Miscellaneous Archives - MAP AND MOVE

9/11: Champion New York

By | Uncategorized | No Comments

I passed by my old apartment downtown yesterday, a block away from the old WTC site. For my last year there, there wasn’t a day when I didn’t have a face off with tourists crowding the sidewalk or suits and ties making the mad dash to work. So much so that I almost forgot that 2,819 people had perished a three minute walk away from where I lived ten years earlier.

But something struck a nerve in me a few days ago when I read a dispatcher’s account of that day.¬†David Rosensweig talked about what it was like sending the 204 fire units to Ground Zero that day and the trauma he still feels in unknowingly rushing many of his good friends to their deaths.

Another dispatcher, Tyron Connell, talked about how a man called repeatedly from the north tower. “The first time I spoke to him, he was relatively calm,” Connell recalled. “By the fourth time, he was very distraught, talking about his kids and his wife. I think there was a point where he knew he wasn’t going to get out. That is something I will never forget.”

So today is a reminder of how the past shapes the future and how we must look back to move forward. Judging by the revived hustle and bustle of downtown, New York has proved that it is a champion of remembering that.
For other ways to remember, go here.

Dining in East Africa

By | Africa, OUR TRAVELS | 4 Comments

In lieu of the tragic events of Tuesday’s earthquake and soon to be catastrophic effects of Hurricane Irene, I’ve decided to write a more positive post in the hopes that all New Yorkers can rise above the possible cancellation of Dave Matthews Band on Governors Island this weekend.

Many people have asked me what the food was like while I was traveling through Kenya and Tanzania. I’ll be honest, food in East Africa is not always the stuff culinary dreams are made of. It didn’t stop me from gaining weight though. Here are my picks of the bunch.

Kenya food cabbage matokeo street vegetable africa east

Cabbage and chai. A meal usually consists of a filler like rice, chapati (thin Indian crepes) or ugali (the best way to describe it is a dough made of maize) paired with one dish- meat, lentils, beans or the aforementioned cabbage.

Making chapati. Your typical meal in a hut.

Kenya food drink fruit juice sugar cane mombasa fresh

Some kind-hearted employees in a juice store in Mombasa, Kenya pitied my desperate tourist photos and let me go in the back to see all the action: a machete-welding man chopping up sugar cane and feeding them into this grinder.

passion fruit juice sugar cane fresh kenya africa mombasa natural delicious

Fresh Passion Fruit sitting next to its friend, Fresh Sugar Cane Juice. This is the real deal. Just fruit, no additives and eternal happiness.

Kenya food cassava snack africa fried fresh

Cassava- It's like fat, starchy french fry minus the crisp.

kenya food italian pasta aniello diani beach seafood fresh delicious

Aniello's on Diani Beach. Basically an Italian decided to set up shop on the the coast of Kenya and marry homemade Italian goodness with fresh seafood off the coast of Kenya. It was one of the best meals I had in three months.

Kenya food samaki fish curry

Samaki- fried fish with coconut curry sauce. Yums.

Coming Home: So Fresh and So Broke, Broke

By | Career, INSPIRATION, OUR TRAVELS | 8 Comments

I’ve been home for nearly 4 weeks and the same question has come up again and again: am I happy to be home?

money foreign currency travel colorful countries
Can Whole Foods start accepting Kenyan shillings please?

Despite the fact that I discovered that I’m filthy rich in every single currency except for the one I need, I’m surprisingly happy with my current coordinates. So I was surprised when a friend recently asked if I needed help getting up on my feet again. I was never down in the first place. I quit my job eight months ago to travel and volunteer; I’ve been without a steady paycheck since. But the fact is, I’ve never looked back. Nor have I felt so incredibly up.

Coming from the US, and especially from New York, we are so programmed to equate happiness with a steady paycheck that sometimes we forget to ask if our underwhelmed and over-caffeinated souls, are in fact, happy.

There’s a disposition to discount the importance of travel and the afterglow of a good trip where you feel refreshed, alive and motivated to work again.

So am I happy? Yes. I feel this incredible surge of energy to move on to the next chapter, to find the next cool thing to do, and to make the old and familiar- fresh again.

I don’t live in a fantasyland where I think I can live off my good looks (ha) and insurance will pay for itself (though it should). I don’t have any problem working my butt off to find my next job either. But at the moment, I am comfortable reveling in the slight discomfort of life without a steady check. Because truly, I think it’s the discomforts in life that challenge us to think outside the box the most.