It's taken me about a week to get used to calling a hotel home. Don't get me wrong. I love room service, and I love housekeeping. I love the pool with food and beverage service, I love the spa, and I love the brand-new gym, stocked with cold towels and green apples and free headphones and water. I feel so absolutely spoiled. I'm ecstatic that I'm here. But maybe it's the germaphobe in me - I can't help but think about how many sticky fingers have touched the remote control! Plus, when it comes down to it, I'm away from home home, which, when you've got a loving husband and two furry kitties there waiting for you, is...well, hard. So I'm trying to refocus my germaphobic energy toward exploring this amazing city, and trying to build a little temporary home space for myself out here, even if it resides only in the mind.
Atlanta is bawse. It contains glimpses of cities I've known and loved and lived in: New York and Chicago, as well as the South, obviously, plus a healthy dash of Portland. The Southern food here has really blown me away, as well as the general friendliness of people. Here are some moments that made me at "home" in my mind.
High Museum of Art
The High Museum currently has a really cool outdoor design installation called "Mi Casa Your House." Basically, it's a bunch of red hammocks on a very green lawn! When I walked up, I just made a beeline straight for a hammock and spent the next half hour, swinging. This reminded me a lot of LACMA's outdoor installations in Los Angeles.
Inside the museum, I saw a Mary Cassatt painting that immediately brought back the feeling for me of my shoes echoing as I walk around The Metropolitan Museum of Art in NYC - my favorite place to go on days when I was
This Hopper painting and the similar one below it gave me a Cape Cod-y, mid-Atlantic vibe -- those marine blues and whites, that coastal breeze -- a nice feeling when you're feeling hot and muggy in the South.
Exploring the aquarium by myself, surrounded by hundreds of kids, reminded me of my time in Chicago, when I was working with these awesome refugee kids from Uptown. I brought them everywhere I could in the city that was fun and enriching and kid-friendly, and I have great memories of them oohing and aaahing at the Shedd Aquarium in Chicago.
Two words: Central Park.