Saturday, September 23, 2006

Back to School Blues

Here's a picure of Anjoli with her teacher and classmates - it was taken just as they reached the door on the first day of school.
They look like death row prisoners....

Sunday, September 17, 2006

Groovin' at the Kava Lounge

Ok I know I'm slow about posting lately.
So sorry.

I wanted to share a few more pictures of me and my "daughters" (ha ha).
So, as I was saying, after a delish Thai dinner we went to my favorite club here in San Diego, the Kava Lounge.
The Kava Lounge is unique - they serve organic beer and wine and yes, kava and other funky, but yummy herby kind of drinks, like Hibiscus Martinis. The girls and I loved their ginger lemonade. Yum. The REALLY cool thing about the Kava Lounge it's a NON-PROFIT club - that's what I love about it. There are no poseurs there, people just go to hang and dance and have a groovy time! It's funny because it was mostly women that night.
I checked ahead of time to see if a good band was playing, and I was PSYCHED to see that Carmen Rizzo and Govinda were performing.
I saw Carmen on Rachel Fuller's show, In the Attic. He produced Rachel's latest cd, Shine. He's been nominated for 2 Grammys and he's worked with Pete Townshend, Coldplay and Alanis Morissette among others. I was really impressed by his brief appearance - there was a certain sparkle there - maybe that's not the right word - he just radiated happiness. So I checked out his music and I really liked it (it's electronica/ambient/loungy). He also has a world beat band called Nyaz which is also very interesting. Anyway, I emailed him and told him that I liked his music and I told him "you should play the Kava Lounge!" Oddly enough, he did!

When we first got there, we watched belly dancers perform (individually) for about 15 minutes. Honestly, it was kind of boring (not to the men I'm sure).
I was commending the tabla player afterwards for not missing a beat and asked him if he got a bit distracted and he said, "no not at all they're my muses!"
(A tabla is an Indian drum - there's one bongo-like drum and one other drum that goes wonka wonk wonk. I'm sure you've seen/heard them many times).

After the belly dancers Carmen and Govinda started to "play" they looked more like djs really - using 2 Apple laptops - but I'm sure it was their own music! They were projecting very cool pictures and graphics on a big screen. Trippy stuff. Govinda accompanied the Apples (!) and sang sometimes and played electric violin. He sang and played beautifully.

Rebecca and Tola and I danced our butts off. It was so much fun. Laura doesn't dance. At all. (I feel a song coming on...Laura doesn't dance. at all. She spent the evening holding up...the wall). KIDDING LAURA. She's such a trooper - just sat and watched us (she did like the music and put Carmen's cd on her "list").

Here are a few pics of the girlz:

From left to right: Rebecca, Tola and Laura

Finally Carmen took a break and I kind of sauntered over and introduced myself and he jumped up and gave me a hug! He remembered me right away. I bought his cds, which he signed of course. We chatted for a little bit. He asked if I was going to the Who's Hollywood Bowl show. I told him that I penciled it in! ha ha
I hope and pray I get tickets...we'll see! He was just an absolute sweetheart really - he thanked me for bringing my friends. Then he gave me another hug and a kiss!

I look severly jet lagged but here we are!

You can check out Carmen's music here!

Govinda is amazing too...

Friday, September 08, 2006

Tales of a Suburban Warrior Princess

Ah so now I am rockin' the suburbs...

So as you know I conveniently left my husband Sujoy back in Taipei for 2 weeks so he could slave away for us as he so generously does! Thank you, sweetie pie. kiss kiss...

It was very very strange to be back at first. San Diego looks like a ghost town compared to Taipei. Where is everyone???!!
Driving was a trip. I went through a red light and a stop sign my first day driving. I NEVER do that!!! But these things are optional is Taipei (no joke). I just spaced them.

Anjoli and I spent a few afternoons at the local Y pool. We were loving the gorgeous weather and clear blue sky. (We missed that awful heatwave, but we had our share of hot hot mugginess in Taipei). Happily we met some of Anjoli's friend at the pool and wasted no time making much needed playdates for Anjoli.
She had lots of sleepovers with her friends. During one sleepover she and Diane played "insurance adjusters." Okaaaaaaaaaaay. Diane's mom had just had a fender bender in a parking lot, so they wrote up pretend reports for Allstate.
It cracked me up. This is how it read:

Name: Cynthia
Age: 19
Story: I was at Marshall's at the parking lot, and this guy just smashed into my car. It was like on purpose.

They told me: "tomorrow we're going to pretend we're working for the UN and we're going to supply Africa with water." Sweet, innit?

A few days after we came home, my dear friend Laura came down from L.A. and brought her friends Tola and Rebecca who were visiting from Sweden. We had a blast (Anjoli conveniently stayed with her friends a couple of nights so it was great to be FREE!!). What great girls they are. So sweet, smart and fun.
The first night I brought them to Coronado and we had girlie cocktails beachside at the Hotel Del Coronado. That's always the first place I bring guests who are visiting from out of town. Sadly, I forgot my camera.
They were all gung ho about visiting Tijuana, and this warrior princess aims to please. So, after many many caveats, we arrived in this crazy border city. It was just as (bad) as they expected, and we were all annoyed with the macho men who tried to lure us into their stores, but that comes with the territory. One of them kept trying to get us into a strip joint (he promised that it was a Chippendales show - HA! Fat chance). He kept saying to me: "my mother-in-law gets in free...c'mon bring your DAUGHTERS!!" grrrrrrrr. They're all around 23 years old. Oh well, that's what I get hanging around youngins.
We had a delicious lunch at a Spanish (not Mexican) restaurant:

Later on we found a quiet street off the main drag where we had margaritas:

I bought a few custom, handmade bracelets for Anjoli and Diane that this man made out of wire before our eyes. He wound them into Anjoli's name (he already had made one that spelled Diane). It was quite an amazing feat, he did it in no time and it's really very pretty! Of course I had to bring back the obligatory bottle of good tequila, so later that night we had a few more margaritas...I did manage to save most of the tequila for Sujoy. (phew)

The next day we went to my favorite beach in the world, Torrey Pines, which is in La Jolla. The water was freezing but I think they all enjoyed it.

Later that evening I dropped Anjoli off at Diane's and we went uptown to Hillcrest. It's my favorite part of town (very gay so naturally it's very quaint and filled with cool, fun shops). Rebecca was keen on going to the vintage shops. She found a scarf and Tola found a really cute dress. Unfortunately we got there late and most of them were closed, so I led the way the next day so they could return and shop some more on their way home.

After shopping we had a delicious Thai dinner then we went to dance at my favorite club here in San Diego, The Kava Lounge...We had such a blast, I'll tell you all about it real soon!