I truly believe that you discover new things about yourself in the most unexpected of places. And then, of course, learn more about the world around you.
Over the past few weeks many have asked me what my favorite place was. It's a question that is actually insane. After so many amazing memories, how could I possibly just choose one place? Then again... there are a few that stand out in my mind. Without this road trippin' adventure of mine, I would've never fully appreciated the beautiful charm of Savannah, Georgia, nor have been as impressed with the magic that is Santa Fe, New Mexico. I wouldn't know for sure that I could easily move to San Francisco nor that Los Angeles really isn't that bad at all. (To comment on the last part of that statement, for as much as I try not to pre-judge anything, I did have preconceived notions about the sprawling city of "superficiality." I can assure you that there's so much more to L.A. than Hollywood, although Hollywood is kind of awesome too.) I couldn't understand how nice it would be to live in Portland, Oregon or Seattle, Washington one day, nor that if "doing college all over again without losing the previous 'Cuse experience" were an option, I would immediately choose Ann Arbor's University of Michigan. And I definitely would not think of Couer d'Alene, Idaho as one of the most naturally gorgeous cities in the United States nor realize that I would happily hop a plane to Madison, Wisconsin simply to feast on the culinary delights that the midwestern city offers (and to kick it with the fabulous Holly).
But I stopped in sixteen more places than just the few I mentioned above, and I appreciated each and every one of them; If not for a complete fascination with the city itself, than for the people that made the stay worthwhile. Because of that, at the beginning of my trip, I decided to make something that would remind of it's entirety. Beyond a homemade collage, each one of the songs below was chosen by one of my hosts or entertainers. Not all of them, unfortunately, since I forgot to ask a few (Caitlin, feel free to add below if you can), but most.
- You Only Live Once, The Strokes
- B.M.F. (Blowin' Money Fast), Rick Ross & Styles P
- Islands, The xx
- Let Your Love Grow Tall, Passion Pit
- Maps, Yeah Yeah Yeahs
- Whatever It Is, Zac Brown Band
- The Silken Whip, Afro Celt Sound System
- All my Friends, LCD Soundsystem
- On Melancholy Hill, Gorillaz
- Sexaholic, Be-1
- The Good Times Are Killing Me, Modest Mouse
- Stereo Love, Edward Maya & Vika Jigulina
- Home, Edward Sharpe & The Magnetic Zeros
- I Second That Emotion, Smokey Robinson & The Miracles
- Love Is All, The Tallest Man On Earth
- 4th of July (Fireworks), Kelis
- Whole New Way, Scissor Sisters
- Stuck Like Glue, Sugarland
- The Scientist, Coldplay
- When You Walk In the Room, Fyfe Dangerfield
- Sweet Disposition, The Temper Trap
- The Promise, Tracy Chapman
- Life's a Dream, Built To Spill
This playlist is invaluable to me now. And I thought I'd share it with you all by the chance that you're looking for some new musical inspiration or jams at the moment. My Road Trip USA friends have some great tastes.
Yesterday morning I listened to my Americana-inspired mix as I got ready for a family brunch. You see, my little brother came home for a quick weekend visit. Since he hasn't been here since August, and he won't be able to make it back for Thanksgiving, it was most definitely a special occasion.
We prepared a lovely spread of coffee, d.i.y. mimosas, spinach quiche, hummus, green salad, bacon, fruit salad, coffee cake, jellies, cream cheese, salmon, and fresh New York bagels. Talk about the joys of home!
Today it's back to that all-too-familiar grind. In the past 28 days, I've picked up three freelance jobs that will hopefully sustain me into the new year. I've also decided to lend a hand to the wonderful people at PageDaily. For that, I'll be spending two spectacular days a week on the Upper East Side and working my little heart out on some of my favorite topics. And then of course, we have my newfound exercise routine and my refreshed commitment to health, beauty, confidence and contentment. Thank you to those that commented on my vlog, by the way, the discussion really meant a lot to me and I think it was an important one to have. As for the more extended future, like another month from now, I can't tell you where I'll be quite yet, but I will say that I won't be in the same place- not emotionally, mentally, or even physically for that matter ;). The journey continues.