Wanderer Returned

And just like that, my blissful 2 week sojourn around the Mediterranean and Adriatic has come to an end.  People have been asking me for photos since the day I’ve been back; patience, good friends!  We took a couple thousand photos, it’s going to take me some time to cull through them all to find the best ones (and ones where I don’t look a hot mess because believe me- it was hot.)

In the meantime, some highlights and thoughts:

-If I was in a post-apocalyptic world, running from aliens/terrorists/swarms of killer bees, I would pick a taxi driver as my companion.  I don’t know how they do it.  They drive with reckless abandon of a teenage driver and the skill of a stunt car driver and the reflexes of a cat.

- Going to Dubrovnik, Croatia where they film Game of Thrones (King’s Landing, if you know the show) was pretty geek-tastic for me.  Counting the days until Season 4 begins…likewise, visiting the Parthenon in Athens was a lifetime wish fulfilled as well, though it was so hot and crowded up there, it probably made my visit shorter than I would have wished.

- In some parts of Europe, you binge-tour palaces filled with gold and brocade and fine china.  In this part of Europe, I toured my fill of ancient ruins and perfectly preserved mosaics with colors so bright and beautiful that they look like they had been made by machine and cemented in yesterday.

- There were tons of stray cats and dogs, mostly in Greece and Turkey.  The cats were all skinny but didn’t have that starved look in their eye.  The dogs all seemed to be the size of small ponies and all sleeping in identical positions in the middle of busy walkways.  I think we might have taken more pictures of animals than of ourselves.

- Favorite city I visited was (no surprise) Venice.  It had this otherworldly beauty about it; the old buildings with wooden doorsteps slick with salt water; the crowded hubbub of St. Mark’s Square; the wind whipping through your hair as you take the water taxi (also known as a vaparetto), the gondoliers singing through the canals and young lovers lingering on steps and bridges.  It’s almost enough to make you forget that the entire city is still sinking into the ocean.  I hope they’re able to salvage some of the buildings, it would be a pity to let them sink to the bottom of the ocean (though maybe the fish have been craving an underwater palace.)

- The food was of course incredible.  I ate too much feta cheese and seafood and gelato.  I have no regrets though.  NO REGRETS AT ALL.

I promise I’ll post some pictures soon; up next- Venice!  (To see some photos I posted on Instagram, click on the link at the bottom of this page!)

Ciao! Ecco un elenco di riproduzione.

Hello!  Here is a playlist.  (Blame Google Translate for any errors.)

Remember when I mentioned that I was off on a trip again this summer?  Well…it’s actually happening.  Like in less than 12 hours.  Yeah.  Still have yet to pack those pesky toiletries, but no matter.  ‘Tis only a matter of time.  Off to the Mediterranean this time, a place that has been the number one destination on my travel wish list for ages.  Countries that I’ll be stopping by this time: Italy, Turkey, Croatia, Montenegro, and Greece.  EEP!  So ready to stuff my face with delicious Italian food.

I’m off for two weeks so there will be another blog drought…in the meantime, why not go back in time and pretend you’re traveling around the Baltic sea with me last summer?  Might help you if you read my blog posts so you know what our itinerary was for each summer.  ;)  If that doesn’t strike your fancy, I suggest jamming out to my delectable playlist.  It was a summer playlist but here in SoCal, we always get a last punch of heat before mild summer autumn hits.  So it’s still summer here.  Autumn proper doesn’t really start until late September.   If you’re not going on a trip and you’re not stuck in school/work (which I daresay is not many people) I suggest playing this as you lounge by your pool, sipping a perfectly sweet glass of sangria or while you take a drive at night with your convertible top down, blasting the music loud while the hot air blows on your face.  (But don’t do this in residential areas, as I do not want angry citizens coming to stone your car.)

Summer 2013 Playlist (aka Get Up And Dance, Because Why Not?)

  1. Harlem – New Politics (I am a sucker for a strong jawline and whew- does NP’s lead singer have a chiseled chin or WHAT.)
  2. Spectrum – Zedd ft. Matthew Koma (“Clarity” seems to be all the rage on the radio lately, but this song was my jam first.)
  3. Can’t Hold Us- Macklemore & Ryan Lewis
  4. Stars Come Out – Calvin Harris
  5. She Blows (The Whistle Song) | Dillon Francis Remix – Time Takers (What a misnomer.  No whistling at all in this song.  Heh.)
  6. Heartbeat – JJAMZ (Getting into a chunk of slower songs, but you need a breather after dancing nonstop, am I right?  Plus, I like my fair share of singable songs.)
  7. Lasso – Phoenix
  8. Pompeii – Bastille
  9. Polish Girl – Neon Indian (Is it Polish like the country, or like the nail coloring?)
  10. A Tattered Line of String – The Postal Service (They’re back!  Kind of.)
  11. Bright Whites – Kishi Bashi
  12. Little Numbers – BOY (Contrary to their name, the band is a pair of German women.  Saw them live earlier this year and they are adorable.)
  13. Sweater Weather – The Neighbourhood (While I prefer sundress weather, I am a sucker for British spelling.  I didn’t like this song at first when I heard it on the radio, but I’ve been won over.  Could be the way he says “it’s too cold for you here.”  He’s probably right – I think everything below 70 degrees is cold.)
  14. Kangaroo Court – Capital Cities (This song is so deliciously crunchy and blippy, and I am obsessed with the entire album.)
  15. Changing of the Seasons – Two Door Cinema Club
  16. The Only Place – Best Coast (The title of the song and indeed the band’s name can only refer to one place- Southern California.  Though I will always love traveling, there’s no place like home.)

Arrivederci, dear readers.  See you next month!

Alive, Not Dead!

You probably thought I had abandoned this blog like so many other bloggers do without warning, much to the dismay of their loyal readers (because y’know, I’m super famous in the blogosphere.)  Nope, I was just incredibly busy (me?  busy?) and taking a little vacation away from this blog.

Even though I write here out of my own free will and desire to put out some thoughts into a public diary, I felt like it was a good time to just step back, take a breather, and do some other things.  One of the main reasons why I started this blog 2 years ago was because I was stuck in an abandoned college town over the summer and having a lot of free time with not many people to see and not many ways/funds to get out, I decided to put some of my energy back into writing.

Since we last met I had just started my new job, and that’s really why I’ve been away for a while.  Not to say that my previous job didn’t keep me equally busy, but at my new job, my commute is so much shorter and I get out much earlier (the downside is I have to get in way early) so I actually have time to do things. Like see people, go out, y’know, things that normal people do.  It’s quite astonishing how social I’ve been lately, given that my favorite thing to do after work is to either take a nap or read at home.

In the two months’ gap from this blog, I’ve traveled to San Diego twice, San Francisco once; made new friends, seen lots of old friends (some whom I haven’t seen in years); semi trained my cat to fetch items and bring them back to me; went to lots of great events like the legendary Magic Castle club in Hollywood and a spectacular Great Gatsby party at the legendary Park Plaza Hotel in Downtown LA.  I’m kind of in love with this venue.  If I had a lot of money, I would throw parties here all the time.  Classy parties, of course.  No jeans and sneakers allowed in here.

Entrance of the Park Plaza Hotel

I promise I’ll get back into the swing of posting again.  Now that I’ve truly settled into my new job/schedule, I can once again go back to regaling you with accounts of my life.  True story- remember that rash I mentioned in my last post?  After 4ish years, it seems to have appeared on my neck.  Great.  I look like I sandpapered myself.  Karma for not posting in so long?