“Not My Circus. Not My Monkeys.” And Other Proverbs From Around The World

“Not My Circus. Not My Monkeys.” And Other Proverbs From Around The World

“A bird in the hand was worth two in the bush, he told her, to which she retorted that a proverb was the last refuge of the mentally destitute.” W. Somerset Maugham

Proverbs are short statements of wisdom or advice that are transmitted from generation to generation. Miguel de Cervantes would call it “a short sentence based on long experience”. I just learned that the study of proverbs is called paremiology. They make up words for anything. It is interesting how easily we relate to them no matter what country they are from. Here are some of my favorites.

Give even an onion graciously. Afghan

The one who asks
 questions doesn’t lose his way.

Don’t put gold buttons on a torn coat. Albanian

The good-looking boy may be just good in the face. American Apache

The fruit of silence is tranquility. Arabian

When elephants fight, ants get killed. Cambodian

Do not remove a fly from your friend’s forehead with a hatchet. Chinese

You do not  teach the paths of the forest to an old gorilla. Congolese

Listen to what they say of others and you will know what they say of you. Cuban

One sprinkles the most sugar where the tart is burnt. Dutch

Use soft words and hard arguments, English 

The best brewer sometimes makes bad beer. German

The liar and the thief rejoice in their first year only.  Greek

A leaky house can fool the sun, but it can’t fool the rain. Haitian

There are hundreds of paths up the mountain, all leading to the same place, so it doesn’t matter which path you take. The only person wasting time is the one who runs around the mountain, telling everyone that his or her path is wrong.” Indian Hindu 

Mothers hold their children’s hands for just a little while… 
And their hearts forever. Irish

Since the house is on fire, let us warm ourselves. Italian 

The reverse side also has a reverse side. Japanese

I ask not for a lighter burden, but for broader shoulders. Jewish 

If you kick a stone in anger, you will hurt your own foot. Korean

To bend a bamboo, start when it is a shoot. Malaysian 

He who thinks he is leading and has no one following him, is only taking a walk. Malawian

it is not enough to know how to ride, you must also know how to fall. Mexican

Instruction in youth is like engraving in stone. Moroccan

Never marry a woman who has bigger feet than you. Mozambique

Not my circus. Not my monkeys. Polish 

He need not search his pockets for words. Russian

You can out distance that which is running after you but not what is running inside you.   Rwandan 

A greedy father has thieves for children. Serbian

Never trust your friend with a secret unless he is mute or a dog. Sicilian 

More grows in the garden than the gardener has sown. Spanish

Those who wish to sing, always find a song. Swedish 

The highest art is the art of living an ordinary life in an extraordinary manner. Tibetan

Kind words take the snake out of his hole. Turkish

Who throws a stone in the market will hit a relative. Yoruban 

Any more?

Fly safe,







Top Ten Reasons To Visit Tokyo

Top Ten Reasons To Visit Tokyo

“The overriding sense of Tokyo…is that it is a city devoted to the new, sped up in a subtle but profound way: a postmodern science-fiction story set ten minutes in the future.” David Rakoff

If you haven’t been to Japan you are missing out. I can’t wait to return.

1. It is so exciting. Whatever cool electronic experience or sleek new building we have in NY, they have ten of them.

2. Their subway system is crazy good, clean, efficient, on time, safe restrooms, vending machine heaven, huge shopping malls and delicious food.


3. The food in Japan is outstanding and served beautifully. Everything is amazing but the sushi and sashimi will change your life.


4. It is one of the safest cities. The Japanese aren’t big on scamming tourists. It doesn’t go with their mindset of politeness and duty.


5. You can take a quick train and end up in an hour at a ryokan ( typical Japanese Inn and bath house) in Nikko and see the temples which is what we are doing. . Or go to Kamakura and see the giant outdoor Buddha if you haven’t already. (I have)


6. Their museums have weird exteriors but interesting exhibits. There are a few exhibits I want to see this time.


7. Tokyo street fashion is amazing and so entertaining to see. Even in this global society, it hits LA a few years later. Fashion changes so quickly in Japan that it is easy to find trendy inexpensive pieces. Fashion chain stores offer high-quality Japanese-made clothing in the latest styles — at reasonable prices. Halloween in Shibuya!!!!!

Screen Shot 2014-10-19 at 1.26.42 AM

8. Tokyo has the world’s best customer service and multi stage gift wrapping for anything you buy. It sometimes feels a little stalky as they follow you to the door carrying your beautifully wrapped purchase.

9.Tokyo has the most expansive sake list. Remember if you are drinking, Tokyo has very strict drunk driving rules for drivers and passengers so take one of the hundreds of cabs around at night.

Screen Shot 2014-10-20 at 7.10.48 PM

10. The most interesting thing about Tokyo is the juxtaposition of the old and the new. The unparalleled mass transit system and skyscrapers are next to shrines and paper lanterns. The fancy shopping malls are near small noodle shops and Japanese pastry stores. It is unbelievably crowded during the day, Nobody seems to sleep except on the train,  but it can also get very quiet late at night.


For more Tokyo blogs





yo I sorano tabi o,


Ten Reasons To Go To Southeast Asia

Ten Reasons To Go To Southeast Asia

“What we think, we become.”- Buddha

  1. Angkor Wat –the largest temple in the world is a big bucket list item for me.
  2. Best quality fakes.
  3. I like seeing monks walking around and not just at temples – at the airport, on their cell phones, shopping, in the mall, on public transportation etc.
  4. Street Food. I wish that I was as adventurous as my food hero Anthony Bourdain, but if it’s cooked, or has a thick skin like mangos and someone else eats it first, I will try it.
  5. I like condensed milk in my coffee.
  6. Some of the most beautiful beaches in the world are in Southeast Asia, and since the beach season never ends, you can live in a state of perpetual summer (like Los Angeles where I’m from)
  7. Chaos – crowded cities with motorbikes and skyscrapers.  Contrasts – people working in triangle hats in green rice paddies.
  8. Amazing Asian photo opportunities for my new Asian camera.
  9. Culture and History – different Eastern traditions, lifestyles, fashion, beliefs , languages, ancient temples, the Vietnam War and the terror of the Khmer Rouge.
  10. Buddhism was recently voted the best religion in the world International Coalition for the Advancement of Religious and Spirituality (ICARUS) Joanna Hult, Director of Research for ICARUS said “It wasn’t a surprise to me that Buddhism won Best Religion in the World, because we could find literally not one single instance of a war fought in the name of Buddhism, in contrast to every other religion that seems to keep a gun in the closet just in case God makes a mistake’” I love Buddhist countries. The best part of the story is they can’t find a Buddhist to accept the award because “The Buddhist nature is in everyone.”


Fly Safe,



Everything The Internet Now Knows About Me From My Travel Blog

Everything The Internet Now Knows About Me From My Travel Blog

“Once you have traveled, the voyage never ends… The mind can never break off from the journey.” – Pat Conroy

What countries I have been to.

Countries I like. Countries I hate.

Countries that I’m afraid to travel to.

Places on my bucket list.

The coffee addiction.

My screen name. My website.

Where I live.

My dog’s travel anxiety. My travel anxiety.

Where I grew up.

My spiritual views. My religious views.

My racial views.

My meditation obstacles.

That i have kids.

My camera skills.

Mistakes I’ve made.

My favorite quotations.

That I like art. My favorite graffiti art.

My computer skills or lack of.

My social media challenges.

That I’ve faced challenges.

Languages I speak.

My favorite band. My favorite music.

How I pack.

My favorite TV shows My favorite movies.

My favorite documentary movies.

My favorite foreign movies.

That I get car sick.

That I’m afraid on small planes.

My favorite books. My favorite authors.

My favorite restaurants. My favorite foods.

My favorite interests and activities.

My favorite countries to eat in.

My perfect travel days.

How many times I post a blog in a week. How many people read my blog.


What I look like in a hat and sunglasses.


Fly safe,








Nine Ways to Destroy The World

Nine Ways To Destroy The World

Destruction is a man’s will, Prevention is also a man’s will. It’s a man’s choice to choose between Destruction and Prevention.” Babu Rajah

1. One person at a time. We are all just doing the best for ourselves, our families, our religions and our country. Billions of people all doing the best that they can for themselves are causing a lot of damage.

2. Lack of education and stupidity –believing what is told to you instead of checking it for yourself or refusing to be reached by logic, fact, or modern ideas. Many people in third world countries don’t have access to obvious and vital truths about public health, sexuality, nutrition, all religions and conservation.

3. We have exhausted our planet’s resources and polluted it beyond its capacity to clean itself. If we don’t change how we take care of the environment, it isn’t going to matter whether we blow ourselves off the face of the earth or not.

4. Fundamentalist religion. We are living in an age of renewed religious wars based on tribalism, religious fanatics, fear of “the others” and no value on human life.

5. Nuclear power plants are on the rise which leads to more nuclear weapons of mass destruction and catastrophic meltdowns.

6. Global deflation affects everyone. The affluent nations still have stuff but fewer jobs, worse health care, more stress and more debt. The struggling nations are much worse off. Everyone is angry.

7. New diseases and viruses are evolving that can “destroy humanity”. They are usually weird, come from Africa or Asia and are transmitted by animals to humans. All illnesses due to environmental toxins are on the rise.

8. I just googled can hate destroy the world to see what people had to say and I was directed to websites spouting hate rhetoric for every race, country and religion. If you want to hate someone, you will find a group on the internet who hates them also. So I would have to say yes and with our advanced social media we can spread hate faster than ever.

9. World War lll  can happen with everyone having nuclear weapons and the belief that they are right.

I’m sure there are more. The future looks bad right now.   I wish that when the new society  arises, they will not look back and see that it was our human stupidity and selfishness that caused the destruction of most of the planet. I assume there will be a small part left and a peaceful, less complicated group of humans or somethings will thrive there.  When they tell our civilization’s story, I want it to be that we cared  and we tried our best to save it.

Fly Safe,


Signs That You Are Still A Tourist In LA

Signs That You Are Still A Tourist In LA

Los Angeles was the kind of place where everybody was from somewhere else and nobody really dropped anchor. It was a transient place. People drawn by the dream, people running from the nightmare. Twelve million people and all of them ready to make a break for it if necessary. Figuratively, literally, metaphorically — any way you want to look at it — everybody in L.A. keeps a bag packed. Just in case.” Michael Connelly

You honk your horn in traffic.

You shop at the mall on Hollywood and Highland.

You are at the Fairfax Farmers Market on a weekday morning – hopefully not wearing cargo shorts and a fanny pack.

You haven’t worn jeans to a nice restaurant or the theatre yet. You haven’t been to the theatre in LA yet.

You still dress seasonally – wool in winter, white in summer.  You haven’t figured out that its scarves, boots, flip-flops and tank tops all year round.

You haven’t been downtown or to a museum that isn’t the Getty .

You are still having lunch at the Ivy for celeb sightings. The food is not as good as it used to be. You get excited when you see Richard Dreyfus at the drug store, Meg Ryan at Barneys or Madonna at Kabbalah. i have to admit I was happy when I saw Elton John having lunch with the kids.

You get excited when you see Tyra Banks online for the bathroom at the Arclight. You do go to the Arclight and not the “Graumans” Chinese  theatre right?

You don’t have a favorite Mexican restaurant.

Everyone knows the driving shortcut you have just found.

You rarely use valet parking and prefer to find a spot on the street.

You have not yet been on a juice fast.

You are not worried by the lack of rain.

Words like Santa Anas, fire season, earthquake kits and did any one feel that? are not part of your regular vocabulary yet.

You leave your car on South Beverly Drive and walk to Rodeo Drive. You still leave your car in one place and walk to all your errands if you can. You attempt to live somewhere where you are near public transportation.

You have not perfected your spray tan color yet.

You have barbecues in the winter. You still get a bit sad that there is no snow on Christmas.

You have not bought a winter coat even though there are days you need it.

You still prefer to eat in the restaurants that have a view of the ocean even though others are better and less expensive.

Fly Safe,


Take Me To The Art – Seattle, Washington

Take Me To the Art – Seattle, Washington

“We use our minds and our hands to create our world.”   Jonathan Borofsky


The Seattle Art Museum (SAM) was designed by Robert Venturi and Denise Scott Brown. It is one of Seattle’s privately owned public spaces. The city of Seattle offered developers the right to build larger developments in return for certain public amenities. As this is not advertised, most people do not know that certain lobby space, restrooms and rooftop gardens of downtown buildings are open to the public. The lobby space of SAM is fun, light and airy – good place to catch up on email.


Jonothan Borofsky’s Hammering Man towers in the front of the museum. The hammer swings back and forth from mind to heart. His original concept was to have Hammering Men, hammering all over the world. There are many indoor hammering men of different sizes. The outdoor ones are in Seoul, Frankfurt, Basel , Dallas, Los Angeles and Seattle.


SAM’s cultural statement is “ we connect art to life.” Art is displayed in similar groupings while juxtaposing with different cultures and time periods. The Seattle Asian Art Museum and the Olympic Sculpture Park are all part of SAM.

I loved one of the current exhibits called City Dwellers. It is a glimpse of India from the eyes of twelve modern Indian artists. The photographs were taken from an Indian perspective instead of a tourist one. India’s pop culture, history and religion has made it a place of contradictions. The artwork highlights this in the private and public sectors. (India Shining V – Gandhi with Ipod by Debanjan Roy)


The Olympic Sculpture Park is part of the Seattle Art Museum. It was built on land that was once on the environmental cleanup list.  On my first visit to the park, I felt that it was about beautifying the urban landscape. The architectural space and scenery were much larger to me than the art. The park is free from dawn to dusk on beautiful waterfront property near downtown Seattle. (Seattle Cloud Cover by Teresita Fernandez)

Screen Shot 2014-09-28 at 6.36.58 PM

An art collector friend pointed out that it was an interesting, high quality outdoor collection. So i had to go back and see it again.  She was right and it is noteworthy.  The Eagle by Alexander Calder stands guard over Elliot Bay.

DSCF4155Among other sculptures are the serpentine steel plated Wake by Richard Serra,  Bunyon’s Chess by Mark di Suvero, Echo by James Piensa and  Father and Son by Louise Bourgious. The sculpture is a lot more impressive in person than in photographs. The combination of setting, architectural concept and art seems to fit with the Seattle aesthetic.  (Serra, di Suvero  Bourgious)

Screen Shot 2014-09-28 at 11.38.19 AM



The gallery scene in Seattle includes many Pacific Northwest artists and affordable art. Seattle is not known as a city of art collectors so if you go to a gallery and show some interest in an artist, they are happy to talk it. They will take you in the back and show you more work. I spent a long time at the Foster White Gallery.


After seeing the small but thought-provoking exhibit at the not for profit alternative art space Soil, I was told about more galleries in the area.


I had a plan but took gallery personal recommendations instead including restaurants and coffee places.  (Roq La Rue Gallery)


There is an eclectic mix of contemporary art in Seattle and all the gallery people were welcoming and informative. Other cool galleries include Greg Kucera, Prole Drift, Punch, Bryan Ohno, Roq La Rue and James Harris. (Bryan Ohno Gallery)

Screen Shot 2014-09-21 at 12.39.16 PM

The art in Seattle ranges from serious to fun and quirky. Maybe it is the weather that influences the artists. It rains a lot which makes you appreciate a beautiful day. I felt that appreciation when I went into a gallery on a rainy Seattle day and found an unexpected piece of art that touched me and connected me to my life. (always my favorite art)


Fly safe,