Category Archives: entertainment

Sisters in Paris 

As I mentioned in my Amsterdam post, I got to enjoy a little vacation with my sisters in Paris this time, last year.  It was their first time in the city and we had a long list of things to do. 

We started our trip with a train ride from Amsterdam.  After hopping on the wrong train & transferring, we accidentally ended up in first class.  It was amazing! 

Our hotel in Paris was right near the Eiffel Tower, & we could peak at it from our window.  My sister & I made sure to walk over to the tower as soon as we checked in.  We took lots of photos. 

   
    
   

The next two days were filled with activities.  We visited The Louver and checked out the Mona Lisa, we stopped by the Eiffel Tower more than once, we ate delicious food, drank lots of wine & wandered the romantic streets of the city. 

  
One of my favorite events was when we took the train to Versailles to see The Palace.  Here’s what the royal estate looked like…  

  
  
  

   

The bedrooms, the carpets, the lighting fixtures, the drapes… everything was so beautiful!

 
  
 

I stopped to touch up my makeup in one of the royal mirrors, as I imagined being a princess, just hanging out at home.


 

Speaking of mirrors… here’s a shot in the famous Hall of Mirrors. You might recognize it from Rihanna’s Dior commercial!

  
  

  
 

Once again, pretending to be a princess…

 
  
  

My blogger bestie and her husband also joined us on the trip.  You saw them in my Amsterdam post, as well.  We met for drinks & bites at the highest view point in Paris.  Here’s a shot of our gorgeous view, from HautePinkPretty.com.  

 

It was a magical moment to share with the girl I once worked with at a bank.  We always dreamed of traveling & talked about following our passions.  Now, here we were, toasting in France! 
I also had the pleasure of taking my sisters to the famous Ladurée, for macaroons and tea.  It was an early birthday present to my big sis.  It filled me with joy to celebrate with her in such a beautiful city. 

  

In a couple of days, my sisters and brother-in-law are joining me for my 2016 vacation… In Colombia! Stay tuned for the post.  I promise to not make you wait a whole year for it. 

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Rhymesayers 20 Year Anniversary 

Last month I got to celebrate with my Rhymesayers friends for their 20th Anniversary at Target Center in Minneapolis, Minnesota.  I’ll admit, in 1995 – when RSE was getting started on building what would one day become my favorite independent hip hop record label – the only hip hop I was listening to was from the West Coast, and my 12 year old self was more concerned with singing Selena songs more than anything. But, just because I was late to the party, doesn’t mean that I haven’t been having a good time… 

I was honored to be invited to this celebration. My only experiences in the city of Minneapolis all involve Rhymesayers moments… & I feel so lucky for that! 

I get to the venue a little early to pick up my ticket. I hang around and say hi to some familiar faces before doors open. When I make it inside, I’m so excited! I want to enjoy every minute of this seven-hour joyous occasion.  

 

Photo by Beth Saravo

  
I join some of my favorite Rhymesayers family members stage-side to watch the show. I’m pretty excited when Los Nativos are on. With their Spanish lyrics and Aztec dancers, I feel my culture being proudly represented. 

  

 
  
 

Photos by Cory Dewald

 
 
The show is moving on swiftly and I’m standing amongst some of the upcoming acts. I make my rounds to thank everyone for allowing me to be a part of this. It feels so good to be welcomed by the creators of the legendary label. 
I walk around the arena to watch the show from different angles. From side stage, to my assigned seat, to the engineer booth, it’s all amazing. I like to watch the entire production come together; it fascinates me to catch people (all people) in their element.  
Of course, my immediate attention goes to the performers, but watching Siddiq, J Bird & Slug enjoy the fruits of their labor is just as exciting. It’s beautiful to catch the look on the faces of some of the Rhymesayers artists, while they enjoy their label mates’ sets. I’m greatly entertained by Randy controlling & perfecting the sound. I’m in awe when I spot some of my favorite photographers capturing glorious moments that they’ll share on their websites & Instagram posts. For me, Sarah Dope, Cory Dewald, Van Styles & Beth Saravo are just as big as the stars on the mic.

 

Sarah Dope. Photo by Cory Dewald

  

Van Styles. Photo by Cory Dewald

 
I turn into a total geek when I catch these behind the scenes moments. When I make my way to the friends & family room, I notice that my dear friends have provided us with delicious snacks & plenty of libations. That’s not the best part, though. There’s a door connecting to the media room. It’s buzzing with all the social network stars, afore mentioned, who are working hard to capture moments of the big day. This is where the magic happens. These are the people documenting the night for all the world to see! With laptops, cameras, chargers, and electrical wiring all around, it’s thrilling to see these geniuses at work.   

 

A shot I got at Beth Saravo’s work station.


Around the corner, there’s an interview room. Artists are escorted to & from the exclusive area, while passing by friends & family who are taking a break from the bustling crowd. I dream of being the one behind those doors, asking all the in-depth questions on camera…someday! 

  
I spend my day bouncing around, taking in as much as I possibly can. When I make my way stageside again, I notice headliner, Slug, of Atmosphere.  I’ve had the pleasure of chatting with him casually on a few occasions. Feeling nostalgic, due to the whole “anniversary” thing, I want to share my first Atmosphere memory with Sean. When I go to greet him, he smiles, gives me a hug & for some reason, I chicken out.  
Even though he’s standing alone, and  I have his attention, something inside tells me not to bother him with my story.   I’m sure he hears stuff like this all the time... 

So, I keep the story of how 19 year-old me used to roam the streets of Modesto, CA at night, with loaded spray cans, good friends, and graffiti dreams to myself. “Star,” would be hit up on walls for all to see & I’d be bumping Atmosphere, “And this goes to those who tag and paint walls with aerosol…” 
I’ve never quite remembered what the name of the song was, but who better to ask, than Slug himself? Of course, he’d give me the answer that so many of my fellow Atmosphere fans have failed to provide. But, like I said, my self-doubt got in the way, and all I did was use my reoccurring dialogue. 

“Hi. How are you? So good to see you again!” 

Then, I walked away, hoping not bother him.  
The night goes on, acts continue to grace the stage & move the crowd. Dem Atlas blows me away.  

 

Photos by Cory Dewald

 
  Grieves has me enthralled. 

Photo by Cory Dewald


 
  Prof makes me jump to my feet & party hard with his energetic stage presence.  

 

Photos by Cory Dewald

  
 I’m amazed by DJ Abilities & touched by his tribute to Eyedea.   

Photo by Cory Dewald


 
As always, Aesop astounds me.  

Photo by Cory Dewald

   
Dilated makes me proud to be from California. 

Photo by Cory Dewald

 
I’m wrapped up in every minute. 
I enjoy the show with some of my favorite Rhymesayers (associated) ladies – the Glam Dolls, friends, family & significant others.  

  

We step outside for fresh air, after Brother Ali’s set and hurry back in for some water & to catch Atmosphere as they close the show.   

Photo by Cory Dewald

 
I’m walking through the crowd, floor level when I spot special guest, Spawn, reunited on stage with Slug, performing the song that introduced me to Atmosphere & Rhymesayers as a whole. 

Photo by Cory Dewald

I could kick myself for not telling Slug about it when I had the chance… Oh how different that interaction & the entire night could have gone…

I could picture it already.  Slug would go all Betty Wright (Tonight is the Night) & say something along the lines of

“Ladies & gentlemen, I know a lot of you have been rockin’ with us for a long time. I know you may have seen us live before, but tonight’s set will be a little different. We want to bring back some memories. Everybody, think back to your very first time… When did you first fall in love with Atmosphere? What about Rhymesayers? Well, there’s a lady here tonight that clearly recollects her first time, and she shared it with me earlier…  

And it goes a little something like this…!” 

 

Photo by Cory Dewald

 
Haha! I know, I know… I have a wild imagination. But who knows? Maybe it would’ve happened… 

   

  

    

Photos by Cory Dewald

  
After the confetti fell, gratitude was deeply expressed, and the lights went on, people made their way back to their cars, trains & other forms of transportation to take home with them the warm memories & great feelings about what took place at Target Center that night.  
I headed backstage to check in with friends. When I shared my Slug story with Van Styles, he compared it to the feeling he gets after missing a shot & he encouraged me to always go for it & never hold back… “Because you just never know.” Then, he graciously invited me to Atmosphere’s green room, to tell the story to Sean, myself. I got there in time to watch Slug make his way out, & like my moment, he had escaped. 
On my way to party the night away with some of my favorite people, I ran into Ant & shared the short version of my story with him. It was then that I was finally told the name of that song: Multiples. Boom! Life was good. 
The rest of night was a collection of stories & celebrations with my RSE friends. We partied until we could party no more. Those are the kind of nights I live for!   

 

*Special Thanks to Ashanti for always taking care of me. To Siddiq, J Bird, and the entire Rhymesayers family & extended family for always making “Minnesota Nice” such a real thing in my life. I can’t even begin to express my gratitude in words. To Skye, Jeff, Sarah, Grieves, DJ Fundo, Van Styles, Tanya, Teresa, Jasmine & friends for making my night a fun-filled experience to remember. And, of course, to Beth Saravo and Cory Dewald for collaborating with me & sharing their masterpieces to bring this post to life! 

 

Photo by Beth Saravo

 
Thank you all so much. I’ll see you at SoundSet 2016! 

Good Grieves 

I first met Benjamin “Grieves” Laub, at the SoundSet 2014 after party. We talked about music & life. I told him that I’m a flight attendant & blogger, and he expressed how much he’d like to share some stories with me. He gave me his contact information & asked me to follow up. I sent an email almost immediately, but never received a response. So, when I noticed him standing next to me at the Rhymesayers 20 celebration, I had to seize the moment. 

He greeted me very politely, after speaking with Photographer, Beth Saravo, who was standing beside me. I was also very polite with my greeting, & after introductions, I reminded him that we’d met before and I wanted to hear his in-flight experiences. 

I thought he was as going to ask me to email him again, but he didn’t. He took a deep breath and went into storytelling mode – something we all know this West Coast MC is very good at. 

  

Photo by Beth Saravo

  
He started with a flight to Denver, CO, a city I’ve come to love. He didn’t disclose which airline he was flying on, but he did disclose the shameless details. A female flight attendant wanted to go above and beyond customer service standards, when she offered (or insisted that he let her give him) a ride home… a little “extra” was definitely insinuated. I can only imagine… 

Another incident he recalls was a recent flight. The destination wasn’t disclosed, but his neighboring passenger was someone he’d never forget. 

“Throughout the flight this guy was complaining about how impatient everyone was. He kept saying how everyone was in such a rush. I just let it slide & didn’t say anything. Then, after landing,  (when the seatbelt sign is turned off), you know how everyone stands up?  People behind him were already in the aisle and he got all mad and yelled, ‘Oh yeah, like it’d kill ya to wait, huh?’

I didn’t say it, but I was like, “Um, You’re the only impatient one here.” ” 

I was impressed by his ability to spot someone who was clearly deflecting. Not everyone can do that & put their frustration aside, in those kind of situations. But, that wasn’t even the most impressive story. 

One time, upon landing, Grieves was sitting next to a young woman who wasn’t feeling well. She seemed very nervous & looked like she was about to be sick. His suspicions came to fruition when the lady began vomitting… In his direction!  He was sitting in the window seat, the woman in the middle, with someone to her left, in the aisle seat. Grieves was the unlucky victim of her aim.  

My first, and instant reaction, was ‘Oh f%^*#!’ But, when I looked at her, she said, “I’m so sorry. I’m pregnant. This happens.”

It was I one of those total human moments and I couldn’t be mad. I looked at her, wearing a thin top, covered in vomit & I took off my button down shirt,  to let her use it to cover herself and get off the plane. She was already so embarrassed, I didn’t want her to feel worse.”

I was so moved by how cool Grieves was in such an uncomfortable position. I see and work with passengers all the time. Not everyone is this calm & collected. Bravo, Ben! 

 

Photo by Beth Saravo

 
Grieves also admitted to me that he only uses social media to talk about good airline experiences. He likes to keep his rants private. We discussed the “power of the corporate letter,” and he promised to write something about the next flight attendant he encounters who goes above and beyond. Maybe my colleagues will catch him on their flights! 

As we approach a busy week with holiday flyers, I hope everyone keeps this post in mind.  Be like Ben, ya’ll! 

 

Photo by Beth Saravo

 
I’d like to thank Benjamin Laub, for sharing these stories with me and for making my night so special. You’re a good guy, Grieves. I hope to catch you in the friendly skies soon. Cheers!  

For up-to-date information, head to GrievesMusic.com and Rhymesayers.com/Grieves 

Photo by Beth Saravo

 
*Special thanks to the amazing Beth Saravo, for collaborating with me on this post & providing her masterpieces.  I look forward to working with you again! 
Check out more of Beth’s photos on BethSaravo.com

My First Burn 

My last post was about my days leading up to Burning Man.  Even though I can’t possibly sum everything up in words, here’s my attempt at sharing some of my experience with you… 

Day 1 for me, is all about “adjusting.”  I really had no idea what to expect.  I’m still warming up to my RV mates when I meet the rest of the people in our camp. I’m feeling utterly unprepared. I don’t have a bike & that’s the main source of transportation around the 7 mile radius known as “Playa.” 
When some of the female campers want to go explore, I feel left out. Should I just walk? There’s no way I’ll ever keep up. 

One of our campers offers me his bike & I scurry after the girls to catch up. They’re all friends or know each other in some way and although it’s their first burn, they seem to know how to navigate around the clock-like area. I’m once again, reminded of how unprepared I really am. 

We make a stop for lunch. This is when I get to experience the “no cash transactions” policy for the first time. I have gifts to trade, but I don’t even have to use them here. It’s Chipotle, it’s free and it’s delicious! The camp serving the food is also offering signature cocktails. This is when I learn that you’re supposed to bring your own cup (*insert forehead slap). So unprepared.  

Luckily, I have a water with me. I chug the remains & use the bottle for booze at our future stops. We make our way around to different camps & stop frequently to admire some of the art pieces. I’m amazed.  

  
   

  

   
  
We head back to camp shortly after getting word that our friends, A&M have arrived. Maybe I’ll feel a little more at ease now that I have some familiar faces around.  

   
 
 
    
 We congregate with the entire group & have a camp meeting. Our camp leaders, (I guess you would call them) are some major veterans to the event. They have a lot of experience in Black Rock City.  They named our camp Anam Cara – soul friend. It’s their intention that everyone in our camp meet theirs during our time here. 

   
 The night comes quickly & a group of us head out to explore Playa at night. Only, I’m not really in the mood to party. I’m still feeling out of place, unprepared & unwelcome. Against my better judgement, I go out anyway. 

My perception takes total control after my group heads into a dance tent. The music is so loud & everyone is so excited to dance, but I can’t hold my tears back. I’m bawling & I just want my friend to walk me back to the RV so I can sleep it off and they can enjoy themselves without me. 

I’m pretty sure I’m going home in the morning. Maybe this place isn’t for me.  

Sure, It seems like fun to “go back to basics,” to experience life off the grid, and to have to use your limited resources wisely… but to be honest, I’ve experienced that kind of living. For certain years of my childhood, I remember times when my (then) single mother couldn’t pay all the bills. I know what it feels like to be walking through the house at night & the lights being shut off. I remember our house phone being disconnected by the phone company.  I already know what all that feels like. Why on Earth would I actually pay money to live like what I’ve worked so hard to get away from?  I don’t know, but I gotta go. For now, though, I’ll just cry myself to sleep.  

Day 2 is a little better. I wake up to my concerned friends asking if I’m staying.  After having a whole night to think about it, I realize that my camp mates are right:  I’m just out of my comfort zone. At first, when they suggested it, I thought, You don’t know anything about me or my comfort zone.  I live my life testing comfort zones.  I’m always in a different city, with different people and… And then, I realized, the constant change of scenery & people had become my comfort zone.  Taxis, subways, trains and planes have all become so normal to me.  I’m usually only in one place or around certain faces for a day or two.  It’s  easy to “smile through it” for a day.  But, I was here for five days, living intimately with my RV mates, with no social media escape & no Über to call to get me out of it.  It doesn’t take much time to think about my response.  I’m staying! 

I spend the day as part of a group, from morning to night. I’m still not fully familiar with the city and I want to be with my friends.  

     

      

  

photo by April Dydasco

 
It ends up being a day (& night) of dancing, partying & lots of drinking.

     
    
 I’m enjoying myself, but  I’m starting to think that it’s not quite the experience I came here for. Maybe I’ll try a different approach tomorrow… 

 

One of my favorite memories of the day: Having drinks at Scar Bar. To order a drink here, you had to show a scar & tell the story behind it. It was such a beautiful way to connect with one another.

  

photo by April Dydasco

 

Day 3 is the day I explore alone. I’ve looked over the booklet that I received upon arrival. It lists different events being held at certain camps. I’m interested in few workshops.  

I’ve heard that there are community bikes roaming about. You’re free to pick one up & use it as you please, when you actually spot one. I’m starting on foot and I hope to find one. 

I decide that I want to try something new today, and when I stumble upon a community steam bath, I know it’s time to let my inhibitions go. Even though I’m staying in an RV, water consumption is something you need to be aware of. Since showers are a luxury, I undress & climb into the igloo-like structure. There’s a lot of steam, and it’s hot like a sauna. There are a few spray bottles & lots of naked men. It’s definitely a new experience for me to carry on a casual conversation with perfect strangers, while bathing, but it’s also very liberating.     

This is a similar (miniature) version of the steam bath structure.

Now that I’m clean, I head to a couple workshops that touch on self development, self discovery & self empowerment. As I’ve mentioned before, I attended the Lamdmark Forum in 2013, and have enjoyed this type of work ever since. 

I continue my day with a personal coaching session, and a hot dog lunch accompanied by a tarot card reading – something I’ve always wanted to do! I’m noticing that I love daytime here so much more.  I’m what you would call a “day burner.” 

  
I stumble upon one of those community bikes & take myself around center camp. It’s a beautiful, huge tent where art is displayed, acts are on stage, and people are practicing acroyoga. It’s amazing to see.  

On my way back to camp, I get caught in the biggest dust storm I’ve witnessed my entire time here. Everything is consumed with dirt and the tiny particles hurt as they whip against my skin. 

 I don’t let the storm bother me. Even though it’s difficult to breathe and hard to see, I’m actually taking in all the beauty and strength of Mother Nature. 

There are times that I have to stop, because I can’t  bike through the white-out, but the journey back to camp is such  an adventure! 

This photo was a gift from a camp I passed during my solo bike ride, during the dust storm.

   
I decide that I’m continuing on with my solo mission tonight. I take the bike out & hit a couple of bars. One of my favorites is Spanky’s Wine Bar. It’s ladies night, which means men must do what ladies want. I’m in the mood to chill, and red wine is always perfect for that. I roll the dice at the bar & the “price” for my drink is that I have to find the founder of Spanky’s camp, ask to see his penis, point & laugh. 

*Note: Burning Man is all about consent & no one ever “has” to do anything they’re not comfortable with. 

I complete my task as payment for my wine. Why not? 
When I go back for the community bike that had gotten me around most of my day, I notice that it’s now serving some other lucky burner. It’s gone. I take it as a sign to head back to camp & get a good night’s sleep to seize more of the day tomorrow. 

Day 4
is my last full day in Black Rock City. I’m excited & free today! I want to hit a few workshops, spend time with the group, eat, drink, and stay up to catch the famous Robot Heart art car in deep Playa for sunrise.  
I start my day with delicious French toast and when my friend, A, wants breakfast, I can’t deny her. We head back for a couple of slices, even though my workshop is starting soon. She loves it. I’m happy. 
When we arrive at the camp hosting the workshop I want to attend, we discover that it’s full & has been moved. I’m sad that I’m going to miss it, but letting my friend enjoy yummy food made me happy. I’ll just look at other workshops.  
When I pop my head into a nearby tent, I recognize Dave Booda, who I completed a Lamdmark course with. If he’s here, I know his wife (my friend), Paula, must be near! I turn & suddenly, I see her standing next me. I’m so excited… In a place with no cell phone reception, the Universe brought me back together with this amazing, powerful, inspirational woman! 

    
I’m excited to participate in the workshop. It’s called Psychics 101. Little by little, we ease into exercises that lead us to reading each other’s energy. It’s mind-blowing! Some of these strangers are sitting in front of me, with their eyes closed, and they are picking up on so many truths about me. 
The workshop is a reminder of how much we’re all always saying, even without words. I’m present to how loud I am, even when I don’t speak, how much people can read me & how much I try to hide it. Wow! 
I also notice how much I try to ignore what people are giving me. I’m so caught up in my life & what I have going on, that sometimes, I just look past what other people are dealing with. I’m reminded to be more open with people. Life is so much more beautiful when we’re connecting.

I head back to camp, feeling fulfilled. A few of us head out for a bike ride.  It’s one of the most magical days I’ve had… 

  

        

      

        
Soon, we gather with our camp mates to offer black light, glow-in-the-dark body painting, as our gift to the Playa. It’s a nice way to come together and meet other burners.
The night goes on & we ride around looking for as much fun as we can find.  We eventually split up, agreeing that we should all do what will make us happy.  Since it’s my last night, I want to see more of the art pieces… 

This is the Burning Man Temple. People gather here to pray, meditate, and leave gifts & notes for loved ones, as a way of “letting go.” Before the week was over, the temple, along with everything in it, would be burned. Walking through it was very moving.

   
   
   
    
 

  

 

I left a little note for someone who was there with me in spirit…


 
   
 
    
  
 
    
  

I had to get a photo with The Man before he was burned.

 
 I’m determined to stay out until sunrise. So, that’s just what I do. By some – I don’t know, miracle- I find Leo (the RV driver that I had the bumpy start with) and his partner, John at a random bar with a bonfire.  We dance into the morning hours & drink champagne at Robot Heart. By now, we all love each other. 

     
  
  We ride around the outskirts known as “Deep Playa,” and find a huge art fire to warm us from the desert’s morning chill. Someone explains to us that this, like many other pieces created for this year’s gathering, will be burned. It’s a reminder that nothing lasts forever, that things are always changing & we are always building and creating.    

photo by John Andrew Kennedy IV

After a full night and a gorgeous sunrise, I take my time riding back to camp. I make frequent stops to appreciate the art pieces along the way. I know it’s almost time to pack my bags & get ready to leave Black Rock City.  

  
 

    
 

          
My same amazing friends who got me all set up to attend Burning Man, also set me up with a ride back out. I met Peter, a Philadelphia local, yesterday, and we set a meeting time for today. When he comes for me, I have to say bye to my RV buddies, who I had come to love over the last few days. It was a bitter sweet. 

  
As Peter and I begin our journey back into the real world, we spot a group of 3 hitchhikers. Since we have room in the car & we’re all heading in the same direction, we invite them to join us.  
We share our experiences and instantly bond. We talk about the people we met, the things we did, what we saw & how we felt. It’s nice getting to know each other on the open road.

We make a few stops for delicious food, the final one being a farewell to our lady hitchhiker, also a Landmark graduate (small world). When we arrive to San Francisco, I part ways with the guys. It really feels like the perfect way to to end my first Burn… 

Burning Man isn’t just a story to tell. It’s an experience, a feeling, a way of life. It’s a place that will never exist again, for next year, the entire city will change. After each annual gathering, the desert is left with no trace of what took place.  It’s a temporary city, built by the people, for the people.  

Where else can we simply use our gifts & words as payment for food and drink? Where else do we trade what we have with each other, to make someone smile. How often are we free to look and dress as crazy as we want? Where else is creativity & sexuality encouraged in such a way?  How often can wear as much (or as little) as we please? 
Although I complained, I resisted and I cried… I also laughed, connected, and felt confident & sexy… & safe. It was nice to be in a place where trust is the default. The instant camaraderie that Burners feel with other Burners is something so special and so rare. Something happens to human beings out there in that desert.  I’m not sure what that thing is, but I’m so glad that that thing happened to me.  

Thanks for reading along, everyone.  I know this was a long post, but trust me, it still doesn’t cover everything. 

*Special Thanks to each and every person that made Burning Man 2015 possible, especially those in my camp & those that I met during my time there.  I appreciate every story I heard, every drink I had, every bite of food, every dance, every tear, every laugh, every moment.  
**Assistance with photos: April Dydasco 


I know I’m failing & falling behind, but stay tuned for more on my #30postsin30days challenge. 



Gorgon City (San Diego & Philadelphia) 

When my ears first heard Imaginiation by Gorgon City, it was love at first sound.  My friend, Miguel (who has now become like my personal DJ, sending me tracks & mixes on a regular basis), first introduced me to the song one wild night in Philadelphia.  I instantly became a fan.  

I played the song and the album, Sirens, on repeat more than my roommates could probably stand.  Sorry guys! I was in love…

 
I’ve played the track for just about everyone in my life, and I’ve made new Gorgon City fans in different parts of the world.  You’re welcome, guys. 😉 

Some of those fans, and some of those lands, include my sisters in San Diego, CA.  Luckily, the fine city that I call home would be the group’s second stop for their North American Headline Tour.  I had to go!

My amazing sisters were kind enough to purchase my ticket & call it an early birthday present.  For those of you wondering, I’m a Scorpio. October 25th is the day I celebrate life (along with some of my favorite musical influences).  

Anyway, October was a super busy month for me.  Although I’m famous for always celebrating my “Birthday Month,” this year, I had the chance to work my tushie off, and I took full advantage of that… More on that later. 

The night before the show, after working a long flight from Madrid to Philadelphia, I hopped on a flight from Philly to San Diego.  I wanted to get a good night’s sleep and have lots of energy for the show. 

The excitement was killing me.  I met up with my sisters and we headed to the House of Blues.  We didn’t arrive too early, so, we didn’t have much time with Amtrac before the guys took the stage.  

I wasn’t sure if Kye & Matt (“Foamo” & “RackNRuin”) would be bringing their festival-worthy live singers along on the tour.  So, when I heard Lulu James open the show with her rendition of Real (originally performed by Yasmin on  Sirens), I was elated… & I knew Josh Barry would be hitting the stage soon, too.  

  
As the show progressed, the guys took us on a wonderful musical journey, while Lulu and Josh flexed their vocal abilities, covering lyrics from a wide range of artists who have recorded with Gorgon City.  One stand out moment for me, was when I heard Lulu do 6am.  On Sirens, the track was recorded by Tish Hyman, who has a killer unique voice.  Lulu’s cover was raved about weeks later in Philadelphia, by my flight attendant friends.  We were also quite moved by Josh’s rendition of Unmissable, especially when he went a cappella & had the crowd clapping in unison. 

I was extremely impressed by how much all four artists grew over the course of the tour.  Their movements seemed more fluid & their chemistry was undeniable.  In such a short time, their stage presence had really matured. It was awesome to witness. 

  
The best part of all, is that I got to meet Josh & Lulu after the San Diego show & we chatted after the Philadelphia show as well.  I stayed in touch with them & had the pleasure of catching up with them during a recent trip to London, where I got to witness Lulu’s original music with her all-girl-band.  Keep an eye out for them! 

  
As for now, the Gorgon City guys will be hitting the road again with these two  talented singers tomorrow, as they start their South American Tour.  For dates, ticket sales, and of course, more music, check out GorgonCity.com

Thanks for reading along, everyone.  I hope you enjoyed this post.  

*Special Thanks to Josh Barry for keeping in touch & taking care of me at the shows… You and Lulu really made me feel at home while I was visiting your home (the lovely UK). I’ll catch you on the road again soon! 

 


***A note to the reader: I realize that we are already in December,  yet, I haven’t shared much of my year with you guys.  So, I’m challenging myself to #30postsin30days.  During this last month of 2015, you’ll hear fun stories about what I’ve been up to.  I hope you follow along! 

Instagram, Twitter and Periscope: @StartingAt30 

For more up-to-date stories, follow me on Snapchat: CcTheStar 

The Queen Mary

As I mentioned in my last post, one of my recent domestic trips took me LAX.  I had the chance to stay on The Queen Mary in Long Beach & I can’t believe I waited so long to share this post with you.  But, since we’re just leaving Halloween season & since today is Friday the 13th, here’s my story about my stay on the famous haunted ship. 

I landed pretty late at night & was ready to head straight to bed.  I definitely noticed an eerie feeling upon my arrival.  When I got into my room, my initial excitement turned to wonder… & a bit of fear.  I mean this place is known for ghost sightings!  I remember sleeping with the lights & tv on that night. This isn’t uncommon for me, in my states of exhaustion, but this time, it was on purpose.  

I wanted to sleep in a bit, since I’d be working all night, as my returning flight was a redeye.  I wanted to explore the ship & take in as much as I could.  Here are some shots from my 3 hour, audio-guided walking tour.  

 

The view from my room.


  

The longest hallway on board. If you stand at one end, people seem to disappear as they approach the opposite end.

 

 

You can find stories like this posted all around the ship.


 

A bit of history: The original office for the Travel Bureau, from the Queen’s active days at sea.

   
 

This is the view you get while entering or exiting the lobby.

 
 In these next photos, you’ll see shots from the upper & lower decks, as well as some of the control rooms.  It was really cool seeing some of the behind the scenes stuff.  

   
   
   

Radio Control and Communication room.

 
    

A look into where the Captain of the ship used to stay.

   
 
   
  

Walking through the control room all alone, was kind of scary…

  

One of the most haunting places I stood on the ship. This room is the lowest point on the ship & the propeller is actually under water.

  

I captured this shot at the end of my tour, before dinner.


After a delicious dinner on the upper deck, and a beautiful California sunset, I headed to my room to get ready for my flight.    
Thanks for checking out this post. I hope you enjoyed it! 
*Remember, for more up-to-date stories, you can add me on SnapChat: CcTheStar. 

For live feed coverage, follow me on Periscope: @StartingAt30

Sips, Stories & Selfie Sticks 

Yesterday I returned from another amazing Barcelona trip.  I was flying with one of the recruiters who hired me.  We spent the day on a gay (nude) beach.  It was awesome! 

Note: I haven’t taken the plunge & gone fully nude on the beach, yet, but I love being topless & people watching! 😜

 

Tuna is life-changing in Spain… here’s a shot of my delicious lunch – my crew member’s treat. In flight attendant life, sometimes senior crew members take us newbies out & show us a wonderful time on their dollar. It’s such a great perk of the job and I look forward to the day that I’m in that position.


We made friends with the guys next us after jumping in on their conversation.  They were travelers from Tijuana & Los Angeles – my neighbors in San Diego.  The guys had beautiful smiles, beaming personalities, fun stories & a full itinerary of travels ahead. 

We decided we needed a group picture. Alex said he had a selfie stick, and heres the first of many shots. Roberto might be joining our flight crew someday soon. Bob was recruiting…

We couldn’t help but bond & be entertained by the transgender (in transition) woman on the opposite side of us.  She seemed to know everyone on the beach and she kept insisting she was “leaving after this drink.”  She left around 8:30pm… 

Anyway, after bathing in the sun & the Mediterranean Sea, we were all hungry.  We changed & met at one of my favorite pinchos spots, Bilbao Berria.  Our party had grown & wine was flowing.  It was a lovely evening with new friends. 

After such a night and working an eight hour flight, I got a group text from my friends in Philadelphia. They were heading to Center City Sips & even though I needed a nap, I was going to join them. 

After a quick costume change, I hop on the metro to meet my crew.  My final destination, a beer garden/al fresco dance party surrounded by tall buildings in the city.  My friends hand me a drink as soon as I walk in & we hit the dance floor.  

It came as no surprise to me that there were fellow flight attendants lingering in the crowd.  It’s always fun when were together.  We play catch up & our conversations sound ridiculous… 

“I’m beat. I just got in from Barcelona.”

“Tell me about it, I just got in from Amsterdam and I have Lisbon tomorrow.”  

“Where’s (insert name)?”

“Oh, he/she got called to Tel Aviv…” 

Lol… We sound ridiculous & I love it!  

 

Here’s a shot of some of us… some flight attendants, some just Philadelphia friends. Eduardo is like 6’6″ & with friends that tall, you don’t need a selfie stick!

 
We danced & drank & enjoyed the perfect weather.  After a beer garden, a historic bar & $1 tacos, I was exhausted.  I had to call it a night. 

I just wanted to share this quick post with you to say that I am so grateful for my life and the wonderful people I get to go out & play with.  I’ve been so busy living, that I haven’t taken much time to write.  I need to work on that… 

This morning, I woke up with a smile on my face as I reflected on the past few days, and I wanted to put something in writing.  Here it is & I hope you enjoyed it.  

For more up-to-date stories, follow me on Snapchat: CcTheStar 😘