JULY 15, 2007 - SLOW PACED SUMMER 578 days ago
Wow, I got so lazy, one month without writing. I wrote a few more poems instead I even joined a group of poets: "Noches de poesia" And here I am.
It's a great idea, the dedicated organizer, Elizabeth Robert, organizes multilingual poetry nights in a charming café. Most of the poems are in French, English and Spanish, but this time we also had Arabic and Malay. It was hard to read in front of people that actually published their poems, but still...it has to start somewhere. So I did read, in Spanish, French and Romanian. That was on June 13th, and now we have to wait for autumn for this to happen again
I also met a few very interesting and charming people: Adrian and Angel from Cuba and Magdalena from Uruguay (she's a journalist for Radio Canada in Spanish and interviewed me and Adrian recently about our immigration experience and my future trip to her city, Montevideo). There were many others, French and English speaking Canadians, poets from Argentina, Mexico, Chile, etc., but I got closer to these three. Even closer that I would have ever thought, but that's another story.
Although I ended my summer vacation, that in theory lasted only until June 5, with the two long week-ends of June 24th (Cape Cod camping trip) and July 1st (New York City). The first with a group of friends - 2 more girls and 3 guys, the second by myself, meeting my cousin and some friends that live in NYC.
It was so relieving to see the verdant ocean waters again, I loved the sand dunes in Cape Cod, also saw lots of seals, drank by a fire on the beach and finally got to swim in the sea after almost two years. The Atlantic there resembles in colour, saltiness and smell to the Black Sea in Romania, except the seals They were coming soooo close to the beach we could see their luscious skin and beautiful eyes. I even succeeded to drag everyone in the group in the cold water in North Truro. We found out afterwards that Chatham had better temperatures so we satisfied our crave for swimming there.
We had fresh lobster at Moby Dick's, in Wellfleet. Also clambake, but the local Monomoy Island clams were full of sand and our Norwegian friend, Petter, said they were overcooked too. But the lobster was great and I actually enjoyed fighting to get the sweet meat out. Another nice surprise were the Bulgarian students serving us, apparently they have more opportunities to leave the country now with work&travel programs.
We tried to get to the Beachcomber Club on Cahoon Hollow beach also in Wellfleet, but the entrance fee was $20 for some doubtful live music, so we went for a beach walk instead and found a lady sitting by the fire with her daughter. We convinced her and her husband to let us put down the fire and some American in their 20's, students on vacation, joined us. They were from a mix family, one brother and sister and one step brother who's mother married the other two's father. We ended up in one of the summer houses their family (apparently very wealthy) had around and shortly after us, girls, managed to slip into beds, really tired, we had to get up and go, because the father called Then we went around in circles because one of our guys forgot his jacket with the wallet in the house and we didn't have any phone number or anything, so we tried to find it again on the winding dark roads! Quite fun, especially considering how tired we were
The second evening we went to Provincetown, the biggest on the peninsula and famous for its gay profile. I found it to be very small, we had decent food at Clem and Ursie's colourful looking shack. I spoke to an Albanian from Kosovo bartender, he was also studying in Washington in IT and was thinking about going back to the Balkans once he will finish his studies. I found Provincetown very similar to Key West, Saint Thomas (US Virgin Islands) and Grand Cayman, in terms of architecture and signage. Apparently it is the American tourist place look.
All together, I didn't find Cape Cod extremely beautiful or exciting, but pleasant indeed. And I guess it is the closest area to Montréal where you can swim in the sea.
NEW YORK CITY
Well, being by myself I couldn't really go out at night, but considering I go out a lot in Montréal, it's not a big deal. I stayed with Jane, an extremely nice and interesting lady I met through my cousin, in Upper West Side Manhattan, between Central Park and Riverside Park (along the Hudson). Her building has an amazing terrace on the 16th floor, too bad is not used. And I saw around (92nd Street) a lot of similar empty terraces - so sad.
I walked a lot through Central Park, I lied there in the sun and read, watched the sunset on the Hudson riverbank, saw the Neue Galerie Museum - displaying an exhibition on Austrian and German expressionism and Van Gogh's influence on it and some of the Metropolitan Museum - like and exhibition on Venice and the Islam - extremely interesting.
I met my cousin Nicu, who got married last year, with his wife and my friend Michael, the bass jazz player, with his other half, Celena. I listened to him inside Jimmy, between East Village and Greenwich Village. I discovered this way lovely Washington Square and I had the occasion to lazily walk and discover the Village, like an alternative bookshop where I bought a great NYC map and vintage postcards and an Italian ice-cream shop where I exchanged with the Sicilian owner - Salvatore. I also walked a bit through Brooklyn with Michael, had Turkish Efes Pilsen beer in a Turkish restaurant - another nice colourful side of New York - there's life beyond Manhattan Many nice bars, cafés and restaurants in that neighbourhood, around 7th and Flatbush avenue.
Every time I go to NYC I find new interesting things, it's an amazing city, but it took me time to discover its charm, or rather things I like about it.
I started my tango classes, last week, and I absolutely love it, it advances slowly, but it is a very difficult dance, especially for an independent person like me, not used to be lead I also went on a long difficult hike in the Adirondacks three weeks ago and got a big toe infection afterwards so I couldn't go again this week-end.
Last night I've been to a 14 juillet Fête de la Bastille celebration, hosted by Francis and Evelyne, a very nice couple that does it every year.
And I still have a hard time getting back to my books, but time runs fast, already three months since I finished school and didn't write a damn line! I need a kick in the ass, big time!