Friday, March 1, 2013
Thursday, November 8, 2012
It's not that I don't love the idea of being here, because I do. But it bears zero resemblance to the Sex and the City dreaminess that I fantasized about. Those chicks never took the train, never ended up in a rat-infested apartment with crazy roommates and had no concept of a budget pb&j-for-lunch lifestyle.
I did start out starry-eyed and looking up at buildings like they tell you not to do if you want to blend in. But as the schlepping ensued and I began throwing elbows to get in trains and watching businessmen pick their noses and wipe the findings on the New York Daily News, the charm waned. And I have yet to see a flash mob in Grand Central Station.
Or, maybe Grand Central lives in a perpetual state of flashmob-ness. It is a mass gathering and everyone does move in time--all scurrying to trains about to leave them and all appearing somewhat uniform.
Here's what all the women look like:
Trench coat. Scarf. Standard I-work-in-NYC Longchamp Le Pliage tote poised where the arm folds so they can hold their coffee. Face? Pinched. Gait? Stomping fiercely toward jobs they probably don't care much about.
Here's what all the men look like:
Suit. Tie. Maybe a tie clip if they've gotten bored enough. Face? Sapped. Gait? Strolling confidently because they are probably used to being important.
To be fair, I work very close to Wall St. so perhaps the midtown men and women look different and so do the ones from downtown and so do the ones from Brooklyn. I look forward to seeing them. To be further fair, I am commuting from Scarsdale, better known as you-do-not-live-in-NYC-at-all-not-even-close. I imagine when I find my place and I'm sitting on a stoop somewhere and have just affirmed that "yes, this train stops at Seventh Ave," and am officially referring to Bowery as "the Bowery," I'll feel a little more at home.
For now, I'm off to see two apartments in Brooklyn and they are not off the L, which I have been told is the only acceptable place to live in BK, so we'll see.
Posted by Tara Donaldson at 2:09 PM
Tuesday, April 10, 2012
I never want to look haggard after a flight and, I assume, neither do most people. Although, for the mother and daughter travelers who boarded my last flight wearing matching fleece pajamas with polar bears in Santa hats, haggard wouldn't be anything new.
For the rest of us, there are certain little products made for each of our air travel ills. I found the ones that best tackle our post-flight woes, wrote a quick feature about them and now it's published at CNNGo--check it out!
Posted by Tara Donaldson at 7:18 PM
Thursday, December 29, 2011
Or home, as it should be. But home is a funny thing when you're me. When someone asks where I'm from, my eyes glaze over while I decide how to launch into the list of places I call home and why I can't honor the question with a straight answer. By the time I reach the second or third, "And then I lived in," their eyes glaze over.
I don't mean to brag or bore but there isn't a way to simplify the answer. If home is where the heart is, maybe I'm confused about just where the damn pulsating organ has gone. When I am home in Syracuse where I live, I refer to LA as "home." When I am home in LA where my family lives, I talk of going "home" to Syracuse. When I am in neither place and answering from the heart instead of the brain, "home" is, without question, Trinidad & Tobago where my culture lives.
It is a dilemma I admit I'm glad to have, but at some point, as a traveler or wanderer or nomad, no place feels like home. This time, in LA, I'm like the puzzle piece that seems to be the right shape but doesn't quite fit. If you force it, it juts out, gets stuck and the big picture never makes sense.
I watch as suave drivers in designer shades shuffle on undeterred by the traffic that has quadrupled what should be their commute time. I, on the other hand, am quietly losing my mind. If traffic didn't make sense to me before, the taste of a traffic-less life has worn my patience thin; there's more to life than the 5 freeway! I've heard there's public transportation here, must look into that for next time.
Everyone is glamorous, the Hollywood sign is sparkling and the drinks are $10 and up. My flats and Syracuse cardigan don't seem to fit where I once had heels and handbags. I wonder if my fanciness has dimmed or if I just need to wipe the smudges off my designer shades to see more clearly.
I step out of the car to a feeling of heat I had lost somewhere between August and the 18 degree cold the night before I left Syracuse. Could it be that I was really wearing a summer dress while friends at home were brushing snow off their cars after spending 10 minutes donning adequate clothing to brace the cold?
Sometimes, I really do love LA. Home or not.
Sometimes, I really do love LA. Home or not.