Would you rather have experiences and no memories, or memories and no experiences?
A trip can seem like a dream once it's over. There are all the details – the food and the weather (always acutely noted by a Canadian traveler), the alligators and lime-green McLarens, and all that. But it isn't until I'm home that I realize how much else was different. There are some things you don't really notice until you're out of them, and these can be really hard to capture in words. I suppose this is what art can do.
Between Miami Beach, Little Havana, the sleepy ocean-suburbs, the Wynwood Art District, the Everglades, and all the places in between, I crossed a broad mix of life in my week down in Florida. The landscape, the culture, the lack of culture, the waiting-for-death-like-the-UPS-man. Read More
The trip is over and it's back to the Great White North for me, which thankfully is not so white right now. Nature's being charitable to my warm-weathered heart by not kicking me in the mouth with a -35 degree blizzard, at least just yet. Actually I guess we don't get blizzards when it's that cold. Clearly the warmth has gotten to my head.
Though Florida has definitely got its lore like Hawaii for palm trees and pleasure, there are a lot of people living outside of Miami Beach and the condo-filled coastline who love their guns, god, and government. Actually, a lot of them probably believe there could be a lot less government but if they have to have something, they like the colour to be red. After all, Jeb Bush – George's cousin – was the state's governor during most of W's reign, and their current governor is a big Trump fan. This is all to say that those whiskey-drinkin', NASCAR-lovin', ethnic-diversity-unlovin' folks are alive and well in the Sunshine State. Read More
After all, there are some different sides to this coin called Miami. As any self-respecting coinflipper might hope there should be. Like many sprawling American cities whose layout was more orchestrated by big car manufacturers than by intelligent urban planners, there are enormous stretches where 'normal' life happens and when you say you wish you lived in Miami (if you ever say that), you're probably not talking about places like these. Yes, warmth, yes, palm trees, no, not much else other than fine establishments like this... Read More
Immediately, you in the Florida-know will be aghast at such an idiotic title. Disney?? Surely even a fool such as myself must know that Disney World is nearly 400 km away from Miami in this gun-loving, alligator-ridden, voting-booth-malfunctioning state.
That's true. But the spirit is alive and well these 400 km away, where the sun shines hotter, the music plays louder, and only peasants drive cars whose names don't end in -ini, -ari, or -entley. There might not be Donald Duck down here, but on the other hand there are a lot of supporters for Donald Trump, both politically and also domestically, if you can call it that. Only 10 minutes from me are three of his towers, with thousands of people supporting him even if they don't think there should be a giant wall built between 'murica and Mexico. But Trump aside, Miami is deeply in a Disney state of mind. Read More
The first thing I can say with certainty is this: writing a travel blog post when I'm back from the place I've been is like covering my mouth for a sneeze that happened two days ago. It seems a lot less urgent, and a little odd.
The second thing I can say with certainty is this: clocks are the biggest liars on the face (get it?) of the earth. If anyone dares to tell me that time moves steadily no matter where you are or what you're doing, I'll tell you that I've got a bridge to sell, and it happens to be in Brooklyn.
Speaking of Brooklyn on a more factual note, this where my 2-day sojourn begins. Read More
The apple doesn't fall from the tree.
I'm sitting in a packed Apple store, a whopping 12 minutes after their opening, using their lightning quick internet, a spankin' new computer, and experiencing only a minor hiccup to this otherwise clever plan... Read More
To Cambodia I went, and from Cambodia I've returned.
Amazing, amazing place. Materially, poor as dirt. But as far as the people go, we're peasants by comparison. Coming back to Hong Kong last night I felt that feeling when you wake up from a great dream and you just feel sad and want to go back to sleep... Read More
Today the rains visited Shenzhen. The fellow you see above was from yesterday, which was a stunning beautiful day. The weather balance stays even in the end.
Yesterday went to visit the absolutely colossal electronics mall that sells knockoff everythings. "iPhone, Samsung, you want, you want?" I was a fool and bought a USB stick from a guy who claimed it was 1 TB and USB 3.0. Well of course if it sounds too good Read More
22 storeys above an absurdly ritzy area of Gucci and Salvatore Ferragamo stores, I'm listening to a jackhammer going on yet another construction project here in Shenzhen. These projects go 24 hours a day. By any stretch, even the most impressive projects in North America seem lazy compared to the way these Chinese work.
So here I am in the place where I can buy an iPhone and say honestly that it was locally made. I'm sure that'd fly pretty far with the tight-jean, moustache wearing folks who frequent the Drake Hotel. Support local business! Buy a MacBook!
This place is pretty wild, but really not as crowded or dirty Read More