Everyone, Meet Contessa

August 24th, 2012 § 0 comments § permalink

Another Fun Ride Along Summer Streets

Since I moved to New York late January of 2011, I have always said I would get a bicycle. Laziness, research, procrastination, uncertainty, and the fear of riding on the streets of NYC have all deterred me…until now. I would like to introduce all of you to Contessa. She’s a State Bicycle – Contender and I have had her for about a month now.

My first bike ride around Central Park changed my life. I didn’t really think I would stay in New York much longer, but this bicycle has completely rebooted my future with this city. Since I’m only a few avenues away from Central Park, it’s easy to take a ride. I’ve taken a whole new view and loving every pedal of it.

I have even taken this bike from my place to East Village, West Side, up/down Park Avenue, but I still need to take it on the West Side Highway, over a few bridges (Brooklyn, Williamsburg, Queensboro, and George Washington Bridge), and around some other islands (Governors Island, Roosevelt Island, and Randalls Island).

Personal Records

I have been timing myself using Strava and today’s ride was quite significant – I have a few new personal records:

  1. Central Park Full Loop: 23:34
  2. The “ACTUAL” Harlem Hill: 1:54
  3. Fastest speed: 65.7km/h (~40.82 mph)

After just a month, I have been able to shave off:

  1. Central Park Full Loop: 1:50
  2. The “ACTUAL” Harlem Hill: 46 seconds

Just to be clear, all these are based on Strava’s calculations with my phone in my pocket, so I’m sure there are a few discrepancies. Either way, I’m having tons of fun with this bike and most importantly – I’m working out again. Feels fucking great.

Shout out to Shey for assisting in the bicycle purchase.

Enterprise, POTUS, and EDC

June 23rd, 2012 § 0 comments § permalink

A triple whammy – three new firsts for me.

Shuttle Enterprise Piggyback Over the Hudson, April 27

NASA is something a lot of us take for granted. I’ll admit, the Johnson Space Center is a gem and I never really visited it much when I lived in Houston. Early that morning, I decided to make my way over to The High Line, but forgot to bring a jacket – it’s late April! I settled in a chair near the south side and after about thirty minutes, I found myself surrounded by other Shuttle fans and some didn’t even know what was going on. No more than five minutes before the fly over, Nathan showed up. Just like clock work, Enterprise arrived from the south and made it’s way north along the Hudson. What a sight to see! About fifteen minutes later, another fly over from the north. I’m really glad I was able to see the last Shuttle launch and the piggyback ride of a fake Space Shuttle. Too bad I missed the Shuttle’s trip on a barge over to the Intrepid. I guess I’ll make my way over there when the facility is ready next month.

"Can I get a piggyback ride?" -Enterprise NASA 747, Shuttle Enterprise, and T-38

President of the United States, May 14

I was walking back to my apartment one day and found a bunch of rails lined up along 66th Street. I also saw a sign posting for a movie that was being made, Bitterpill. I thought to myself, now what the heck is going on here? I didn’t really ponder on it much and just went to bed. Early the next morning, a working crew started setting up the rails. They blocked off not just my avenue, but as far as my eye could see. Then, a bunch of police cars started blaring their sirens, so I turned on on the NYPD Special Operations Division and Traffic scanner. I heard “POTUS,” so I jumped down to the street to see what was going on. They blocked off the entire avenue and I that was when I realized Obama was in town and actually coming down my street! As for the movie, meh…they’re always filming around New York. Nothing interesting yet.

Theatrical Rain You're Welcome, POTUS!

Electric Daisy Carnival, May 19

It was a freaking gorgeous day for this event, maybe a little hot, but totally worth it. I didn’t know what to expect, but going with a good set of friends makes it all worth it. Plus, I got to see awesome old and new DJs live! I never really imagined myself going to events like this, but the “Carnival” part really got me excited – most of all the rides were FREE! To put the cherry on top, that evening there was a fireworks show!

Seating Attendance, Zero EDC Confetti Over Cosmic Meadow What's Going on Here?

Wait, is that the Cornholio?! Gareth Emery Five-Layer Flames, Anyone?

"I feel like a freaking kid that's in line to get into Disney World!!" What's Over There? Sunset Over EDC

Hell Yes, That's ATB Night Time Carnival Fun Armin Van Buren

An Extended Las Vegas

June 22nd, 2012 § 0 comments § permalink

I can’t believe how quickly this year has gone by. Cliche? Yeah, but I noticed this because I checked out the last date of my last post – almost three months ago! I’m going to update these gaps based on my Flickr Photostream and whatever I can dig up from my memory for the next few days.

Huge Accomplishment at Work

After finishing a huge project for work, our company took a few of us to the Microsoft Management Summit (MMS) in Las Vegas way back in April. This time, I only went to celebrate the project I completed and met up with the rest of the team for some well deserved celebration.

First Night, Celebration!

This first meal was at Ri-Ra with Kevin and Kelly. A feast of Irish comfort foods, a few beers, and some Bushmills Irish Honey. I found out that I’m a fan of whiskey, burbon, and especially scotch. A few hours later, I found myself at the celebratory team dinner was at the Public House where I enjoyed a ridiculously awesome short rib from Public House. It’s also where I got my official team hat! After a bunch of beers, chatting, and eating, I surprisingly made it back to my room by myself.

Ri-ra, For an Irish Dinner! Second Dinner: Short Rib, No Bones Honeybadger Don't Give a Fuck

Day Two, More Food

The second night was dinner with a mix of mix friends and coworkers at Public House again. This time, we ordered a bunch of things for all of us to try out. My favorite was my bone in filet and the bone marrow definitely came in a close second. For lunch, I took myself to Table 10 and ordered up way too much food, but definitely worth it. Later on that day, a few of the FyrSoft team joined at Trattoria.

Public House, Round 2 Lunch at Table 10 Swordfish Picatta at Trattoria

Unexpected Third Day

I woke up and took off to the airport. Right when they announced that my flight was boarding, my phone rang. It was my boss and he wanted me to stay an extra day in order to meet up with a client to review a a potential project for me. Any way, long story short – I got to spend an extra day in Vegas and most importantly, I made my way back to Postrio!

Oysters at Postrio Crab Cakes Reunion Crab Asparagus Soup, the Conversation Starter!

2012 First Quarter Report

March 28th, 2012 § 0 comments § permalink

Yeah, I’ve been gone for a while and a lot has happened! I’ll need another update for the pictures I have yet to add with all the food that are still sitting in a folder.

Lack of Snow in New York

This year’s winter season was abysmal. I was hoping for more snowboarding trips!

First Snow of 2012 Kind of Weird Seeing the Lake Iced Over Ice Skating at the Park Central Park Was Pretty Empty

Giants Won the Superbowl!

I’m so proud of the Texans making it so far! Since the Giants won, I decided to check out the parade. It was nuts.

Letter and Legal Paper, Not Ticker-Tape Just After the Parade You've Got to be Kidding Me Greatest Giants Fan Ever! Canyon of Heroes, aka This Part of Broadway Both Signs Need Design Help Dancing in the Middle of Broadway I Want Rollerblades Too!

Snowboarding at Hunter Mountain

OUCH, talk about being scared of ice. I had one really hard fall that convinced me I needed wrist guards. After the first night, it snowed a bit, so the second day wasn’t as horrible. Afterward, we went to So Kong Dong Restaurant for some amazing tofu.

Not Much Snow, But Lots of Fun Post Snowboarding Warm Down This Snow Made It Hurt Less Post Snowboarding Dinner

Rockets at the Nets

We came, we saw, we conquered. There were a bunch of Rockets fans at the game, too. Man, I need to brush up on our team. I barely know anyone now!

Go Rockets!

Elizabeth, Her Sister and Husband Visited

First of all, these are really good people. Thanks for visiting and everything! I really hope y’all had a good time here.

Balthazar Bar Steak with Fries! 6 Month Anniversary, OWS Courtesy Of The Red, White And Blue Saint Patrick's Day North Pool and Museum 9/11 Memorial Bike Gift of Battalion Chief Brian O'Flaherty Doing Saint Patrick's Day Right! Perfect, Right In Front of Me Massive Lobster, NOM NOM NOM My Barista These Crazy Kids

Snowboarding at Snowbird and Park City, Utah

This was our first time in Utah (at least for me) and Ben has had a five year hiatus from snowboarding. Three days of fun – Snowbird, Park City night time, and another day at Snowbird. I couldn’t really thing of any food that’s specific to Utah, but there are some gems. The burger was my favorite – habaneros!

Mesa Verde, Not So Good Gorgeous Day in SLC Can't Say No to Pork Belly Yeah, with a Fried Egg on Top How to Start the Day First Blue of the Trip These Goggles are Awesome! "I'd Rather be Playing BF3..." This is How Ben Greets Birds Korean BBQ Kim Chi Tofu Soup Still Boiling On the Way to Park City Night Boarding in Park City Ring of Fire at Lucky 13 Look Ma, No HandsPeering Down the Valley

Final Destination: Lisbon

January 29th, 2012 § 0 comments § permalink

Funchal | New Year’s Fireworks | Porto | Caramulo | Lisbon

Off to Lisbon We Go!
4 January 2012

Sarah drove us downhill and into Lisbon. We stopped at at gas station rest area for food and map up the Avis location and hotel area. Each of us had a dish of the beef and some coffee. Beef you say? Hell yes, at a gas station!

Bitoque at a Gas Station?!

Baixa House 1 is freaking awesome!!! Ben and Natalie returned the car at the airport while Sarah and I were left to scout for places to eat. We rested for a bit and then made our way around the area – we found a McDonalds! They got back and we enjoyed a feast of junk food. Fucking Americans!

Freaking Poser Tada!

Belem for the Day
5 January 2012

I immediately realized I left my GoPro in the car when they left to return the car. I tried to call Avis about nine times, but they didn’t pick up and they were closing soon. About six in the morning, Ben and I took a taxi back to the airport. Thank goodness they haven’t cleaned and re-rented the car. Bed time again, crisis averted.

All of us woke up around noon, had breakfast and coffee, and took a cab to Belem.

Monastery of the Hieronymites

This monastery was huge! With all of our technology and advancement in architecture, our generation won’t leave anything like this behind except for skyscrapers – no attention to detail.

Find the Shady PersonAcross the Courtyard Arches and Stained Glass Extensively Intricate Columns Admiring the Marvel Stop Playing Around Mini Flying Buttresses Aziz is Doing a Great Job

The Coach Museum

While walking around, we found this little place. I wish I had another piece of bread since they added a ton of meat. Adding piri-piri made it even more delicious. As for the Coach Museum, it’s not what you think – no purses or bags here. This place had some really extravagant coaches. I mean, c’mon – one of them was painted gold.

Pao Pao Queijo Queijo It'a Coach Museum! Belts Used as Suspension Ballin' Out of Control

Walking Toward the Water

As we got closer to the water, the sun was setting. So what did we do? Grab a beer and watch the sunset on the river. We caught a ferry to visit another place, but after walking around for about ten minutes, we immediately went back to Lisboa.

Belem Place Guess What This is Used For See You Later, Sun! 25th of April Bridge

Seafood Dinner

Dinner was at the highly anticipated seafood restaurant, but it wasn’t amazing as we thought. It’s good, but the service was horrible and the waiter seemed like he didn’t give a shit. Oh well, it’s seafood – NOM. Afterward, we went home to rest and played a game of spades – Ben/Sarah lost to Tom/Natalie. Great game, but time for bed an early rise to go gorging tomorrow!

Giant Grilled Prawns Portugese Seafood Soup More Graffiti What the Hell Are They Doing?

A Day of Repelling
6 January 2012

This is ridiculous. Everyone should go sometime in their lives. We had a total of three sessions of repelling, each got a little more difficult, higher, and more fun! Afterward, we stopped by to try some torta de azeitao.

Pit Stop for the View We're Going to that Beach SAM-CAM.COM Ben Crawling Out the Crevice Picture Time! It's the Beach! Photo Op Tortas de Azeitao

Dinner at Alfondega

I debated whether to color correct these, but the lighting was just too much. Anyway, the food here was really different than what I expected. Appetizers were awesome and the burger I was looking forward to having wasn’t of ground beef as I know it. It was a really weird texture I can’t even explain. Afterward, we ended up at the casino. Nothing like Vegas – quite depressing actually.

Alfondega Mushroom Tops Quail Eggs and Sausage Burger with and Egg!

Another Day in Lisbon
7 January 2012

Once again, we all woke up around noon and had lunch outside in a little cafe out on the street. I was really glad to have rice again, but I wish they gave us more chicken per plate. Afterward, we did some wandering around the places nearby and

Streets of Lisbon Caution, Under Construction Postcards for Tourists A Tourist Shopping Chicken and Rice Vegetables and Rice I Hate Pigeons

Wandering Around the Santa Justa Elevator

Santa Justa Elevator Roof Top of the Elevator Carmo Archaeological Museum The Cliche Picture City Down Below Moonlit Sky Don't Make Me Laugh He Just Looks Innocent We Found the Hipster Band A Bunch of Hipster Kids Confeitaria Nacional Quick Night Snack

Texans Watch Party – Portugal!

It started with four Super Bock 40s and a bunch of chips at the apartment. Around half-time, we left to get some food and returned to find that we reached our Internet capacity. Good thing we found some Internet to borrow out in the hallway to catch the rest of the game!

Super Bock Tap at McDonald's Groceries at McDonald's Half Time Break Borrowing Internet in the Hallway

Portugal Trip

Time to go Home
8 January 2012

Ben was the first to get to the airport, then it was my turn. On the plane, I sat next up an older man and the lady in front leaned back, he freaked out and motioned her to move up. The lady in front rolled her eyes and under said, “oh, thanks is going to bee a fun flight.” Initially, he only spoke in Italian. Frustrated, I showed him how to lean his chair back, but he still wasn’t happy. Grumpy old man.

The taxi ride back was $70. I’ll avoid EWR flights from now on.

Funchal | New Year’s Fireworks | Porto | Caramulo | Lisbon