I know -- it's been ages since I've posted. One of the reasons is that I've been busy with triathlon training (it's on 7/24 -- 13 short days away!). This means that I'm spending a decent amount of time on a bike. I love cycling, but have to admit that at least at some point each time I ride, I get completely pissed off at the poor cycling etiquette in NYC -- people cycling the wrong way, insisting on passing (and often crossing over into the oncoming cyclist lane to do so) at narrow points on the bike path, not saying "on your left" or ringing a bell or in any way warning me that you're coming up alongside me, biking 5 people wide in Central Park super-slowly, without any sense that people might want to pass . . . and more. Seriously, people, a little courtesy and safety goes a long way. It's not hard. And stop pissing me off!!
And it was soooooo relaxing. I took an extremely long Memorial Day weekend to recover from an incredibly busy past month or so. In addition to a trip to Ikea and some continued work unpacking my kitchen, I didn't have much on the agenda. I once again moved out to Brooklyn Heights with Moxie, this time to dogsit for Barley & Hops while their humans took a vacation. Aside from an impromptu dinner at Noodle Pudding on Thursday, hosting a barbecue Friday night and attending another barbecue on Sunday, I did a whole lot of NOTHING. It was glorious. I slept late, went running, cooked/grilled, read, binge-watched Season 2 of Bloodline, and watched the sunsets over the Brooklyn Promenade. Oh, and there were dogs. This shot was taken yesterday evening sitting on a lounge chair on the patio, a glass of lambrusco to my left, enjoying the evening breeze with my dog posse. Rachel & Nagib -- happy to hold down the fort at the #dogpalace anytime.
Here it is in all of its glory!! I'm still putting things away, and I haven't put up any personal touches like my "Eat" sign, but man, what a difference. In case you forgot what the before looked like, here it is. Visits/dinner parties start soon!
During the worst of the renovation, Moxie and I have been fortunate enough to live with our good friends Rachel & Nagib and their dogs, Barley and Hops, in Brooklyn Heights. I don't even know where to begin on how lucky we are. When all is said and done, they will have had us as guests for two full weeks -- their hospitality shows no bounds. We've had a great time together -- so much so that I'm afraid Moxie isn't going to want to come home.
The kitchen has been gutted, the pass-through created in the wall, electrical work, plumbing and gas is done, the walls have been prepped for paining, and the waterproof membrane has been laid down on the floor. This week -- installation of the floor tile, painting, and installation of cabinets, countertops, and appliances. Progress!!
Here's the final before picture -- demolition starts today. You've served me well, tiny, grubby kitchen. I thank you for your service, but I can't say that I'm sorry to see you go.
Appliances are purchased, asbestos testing completed (negative!), packing and prep checklists made, building architect has approved the plans, paperwork is almost finished, pre-construction meeting scheduled with building and contractor, and work is scheduled to start the week of 4/18.
That said, I had a drink the other night with a neighbor who went through renovations in my building and he scared the hell out of me with regards to the amount of preparation I'll have to do to prevent everything in the entire apartment being covered in dust. His secret weapon? An industrial-sized roll of plastic wrap.
I also learned that I'll be able to keep my current fridge in my apartment somewhere to use until the new one is set up. Between that and the microwave & toaster (a.k.a. my auxiliary kitchen on a bar cart by my door), I should be able to do some cooking and eating at home after the initial demolition period (during which I'll be relocating to Brooklyn).
Of course all of this is going on during my busiest time of year at work. If all goes well, it'll be done before I have to go to Chicago for a conference in mid-May. Fingers crossed . . .
Way back when I wrote a post about my kitchen renovation. No, it hasn't started yet, but I have made a great deal of progress. I've firmed up my design, selected all of my materials and appliances, signed contracts with the designer, cabinet/counter installer, and contractor, and sent various checks out. I've also started to select a new couch and chair for my living room (the living room update is a collateral consequence of the kitchen renovation, plus my couch has about had it). Work starts mid-to-late April, and, in theory, everything will be done by mid-May. I can't wait!!!
He's smart, handsome and age-appropriate. He's a feminist, he's pro-choice, and supports gender equality in the workplace and with equal parental leave. He's got the body of a boxer and has a tattoo. on one of his biceps. He is welcoming to refugees and is an animal lover. Isn't he fantastic?
Ok, where was I? Back to reality.
In a few hours, I'm flying to Guayaquil, Ecuador, where I'll be spending roughly 24 hours before heading to the Galapagos. Once I've reached the Galapagos, I'll have no cell or internet for about 8 days until I'm back in Guayaquil on the 2nd. Merry Xmas and happy early New Year, everyone -- see you in 2016!