Wednesday, August 29, 2007

The cult of Starbucks

I'll admit it, I'm a Starbucks drinker. The hippie in me wants to get my coffee only from a fair-trade, organic, small farmer owned, locally grown, co-op of righteous young hipsters who smell of patchouli, wear their hair in dreads and have weird, ironic tattoos.

But the reality is that Starbucks is right around the corner from work, the people who work there are incredibly nice and super-fast, and the coffee I get is always, always, completely consistent.

I can still laugh at myself about my addiction to the coffee-crack of America, though. And now you can too-- take this quiz to see what your Starbucks drink says about your personality.

I warn you, though-- it's the type of quiz for me: a quasi self-hating hippie who drinks Starbucks claiming irony, but really seeking convenience.

I drink a tall Americano. Let the results speak for themselves.

Tuesday, August 28, 2007


It's been a weird couple of weeks.... I've had my 10 year high school reunion and went to a wedding which was essentially a college reunion.

Funny thing about old friends (and enemies).... you expect them to stay the same, while desperately trying to prove to them how different you've become.

What I didn't expect was how different everyone was. How (dare I say it?) grown-up everyone has become.

Looks-wise, I was disappointed. I expected big things. Gleefully I hoped that everyone who was mean to me in high school had grown enormously fat and developed a nasty skin condition. And I wondered if the slightly nerdy (myself included!) people I hung out with in high school would have come out of their shells and be gorgeous supermodels or super wealthy moguls.

Well, it's only been 10 years since I left high school. People looked pretty much the same. But the big difference was in attitudes. Oh, sure, at the bar everyone fell pretty much back into their own little groups. But I also found people much more willing to engage outside of their comfort zones-- I ended up chatting with and finally hugging a girl who was pretty bitchy to me only ten short years ago!

It was really wonderful to see Jessica and Eric and Caitlin and Maria and Josh and Amy again.... funny how people you haven't seen in years can still know you still well. I'm very proud of the group of friends that I had in high school-- and very happy that I can still consider them friends. Josh and Amy have a BEAUTIFUL little girl Ainsley, who they brought to the picnic the next day.

I never pictured any of my friends getting married or becoming parents-- but it's really lovely to see. Josh and Amy seem to have struck that perfect balance of being funny and smart and hip while making sure that the little one wasn't eating rocks or stealing Caitlin's purse. (She had excellent fashion sense, you had to give her that!)

And speaking of friends getting married... Magic Mike and Kelli tied the knot last weekend, on the hottest day of the year. As all of my favorite Purchase people slowly melted in the hot courtyard, they had a beautiful, simple ceremony. Of course Kelli's dress was utterly gorgeous-- what else do you expect from a costume designer? After the ceremony we all piled on to the Liberty Belle and sailed down the Delaware as we ate, drank, danced, drank and drank some more. Oh, yes, they played Roxanne. By the end of the night, some of Kelli's relatives commented that it seemed like less of a reception and more of a college party. PERFECT! It was nice to have a little of the Silver Parcan here in Philadelphia.

Most importantly, any awkwardness left over from college dalliances was completely eliminated. We're... like.... adults now. What happened in college stays in college and now we can all have a good laugh about it. That's nice. See? We're growing up!

All in all, I found my old friends and enemies more grown up, relatively happy and seemingly healthy. I couldn't ask for anything else, really.

Now we'll see what the next 10 years brings us...

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

High school High

A terrifying, miserable experience.

That's how I would describe my high school years. Of course it wasn't all bad. I made some great friends, who are great friends to me today. And I learned so much about life, other people and-- not to be too much of a cliché-- but I learned a lot about myself too. High school opened up the world of theater to me and helped me be comfortable (sort of) with who I am. High school knocked me on my ass and broke my adolescent heart. High school showed me that adults could be both incredibly wise and incredible fallible. High school was a small world that in leaving that world, allowed me to realize how big the "real world" actually is. What a relief.

So I'm going back.

To my 10 year high school reunion, that is..... and I'm excited. And scared.
Caitlin text messaged me the other day, saying "What are you wearing? Hey don't laugh, but I am stressing over what to wear". I couldn't laugh at her. I was stressing over the same thing. The key, I think, is to look super-hot, fashionable yet accessible, without looking like you tried to look super-hot or fashionable. "Oh, this old thing? No, this is what I wear every day in my fabulous, successful life in Philadelphia."

So I am looking forward to seeing Jessica and Caitlin and Eric and all of the other friends who I lost touch with. I'm looking forward to talking with the handsome, popular quarterback who came out of the closet after we left high school. I'm looking forward to seeing people who made fun of me for being different looking exactly the same. I can't wait to meet husbands and wives and babies. I want to see how life has treated Homer High School's Class of '97.

Because while I like to think of myself as a totally different person than the over-serious drama nerd terrified of her own sexuality and longing desperately for acceptance, really, I'm the same old Sara. Only happy, grown-up and accepting of herself. Most of the time.

It's funny what a little perspective can do for a girl.

Sunday, August 12, 2007

Sara + Deb + Maine = Fun

Away we went to Maine.... we left Philly at 5am, and got to Maine around 3pm. It was like travelling to a different world.

Deb driving.... and counting how many Subarus we saw on the road to Maine.
I was the supreme mapquest navigator....

Our little cottage. We stayed in a motel for the first two nights until we were able to move to the cottages. Our cottage was so cozy and wonderful, I could have lived there.

Although we city-dwellers found keeping the front porch light on at night comforting, we realized that it also proved a little hard to get in the front door without being bombarded with moths. Deb demonstrates her moth-dodging technique.

Sometimes front doors are hard to lock. Fortunately Deb had the right tools for the job.

Why is Deb smiling, do you ask? Because she's eating at Fat Boy's, a drive-in burger joint that serves delicious burgers right to the comfort of your car. Oh, and their frappes are nothing to sneeze at either.

Deb is petting the fisherman's pet lobster. We're at Land's End, celebrating my first glimpse of the ocean on this trip.
Check it out! You can see inside the rich people's houses with this thing!

Deb does some spying of her own. Scenery, schmenery. It's all about looking in rich people's houses.

My pretty girlfriend and the ocean.

I decide that the sea air can make me fly.

This is what a happy Sara looks like.

This is what a happy Sara and Deb look like!

After taking in the salt air, it was time to eat some lobster. I'm so ready. Now let me just figure out this bib...

Our feast!!

Deb has that happy glazed eyes look that comes with anticipation of lobster.

Hmmm, these things are complicated....

This requires intense concentration....

AHHHH! I will defeat you, LOBSTER!!!!

Haha. I will now stick my finger up your tail end to extract your deliciousness!!

My lobster, stripped of all meat and thoroughly enjoyed.

Deb was getting all hard-core with her crustacean as well.

Deb seems upset that her lobster left a little something on her plate.

"Stop pooping on my plate, lobster!"

Check out this guy. And check out those butter finger prints on my pants.

The next day we went to Boothbay Harbor, and spontaneously decided to take a sailboat ride around the bay. It was amazing! We saw seals and dolphins playing in the bay, and really enjoyed our time on the water.

I tried to convince Deb to put a knife in her teeth and climb to the crowe's nest, but she refused. Aaaarrrr!

After the sailboat ride, we enjoyed a perfect slice of blueberry pie with blueberry ice cream. Amazing.

Something tells me we're not in Philly any more....

The next day we went to beautiful Popham Beach and made like mermaids in the surf. It was my first time swimming in the ocean! The ocean water was cold, but wonderful. We body-surfed and watched as high tide ate up the entire beach.

Beach bunny!

Oh, we could so get used to this....

Yes, we had to. It was romantically washed away by the surf seconds later.

Heading home, crossing the Maine/New Hampshire border.
We had a wonderful trip, and I think we plan to go back next year. Now I have to settle in at the new place and unpack and get things ready as we gear up for.... the next season at the Walnut, starting soon. But I'll be carrying a little piece of Maine with me all year long, looking forward to next summer.

Saturday, August 11, 2007

So this is why they call it "Vacationland"

The scenery in Maine was so breathtaking, it deserves a blog of it's own. Here's a scenic journey through our trip...

My first glimpse of the ocean, from land's end.
My first Maine lighthouse...

These were rock formations called The Giant Steps. Because they were... um, big. And looked like steps. Deb and I spent a good deal of time here, looking for mermaids. And then we had an amazing lobster dinner at Cook's Corner.

The next day, we took a sailboat tour around Boothbay Harbor. The day couldn't have been prettier. During our sail, we saw seals playing in the water and even a dolphin in the bay! It was amazing.

I love this camera.

Another view from the sailboat-- two birds kissing!

There was a sailboat race in the harbor-- apparently it was the New York Sailing Club. Those boats were pretty amazing, and all followed by the catering yachts, serving up snacks to hungry sailors. Not that those people are rich or anything.

Our sailboat was named the Eastwind, caught here beautifully by Deb. I kept trying to convince her to put a knife in her teeth and climb up the crowe's nest, but she refused.

A pier on Boothbay Harbor, around sunset.

The sun beginning to set over the harbor. Check out the cool funnel cloud.

Sunset over Boothbay Harbor. It just kept getting prettier and prettier.

The next day we headed to Popham Beach for some sun and fun. It's been rated one of the top 10 prettiest beaches in America, and it's easy to see why. The water was a bit cold at first, but soon Deb and I were body surfing those waves as high tide came in. Being a lake girl myself, I was astonished at how much beach high tide actually ate. We had to move our stuff 5 or 6 times! I'd never swam in salt water before, and I found that I actually liked it a lot. I did keep an eye out for sharks, though, as I have watched Jaws one too many times.

A fellow beachcomer, captured by Deb.

A view of the beach from the end of the day, when most of the beach was gone after high tide came in.

Beach bonfire, anyone?
It was a truly magical experience... pictures of Deb and I up to no good in Maine coming soon!