Thursday, June 28, 2007

Reality Check

Ever since my last birthday I’ve been slowly putting on weight, now that I’m home again I feel heavier than ever. While traveling provides good motivation for walking, there are no interesting sights to walk around Rochester. David finally got me to join the RIT gym this morning to get back on the workout routine I tried to keep a year ago. The gym is quite nice and a wonderful bargain. My one monthly fee at Midtown could pay for almost a year at RIT! At this price, I can’t afford not to workout. I hopped on the automated scale at the gym and holy molly, I’m 10 lbs heavier than I was last year! I started with 45 minutes on the aerobic machine, some setups and arm weights. It felt great to work up my heart beat and sweat a little.

The weather has been quite warm lately. My friend Craig teaches at the public school and is now in recession. We made salmon and asparagus for lunch and examined recent issues of Playboy magazine with his two fluffy cats.

Spanish class has been very enjoyable other than it starts at 8 in the morning and most of the time I’m only half awake. Still, I think I am doing pretty well and I might try to study on my own from now on instead of signing up for the second session. The grammar comes rather easy with 4 years of Latin and some Italian on my belt, but I really need people to practice speaking with. Few days ago I wrote my first email in Spanish to Rose, who is still in
Buenos Aires. I was so proud of myself!

Sunday, June 24, 2007

Duck crossing

It was a beautiful warm day. I walked around downtown to snatch few pictures of landmarks in Rochester and happens to come across these cute duckies crossing the street.

Saturday, June 23, 2007

Happy Birthday Dave!

Thank you for being a good friend and the only guy who get me lilies on his own birthday.

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Wednesday Milonga

After another day of work and class, I finally decided to go out to the milonga tonight instead of passing out on the couch in front of the TV like most of my evenings. I figure I need to socialize with people before become completely inapt in normal communications. I haven’t been dancing since BA except couple of milongas in Spain and Lisbon. I don’t miss it that much and wanted to go tonight only to see few familiar faces and listen to some music. Jan usually runs the milonga at Nasty D’s on Wednesday nights but I found out later that he was out of town to attend the tango festival in Prague and another one in Paris. I sat around for a while without any motivation to even change my shoes as there are very few people to dance with. I finally gathered enough enthusiasm after hearing a vals I liked. Just as I putted on my tango shoes Misha walked up the stairs with Lisa, who is now 6 months pregnant. What a coincidence! Neither one of us ever comes to the milongas and we just happens to show up on the same Wednesday. We danced few songs but I was very out of practice and only got more comfortable by the last vals. Lisa dances very well even with the baby in her belly. I left early since there wasn’t all that much to do or many people to talk to. Spent the rest of the night watching Samantha Bee’s Trip to Latin American on the Travel network and reminisced about BA.

Monday, June 18, 2007

Hanging up

Being as stubborn as I am I feel terribly sorry for my poor mother who has been worried sick about me getting started with my career and settling down. In fact, I’ve always went against her advises on decision making. I had terrible time with it in high school. Things got slightly better in the past four years because we lived in different states and I compromised with the economics degree, but mom never stopped talking about other people’s kids becoming doctors and all.

I finally ordered flight tickets to Indianapolis to visit my parents at end of the summer for two weeks. I have plans to take more Spanish classes and get certified for TESOL before leaving Rochester in the fall to go back to Buenos Aires. Mother obviously have different plans for me and was quite upset with my decisions. She made it sound as if I’m driving off a 3000 feet cliff. It can’t be all that bad, can it? Pretty soon I’ll have to start to blackmail her to stop nagging at me or else she can cross off that visit in August. People always have the impression that I’m mom’s rich little girl. Once and for all I like to say it on record that I don’t take a penny from my parents. I think that just buys them more rights to lecture me, not that they don’t have enough already just being my parents. I have a feeling if I were ever become a mother things would be much worse and I can count on my kids to be even more rebellious. That’s it, I better think twice about ever having kids, they would most certainly drive me into an early grave.

Sunday, June 17, 2007

Where there’s a Greek festival there is a Turkish festival

Enjoyed the hot afternoon at the Turkish festival in Chili. The food was tasty but I missed out on the dancing for going to Liz’s going away party in Pittsford. Later I attended my last concert for the Jazz festival. Bill Frisell was great.

This is the second show in a roll where Eastman was brought up in the same way. Don Byron, the tenor saxophone player, started the show by saying that the last time he was in Rochester was auditioning for the School 30 years ago. Unfortunately, he didn’t get in and had to pursuit his music studies else where. Don Byron now teaches at SUNY Albany. Bill Frisell was in a similar situation, except he auditioned for the clarinet and the Eastman only accepted him as a music ed major, to which he replied: “fuck that”. Later he ended up playing the guitar and now putting on terrific shows everywhere.

I‘ve always felt extremely privileged to have been part of the school and I miss it everyday. Ran into Professor Will Marvin the other day at Java’s. I still get nervous seen him around even though I’ve finally passed all the required theory class to get my degree. It was he who recommended me to see Fred Hersch and it turned out to be a very good concert, absolutely loved the beautiful tone of the piano. Tony Caramia and Professor Wason were also among the audience. Really wish I could see what is going through their minds when they listen to music.

Friday, June 15, 2007

Rochester International Jazz Festival

Two exhausting weeks since I came back zoomed by faster than Eldar on the keyboard. After being away for most of the year I had so much work and teaching to catch up on. Mrs. Lee is the best student ever. She is a good friend and always so supportive of me. Best of all she has fresh fruits and cookies ready for me at every lesson in additional to memorizing her pieces! I'd be fat if all students were like her...

The annual Rochester International Jazz Festival is going on this week so I try my best to make to as many shows as I can even though some times I’m on the verge of falling asleep. The artist line up is very impressive this year and every show I’ve been to was packed to full capacity. So far I have seen Randy Brecker Quintet on Saturday, Lotte Anker, Mr. Something Something and Fred Hersch Trio on Sunday, Midaircondo and Dan Hicks on Monday, Christian Scott and Bonerama on Wednesday and Zapp String Quartet this afternoon. Although I really enjoyed Fred Hersch, nothing really stood out to me. There were some solid playing but where is the innovation? Where is the creativity?

I feel great that I got some practice done this afternoon, went to the jazz fest and got my Cajun platter for dinner, which is by far my favorite part of the whole event! It's getting late, I'll make sure to write more soon.

Saturday, June 2, 2007

Greek Festival

What would the Greek festival be without food and dancing??? Nick and I went there for lunch and escaped the afternoon heat in the Little Theater for a movie. The Waitress is a pretty nice film full of pies. It made me want to go home and start baking myself.

Friday, June 1, 2007


A delightful little cup of ice cream on the flight back from London.