March, 2001

NYC: First Impressions

March 12th, 2001 March 12th, 2001
Posted in It's life, Jim...
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Got up with the sunrise in Manhattan. My body has slipped easily into its natural diurnal rhythm so by 8am I was out on the sidewalk enjoying a beautiful sunny spring morning.

Cold but not too cold and lots of people walking dogs. Seems to be a big thing around Chelsea (which is where I’m staying) although the strange thing is that there’s no dog poop to be seen. Very different to England. Also the sidewalks were trash free, although I’ve walked down to Soho now and there are streets where that isn’t so, but generally, Manhattan is squeaky clean. I wouldn’t eat my breakfast off them, but I’m weird about stuff like that.

Everyone tells you the US is very cheap to eat out. It’s no cheaper than London BUT the food I’ve had so far has been more delicious and bigger portions. Okay, so I’ve had one meal in a shiny metallic diner around the corner from the apartment where I’m staying. It was good.

Getting from John F Kennedy airport to Manhattan took three freaking hours from the time the plane touched down. Customs and immigration were fine but the baggage handling took about three quarters of an hour. Then the inaptly named Express Bus takes another 45 minutes (or so it seems) going around every terminal to pick up passengers. And there are a lot of terminals at JFK!

The expressway… hahahaha, good name! No, it doesn’t go very fast all the time. Sometimes it’s solid traffic. But the air at the moment is clean and clear so it was nice to sit and look out of the window at the diamonds and rubies (headlights and tail-lights) as we drove.

‘But what about beer?’ I hear you say. I know you people! Beer — one day so what can I say? I had a Samual Adams which tasted pretty strong and didn’t really have the flavour of either a bitter or a lager. Nice. Mind you at $4.25 a bottle plus tax it should be bloody marvellous. Maybe I need to try some of the bars for more reasonable prices.

I digress. It is a beautiful day and I’ve walked up to the Empire State Building and caught the express elevator to the 96th floor, ears popping all the way. Fantastic views and surprisingly good quality souvenirs along the lines of pewter miniatures and snow shakers. Nicely sculpted models, I mean. So I didn’t buy any. I must find the nastiest Statue of Liberty cigarette lighter in existence to take back as a gift! Hehehe

Going off to look for the Guggenheim next. Maybe I’ll log on again, maybe I won’t. Who knows?

Rambling Without Moving

March 8th, 2001 March 8th, 2001
Posted in Film making
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It’s been one of those weeks where it’s felt like nothing much has happened and yet tons and tons has happened and there’s a sense of inevitable irresistable and welcome change.

Earlier in the week I was talking to a friend about her impending visit to a psychic (and I’m still bursting to hear what happened, but she knows that so I’ll shut up). Nevertheless, it reminded me of another friend who does tarot readings and it just so happened I was round her house on Tuesday or was it Monday? Where did the time go? I digress.

So my other friend did a tarot reading for me and it was all about how I’m resisting change and holding on to stuff when there are great opportunities around me if I’d just look around. There was also a lot of stuff about laughing and enjoying being with friends and generally having a good time. And the opportunities and changes that are there and coming are inevitable, whether I push it or not.

Of course, I’ll probably push it because that’s just me, but it does take away the feeling of pressure to DO something when it’s said that it’s inevitable like that and I think that lack of pressure is a good thing. It gives some freedom to think and be creative.

Then tonight another old friend, Andy, phoned up and said could he drop in on his way home and I said sure, that would be great because I haven’t seen him for ages. And he did. We actually didn’t do that much talking but the thing about talking to Andy is it’s always very meaningful.

Andy works as an editor and is several bands and he played me a CD — several in fact but this one stood out — of this song he’s been doing with a female vocalist with a beautiful voice. Fay.

Andy plays a very sensual baseline and there are more people than just the two of them in the band. The song is all about this woman who has these delusions that she’s a secret agent and it’s just fantastic. I hope they make it big.

We talked a bit about options for the future and I tell him about the progress of my films because he’s done the music for one and they still aren’t finished because I’m relying on favors. Andy says not to worry, they are moving forwards and it will happen and it’s not like there’s anything I can do about it without funds.

We also talk a bit about graphic design and my trip to New York and just his reactions tell me I’m doing the right things and it he kind of just lets me inspire myself and gives positive reinforcement. I think a bit about working part-time and maybe doing a job-share in with another director so I can go back to college and study some more. It feels like an option and it feels good to have some options.

I’ve been listening to the lyrics of that song after (I burned it on to a minidisc) and it is so well written. And I was also thinking about the books I’m reading at the moment (another recommend from another friend), Travis McGee, and the wonderful storytelling and neat turns of phrase and general unputdownableness of the latest one I’ve bought. And you know what? I feel the urge to be more creative returning.

Spring is definitely in the air.