Thursday, August 31, 2017

a wonky international time machine
Our trip to America was not for a vacation, but due to a huge bureaucratic cluster-f$ck against kids with diabetes when it comes for registering to take the SAT exam for college entrance. That said, it was a good time for us to come back and test our footing back on our old stomping grounds. I apologize to all our friends that we didn't call because we didn't call anyone. The actual plane trip and jet lag  went as planned, yet devastated me. It was a good thing we had planned time before the test for T to get her inner clock reset. I just wanted to concentrate on our daughter and keeping her sane and distracted before the exam. It turns out international cuisine, the best museums in the world, and, most of all, some revolutionary book stores are all our girl needs to be happy. It didn't hurt that we got to crash at our friends Thom and Ellen's amazing loft in Williamsburg, where Ellen also has her art studio. 

We had a few days with family that included some prize winning restaurant dining, an epic boggle championship, and some interesting stories from the authors in my family -- my mom and brother. 

Riding the subway in Manhattan and Brooklyn, I saw some really beautiful, moving examples of a sense of community, resistence, and empathy in action. I didn't expect it. And I was happy and proud to see it. I am proud to be a New Yorker, but it is clear that I couldn't be happy living big city life. I would rather be an outsider in Italy than an insider in America. I am grateful because, out of all the flavors of outsider, I like the New York flavor best. When we got on the plane, I could not have predicted how I would feel. I guess given the last seven years of my life, it is a relief.

Highlights of the trip would be the Eclipse at the Met, dinner with the family at Nix, the Strand and its many wonderful political buttons, the fashion gurus at Shishi who dressed us and took all the work out of getting a new wardrobe, Harold at Tip Top shoes -- who salsa danced for us -- and looping the park with my best Ian.
This is what 25 dollar almond butter looks like. I said 25. Dollar.

Television has become a thing that you need a degree to operate. After you figure it out, there is still nothing worth watching except for shows with sound tracks that have 90s R&B like Sex and the City. The commercials are epic and have no connection to the products for sale. I am so lost. Help me make sense of it all, Maria di Filippi, ti prego.

 Yeah, we couldn't believe we got to stay here either.

This is a real cool lady at Whole Foods, the supermarket the size of a football field, also known, due to the prices, as the food museum. We also saw her at the cool salad chain lunch spot, Sweet Green.

Here is the sun eclipsing.

 This little girl was saying, I kid you not, "So when I was a baby, we used to hang out?" And the Uncle guy said, "Yeah, but we hang out now, too, right?" Sooo New York. I died.

 I made T take a trip down memory lane to the tot lot in Prospect Park.

Post-SAT mandatory Van Leeuwen artisan ice cream extravaganza!

T got a celebratory second ear piercing. We felt very cool of ourselves, but F said I probably should not have bought her a doll named Scorpio Vixen for her when she was young. 

Full circle to Chelsea Market where it all began.

Wednesday, August 09, 2017


And while we're being thankful, we would also like to thank the wonderful staff at Xavier High School in New York, including receptionist Carmela Barbieri and administrator Thomas Gibbons for resolving the issues we had with T's required accommodations for Type 1 Diabetes for admission to the SAT test. I am deeply troubled by the disadvantage that all students with diabetes face in being admitted to this exam, particulary the rule which do not allow students who wear an insulin pump to enter without special permission that must be applied for months in advance, just because it is an electronic device. Shouldn't it be more important that it is a life-saving device? Why should people who wear one be under special scrutiny for cheating? Afterall, all students bring in an electrical device called a calculator!