Laughing Into 2016

This picture is from last night. My boyfriend and I went to dinner at The Cellar for amazing mac’n’cheese and champagne before going to his best friend’s apartment for his annual New Year’s Eve party. I think in this photo I’m laughing because I just finished drinking all of the champagne (just kidding, but probably). 

There were lots of ups and downs, but it turns out that 2015 was lots of fun. I traveled to New Orleans, Chicago, as well as Denmark, Norway, Sweden, Finland, and Estonia. 

I dated lots of questionable guys and then went on a date with someone who wasn’t my usual type (this was a plus as my type was usually a flaky loser disguised as ‘artsy’) and he ended up being a wonderful guy and I was so, so happy to be able to ring in a new year with him last night. 

I left a job that I loved because I felt like I was stagnating and i took a job that was presented to me with a higher salary and more opportunity only to be disappointed when it didn’t work out. But shit happens.

I threw a couple of successful parties during my first year in my apartment.

I strengthened some of my friendships and ended a couple of others that no longer served me.

I read 25 books. I saw tons of theatre. I went to a bunch of stellar concerts. I kept on meditating daily and took a meditation master class. I renovated my kitchen (with lots of help from my family, of course) and afterward I cooked a ton. I also de-cluttered, which was awesome. I watched all three Star Wars and saw the new one. I watched too many TV shows on Netflix and not enough movies in theatres. 

In 2016, I’m going to concentrate on really sorting out what I want to do professionally. I excel at everything that I’m super passionate about and if I can find myself in the practically-perfect job, I’ll fly. 

Being happy is also a top priority. Fitness is next. I will keep going to the gym more mornings than not, maybe finally do a handstand on my own, and tone my arms because I hate my arms. I’m going to keep de-cluttering my apartment. I want to play more guitar and journal more. I’m going to read another 25 books. I’m going to keep making time to see my friends, including trying to see those that I don’t get to see regularly. 

2015 was great, but 2016 will be even better. Onwards/Upwards.

Last month I landed a ticket to Manhattan Theatre Club’s Airline Highway at the Samuel Friedman Theatre after learning that Julie White (!) was in it so how could I not see it?!

The play takes place in the Hummingbird Motel on the Airline Highway outside of New Orleans and is a pretty depressing place to live. The residents are throwing a “living funeral” for one of their favorite inhabitants, a former dancer named Miss Ruby. The other residents have pretty much not done a whole lot with their lives but they at least had a good time not doing anything. A resident who’s gotten out and done well for himself is coming back which is a problem for Krista, who was in a relationship (of sorts) with him for six years, still loves him, and is still in the same spot where he deserted her.

Bait Boy brings his girlfriend’s daughter with him to the party where she asks the residents questions for her high school sociology project and is filled with life from the fun and good times that these people are having while having not a care in the world.

Things get messy and I think the overall message of the show is that we spend our life running from ourselves and our feelings instead of actually, you know, feeling them. 

It’s dark, and depressing, but it felt relevant. 

Ghost Tours

I love going on ghost tours. I’ve been on them in London and Seattle (I should probably go on one in New York, right?), and I couldn’t pass up the opportunity to go on one when Kristen and I were in New Orleans for a few days. 

We ended up being the only people to show up for our tour so it was basically a private tour, just for us, with a few stops for drinks along the way. Our tour guide, Judy Bajoie, was incredibly informative (she was a former high school history teacher) and super fun. She kept telling us where to take photos to see if we’d catch anything. I took lots but I think I may have caught things in two of the photos.

Unfortunately I don’t remember exactly what happened in this building (I’m going to be buying this book very shortly to see if they can jog my memory) but our guide told us to take photos and see if we saw anything. I took a bunch and in one of them the white blur you see in the above photo appeared. Kristen and her looked at my camera and went, “Whoa, that’s definitely something!” And off we went to the next place.

This photo was taken from the steps outside the Louisiana Supreme Court Building, which is in New Orleans, yes, instead of the state’s capital, Baton Rouge. There’s a lawyer that’s been known to haunt the court building that our guide told us could be seen often standing in the hallway where I took this photo. There looks like there could be a fan or something above the light in the window on the right, or may even the outline of a body in the center pane. 

Who knows what these things really are. I just thought it was kind of cool and wanted to share them with y’all. If you’re ever in New Orleans, definitely take a ghost tour with Judy Bajoie. 

Five Days in New Orleans

Sorry for the silence! After five days in New Orleans with Kristen, my sinuses freaked out and I was busy back at work, so, Tumblrs, sorry, you took a back seat. BUT! New Orleans is an amazing city. When Tennessee Williams said “There are only 3 cities in America, New York, San Francisco, and New Orleans. Everywhere else is Cleveland,” he was not lying. So much history and art and music. The architecture is beautiful there. I was astonished. It’s also one of the most haunted cities in America. It’s ALSO cheap as hell. My beer at the hotel bar was $7.50 (RIGHT?). 

Kristen and I went on a ghost tour, got lots of beads (it was the verrrrry beginning of Mardi Gras), went to Frenchmen Street, drank Hurricanes at Pat O’Briens where they were invented, saw the shitshow that was Bourdon Street, got very sloshed at times, went to Cafe Du Monde for the coffee, listened to jazz at Spotted Cat, and ate lots of amazing food (Herbsaint and Three Muses – GO). And we walked an entire parade route down Dauphine Street (we only caught up the tail end of it, unfortunately) and saw lots of the Bywater.

When I was on my own, I went into the Louisiana and New Orleans #1 Cemeteries (saw Marie Laveaus’ grave), I went to the World War II Memorial Museum, walked around the French Quarter, the Frenchmarket, and the Warehouse District lots. I drank a $3.50 Shocktop (not happy hour, that’s just the regular price, WHAT). I went to one of the Louisiana State Museums to exhibits on Katrina and Mardi Gras, I went to a yoga class at Reyn Yoga when I was incredibly hung over. I walked up and down Royal Street in the French Quarter a bunch of times listening to the music. I spent a bunch of time in Jackson Square people watching (and listening to music). I ate at the Ruby Slipper and Sylvain (both were awesome!). 

For the first time ever I didn’t really buy any souvenirs. I just didn’t feel like I needed any. I brought coffee back for my office and pralines back for my parents, and lots of beads, but that’s it. 

The people were incredibly nice and there’s so much to do there. I was sad to leave the seventy degree whether for twenty degree weather, but I was exhausted. If you’re going to NOLA, go for 4-5 days for your first time. You’ll never be bored but it won’t be too much. LOTS of pictures below the cut…

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Happening today: Flying down to New Orleans to meet this girl. Totally tagging along on her business trip, but I had a Delta credit that I had to use and she said OK. Let me know if you have any suggestions of things to do/see/eat/drink while we’re down there! 

We will cause all sorts of trouble (we didn’t nickname ourselves Natural Disasters for shits and giggles) and probably be doing a lot of what you see above.