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“There is a kind of magicness about going far away and then coming back all changed.” ― Kate Douglas Wiggin, New Chronicles of Rebecca

Hi friends,  I will be visiting everyone’s blogs in the next few days and will be catching up on your posts. I do miss you all when I am not around here.  Actually, you are the only routine I missed 🙂

I have been off of work for the past week.  This time I didn’t check in at work at all.  I totally disconnected, I didn’t even check email.  I really needed this break.  I don’t care about work as much anymore (there will be a future post about it).

My friend from Brazil is still here.  She will be here until next Sunday.  It has been fun playing tourist, but also so exhausting.

Among all we did, we spent a day in Mystic, CT, just enjoying the beautiful scenery and stores.  We had some delicious pastries at Sift Bake Shop. 

We spent a day in Westerly, RI. There we spent some time with my friend that lives there and is running for town council.  We attended one of her events, and drove around the beautiful beaches.  Eating at the Verandah at Ocean House in Watch Hill is always a favorite for the amazing water views.

We also spent a couple of days at Foxwoods Casino and Mohegan Sun Casino.  While we didn’t make money, we didn’t really lose much, and it was really fun playing the slots.  While there we shopped at Tanger Outlets. We also had great meals there, specially the one at Ballo Italian Restaurant in Mohegan Sun.

We were sightseeing in New York City for a couple of days. We did a lot walking, which was good since we have been doing a lot eating. The best meal in NY was at Rice and Beans, a Brazilian Restaurant.

Mr. Sweet joined us for that dinner and the night before he took us to an Argentinian restaurant that his friend owns.  He continues to be very sweet, being kind to my friend and bringing bagels for my sister every time we meet.  I will be writing a post about him next.

There has been a lot shopping.  Even though I dislike going shopping, if I am forced to go I end up being the one that buys the most.  Besides the outlets in Foxwoods we also shopped at the outlet stores at Clinton Outlet in Clinton, CT. And not to mention, all the other stores, such as TJ Maxx, Marshalls, Macys, etc.

There was a huge amount of walking, which is always welcomed by me.  My sister and my friend are not used to so much walking, so we got an Uber a couple of times in NY.

This week will be non-stop again, specially since I have to get back to work. During the day, my sister and I will take turns taking my friend to work with us.  Some evenings we will go shopping as she still has some items left on her list, and will also go out to eat as we still have a couple of restaurant to get to.

Stay tuned for the post about Mr. Sweet.  For now, I just wanted to say hello.  Wishing everyone a blessed week! 🙂

“Distance changes utterly when you take the world on foot. A mile becomes a long way, two miles literally considerable, ten miles whopping, fifty miles at the very limits of conception. The world, you realize, is enormous in a way that only you and a small community of fellow hikers know. Planetary scale is your little secret.

Life takes on a neat simplicity, too. Time ceases to have any meaning. When it is dark, you go to bed, and when it is light again you get up, and everything in between is just in between. It’s quite wonderful, really.

You have no engagements, commitments, obligations, or duties; no special ambitions and only the smallest, least complicated of wants; you exist in a tranquil tedium, serenely beyond the reach of exasperation, “far removed from the seats of strife,” as the early explorer and botanist William Bartram put it. All that is required of you is a willingness to trudge.

There is no point in hurrying because you are not actually going anywhere. However far or long you plod, you are always in the same place: in the woods. It’s where you were yesterday, where you will be tomorrow. The woods is one boundless singularity. Every bend in the path presents a prospect indistinguishable from every other, every glimpse into the trees the same tangled mass. For all you know, your route could describe a very large, pointless circle. In a way, it would hardly matter.

At times, you become almost certain that you slabbed this hillside three days ago, crossed this stream yesterday, clambered over this fallen tree at least twice today already. But most of the time you don’t think. No point. Instead, you exist in a kind of mobile Zen mode, your brain like a balloon tethered with string, accompanying but not actually part of the body below. Walking for hours and miles becomes as automatic, as unremarkable, as breathing. At the end of the day you don’t think, “Hey, I did sixteen miles today,” any more than you think, “Hey, I took eight-thousand breaths today.” It’s just what you do.”
― Bill Bryson, A Walk in the Woods: Rediscovering America on the Appalachian Trail