie collection from the designer Disaya Prokobsantisukh. The confidently sexy collection really suited my smaller frame and the fabrics were so rich that you would think I picked up some kiki montparnasse while abroad. Eat your heart out lingerie lovers because this stuff was a steal.

The Weekend Market in Chatuchak was the best one-stop-shop for all our last minute purchases and some pleasant surprises. I picked up some swanky t-shirts for the gents in my life and some truly unique leather and textiles.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Moving video diary

Diary (2010) from Tim Hetherington on Vimeo.

This is a 20 minute experimental film released a few months ago by Tim Hetherington, the director of Restrepo who was just killed in Libya.

It is a compilation of his personal footage meant as an attempt to show people what it was like to move between life in the war zones in which he was working and life in the industrialized west.

It is unnerving.

I can't help but ask myself - what motivated him to continue reporting? Was he a pioneer for humanity whose goal was to uncover the truth? An advocate for hope?

Doesn't everything else seem trite against the backdrop of war?


Thursday, April 14, 2011

Happy happy

A very HAPPY Thai man initiated Myra and I today. After gently placing white powder on our faces he said, "happy happy." It was delightful! Later in the day we encountered more aggressive water soldiers. By aggressive I mean not delicately splashing us, it was more direct and targeted. Not knowing Thai, I think they said, "get the dry ladies!" Leading Myra to say, in the most simple terms, " we need to get a gun."

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Monday, April 11, 2011

You down with koh phi phi?

Yesterday we hired a long boat to take us around koh phi phi. For about 30 USD a person a young Thai fellow will shuttle you around from one beautiful bay after another.

It was private and stunning. Limestone cliffs poked out of the sea everywhere you looked. We felt like royalty. As I napped on the long boat after too much Dramamine, I realized how truly blessed I am, because even though I was in paradise I couldn't wait to go home. My paradise is with Mr. DID in New York. A private tour of stunning bays and blue sea can't change that.

In Thailand we love the king like we love our Father.

-- charming Chiangmai woman

Photos of the king are everywhere you look in Thailand. I counted 7 from our hotel in Chiangmai to the airport.

Made in the USA??

Where do I begin?

Sorry for the brief hiatus, but Thailand is too beautiful not to spend in peace. For the first time in several years I was able to shut off my nagging mind. That's not to say that I haven't written beautiful poetry in my head.

We took and air link to charming places and haven't looked back. After a brief stint in Luxury in Phuket we went to the islands. I have never seen more beautiful water or beaches, it is truly stunning. More later...

Lazy me

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Monday, April 4, 2011

Local bus

Hello from sunny Thailand! After 30 hours of traveling and a good sleep, yesterday we spent our first full day in Chiang Mai, Thailand.

I'm delighted to say that Thailand is a gem. Yesterday was a full day that started with a Thai massage. If you've never had a Thai massage beware, it is a workout. The 70- pound woman that was my masseuse had about 400-pounds of pure power.

After massages we headed to a Thai tailor with a pretty long list of items we wanted recreated. The fabrics were rich and the tailor ambitious. Please keep your fingers crossed for us, we have second fittings this afternoon.

The evening hours brought us to cooking school at Nancy's house or Siam Rice Thai Cookery School. We spent five hours learning how to make curries and other authentic Thai dishes. Taught at their home, Nancy and her family make you feel like a part of their clan. They also make you consume everything you cook, so you leave stuffed. I learned a lot about food, but my biggest take-away was that Thai men pick their wives based on the quality of their curry paste. Ha-ha!

More detail and photos to follow. Sa-wa-dee-kah for now.

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Commitment to beauty

Apply day and night - for a lifetime.

Saturday, April 2, 2011