Day #35

         Abu Dhabi               Dhr200, easily                      hour ride       

                 we roll                                         down Sheikh Zayed Road. I am here.

Day #23

                     a meeting

I arrived     at the restaurant

                                                           still hungover

   I had                                   a feeling

             she would be experienced

                                                                 Sure enough, I was right

travel writers

    different beats,

                       “specialized” knowledge. 

Fair enough. 

                                asked me

dead-on,

         ‘is this something you want to do for the rest of you life?’

This happened

                  she                                            (for the second time)

                          a travel writer has to hustle.

       keep

                                               the lines of communication open.

      trusting

   my gut—

                                                    coming from similar

                     to figure out

where this all might lead.

  take decisive action in my life. But that’s an illusion anyway.

                     the real question

Day #20

                       two hours inside Kinokuniya

                                                       a photography book called iDubai

      Joel Sternfeld, and another 

           professor, Jonathan Crary,

"The indoor mall world of Dubai is a quintessential non-place where people circulate, shop, eat, and spend time in various ways. A non-place where it is assured nothing can really happen.

                                    Still excited to go?

Day #17

 H        

              said I kept “one-upping her”


                      quinoa and kale

for myself

                                                                                  I took

                     her doing funny walks in my living room,


                                                                           then she left.

     napped in my room


                    , I met Mohammad,

   became overexcited                                                 He taught me Shokran

 which I knew already

                                 it’s good to start somewhere.

Day #13

Met friend for dinner in EV. Ate chicken marsala.

Had to leave early to go to the UES since mom wasn’t feeling well and I needed to walk Daisy. Got into a cab, zipped uptown, and sat for a while listening to the other cars beeping at each other on the slick pavements. I’d decided over the weekend that I definitely was going to visit Tel Aviv while I was in the middle east, and that was beginning to feel more and more like the right thing to do.

Hope. And then, of course, that too-familiar second-guessing, that kill switch that prevents me from ever getting genuinely excited about anything. But there, in the cab, I actually did feel the slightest hint of genuine excitement, or at least the closest I’d come in a while.

That afternoon, I’d heard back from a friend who said he would show me around Tel Aviv (though, he pointed out, I’d just missed Pride). Plus, I’d been obsessively reading my Dubai travel guide, and my mind was a swirling panoply of hotel star categories and undecipherable neighborhood names.

Photo: Get Up and Globe

Day #10

Woke up in Atlantic city, went to get a tea in the lobby. While I was adding honey packets, an employee came up and threw my cup lid into the garbage. “Shouldn’t have left it lying so close to the garbage,” I thought.

When I went up to ask for another lid, the guy looked horrified that I hadn’t already been given one, which I thought was appropriate. Back to the room, drank my tea, felt good, had to poop immediately. And thats the beauty of a hotel room right there—you do what you have to do when you have to do it, and you take your tiiiiiiime.

Burger breakfast at the cafeteria. Then back to the room. Took a cab to go see a new casino that opened on the boardwalk. I wanted to get outside onto the terrace but one guard said I needed to prove I was a guest. So we went downstairs (the terrace has at least three floors—it’s massive) and when another guard (this time female) asked to see our “cards,” I explained we were waiting to check in, and that our bags were being held at the Front Desk. She waved us through. Success!

But the sprawling deck turned out to be a bit of a disappointment. Matt looked bored. I didn’t really know what I was looking for (surprise, surprise!) and we wandered around for a while then came back inside. We made a point to walk in past the original guard so he could see us being all rebellious. Not sure if he even noticed. 

Day #09

Driving past Newark airport. Looking at the planes and terminals and endless runways. See a Delta plane slowly land and wait to taxi. I think about airports, about wandering around them for no particular reason at all.

And I think about Stevie, about how maybe she and I are similar that way. Except maybe she’s found a way to really excel at turning that wanderlust into a lifestyle. So then what are the differences between us? 

And then I picture myself at the airport, somewhere, maybe Texas, waiting to connect to my flight that would take me to the SFO conference in Las Vegas, and my boss, and Mark, and all of them—and how maybe, at the end of this, even with a bit of travel writing under my belt that I’m actually a bit proud of, I still haven’t found what I’m looking for in these airports, hotels, and casinos. Maybe there is something else in there for me.

Photo: Destination 360

Day #08

Woke up early to write stories. Spoke with my roommate as usual on his way out the door, about his girlfriend going on tour and how she has to buy a car for the trip and is freakin out over the expense. Oddly, I clapped twice as we said goodbye. Some sort of concluding gesture, entirely unwarranted.

Started worrying and fixating on my missing social security card and how I needed it to get paid for the Times Square job and then started thinking about that and how was it even a worthwhile job at all and god, what do I want to do??!

I was supposed to fill out some forms for the company to do a background check on me—I realized halfway through that these forms are used for possible employment, so whether this is standard for all freelancers or if maybe someone recommended me, I don’t know. But wouldn’t that be great to get proper job out of all this.

Tore myself away, went for a run, felt better, came back to the house and mom texted me to say she had my social security card after all.

Practiced at laurens apt, worked on a potential new song, called george on the walk home, came home, meditated, slept.

Photo: Myspace / Brunuron

Day #01

Meditated first thing after waking up. Dreams were panicked, a conversation with my boss, an argument with Lauren, felt rushed and scattered. And new York city is hot, that familiar sticky heat creepin up for the summer.

Flopped my brain after breakfast between dubai, Israel, HotelChatter, sprint, Greene girl, my sublet, pitching freelance stories, and eventually had to just get out and go for a run. Came back feeling re-charged, emailed some more about hotel Father’s Day packages, met nora for tea, then George for dinner. Got home, talked for a while with my roommate, he made a suggestion that I should contact the Time Out folks in Dubai; and suddenly I felt incredibly hopeful, grateful, content. Even said so on Facebook.