Friday, 5 October 2012

It Takes Two Baby!

They met in 
Kuala Lumpur
about eight years ago.
Their careers brought them to the exotic 
Far East
after a whirlwind romance,
spanning several continents,
got married on the 
Gold Coast
The wedding celebration
was a 
blast of fun.
Love is beautiful.
Our friendship began when
one part of this equation
into our store one day.
In a way, shopping does bring people together,
and as they say...the rest is history.
Over the years
 crossing many time zones,
our friendship stayed intact.
with this app & that app,
you're only a button away
to staying connected.
Having recently purchased
an apartment on the 
Upper West Side
my friends were thrilled to have me 
check out their new place.
You know the neighborhood has
potential when
that trendy organic food emporium,
opens a branch there.
It was early evening as I exited from
the subway station,
to be greeted by a blast of warm humid air.
The locals were all out & about,
busy with whatever they had planned.
Even at this hour, there was a
 buzz around.
I was on the other hand, 
invited to a dinner party with
old friends.
New York 
can be like
Kuala Lumpur 
all year long.

" All human beings have three lives:
public, private and secret."

Gabriel Garcia Marquez
This was a grand building by
New York
Security door and a well appointed foyer
gave an impression of
comfort & safety.
After having lived in two other locations,
the couple was veritably happy to have
found this exceptionally 
spacious residence.
Walls the colour of
 warm burgundy
a powder room conceived in 
black & white
Manuel Canovas 
wall paper
gave it a touch of grown-up elegance.
hung everywhere,
objets d'art
collected from all their travels,
the space like an
 encyclopedia of travel.
And beyond the windows,
the bright sparkling lights of
were coming on.
like in some 
Woody Allen 
Maria Herminia Graterol
Peter Ikladious.
Two parts of an equation
that makes up a whole.
He's Australian
 she hails from
I was delighted to be part of this
sophisticated group of
young and in-the-know
New Yorkers.
After all,
a visit to any city is like icing.
As a tourist,you're only tasting the top bits.
Getting into the homes
 private sanctuary
of the locals,
gives the visit a 
stronger impression.
lasting memory
that qualifies beyond
Besides...I don't fancy icing!
While waiting for a 
custom-order sofa 
other bits & pieces that would make this
go from
"High to Haute"
 to arrive,
Peter & Maria
decided to forgo the wait
 host this evening
while I was in town.
The smell of delicious food floated in the air
as I made way into their private space.
Soft latin music
made you sway
while sparkling bubbles
made one
with content.
Life was good indeed.
Hugs and kisses aside,
we embraced each others presence
with a geniality that 
goes past casual.
The evening was going to be a true
New York 
A perfect setting in a
city that radiates energy!
" ...because no matter who you are, 
if you believe in yourself and your dream,
New York
will always be the place for you."

Michael Bloomberg
Their lovely
twin girls
was in the care of the babysitter
while the
trendy parents
hosted the guest 
 grace & warmth.
We had cocktails on the roof top.
Twilight engulfed us
as ships sailed by on the
Hudson River.
Skyscrapers shined and glowed.
Up here,
above the canyons of 
urban-sounds bounced off the tall buildings,
further enhancing the
Flawless is only a minute away!
Maria's pulling power is of course her
jovial personality
 her infectious laughter.
Not taking oneself too seriously may be a
 good approach to life.
This is in tandem to Peter's
acute sense of 
Formal is not in their vocabulary.
Living is!
Favourite colour?
Maria: Between Red & Purple.
Peter: Blue.
Your hobby?
Maria: Shopping.
Peter: Photography.
Jean, skirt or shirt?
Maria: Jeans
Peter: Shirt
Which trait in a person you most deplore?
Maria: Despotic
Peter: Arrogance
Favourite cuisine?
Maria: Thai.
Peter: Any type of fusion food.
Which book are you reading now?
Maria: My friend, Vaddey Ratner's book...
"In The Shadow Of The Banyan".
Peter: Same book.
Describe your style?
Maria: More, More & More!
Peter: Oh shit...!
What puts a smile on your face?
Maria: Beautiful things..
Peter:  My girls.
Favourite city?
Maria: New York.
Peter: Oh...?

What do you admire in a person?
Maria: Loyalty.
Peter: Intellectual curiosity.
If I say sit...?
Maria: Where?
Peter: Ok!
What makes
you happy?
Maria: My family.
Peter: Many family & being successful at
Favourite TV show?
Maria: Ab Fab.
Peter: I wish I watched TV!
What motivates you?
Maria: Hope.
Cotton or linen?
Peter: Cotton.
What were your first thoughts this morning?
Maria: Who will feed the girls.
Peter: One more day in the weekend.
Finish this sentence-"I am so lost..."
Maria: " new cities."
Peter: "...around new people."
Greatest achievement?
Maria: Growing up.
Peter: Surviving New York.
What's next?
Maria: Travel & career change.
Peter: Change.
Night & day 
is all rolled into one in a city like
New York.
The inhabitants live for the 
When the light dims
dawn breaks,
you simply breathe a different personae.
After all, why think about tomorrow
when the present has
 so much to offer.
When asked how the move to 
this city has changed them,
Maria venture,
" was something that
I had wanted, coming full circle to a new phase."
As for Peter 
" educated me on Americans & their way
of life."
Wine paved the way for easy talking...
and the dinner party was in full swing.
Bossa nova tunes added to the already
exotic atmosphere.
The conversation revolved around
 the issues of the day.
The other guests were all charming and armed full with
"New York" stories.
You get the feeling that the city offers
unlimited experiences...if only you
open yourself to it.
I felt privileged to be part of this exclusive group,
 having set one foot into the
sanctum of this metropolis.
As for our hosts,
they appeared at ease,
mingling about ensuring all was
adequate & comfortable.
The meal was 
a delightful spread of
Latin American
I sat there taking in the scene before me.
We were all from different
 cultures & backgrounds
 the only common ground
was our ability 
to converse.
The moment was all about connection!
The biggest daily challenge for the couple
appears to be for Maria "...trying to balance career & family"
and for Peter
" have more time."

A visit to any city
is only a visit
 unless you have friends living there. 
This elevates the experience.
Allowing & opening up oneself
to new adventures can
bring on surprising outcomes.
Unscripted holidays are best,
especially if you embrace spontaneity.
Our evening was a marvellous 
exchange of stimulating chatter
good food
set in a elegant apartment.
Maria & Peter's
affable entertaining skills
 indeed enchanting.
The different shades of their personalities
radiates warmth to the utmost degree.
Laws of attraction
strangely incredible.
Once the wheels are set in motion,
the momentum never ceases.
Such is the 
case for friendship.
You always pick up where you left off.
The iconic yellow
New York
cab was waiting for my departure.
My date with this group has come to an end.
There will be a next time...for sure.
But for now, 
the cab whisked me away into
the darkness of this
singular sensation
New York!

Thanks Peter & Maria...
you had me at hello!

" El que busca la verdad corre
el riesgo de encontrada."
Who searches for truth runs the risk of
finding it.

Isabel Allende

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Nice of you to write!