The Adventure Continues: Year Two

Welcome to the 2nd year of the Wandering Willey!  February 26th marked the 1 year point for the blog.  There were 103 posts over the 365 day span, not too bad for year 1!  I am going to attempt to improve upon consistency again now that we have have settled into our new apartment, and hopefully stay in better touch with the world.  So here is to another year of good events to write about and to you the reader for sticking with us.  Cheers!

And on that note, let’s start this new blogging year with a bang:

"You can Sarran Wrap anything," Shannon Tebay.

We have officially moved!  We have set out the last of the moving boxes and bubble wrap at the curb, hung everything on walls, and stocked the pantry.  Our journey from the East Village to East Williamsburg was fairly uneventful, with careful planning and packing we were able to hire movers (the only way to go when 5 flights of stairs are involved) to get the job down in under 6 hours.  After saying goodbye to the old apartment last Sunday there is no looking back.  It is truly amazing the amount adventure contained in that silly little apartment perched above Avenue A.  Shannon, Dan, Addie, and all of the friends we had come and go have used that place as a launching pad for more excitement than anyone has a right to experience in just 14 months.  Time to start all over again in Brooklyn!

Williamsburg, Brooklyn, NYC, NY.  We now live on the 4th floor of a red brick building above a jewelry shop.  During the process of moving out to the new borough it quickly became obvious that it was going to be a little different scene.  Not only are simple things quite different, as in the temperature is considerable colder when you are unprotected by the towering city, but also the architecture is radically different, the noise level is drastically reduced, and most blatantly and almost oppressively the blue sky returns!  It actually stratles me every time I look out of the window and see nothing but blue sky, I hadn’t realized how much I missed it.  We now get to see a real sunset every night!  Already the transition has been a little bitter-sweet, I have found that while Brooklyn has welcomed us with arms wide open I do already miss some things about the East Village.  When moving out of an old place it seems that it is hard to remember why it is we were moving, and only after settling into the new place did I come to understand the charm and unique beauty of our old neighborhood.  Moving forward from the city, there are tons of benefits to our new neighborhood!  Already we have located the plethora of great bars, restaurants, and cafes.  We have a grocery store right across the street!  Anyways, I can’t wait for the weather to let up so that we can actually figure out our new spot.

The Apartment: Small.  About 650 sq. ft. 1 Bedroom sitting atop of a large brick building (tallest on the block) with a view of the Manhattan skyline and the Williamsburg bridge!  It is no small thing being back in an apartment where things actually work, i.e. the sink works, cabinets have handles, the counters are marble and not porous stained vinyl, and there aren’t nails coming through the floor!  One thing has really made our new place a good place for me: sunlight.  We actually get bright morning sunlight in the kitchen and warm afternoon light in the living room.  Pair the sun with some blue skies and finally I can relax a little after escaping the concrete sidewalks and towering buildings.  Here are some pictures of the move and the new place slowly being assembled.

Much more to come this afternoon and over the next couple of days.  Check back in on updates about work, school, and new adventures.  We hope all of you guys are doing well.  Much love from Brooklyn/

Routinely Smooth

It now takes me about 10-15 minutes to shave, but in return I have gained the right to move one space closer to “manhood” in the game of life.  Like most things in life the tasks that you take the time to do right seem to reward you the best, and this seemingly small part of my routine (especially since I don’t actually grow facial hair) has forced me to slow down and actually pay attention to something I have often over looked.  There is something about ritualizing a simple task that can elevate it from mundane inconvenience to something that uplifts the spirits.  I never thought that shaving would actually brighten my day, but when you slow down and do it right without skipping any steps you feel better and fresher by the end of it.  So go out and get yourself a badger hair brush, some pre-shave oil, a good cream, and a safety razor (not a mach 1000, but something that holds real blades) and go to town.   On that same note, keep your Scotch in a decanter with its own tumblers, it makes pouring and enjoying your drink special.  It can be a $10 dollar bottle or a $1000 dollar bottle, but it elevates them both to something they couldn’t be without the ritual of pouring them out of a beautiful decanter.

I was cruising around NYC the other day in Moonshine Metro (the distilleries trusty little Geo-Metro) delivering moonshine to the masses when it hit me like a hammer, Ive been trapped in the East Village.  Driving through the mountain range of buildings in the financial district, cruising across the beautiful Brooklyn Bridge, down the tree lined streets of Park Slope, by Prospect Park, along the banks of the East River, outside of the sea-port, and the list goes on and on… in only 5 square miles it was made completely apparent to me that I had fenced myself in.  Matthew who was making the rounds with me made comment to how that was a real problem for all New Yorkers, that everything is so accessible within your own neighborhood that you never have to leave a 4 block radius.  We are constantly surprised to find places we never knew existed within a stones throw of our front door, and to think about how much there is to discover just a 10 minute walk away is almost frustrating.  As we have settled into our normal routine of work and school here in the city it has been too easy to push aside exploring for the comfort of our couch and the promise of an easy day.  With so much available to us, and none at almost no cost, I hope to find the motivation to get out into the world again during our very limited free time.  Fortunately moving day is coming up and once we have relocated into Brooklyn we will have already taken a new step to exploring a new area.

Shannon and I are officially making the move to the new place next Tuesday.  So after that time, please find us at our new apartment in Williamsburg.  I haven’t decided how I feel about posting our address on the internet, I am not sure it matters at all, but if you guys need our new mailing address please let me know and I will either put it up or send it to you.

Finally, our good friend Tanner Walle is working on his next album and is preparing for some studio time.  As you know he has been amazing here during our first year of living in New York, and has made numerous appearances on this very blog.  You can find some video from his concerts in previous posts: click here.  We met Tanner bar tending at our favorite wine bar, aka our second home, where he makes a living, but while Tanner can poor a mean bottle of Bordeaux his true talent lies in his music.  In order to get our good friend into the studio to produce his album he is making use of a funding website called kickstarter.  Check it out, check him out, and if it perks your interests, help him out!  See it all here: Tanner Walle’s Kickstarter Project.

Snowy Weather, Story of Our Lives


Holiday Season

It’s taken almost a whole year and a trip away for me to really start to come around to living in New York.  Up until this point I have enjoyed my time in this and have attempted to gain every possible experience that it had to offer, but I haven’t quite been able to commit myself to being a part of this city rather than just a visitor.  The last three nights this week I have found myself wandering through cold empty streets very very late at night, and during the quietest time in NYC when the early morning cafe owners and the late night bartenders hand off the baton (I actually high fived a cafe owner opening his shop on my walk home the other night at 5 AM) my high regard for this city has emerged.  It is an odd sensation when you walk down a street where hundreds of people live and feel like it is YOUR city, but finally I feel like I might actually live here and not just vacation here.  It is amongst the cold but festively decorated streets of the East Village that I am finally feeling at home.

Bourbon arrives!  We recently un-casked the first ever run of whiskey at the distillery!  It simulates a bourbon in flavor, but without being

Shelf of various results.

aged for 2 years I am not sure it can technically be called bourbon.  As it turns out we can produce a respectable product!  Cinnamon, clove, slight citrus all abound on the palate of our new amber colored creation!  Simply awesome!  With production fairly limited at the time and a little bit of a learning curve built into our recipes I will wait to share it with you all, but if you are a bourbon/whiskey drinker and would like a taste please let me know!  I am very excited about this and I think it will be a huge time for the distillery!

I finally left the city for the first time (minus the cabin fiasco)  for a relaxing trip to Reno, NV to see our good friends the Freyers as is required by Thanksgiving tradition.  What an amazing thing to have fresh air in my lungs and blue skies above me!  After years of living in Albuquerque it was a reminder that my body was tempered at high altitude, as both my sister and I commented of how natural the thin air felt versus the thick seaside air of NYC.  As far as the trip went, what could be better than consistently having a productive morning at the gym and around town and then retiring by 3pm to the living with with a bottle of wine!  It was a much needed getaway, and their will be a much more in depth post about the week long affair.

The weather here is actually promising to get cold and wet as it should be, rather than the eerie balmy warmth it has been, and so I wish you all a cold winter season with a warm hearth to curl up next to!