Sunday, November 1, 2009

Live from Halloween celebrations in the US V

The best costume I saw all day was not the skinny dude covered head to toe with green lycra (we asked him what he was and all he said was 'green'.) but the girl walking next to Michael Jackson number 32587 (so many Michaels, and all different). My friend Robert asked her what was her costume. I managed not to crack up when I heard the dialogue. 'What are you?', The girl smiled 'I'm a fan'. Robert was lost. 'A fan of what?' She looked at him like he was stupid, then at her Michael Jackson buddy, rolled her eyes then said with a clear voice: 'A fan of Michael Jackson'.

And with that note, I'm off to bed. Let's hope no one trashes the place, I ate most of the chocolates :)

Live from Halloween celebrations in the US IV

My biggest surprise all day?

Two guys sitting outside my local supermarket, smoking and relaxing ask a guy in a costume 'hey, dude, what's this Halloween thing all about?' The guy in the costume smiles and keeps walking. I stop and start to chat. 'I mean, where did it come from? When did it start?' So there I was in front of two Americans who had little or less clue than me.

Live from Halloween celebrations in the US III

Things confirmed by the movies:

- You don't give chocolates/candies then your place gets trashed/pranked/something happens.

- People of all ages dress up, there are people in costumes in every corner, in every street.

- There are so many parties and events it's hard to decide where to go.

- Never seen so many pumpkins...

Live from Halloween celebrations in the US II

What I didn't know about Halloween before actually being in the States during the holiday and before being surrounded by Americans:

- Moms go trick or treating too. In most movies I saw the kids go out alone and adventure off, apparently to get candies and chocolates for free at strangers' homes, what I actually saw was moms (ok, ok, I saw ONE dad too) waiting by the gate while the kids walk up to the door. One mom was scarier than her kids' costumes.

- No one gives fruit or cereal bars anymore. Too many people died from it, stuff got put inside fruit, poison etc. As I heard this I chuckled and said I thought all that were urban legends, then 3 grown mature people stared at me super looking all serious, 'real people died.' Right. Got it.

- Kids come up to your door, they say 'Trick or Treat' and then YOU, the person holding the chocolates decide what they get. Chocolates, or a trick. My friend Robert had a kid howling. I love him.

Live from Halloween celebrations in the US

First of all, we regret the weather. We, of the skirt wearing kind, regret it even more.

In the movies we don't see people shivering or wearing raincoats, do we? We also don't or at least I haven't seen women dressed as witches walking their dogs. Why is that? It would work for me as an audience...

Live Halloween posting (considering the time difference most of you won't really care about the live bit)

the live posting starts in 5 minutes. I'm not ready are you? :)

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

My first Halloween themed party

It happened to be a kid's birthday party but it had Michael Jackson's Thriller dance, food and drinks so does it matter?
The house was unmissable. Imagine driving in while hearing kids scream in the background. Passers-by stopped to chat as well, it was very nice.

I still think this 'clown' was the scariest bit. I slept in the living room that night and kept having to remind myself it wasn't some creep sitting down watching me.

This was the toy I hated the most, you hear screams and shrieks every time you press the button so of course the kids pressed it every five minutes.

The spiderweb touch was a great detail, it's still all over the house. I hope I'm not the one that has to clean it up.
The spiderweb included details such as different size spiders hanging from the ceiling.

As well as a tiny doll trapped in the spiderweb. Clearly I was born in the wrong generation.

Friday, October 23, 2009

Halloween is already next weekend!

Man, where does time fly off to? This weekend is homecoming weekend, DC is insane with parties, events and general celebration. Homecoming, if I understand it correctly, means celebrating the return of students/alumni. There are balls, galas, parties and of course, alcohol. And before you have time to recover from homecoming weekend, Halloween is already here.

I haven't been taking my camera with me lately so you'll have to take my word when I tell you that each day there are more Halloween decorations popping up. The supermarkets have an extra aisle for chocolates, pumpkins are seen everywhere, scary and funny costumes are sold on the streets. I think only now do I realize I really am in the States. This Sunday I'm attending a birthday party whose main thing is doing the 'Thriller' choreography. Life is good.

I've recently discovered cupcakes. So far my favorite are the peanut butter cupcakes.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

48F or 9C

Whether you're thinking in Farenheit or Celcius, it's cold. However all DC folks say 'it's chilly'. Also, it doesn't rain, it 'drizzles'. Who's with me in thinking I'm going to enjoy winter?

Wednesday, October 14, 2009


You'd think any Western supermarket would be simple for a Westerner, right? At least that's what I used to think.

Just imagine the biggest supermarket in your country and know that that's a normal size one in states. Then imagine different names for things you knew all your life. Not just different names but different packaging. Different places to put things.

Imagine all that and try and go and shop under 20 minutes.

It can't be done.

This is the main reason why the kitchen cabinet is full of Oreos and apples.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

American ads

You have not seen advertisement until you've watched American TV. A single children film (yes, I watch kids' stuff) has at least six or seven commercial breaks.

Here is what I've noticed so far:
  • Lose weight ads come on mostly in the afternoon, specially lunch time.
  • Halloween is coming. There are ads, cartoons and movies about it.
  • Thanksgiving is coming. Now that I don't eat meat I see tons of turkey. Typical.
  • Christmas is coming. There are more toys' ads now than all summer together.
  • Starwars is still going strong. Silly me, I thought it was over and done with.
  • Michael Jackson mania. ('nuff said)
  • If you have a new drug to sell mention 3 good things about it then 32 side effects (I've heard stuff from hallucinations, depression, losing of arm and leg control, to losing ability to speak, you know, minor things.)
And yes, some of pharmaceutical ads go on during the day. It's hysterical.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Love of information

Americans love being informed. Love being the source of information. They love information period. And they're very practical about it.

In the beginning it annoyed me. It really did. 'What is the purpose of your visit?' 'How long are you staying?'

Then it started being entertaining. 'This bus ain't movin' until everybody moves to the back! So if you want to get to work today I'd get moving!'

Now I depend on its precision. 'Ladies and gentlemen, the metro will begin moving in 20 seconds.'

I guess love can start with annoyance first, hun?

Saturday, October 3, 2009

A-going to the States

New adventures, old friends. yay!

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Thai cheetos

I was so excited when I saw cheetos in Thailand! I love cheetos. Then I opened the package...

Wednesday, September 30, 2009


It took me about 15 shots to get these two. Next time the tripod will not stay in the car...

Thailand posts returning tomorrow

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Bangkok: weird, insane and lovely

Took me a long time to get this photo without cars in it, long live the Queen.

I clearly did not go to smart school...

A market can be anywhere really, just need a few inches.

I do not want this guy job.

Believe it or not it's the inside of a shopping center.

Entrance to a alley market/ collection of tiny shops in an alley.

He looks happy enough with braces, come and be happy too!

What other name would a postcard store have? in small letters it say ''love blood & love u".

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Bangkok: Wat Pho PT II

Welcome to the reclining Buddha temple. Make yourself at home, I'll keep an eye on you...

These are donation/prayer pots, you get a little tin bowl filled with one satang coins ( 1 cent sort of) and drop one in each pot. Not familiar with how it works beyond that but I can share that the sound of coins being dropped in a row in an empty temple is something I shall not forget anytime soon.

I knew the statue was going to be big but I was still impressed.

The feet are decorated with mother of pearl. Remember never to point your feet at any Buddha statue or Thai person, very disrespectful.

Even His back shines, those sculptors really paid attention to detail. Don't forget to visit the statue when you go to Bangkok.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Bangkok: Wat Pho PT I

Wat Pho is located about 1km away from the Grand Palace. It's famous for its reclining Buddha. It's probably the biggest statue I ever saw. However I spent over one hour taking photos of the temples statues and... cats. Don't worry I won't show all the pictures I took, just a few. The Buddha photos will be here tomorrow if blogger stops saying 'bad request' when I try to upload them.

Wat Pho also includes a nice Thai massage school. The streets around the temple are full of oil massages and other material. It's a interesting experience for your nose.

notice the little black cat on the left corner. when I first looked at the statue it scared me, then I saw the cat and relaxed.

I want his life. Look at that peace of mind...

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Bangkok: Grand Palace's statues

Entrance. A relaxed statue welcomes us.

All over the palace and temple there are statues, literally all corners and plants had one or two.

These reminded me of India a lot.

I personally prefer 'the guardians'.

Yep, those are some big statues... If you go and visit take lots of water, the place is bigger than it looks. I ended up having to get my head wet and sit in the shade every chance I got. All afternoon in there and there were two places with shade...

A two-in-one shot, two guardians together. The poor human guards cant move or talk. I asked him to blink once if I could take a photo...

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Bangkok: Grand palace & Esmerald Budha temple

It's hard to miss the Palace and the temple (it's inside the Palace's grounds) but somehow it had eluded me so far.
Believe it or not I forgot to ask how long it took them to build the place.

A lot of people call it the Golden temple. I think you can easily understand that.

It's always full of tourists, for some photos I had to wait a few minutes or reshoot a few times in order not to get some blonde in it. Don't get frustrated, see it as an opportunity to really find the perfect angle. Most of all I enjoyed the statues, tomorrow's post will be dedicated to statues and other 'creatures' I met at the compound.

And the palace...

When I grow up I want an entrance just like that one.