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Thanksgiving has always been a time for reflection.  I guess it has something to do with the fact that my birthday circles it or it circles my birthday, this or both.  Either way, it’s that time a gain.

I moved here on October 1, 2008, which means this is my fifth anniversary of Halloweens, birthdays, Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Years.  I wrote a piece on my first year here and feels like its time to check in and see what I’ve accomplished and what I haven’t, along with what there is still to do.

The first year was spent getting my footing.  I had no job and was living on a friends couch.  Not what you would call ideal at 40.  I left a good job, an apartment I loved and a brand new car.  The number one question one gets asked is, why did you move here?  Best opening line/conversation starter and the most New York thing you can do.  Me? Like most people they want to change and or reinvent themselves.  I wanted adventure, change, attend culinary school, to grow as a person and live somewhere else, other then where I grew up.  A.K.A., get out of dodge.

Over the years there have been many ups and downs.  These are to be expected.  But what is not expected is which ones they are.   I have really grown to like living in Brooklyn. There’s so much here, that honestly no one needs to ever go to Manhattan.  Would I live in Manhattan again. Yes.  My small stint in Hells Kitchen was just a taste.  And it still lingers in my mind.  How resilient I am, surprised me and made me stronger and more secure in myself.  Do I still have insecurities? Yes. Too many to count. But I am tough and can get through what I need to.   NY teaches you that or you leave.  I call this place the most conveniently inconvenient place to live.

I have come to travel more then ever in my life. From up and down the eastern seaboard to New Zealand and back.  I can’t wait for the next adventure.  I’m in a relationship that has also tested my strength, tolerance, patience, challenged my creative side, opened me up to be silly and expanded my ability to love.  Not bad considering I was no where near wanting or needing a relationship when I came here.

My friendships and family are stronger then ever and I wouldn’t change them for the world.  From landing with no job and couch surfing to my first Halloween in the emergency room and getting stitches from bashing back gay bashers, to having more jobs in five years then in the last twenty and knowing I can walk into almost any job and get it done, I can truly say, I am a New Yorker.  In as many ways as I have grown I feel I have a lot more learning, sacrificing and good times to come.  Life is a series of challenges and not all are fun and clear as to their objectives, but I am ready to march on and see where it takes me.  Like the song says. “I will survive.”  Or, as we say here, welcome to New York.



July the 4th & then some!

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The weekend started with a bang.  It being 4th of July and all.  It was our friend Kirks Birthday and I attended his celebratory bbq bash where he made his Great Grandmas Fire Engine Red Cake and we enjoyed fireworks through a chain link fence. Only in New York can this be enjoyed.  Well not entirely enjoyed but the company was wonderful.  I then went home and took the late morning train to meet up with the beach crew for the rest of the weekend.

As usual we hit the beach bar for a quick arrival drink, abortion then headed for camp.  The weather was amazing and for lunch I brought egg salad sandwiches.  Great for the first day.  The rest was spent soaking in the sun, swimming in the ocean and playing the ukulele.  When dinner came around we were very excited to bust out the newest crazy meal we had thought up.  Meatloaf sliders. Yes that’s what I said.  They were a huge hit!! And really worked out great on the beach.  We accompanied them with coleslaw.  Which didn’t work out as well.  But you can’t win them all.

The next day was the usual breakfast, eggs, bacon and potatoes.   What wasn’t the usual was that our friend Naoum decided to join us.  We were beyond thrilled.  We picked him up a the dock and sang the New Zealand welcome song Haere mai.  He arrived just in time for lunch which was our Spam musubis.   We then constructed a kite made from the mylar balloons we found on the beach.   It took a while but well worth the effort.  For dinner we went for a classic, bacon wrapped hot dogs and macaroni salad.  needless to say there was nothing left.  The night was spent having cocktails and playing our favorite card game.

Our last day was lazy and spent doing what we do best.  Breakfast, swimming, sunning, playing the ukulele and making beach  pizzas for lunch.  Sadly it had to end so we packed up, flew the kite one last time, hit the ferry,  grabbed the train and headed home for Chinese food and a movie.



Meatloaf Sliders
Recipe type: BBQ
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
  • 1 Pound of ground beef and ground pork combined
  • 1 Small green pepper chopped
  • 1 Small onion chopped(yellow or white)
  • 1 Egg
  • ¼ Cup of quick oats or bread crumbs
  • A couple splashes of Worcestershire sauce
  • A little bit of catchup
  • Salt and pepper
  1. Combine all ingredients in a mixing bowl
  2. Mix with hands(my favorite part!)
  3. Make slider size loaf patties
  4. Grill till done all the way through
  5. Serve with your favorite burger toppings
  6. Best with potato slider buns