More than this

Has a special place for me this clip. Reminds me sooo much of my time in Japan. And other things.

I actually used to sing a song in JAPANESE at karaoke in my Japan days. It was such an institution. We went all the time. That sense of Zeitgeist looking back… so strong. Another time; another life; another person.

Adore, covet and love Lost in Translation. Speaks to me on so very many levels, the vast majority of which I can’t even begin to articulate.

“Everybody wants to be found”

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Radio silence

So I haven’t blogged since I got back from New York, a little over a month ago.

Hard to believe I was even there. It was such an adventure. I look back and it’s as if it was someone else – not me. All somewhat surreal. Living between Central Park and Times Square, working in Midtown East, hanging out in the Village, shopping on Fifth Avenue, walking in Central Park… you get the picture. I loved it, truth be told.

Back in London.

Work has been really horribly busy. I’m in a new role (same organisation). And the role is more like two roles. Plus I’m still doing my old, legacy role. So it’s been stupid-busy.

I did get to Italy for work earlier this week. Which was good. Though fleeting.

Next year will be manic. I’m still angling to get a proper stint abroad – one measured in years, not weeks or months. Plus ça change.

Another year goes by. Almost.

Seasons greetings to all and happy holidays! (Doncha just love my PC, American-style felicitation! :P )

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Sunset over New York

new york sunset

Bitterly cold in New York today. Although air temperature-wise it was probably about 8c – not too bad – the windchill really made it feel like it was below zero. Really chilled you to the bone.

Spent the morning at the 9/11 Museum. Very moving but very worthwhile. It goes 7 storeys below ground-level and is huge, much bigger than you would think from the relatively small building at ground level.

Late afternoon we went to the Top of the Rock – aka the observation deck at the top of the Rockefeller Center main tower. It’s a triple-storey observation deck on floors 68-70. Floor 70 was actually closed due to the high winds today, but there was still plenty of viewing opportunity on the other two floors.

new york sunset top of the rock

The views are amazing – and being there to watch the full sunset over the course of an hour or so was incredible (although cold). I have many, many more pictures than the two here. Lots of sorting and editing still to do.

In the top picture, the building at the far back is the new 1 World Trade Center which opens next week – the tallest building in the Western Hemisphere. The main building in the foreground (left) is of course the Empire State Building.

My adventure in the US is almost over.

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Final stretch

Where does the time go?

I’m on my final stretch of these two months over here, Stateside.

It’s been great. A real adventure. Met so many people, done so many things. Shopped like it was going out of fashion. Have seen lots of New York.

It’s been wonderful to get out of London and be somewhere new. That sense of adventure is very real.

Have eaten too much. Have put on about 1/2 a stone (that’s about 7 lbs for those that don’t use the UK weight system). It may not be quite that much, but I’d say it is over 5 lbs. Hope I can lose it easily enough.

I could quite happily have stayed here until Christmas. The downside of the duration is that I’m just starting to settle down in some ways, work-wise anyway. Living in a corporate flat much longer wouldn’t really be for me. A bit too sterile. But workwise doing longer would have been good.

This evening – a great night out at a steak restaurant on Second Avenue hosted by a very senior London colleague who is over. Tomorrow a major work event which promises to be good fun. So many work events here – far more than at home.

So this is the final stretch. In 10 days time I’ll be heading home.

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Birdman

birdmanposter

Well that was quite the most surreal movie I’ve seen in a long time.

I saw it at Lincoln Center last night which is one of the big cinema complexes here in Manhattan. However, as it only came out on Friday (and you can’t seem to reserve actual seats like you can in the UK) – I ended up in a most unsatisfactory seat very near the front on the right hand side. The chairs in the cinema are comfortable, but I really didn’t appreciate the viewing angle – up and sideways.

Bizarrely the movie isn’t out in the UK until the New Year. I’d thought that the days of long pauses between films making their way over the Atlantic were over? Obviously not.

I like Michael Keaton, Naomi Watts, Edward Norton – solid line-up.

I’m not even going to try and write any kind of synopsis. I liked the sheer craziness and quirkiness of it but I didn’t enjoy the physical experience in the cinema because of my seating set-up – so that dented my enthusiasm.

I’d like to watch it again on DVD at home.

It actually felt more like a stage-play than a movie. The art-house/film-connoisseur set are loving it. Speaking of which, Lindsay Duncan seemed miscast in the NY theatre critic role. Just my 2c.

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Almost done a month in the US

So it’s almost been a month. Where does the time go?

Starting to feel normal now. Inevitable I guess. I know my (new) colleagues well. There’s a tighter atmosphere than back home. That’s inevitable with a much smaller office. Also, due to the ‘hire and fire’ nature of New York employment laws – the people seem very good. None of the ‘dead wood’ that you get back home. ‘Dead wood’ just isn’t put up with here. No dinosaurs. I like it.

Tomorrow we have ‘games’ in the office in the afternoon. I’m looking forward to it. I like the culture. You would never get anything like that in London.

And no. It isn’t an option for me to ‘stay’. Not possible. I’m helping out during a particularly busy period and covering an absent colleague. If they did ever offer a new role here, I would have to compete for it against others.

Irrespective, it’s been a brilliant opportunity and my ‘stint’ here will stand me in good stead career-wise for other overseas jobs, and we have quite a few. I may have less than a month to go before returning to Pudding Island but that still gives me the time and space to do the things I want to do and to enjoy living in New York and in the US.

Sheridan is coming out and I’m also going down to DC to see old friends. So it’ll be busy. Also have some exciting work-related stuff coming up.

Good times.

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