Thursday, March 29, 2012

Food and Furniture

So I wanted to update you on that apartment I finally found!
It has gone through quite a transformation since I moved in last October.
Besides being covered in dust, cat hair, food and toys in every corner and behind every...well everything, I had lot of shopping and redecorating to do.
Here is how it looked my first night, and after one month:
Just moved in!
Note the laptop and empty shelves! "THIS. IS. SPARTAN!"
 Step One: Buy bed sheets!

After that, between work and everything else, I didn't do much around the apartment but clean, clean, CLEAN, every weekend! Fast forward to December...
I found a wild Wendy!
Now, the introduction of girlfriend to my habitat precipitated lots more furnishing and cleaning, but the rug pictured above was UNSPEAKABLY saturated in cat hair and what I can only guess was kitty litter sand. I bought a new, beautiful, black rug, for about the same price renting a carpet cleaner would have cost, then I got something my job was as happy to hear as my girlfriend!
TV! Note again the shelves and TV location, they will change again...
So here are the fruits of my 6 month labor: My bedroom and living room will probably stay much this way until we move out to find somewhere that will let us have a cat:

Final Desk:
Note the Japanese owl noren, added shelves full of stuff, Lupin III bowling pin, and Wendy's Maru calendar!

Final Living Room:
You can kind of see my new carpet... what? The Moomin-looking chair? Well... let me tell you aaaaall about it...

The handsome gray chair, is actually a Japanese Massage Chair, the result of five years of dreaming!
The massage chair, made by Panasonic, massages your neck and back, and instead of a foot rest, has a pop-out foot and calf massager! Living in Japan, paying off student loans, I could never have bought this. Even if I had, I would have had to do something with it when I moved back to America.
This didn't stop me from visiting the massage chairs at electronics stores all over Japan (sometimes more than once a week!) to try all the various brands and models, and after a year or two, I decided this one was my favorite, and one day I would have it. Oh yes. It would be mine...
Now with my job and lovely neighborhood, I finally felt like I deserved a present, so I got on-line, spent the money, and now I have it!
(By the way, I am skipping a bitter details of a story about how it took two months of delays to get it finally delivered, but whatever! It's finally mine!)

 Final Bed Room:

But the inside of my apartment is only one great aspect of my new dwellings!
If you REALLY want to know my favorite thing about living in Astoria, it's the intersection I live on! Immediately outside my apartment is a corner store, complete with sassy, orange cat that wanders in and out; a private high school, with a big green lawn and trees where adorable squirrels frolic happily; a Greek, family-owned laundromat; a Mexican-run Italian restaurant with cheap, delicious pizza; and two restaurants owned and operated by Costa Rican who grew up in the neighborhood, knows everyone and is just as happy to say "Welcome home!" as you walk by, as he is to welcome you into either place. The first, Fatty's Cafe, is a fun, laid-back diner with a diverse menu and big portions, and friendly bartenders who make masterful Mojitos and offer amazing brunches.
But my favorite spot is the second, neighboring bar Crescent & Vine:  
Wendy and Brian ham it up for the camera
I was also lucky enough to see SAKURA (Japanese cherry blossoms) in my neighborhood, and even more in Central Park, donated by Japan exactly 100 years ago this spring!

But getting back to FOOD... maybe one of you can tell me where this tradition came from, but on the first day of spring, everyone at "C&V" was trying to stand a boiled egg on it end, like so:

And just to brag about how great living with my girlfriend is, here are a couple lunches she's made me for work! <3
The first is spam musubi and a fruit salad, the second, stir-fry, white rice, pickles, and carrot sticks!

And the 3rd, bonus "F"... FIGHT!
( I took this photo in a subway station!)

I think I mentioned before, but about 2 months ago, I started taking Brazilian Jujitsu. But right after I started, they moved!
Here is the newer, larger, studio, with double the showers! Since I usually go at 7a.m. before work, more showers is definitely worth the extra 5 minutes added to the commute.


And here is a parting gift:
Blog ya later!

1 comment:

  1. Dude, I'm loving the bentos. Glad you found an apartment and have been making some progress. Still looks a little cluttered. Want me to send Akimi to help? haha


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