St. Thomas, Need I Say More?

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Well, I’ve finally managed to clear some room from my media library to bring you part one of my St. Thomas vacation recap. I have decided to really come through the hundreds of pictures I took while away and present an edited photo collage of my adventures.

While it has been a month since my trip, I can still smell the water, hear the birds, and feel the salty ocean water on my skin. The only thing I miss more than the breathtaking views and the overwhelming aura of peace and relaxation is Cynthia.

I have to admit it’s pretty awesome to have a friend in this corner of the world. Yes, of course, I miss her, but getting to see her in her new home: thriving, happy, effervescent and carefree, was wonderful to see. My wanderlust has definitely been piqued and I am now thinking ahead to my next great adventure for 2016. I’m thinking Italy! But until then, here are photos from the first three days of my trip on St. Thomas proper. Enjoy 🙂

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Wordy Wednesday

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As I sit in my brother’s home, in the quiet of nap time, my niece and nephews sleeping above me and across the hall I came across this passage in a book I’m currently reading and was instantly taken to the time of day described. If you can’t tell I am eagerly awaiting the seasonal change!

“There is a particular kind of afternoon sun that exists only in autumn. A golden light drapes itself over the world of that hour. It falls through the afternoon sky, fine and faint as a swirl of cigarette smoke caught in the wind, nearly transparent. So sweet, that light, insisting softly, goldly against the windows.”

Excerpt from The Twelve Tribes of Hattie by Ayana Mathis

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Tuesday Thoughts

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This morning started off with a lot of negativity for me. I felt a little trapped in my situation and not really sure what to do I decided to go for a walk/run along the Hudson River to clear my mind and figure out what was going on. Needless to say, once the Pandora station was selected and the walk was underway I was able to zone on the present and not really get mired in the self-pity I awoke to this morning. As I proceeded south along the Cherry Walk towards Riverside Park on the UWS, I started to evaluate the things that I was hung up on and began to work through solutions to those problems. While all of them may not be resolved today or tomorrow I definitely felt reinvigorated after the run and was able to snag an audition slot for an upcoming production in the city. Mother Nature has done it again 😉

Ciao

Wordy Wednesday

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Have you ever been hugged by God?

what does it mean to be alone and why are so many of us afraid to be?

is it because we need constant admiration from loved ones and strangers.

or are we overcome with thought to that we’re just not good enough? not the ideal? the gold standard or hot ticket that everyone clamors for?

think about it. it is part of our human nature to be social. to enjoy each other’s company and be enriched by our merging lives and the places we hold in them.

but it is also in our nature to fine-tune ourselves, to keep striving for our hopes and dreams and conquering the missteps and challenges we face from day to day.

so why are we afraid to be alone?

is it that when we stop moving and are forced to look deep into ourselves we discover we are constantly holding our breath? clenching our jaws or tensing shoulders?

or maybe its because we’re afraid to fully release. to learn more about ourselves without an audience spitting out their opinions.

or maybe you’re like me and aren’t ready to be caught off guard.

to realize that you don’t have all the answers and have no way of figuring out the right questions.

maybe sudden hiatuses from an established routine have caught you off balance and you’re simply trying to tread water?

or just maybe you’re afraid to remember that you’re not alone but simply have forgotten the one person who is always there?

in the moment when that thought hits you, the wind suddenly picks up, the salty air from the water is strong in your nostrils and you finally release as you are being hugged by God

being assured that everything is ok and that HE has and always will have your back.

how blessed and fortunate am i to receive this reminder from time to time 🙂

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Return to Ithaca Day 2 & 3

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Well all i can say is that after reuniting with jake and lyndsay on friday, i knew that the rest of the weekend would be anything but boring. and boy was i right lol. saturday included our obligatory breakfast at ithaca bakery and then we were off to the wineries of upstate new york. on our itinerary was Americana Vineyard and Lucas Vineyard where we partook in wine tastings and bought these wonderful wine slushie concoctions (don’t worry we had a Designated Driver, our friend Jeremy, who knew all the best places to go) and i purchased a bottle of red wine the Banco Noir, which is without a doubt my new favorite red wine! After taking naps we got dressed for our pre-show dinner at the Boatyard Grill. Looking schnazzy and eating well we looked over the water as the sun began to set over the city.

Then it was showtime! We attended the closing night of the Hangar Theatre’s production of Sondheim’s Gypsy, directed by my mentor and current artistic director Stephanie Yankwitt. The production was fantastic and some of our campers from last summer’s Next Generation program were featured in the show. Leaving the theatre singing tunes from the show, we drove over to Corks and More, where the Hangar was holding the closing night party. It was great to see the cast of actors letting loose as we reflected on their performances. Since we were a little hungry after the bar, we drove over to Short Stop for sandwiches and snacks, chatting outside about our disbelief that we only had one day left in Ithaca.

Day 3 was a lazy sunday that started with me having a great chat with Stephanie, before Jake and Lyndsay rolled through for breakfast at, where else, Ithaca Bakery, before we went to the Farmer’s Market. The day was sunny and cool, with a refreshing breeze billowing through the trees. After purchasing flowers at the market and looking at the various stands and wares, we said our goodbyes to Stephanie before heading to one of the gorges to dip our feet in, before grabbing lunch at Wegmans with Andrew Keeler who was driving through on his way to Green, NY for a workshop.

All in all the weekend was long and short at the same time. We were able to visit all of our old haunts and reconnect and reminisce about last summer and predict what our future held in store for each of us.

Leaving Ithaca is always hard, but also necessary. I was able to reconnect with great friends, and remind myself why nature is so important for each us. If you ever have the opportunity to find a place that truly frees you, mind, body and soul, always hold it close to you and visit it as often as you need. It truly helps me get through the long days, weeks, and months i spend hustling in the Big Apple.

ciao

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Ciao

Ithaca Shower

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What is more freeing than crying in the rain?
As the heavens open refreshing the earth with cool wet rain
My mind and body are able to release the hurt, pain and unconscious feelings bottled up inside
Smelling the earth reinvigorated with the scent of green, dirt, and crispness of air
I am able to extinguish all doubts and fears that were trapped inside
Do not feel sorry for me
Feel sorry for those who feel they must never let go of what is inside of them
How else can we dream and envision a life worth living
If we are unable to let the clouds of our soul burst open freeing the ideas we have not yet opened and explored?

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