Tuesday, July 08, 2003

I heart NY

I love, love love love new york. It is one of my favorite places in the world and I would seriously consider living there if the right opportunity presented itself. My affinity for this city that so many people say is cold, unfriendly, and impersonable is in a large part due to the guide I've always had. Having lived in boston her whole life, n knows its close cousin well, and has always been a terrific guide, showing me the beautiful insider's view and ignoring the ugly. And of course, the fact that Cousin lived smack in the middle of downtown manhattan helped matters.

My happiest times there have involved walking so much the whole soles of my feet had blisters. And typically, we would walk to destinations involving food. Whether it be ginger mint lemonade on a bench outside of balthazar cafe, sipped along side petit fours and raspberry tartletts, finding the perfect cup of pearl tea inside the ten ren in Chinatown, to actually eating sweet and salty chicken off a stick purchased off a street vendor outside H&M (unheard of under typical circumstances!) n and I scoured avenues and streets alike to find new culinary delights.

and OH. H&M. a new world opened for me when n showed me H&M. my understanding of the world we live in changed. Even with my spoiled retail outlook resulting from years of living in hong kong...i could recognize that the ikea of clothing would revolutionize the industry in the US similarly to her furniture-producing brother. i loved it!

Friday, July 04, 2003

We're free--let's roast marshmallows!

Ahh....there's nothing like the smell of a wood burning fire. Unfortunately, with California's environmental laws, wood fires are few and far between. You can hardly even find them in home fireplaces anymore as new homes are mandated to be built with gas--a shoddy substitute. After some research, I found that one of the only places in SF to create this elusive scent in public was at Ocean Beach. I few friends and I donned windbreakers, packed up the tiki torches and campfire forks, bought plenty of marshmallows (and other roast-friendly foods) and were on our way.

It was ridiculously hard to get the fire started. 100% of the attendees were engineers and more than 90% were EE/CS, so I guess you could say weren't well versed in the material science/chemistry aspect of the exercise. After numerous attempts using a variety of methods, materials, and a dangerous (and probably not appetizing) amount of lighter fluid, we finally threw in the towel and "bartered" for a flame from some of our fellow fire lovers on the beach. In no time at all however, we had a cheery blaze going, and started on our way to quenching the flame of hunger.

A few notes about roasting things to eat on the beach: 1) it's sandy 2) it's windy too, so sand will likely get in your food no matter how hard you try to block what you're eating with your body 3) foil is your friend 4) curry fish balls and pre-cooked sausages work well 5) potatoes and corn do not 6) no matter the sand, the cold, the wind, and the consumption of undercooked food--everyone is guaranteed to have a fabulous time.

Photo credits to t and jk--thanks guys!!