Tag Archive: travel

Into the Arms of America

Reliving my 3 weeks with 3 lovely girls in December 2009 🙂 This is what I recorded...
so far…

we’ve been to a cuban cafe in soho (twice),
had a conversation about spirituality with a guy called from sydney in an aussie bar in nyc,
rode the private lift in tiffany’s on fifth avenue whilst we pretended that martha was getting engaged so to try on the rings,
got hit on by two seedy men at 6am at LGA,
subsequently met a nice british guy who ended up being on our flight to washington, mistook capitol hill for the white house (don’t even..),
had a long chat with the two cops on duty at the capitol,
saw jfk’s eternal flame at arlington after watching the changing of the guard,
senate, supreme court,
witnessed a “movement” outside the white house (i.e. obama’s convoy),
got interrogated at canadian customs,
chatted til 2am with two canadians in a french restaurant in montreal who worked for the government,
looked ridiculous traipsing through the cobbled streets in quebec with our bags semi-lost up the hill to where we stayed in the shadow of the frontenac,
being kindly informed by two seedy guys in an international beer pub that by taking off the labels of our beer bottles that we apparently were expressing our sexual frustration,
replying that that was in fact not the case,
served by a younger and hotter version of mr hennes,
classic disney slip over on the ice in the street,
introduced to tim hortons,
jazz club in montreal,
fell in love with the ‘i’m not cool but that’s ok’ song,
snow ball fight in montreal after getting lost in the underground,
promptly got over our romance with snow,
ate poutine and schwartz’s smoked meat,
had my first real coffee in an italian place with a flirty waiter,
martha got her hair stuck in a christmas tree,
dug samantha (cara’s car) out of the snow,
road tripped to ithaca,
played song charades on the public transport in boston,
cheesecake. oh my. cheesecake.,
musuem of fine arts,
jfk library (aneurysm),
fenway park (with 3 other aussies.. ridiculous),
went to an awesome church where the band played kings of leon, a cute (very) cute keys player, and they supported three justice causes (sex slavery, clean water, a dominican pastor working to educate street kids) http://www.reunionboston.com/,
met windy’s twin. actually freaky.,
experienced a peanut butter and banana smoothie,
freedom trail,
had our palates revolutionised by mike’s pastries,
stumbled across an orchestra performing bach,
ran with lyn (nyc has crappy air, fyi) to get a spot to late nite with jimmy fallon,
hi-fived jimmy fallon,
saw next to normal, shrek, god of carnage, and in the heights on broadway,
martha won the lottery for in the heights, so we got to sit front row – had a chat with the conductor,
went on bus tours downtown, to brooklyn, uptown (with the crazy, offensive un-PC kazakhi tour guide),
got serenaded by street performers, one of whom thought martha would appreciate his nipples (secretly, she did),
learnt that starbucks’ ‘signature hot chocolate’ is rank, and comes with mounds of whipped cream unless you specify otherwise,
museum of natural history (amazing space exhibition with a 4.5 billion year old rock, and an incredible exhibition on evolution, dna etc),
fell in love with bagels,
wore complementary fairy wings at alice’s tea cup,
jess got serenaded at the stardust diner,
went to grand central,
‘i can’t feel it in my fingers, can’t feel it in my toes, the cold is all around me, and so the feeling goes..’,
the met (flip.),
the trendy burger place hidden in a hotel lobby recommended to us by pat,
walked along bleecker st and found joe’s,
the first real coffee in america,
jess and i walked 45 blocks up to buy boots,
had cheesecake at junior’s where the waiters were fascinated by our accents,
got into birdland where we heard the drummer who played by charlie parker 60 years ago on the night birdland opened (you know, as you do as an 84 year old),
ground zero exhibition (incredible),
ran for a subway, only to leave jess behind. drama ensued.,
the bodies exhibition (real human bodies. crazy. struck by human intricacy and our frailty, and how glad i am that there is hope beyond this existence.),
watched carolers sing ‘new york new york’,
played the sugar/salt game in the oldest pizza joint in nyc,
watched to knicks snatch a win over the clips at madison square garden,
went to the moma (FLIPPING HECK),
experienced ‘blizzard 2009’ and ate an entire ny pizza from fat sal’s whilst watching ladder 49,
heard tim keller at redeemer talk on how jesus is the intersection of heaven and earth, how heaven opens for the humble,
encouraged by the work one of their church plants in the bronx does for the homeless as they seek to tell the gospel and embody the gospel,
bought two pairs of jeans for $40 at macy’s,
sat under bob dylan’s acoustic and next to ringo’s kit at hard rock cafe,
lyn got stranded for 10 hrs on the tarmac, 7 hours in a line and 3 days thanks to the snow storm (i hate uncle snow!),
flew to denver, then to abq, my bag got sent to chicago, and have been hanging out with my aunt and uncle in santa fe.

we also ate a lot of food.

love to you all.




“How much do our travels measure up to the longings that inspired them? I decided that I’d try to find happiness there (in the Mediterranean). Everything was exactly as the brochure had promised. But there was one thing that wasn’t as I had hoped. … At the middle of Day 1, a troubling realization began to dawn on me. That I had inadvertently brought myself along with me.” (Alain de Botton)

I think I often feel that if I were to change where I lived, that I would live differently. That I would be free from the patterns of life that I find undesirable. I think there’s an element to which moving away would help me to catalyse change, or maybe consolidate change. But it’s important for me to remind myself that the only lasting changes come from a change of heart, not a change of place, not even a change of relationships. And the only one with strong enough hands to coax the knots out of my stubborn heart is He who made it.