Tag Archives: travel

Travel: E.I.E.I.O.

37 hours and 9 states later, I am finally in California.

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Exhaustion gave way to severe aggravation and agitation: “why the fuck aren’t we there yet,” happened at hour 29 and my girlfriend was a sweet honey bear the whole way.

Between naps and complaining, we saw this:

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Texas

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New Mexico

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Arizona

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And a million miles later, California. Work today was rough but I am going to do my best to update in a timely fashion. 12 hour days of heavy labor make that challenging but certainly not impossible. Thanks for checking in, next I’m gonna show you what I do here.

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Travel: The United States of Georgia

So over the weekend I had the opportunity to see just a spec of how truly fantastic and gorgeous my state actually is. A one hour trip to Dahlonega revealed all.  Dinner in downtown Dahlonega at Piazza with a bottle of easy drinking Chianti from Banfi.  Wine prices were stellar, only $26 for the bottle.  What a mark up!  I was so proud, my student/girlfriend correctly guessed the vintage of the wine based on some information I gave her about the color of the rim and its connection to age.

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The pizza, a concoction of spinach, roasted garlic, prosciutto, pepperoni, mozarella and ricotta was pretty good too.  For the price it was fantastic but of course it was no Antico.  Breakfast at the B&B proved lovely as well.  I loved her place settings and the mug of Bavarian chocolate.
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Cream cheese pancakes are the truth…and we love kielbasa. But in no way do these compare to Elaine’s pancakes with orange steeped blueberry compote from the B&B in Savannah. Those were/are still the best.

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Full and ready for take off, we decided to celebrate our small vacay and her finishing her first major medical school exam with a bottle of Special Club Champagne. Special Club is a designated group of small wine growers in Champagne who select their best lots every year for bottling of a vintage release, this is a 2006. Yes, those were coffee cups but with the lemon and vanilla almond macaroons, it was a showstopper.

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So we sat by the pond with our army of gnat buddies and sipped and giggled.

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30 minutes later we took a hand drawn map headed towards Amicalola Falls but got sidetracked here at another winery. A Tuscan masterpiece deadsmack in the Georgia countryside. Say what?

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There were rolling hills covered in vines and a small community of Tuscan style homes nestled in the forests  behind the vineyard.

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It’s lovely and for a moment you almost feel as if you’ve traveled abroad…although we almost traveled down the road of no return. A house was for sale and we opted to check it out. The door was unlocked BUT the owner was home. Luckily he wasn’t afraid of the two girls who just walked into his house somewhat unannounced. #hotmess

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These two lucky escapees fled to Amicalola Falls state park to go hiking. My girlfriend wanted to see bears. I did not want to see bears. We did not see any bears. Yay for us.

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There isn’t much I can say other than go here now…or this weekend or whenever you have 4-7 hours to spare for nature.

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It’s breathtaking. It will make you stare. It will challenge you. You will climb 175 stairs to see this 600 ft.  drop of magnificence.  You will be in awe that you are standing in Georgia and you will realize that Georgia is beautiful.

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Then you will climb an additional 425 stairs to see this fantastic vista from the top of the waterfall.   “The view is certainly different from the top,” she said.

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Whoever was in this car 50+ years ago maybe got too over zealous about being at the top and crash landed to the bottom. Eeriest and creepiest part of the trip seeing this old vintage truck crashed and rusted on the side of the mountain.

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But the sun was out and shining brightly.

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A beautiful day to wash away all the stresses of the city and enjoy a little cool mountain breeze.

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Foodie: Veggie Frittata

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Every now and then I like to go far away from the city lights and smog to hear the sound of birds chirping and frogs making whatever sound frogs make and little bunnies hopping and burrowing to remind myself just how much I adore the city.  😀

Okay, I also take these trips as a kind of refresher, an opportunity for clarity and rearranging my track. With so little noise and so much fresh oxygen, I feel clairvoyant.  And Aunt Kay’s is by far my favorite place to travel.  She’s as big a foodie as I am and she reminds me of my grandmother; Overly comfortable home, sprite and youthful, funny and a refrigerator stocked up with your wildest dreams.

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This unattractive hodgepodge is toasted french bread with melted smoked gouda, goat cheese covered in blueberries, pork rillette from Spotted Trotter, olives and peppers, summer sausage and some kind of herb crackers.  We munched that down with Chateau Fortia Chateauneuf du Pape Blanc  2008 by the pool under the Super Moon.  It was drinking beautifully.  Honeyed and slightly oxidized, it helped my girlfriend see just how wine can be transformed and magnified by food and vice versa.  The wine put my mind at ease from all the nature sounds, you know, pine cones falling that sound more like a rabid raccoon rushing you for your bread.103936_1_1

Then we watched Somm, a documentary about the hardest exam that no one has ever head of, ever; the Master Sommelier exam.

Check out a trailer here:

I’m exhausted just thinking about it. Breakfast the next day brought us here:

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I’ve never made a frittata before so I watched closely. 7 eggs and carnation milk for added fluffiness. Blanched veggies (asparagus and broccoli), sauteed veggies of onions and carrots, peppers, a thick rounded pan and a spatula. Takes no time at all really. Get it half cooked before topping it off with cheese and sticking it in the oven for 10 minutes then voila!
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Even the leftovers the next day were great. We topped it off both days with baked flounder and salmon and Segura Viudas Cava. And now, I miss the country.

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Comfort Friends

I know what they say about eating for comfort. It IS bad for you and frankly this weekend I didn’t give a damn darling.

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I needed all the comfort I could get this weekend and I found it. Namely through my amazing friends and family, deliciously rich food items, meaty meats and sweet treats (first bite of King Cake in over a decade , I should have stopped at bite 11). I had it all. Look!

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And then some…

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And some more…

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And then right at the point of bursting from comfort, I had some more.

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I nearly exploded. The weekend was rough and partying was minimal. So I fell into this lap and rested.

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My best meal for sure.

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Awkward Journey’s

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I’ve promised myself in the New Year to check out new places and make new friends right here in Atlanta. After traveling to LA, and realizing while I received so much love, the fit wasn’t right, I’ve struggled where to plant myself. Abroad, not yet. New Orleans, teeny tiny gay community. New York, too expensive. Chicago; too fuckin cold.

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So here I’ll post. Build a foundation and some werk and let my creations bloom.

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The decision seems to be working. I think I met Fonzworth Bentley. Lol.

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First stop. Smith’s Olde Bar. Wish me luck on my journey into awkwardness.

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Green Leaves

i needed some time alone.  to wander and explore, by myself.  so my friend invited me to travel to brooklyn for the weekend.

Downtown Brooklyn

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Monthly Meanderings

so i’ve been gone for a minute, now i’m back in the jumpoff…
okay seriously, i have been gone. and really taking things slowly. eating better. spending more time alone contemplating the silly and the serious. and working.

like today:

we did a dalla terra tasting at cucina aselina with brian larky, who’s considered a superstar in the world of italian wine imports…and with good reason.

shit was mad good.  mad good son.  refreshing prosecco’s and lambrusco’s. mouth watering nebbiolo’s and food worthy arneis’.  hot damn, yes ma’am.

and what was even better were the tasty flatbread treats we got to have. they’re not necessarily a part of my new lifestyle but hey, i wasn’t about to say no to this.  sorry.

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