Author: Heather

I love travel, ballet, cats and my hometown of NYC.

Which Cat Island Would You Prefer?

Even though it’s kind of last-minute, Mal, Peter and I are planning a quick getaway for mid-May. Since we’re only going for 4-5 days, we’re thinking of somewhere pretty close—like the Caribbean. While researching destinations, I stumbled upon Cat Island, one of the Bahamas’ Out Islands. Besides its appealing name, it’s also home to gorgeous, white sand beaches. Like this:

cat island beach

But this discovery also led me to another Cat Island—which is appealing in a very different way!

Tashirojima is a tinyВ Japanese island that’s better known as Cat Island. It reputedly only has about 100 human residents—but hundreds of feline dwellers. Apparently, in the 1800s, the fishermen who lived on the island believed the cats would bring them good luck and fortune, and cared for them accordingly. Hence their population!

Today, the island has a number of cat-shaped buildings…

cat building

cat building

…in addition to their many real cats!

cat island 1
cat island 3
cat island 4
cat island 5
cat island 6
cat island 7

For me, a trip to that Cat Island would be an allergy attack waiting to happen…but I’d still want to go, if only for a few hours!

Which Cat Island would you prefer?

(Top photo via My Out Islands, middle photos via Tofugu; bottom photos by Fubirai via Buzzfeed)

3 Words to Describe NYC

You know that I’m a sucker for videos that capture the spirit and energy of NYC. So that’s why I’m loving this one, “3 Words for NYC,”В created by Cokau Lab, a Paris-based A/V studio. (Which explains the French!)В The concept is simple: The filmmakers asked New Yorkers to describe what makes NYC so special—in three words. Here’s what they found:

What would be your three-word answer? I think mine would be “unlimited possibilities, forever.”

(Video:В 3 words for NYC from Cokau on Vimeo, via Gadling)

So Ready for an NYC Weekend!

New York City at Night

I am so glad the weekend is here! My next few days are pretty full, but luckily, there are lots of nice, relaxing elements involved. My mom, sister and I are getting massages that we all got each other for Christmas and birthdays, and we have a family brunch planned for tomorrow. And I’ll be running at some point—our race is a few weeks away and I’ve only squeezed in four runs, so far! But I’m not worried. 😉

This week seemed to be chock full of awesome NYC photos. A few days ago I stumbled upon the one above. An Expedition 35 crew member aboard the Earth-orbiting International Space Station shot it on March 23; NASA recently posted it on its site. It’s truly amazing how clearly the gridded streets are lit up. And I love how easily you can spot Central Park and the riot of lights that is Times Square.

Have a wonderful weekend!

(Photo by NASA)

Wanderlust

Maybe it’s because life has beenВ pretty insaneВ for the past few months, or because my last long trip—to Guatemala—was seven months ago. But I have a serious case of wanderlust.

That’s why I’m coveting this necklace from Mary Beth Heishman, the Las Vegas-based artist behind the jewelry lineВ I Adorn U. I love its simplicity and the retro-vibe of the propellor plane—and, of course, the vision it conjures up in my mind, of taking a little prop plane to a sparsely populated island for a week or two!

wanderlust

Do you have any trips planned soon? I’d love to hear about them!

(Image from I Adorn You via Scoutmob)

Whoa, Manhattan!

Port Authority Offers Media Tour Of One World Trade Observatory On 100th Floor

How stunning is this photo? It was taken from what will be the 100th floor observation deck at One World Trade Center, 1,250 feet up in the air. When the building opens in 2015, it’ll be 1,776 feet—and the tallest building in the Western Hemisphere!

It’s funny; I can’t recall ever seeing another shot taken from this angle before. The clarity is astounding, and I love how you can see both sides of the island from downtown all the way up to my ‘hood, near the George Washington Bridge. Plus, it’s crazy just how much higher up this building is—it’s towering so far above all the others.

Pretty amazing.

(Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images via Gizmodo)

Childhood in New York

Climbing in Central Park

I’m excited to read the latest issue of NY Mag—its theme is “Childhood in New York.”В It includes recollections from 39 famous New Yorkers about growing up in the five boroughs. I’ve yet to read all of them, but I stumbled upon this quote from Joan Rivers that especially resonated with me:

New York was the magic city. New York was Oz. All I wanted to do was to get out of Brooklyn and get into Oz.

Replace “Brooklyn” with “Queens,” and that was basically my mindset throughout my tween and teen years in the ’90s. I looked forward to the day when I’d live in Manhattan and didn’t have to take a long bus ride and multiple subways to get downtown—or be beholden to the LIRR schedule. (Bayside, where I lived, is pretty far out!) I pictured myself working for a magazine in midtown and taking dance classes at Broadway Dance Center at night. I saw myself living in Williamsburg or the East Village. I imagined I’d goВ shopping in SoHo and hang out in coffee shops in the West Village on the weekends. And go clubbing until 5 a.m.—because who doesn’t dream about going clubbing until 5 a.m. when they’re 15?

Some of that stuff turned out similarly to the way I’d envisioned—though by the time I actually moved to Manhattan, I found hipster neighborhoods less appealing, SoHo to be too expensive and tourist-filled for shopping. And I really had no desire to go clubbing until 5 a.m.!

But one thing that I predicted, with 100% accuracy, was that Manhattan was where I belonged. I’m more at home here than anywhere else I’ve ever lived or visited. Even after all these years, I still feel like it’s the “magic city.” Every day, I can feel the city buzzing with the excitement and energy of endless possibilities—and I don’t think that’ll ever get old. I’m amazed that my younger self was able to pick up on that during my family’s sporadic trips to “the city”!

Did you grow up in NYC? What’s your memory of childhood here?

(Photo via NY Mag)