Wednesday, October 27, 2010

chocolate cakes at midnight

and now
lest you think
i'm just sitting around these days
doin' a whole lot a nothin',
i will tell you instead
that there is nothing like moving into a new place
and hosting a
3-birthday/housewarming party
for some 25 people
just 3 days later.

last night
after finally chucking everything
that we couldn't find a place for
onto the balcony
in order to make our place look presentable,
we did hang one thing on the wall,
my sunburst mirror,
at 1:30 am
just to make me feel better
about life.

but i'm pretty sure
that the culmination of this week
happened just tonight
as i was knee-deep in chocolate cake batter.
after all four of my pans
(yes, four, am i really attempting
a 3-tiered cake under these circumstances?
were buttered and cocoaed,
my chocolate was melted
and i was chipping away at my brown sugar,
i thought to crank up that "new" oven.
now, when i say new,
i don't so much mean new
as i mean new to me.
because it is anything but new.
in fact, it's probably 15 years old.
and when it didn't fire up when i first tried it,
and then i realized there is only one rack
(remember, four pans,
and it was already 10 pm),
well i knew
that this oven just wasn't the risk
i wanted to take
with my cake and my party.
and so i gathered my batter, my pans
and my computer
and hustled over to my in-laws
to borrow their trusty oven.

and so i sit now, well past midnight,
waiting for cakes 3 and 4 to rise as beautifully
as did 1 and 2.
with a little moral support
from my sister-in-law
i'm feeling like
things just might work out.
wish me luck.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

early christmas

it really is
almost like christmas.
grabbing another box of my stuff
that was packed in my absence,
unwrapping each item
with great anticipation
and then exclaiming,
hey, i remember this!

but the very best
are those suitcases
that actually were packed by me,
the ones full of goodies from france,
finds at the flea market
or kitchen ware from geant casino
sent back with alex on one of his trips,
that have awaited my arrival.
those are really like christmas,
since i don't even remember
all that i bought.

but what does this early christmas mean?
it means we are moving.
and you'll never really appreciate the miracle,
but the miracle is
that we found the place,
in the perfect location,
in those 5 days we were in moscow
a few weeks back.
we returned last week,
signed the contract,
and last weekend
made the move.

and now i'm just hoping
that christmas will hurry and end
so that our new home
will be in some sort of shape
that we can actually live over there.
tomorrow the furniture
will be reassembled,
so perhaps this weekend?
do you remember what i said
about my life very accurately resembling chaos?

Tuesday, October 19, 2010


and after disembarking
we still had
the whole island of bali to explore.

though it is still 3rd world indonesia,
you'll find 5-star hotels
at the end of those pothole-riddled roads,
streets of local boutiques among the temples,
great beaches at the bottom of the cliffs,
rice fields nestled among the patches of jungle,
and the hippest restaurants
scattered here and there.

i must say
that i was pleasantly surprised
by much of what it had to offer.
in fact,
it was one of those (rare) places
that i left saying,
now i just may have to meet you once again
in this lifetime.

and with that, my friends,
the story of my endless summer has ended.

i was happy to see that my children missed me,
and that not all the leaves had fallen
in our absence.

now we are just plowing through
that adjustment back to
this place that we still
(believe it or not)
call home.

Monday, October 18, 2010

el aleph

so the fact is that no,
we don't travel this much every year.

but the other fact is,
that our hero of the year
had a most desperately miserable summer.
while we were busy enjoying the lazy days
of the loire valley and tuscany,
he was slaving away in abominable moscow,
suffocating in the heat and smoke,
buried in work
and familyless for 3 long months.
all in the name of making his family
(almost) blissfully happy.
of course we didn't plan to be apart so long,
we had hoped he would join us for much of the time,
but the pressures of work
had other plans.
and skype became our lifeline.

and so after his dreadful summer
with nothing but a few quick weekend trips
to see us,
he was ready for
and much more than deserving a real break.
and when his friend invited us
on his 30th birthday trip,
well that was just the ticket.
and i was the lucky tagalong.

and so my endless summer
took us next to bali.
where we first boarded el aleph
and cruised the indonesian islands for 5 days.
it honestly,
was the trip of a lifetime.
and unfortunately will probably have to count
for our 10-year-anniversary.

we visited about 10 islands,
in increasing order of remoteness.

and perhaps my favorite part of the trip
was that night
we cruised all night long
and alex and i slept on the top deck
under the wide open sky
with all its stars
until the light of the sun began lighting the sky
on the horizon in front of us, little by little,
colors changing as it got brighter and brighter. . .

then there were the volcanoes,
one with a crater lake that we canoed around,
and the other still active
with a black sand beach
that we puttered along,
reveling in being the only ones on the whole island.

we visited the komodo islands,
home of the famous komodo dragon--
the reptiles at the top of the food chain.

enjoyed incredible snorkeling and diving,
the best of which
was off this pink sand beach,
which we also had all to ourselves.

we biked our way
around this whole island

we ate the equivalent
of moscow's finest restaurants
for every meal,
right there on our boat,
cruising and watching the islands go by.

and then on a rainy morning
we disembarked that dream-maker,
and flew back to bali.

and the story will continue!

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

back to life

and now is the part
where i admit to you
that i have not been wandering the streets
of gloomy and gray moscow
(which saw its first flakes of snow this morning)
in search of a home
these last two weeks.

to give you full disclosure,
without telling the whole story now,
i will tell you
that it didn't involve children
and it did involve
the likes of this:

i do wish
that i had the time
to tell you all about it now.
but my life in the next week
is resembling nothing short of chaos.

so let me ease back into this slowly . . .