Thursday, September 30, 2010

NY frame of mind

Ah New York.

Noise. Sites. People. Traffic. Snarls and rushing voices. Accents grating against the shoreline of my mind like sand grating against an oyster's shell. The sounds, unexpected. At first confusing. Undecipherable. And then, they begin to make sense. To round out. The vowels longer. Wider. The consonants slurred.

I noticed it first on the plane. There was a man across the aisle. His accent was flat. Mid-western I think. But some words escaped me -- though his conversation didn't. It was impossible not to hear him.

He was on his phone. The flight was boarding and he sat and held a conversation with an unseen woman on the other end of the line. I know she was a woman. Apparently she's going to Alaska and would have looked really good in the red outfit he saw. Too bad I didn't buy it for you, he joked.

But I don't think he was really joking. There's something going on there. Or at least, he wishes there was. But then, it's because of her he doesn't look as sloppy as his business partners in the deal they're doing in China. They're sloppy. No paperwork. Nothing to track efficiently the use of funds they've sent over. $300,000 x 2. The investors want to know. Who's going to tell them? They're slopped.

But he's not. He's got her and Jeff and Brian and Tom. Good thing. He's the one filled with the good ideas. But he needs them to keep him looking good. And organized.

Fortunately, the Captain announced we were preparing for take-off and all phones had to be turned off.

It does amaze me though how people can talk in loud voices in small, confined spaces and think they're having a personal conversation.

And now, I'm in New York. Arrived in at 4:30. Took a cab to my friends in Brooklyn where I was greeted with a chilled glass of white wine, truffle cheese and crackers and... the promise of an evening of dance.

We went to see Pina Bausch's, Vollmund. And oh my. It was at the Brooklyn Art museum, BAM. What a beautiful building.

It's what I miss after so many years still about living in the west. Our architecture is so young. So sterile. So new. BAM was built in the mid 1800s. Completely refurbished it is exquisite.

As was the performance. Wow! The dancers played and ran and danced in water. Pouring water raining down. A river on the stage. Buckets and scoops. A huge rock the only structure on the stage, it became part of the play. And it was incredible.

And after the performance, the founders and supports opening night reception upstairs. The space was incredible. Huge arching girders strewn with twinkle lights. Open beams and rafters. Enormous arched windows filled with a series of moving light works. And food and wine and conversation.

My ears became attuned to the accent. Words began to make sense. Sounds to flow more effortlessly.

And I am in New York. Yippee!

One of my favourite cities in the world.

All is well with my world. I'm off to a day of adventure. To meet up with my co-presenter at the conference and then to check in.

It should be an exciting day.

A tout a l'heure!

PS. My daughter is okay. She is amazing! :)


Jingle said...

have fun there...
it is both exciting and amazing place to be.

Anonymous said...


ahh ... new yauwk sitttee ...

so much to see, do, taste, touch, feel ... part history lesson, part future look, partly surreal, partly exotic

it is the worst of places, it is the best of places - all at the same time, all the time

have a street-corner pretzel for me


Maureen said...

So happy your daughter is doing well.

I love NYC, that it's on 24 hr a day, offers such riches in art, music, dance. I was just reading a review of the Pina Bausch piece yesterday. I haven't seen the group in years.

Have a super day. If you see my son in Brooklyn (he lives on George St.), wave.