Thursday, January 28, 2010

In 20 Years You’ll Be More Disappointed In What You Didn’t Do, Than By What You Did.

So this new show, The Buried Life, is the probably the most meaningful and productive reality show out there today. I really think it’s terrific how they decided once they’ve accomplished something from their list, they help a stranger accomplish something they’d like. If you haven’t read the full list of 100 things to do before Ben, Johnnie, Dave, and Duncan die, you should do so. I chose this title for my blog today because I feel like I should apply it to my life. Also, I feel that this is how most people should try live. It’s the only way. There are so many times where I (and many others, I’m sure) have skipped out on doing something, small or big, then later on wish so badly I didn’t; you don’t ever want to regret letting time pass you by.

Now, I don’t have a list wanting to pay off my parents mortgage, sleep in a haunted house, or sing the national anthem to a packed stadium but I have been very lucky in my life having seen some amazing places and met some marvelous people. My bucket list is to not DO 100 things, but GO to 100 cities (at least). I haven’t finished writing my list yet, but I will soon. I’ve been to quite a few cities but these following have been my favorite:

Florence, Italy. What a beautiful, historic city! I moved to Italy in August of 2007 and it was by far the best move of my life. I lived in a true Italian style apartment smack in the middle of Santa Croce church and The Uffizi Museum and around the corner from Ponte Vecchio (the photo below).

Amsterdam, Holland. Such an all around FUN city! The Dutch were, by far, the most friendly of the Europeans that I met. Amsterdam is also a beautiful city. The houses are definitely a sight to see (the photo below). Some are leaning left, some to the right, but either way the owners still live in their homes as if there’s nothing strange about them. Not forgetting to mention Amsterdam's beautiful 1,500 bridges and about 63 miles of canals.

Berlin, Germany. A super modern city with a super retro feel. Berlin was the city where my eyes were probably open the widest. Being that there is SO much history in Berlin, you could almost feel it walking around the city. I guess that feeling mainly came from parts of the Berlin wall standing on every corner. The Brandenburg Gate (photo below) is the only remaining gate of a series through which one formerly entered Berlin from the West.

Gstaad, Switzerland. Simply a fairytale town. When I visited Gstaad I was speechless; there were Clydesdales, story book houses, and about 1-2 feet of snow (depending where you stepped). I was fortunate enough to stay with my friend Carmen in a house just to the right of the castle-looking hotel you see in the center of the photo below. At night we would eat raclette (a warm dish of cheese, potatoes, cold-cuts and pickles), drink Jagermeister and run around barefoot in the snow. During the day we would eat schnitzel (fried veil with potato salad), drink beer, and take chair lifts to the top of the Alps to throw snowballs at each other.

If you get a few dollars and a few weeks to spare, travel. Forget about everything where you are, pick a new place to be and just leave.

Recipe For The Day:

Really Good Mexican Guacamole!

1 medium/large mixing bowl (this will also serve as your serving bowl)

1 small frying pan

4 avocados*

3 limes

1 bushel of cilantro (only need half)

1 red pepper (only need half)

1 yellow onion (only need half)

1 clove of garlic

Canola oil


Serves: a decent party

Prep/Cook time: 20 minutes

*4 avocados if they’re the small dark green ones. If they’re the large bright green ones you’ll only need 2. Begin by slicing avocados in half and scooping them into the mixing bowl. Keep 2 of the avocado seeds aside. Cut all 3 limes in half and squeeze every last drop of the juice into the bowl. This can be done easiest by sticking a fork into the halved lime and using the fork as a juicer. Using a fork, brush the cilantro off the stems (its okay if some stems get in the mix) kind of like you’d brush your hair. Use about ½ of the cilantro bushel. Using a whisk or a smasher, start mashing it all together. Make sure you get all the thick clumps smashed and everything all mixed and mashed.

Next, put about 3 large table spoons of oil in a frying pan and start to warm it on a medium low temperature. Cut the red pepper in half and slice thin pieces then dice itty-bitty pieces – set aside. Then, chop the onion in half. Same as the red pepper, slice thin and dice tiny pieces – set aside. Next, peel about ¾ of the garlic (or a little less of that, but I REALLY like garlic) and same as the above 2, slice thin, dice even smaller. Now toss the red pepper, onion and garlic in the frying pan with the warmed oil. At this point turn the heat up a few notches and continue stirring. Add lots of salt while stirring because the salt will cook into the oil and veggies. Don’t leave the pan because if the veggies aren’t continuously stirred then they’ll stick to the bottom of the pan and burn. You should stir until the veggies are lightly browned.

When it’s all done, pour all that is in the pan into the bowl with your other ingredients. Mix, mix, mix all together. Remember the 2 seeds you were to keep aside? Put them in the guacamole mix, it prevents it from turning brown if you cover and save it in the fridge. And TA DA! Real Mexican guacamole!

(don’t forget, it’s totally okay to add more lime, salt or cilantro if your taste buds tell you so!)

So, happy weekend to you all!

On Saturday we’re celebrating my Dad’s 50th birthday. Check back soon for stories of Dad’s “Over The Hill”! Maybe we can get him up on a keg stand?

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