this trip may go down in history as one of the most packed trips i’ve ever had – just a taste of everything. i flew into new york, took the bus to philly and back, was on call for work, hung out with a bunch of my favorite people, got hit on by the airport personnel, made some new friends, lived in the moment. pure bliss weekend.
tiago picked me up at the airport, and immediately we were off on the guitar hunt. first up was a small shop where they know him by name and i immediately called myself out as an ignorant bystander :) this is the hole in the wall where the legit folks go – none of this hipster BS, these guys are dealing in strats and pedals. i’m staring at the walls as though i know what i’m looking at, and i’m able to pick words out of the conversation at the parents’ table like when i’m watching Spanish novellas – like every few sentences i’ll pick out something that sounds like something i think i know.
these corners of the earth, they’re really amazing. a few stores down we went to pick up a bass of T’s that had been in the shop. the guys here were a little more rocker, a little more black-wearing, long haired types. the guys at the first joint were old blues hands, this place had a touch more panache.
tiago got his baby and checked it out on the spot. boy sounds GOOD! i still get dumbfounded by those moments when i remember how talented my friends are… when so many friends can play so many things, the magic of a guy with a guitar becomes commonplace – until in a quiet second your buddy starts plucking and you realize it’s a whole language you’ve only heard and never spoken :)
thursday night was super mellow, just hanging with tiago and deise, eating junk food and catching up on nothing in particular.
deise and i spent the day as tourists, something i’m surprised has happened so rarely in new york, in my adulthood… we started with the empire state building
and then we went shopping :) as it turned out, i was in desperate need of jeans and something to wear to our new york office if i was called into work – which DID end up happening – we hit H&M, Gap, Forever 21… deise picked up was this necklace, we each found jeans, and i found a great little black dress that was conservative enough for the office. i’d say it was a total win!
i snapped a pic of flowers on the street… just because they’re there! i love this neighborhood, i love the vitality of new york in general. sometimes it feels like everyone’s humanity is shifting and overlapping more than anywhere else.
a couple hours and a shower later, we went to a cafe in the east village to see deise and tiago play a set with our friend reinaldo, who is another percussionist and traveler – we met up with some of their other friends and had dinner in an intense, dark little spot with great food
one of my fellow revolutionaries did exactly what i’ve been tried to do a couple times and get some great minds n a room to talk about how to build. here’s his description of the event…
The Workshop is a day-long gathering, inviting pivotal leaders to explore big questions at the intersection of humanitarian causes, ministry opportunities, and artistic pursuits. Through brainstorming sessions, group discussion, and prayer, participants will have the opportunity to share their ideas on these important questions:
- How do we partner with each other as organizations?
- How do we support each other through prayer and love as individuals?
armi generously asked me to come in and help moderate, this was one of my motivations for coming out this weekend – here’s the promo video:
and then we brainstormed for a few hours. we worked from an outline, captured thoughts and ideas around the intersection of [art, ministry, and nonprofit]. how do they play together… how do we define them… what are the inherent strengths and weaknesses of each, where are the equilibrium points between them?
i could only stay for most of the first day – but it was exactly what i always wanted this kind of experience to be. like-minded hearts coming together in one room to figure some big questions out. people whose ideas and experiences complimented each other – who had seen some of the same things and had to solve for similar problems. i think we all came away from the experience encouraged and refreshed.
turns out i did indeed have the best pizza of my life. and met a guy who wanted my camera. i just wanted a photo of the storefront, and this guy got all up in my business :) i picked up an extra slice for that dude in the pink necklace, and then he started asking for other things – if you give a mouse a cookie, i guess.
and finally, got back to owen’s for the series finale of LOST… now the back story is that owen got me hooked on LOST, i wasn’t into it at first but he was so convinced that he bought me the first two seasons for Christmas one year, then one thing led to another and we started having skype quality time so we could watch it together!
therefore, as the season came to a close, obviously i needed to come to the finale party. it was the only logical thing. and what a killer party :) sam made everyone plane ticket invitations, we had name tags, themed food and decorations –
somehow all the girls went for boy names and all the boys went for girl names. i picked richard, who was by the end of the show possibly my favorite character. plus sam made one plate of display cookies and another plate of delicious LOST shapes
so we had a little jungle spread – fruit salad, goldfish, themed cookies, fruit punch
i don’t know who saw this show and this finale, but i have two overarching thoughts
1. the classes i took in comparative world religions really came in handy and
2. that end to that show was really, really appropriate and moving. good stuff.
the morning after, it was monday again and i had to get back to work before i headed home. i took the morning bus back again from chinatown to chinatown and wore my pretty new dress to Y&R New York where i met up with my amazing colleagues on the Barilla team. we worked from noon to 6pm and grabbed dinner with our clients at tao, which was seriously impressive. i’m not impressed by restaurant ambiance that often, but this place was pretty hardcore :)
and a rare treat – i actually got to see kasey, who i know from way back when he lived in chicago and we both went to church together. kasey is a unique brand of awesome, the guy works so hard and just loves it
he’s such a badass… we kept giving him shit from across the room and he was like, ha, yeah guys, excuse me, i have this amazing project to finish… then he went back to work while we drank our wine haha
i stayed til midnight or so, then got picked up by deise and tiago… we went back to their place where i got to hang with marley and lament, as always, that these life-tangents are always too damn short, but oh so delicious
got hit on by the baggage guy at southwest. he’s not pictured. he showed me his tattoo, a rather unimpressive but badass because it’s huge cross on his chest :) we’re facebook friends now. very nice way to end the trip.
landed at midway. went back to the office for the afternoon.
didn’t catch up on sleep for almost a week.
and that, kids, is how it’s done!