So here it goes…
An attempt to get back into the blogging world. However I like to think of it more as sharing vs. blogging. A place I can escape to release my thoughts and experiences without having to worry so much about approval. A safe place where I can surrender and in return slow down, reflect and ultimately get some silence in my monkey brain. Almost like taking my yoga practice from the mat to the keyboard.
Life over the past year and half has been full throttle. Looking back and trying to explain my online absence is just, dizzying. So many obstacles, life lessons and self discoveries were happening at such a fast rate I could barely keep up. Not enough sleep and curveballs became my new day to day.
The fucking curveballs. Man do they like me.
After speaking with other restaurant owners and entrepreneurs, everyone says the same- they never really slow down, it’s more about how you handle them. Right? And if it’s one that’s particularly nasty, just surrender, take a deep breath, do your best and keep looking forward. This has been one of my biggest challenges- keeping the emotions out, staying calm (Who me??!) and behaving mindfully.
A few good reads, short travels, friends and yoga have helped me tremendously in these situations.
Nowadays I know they’re coming so they’re more approachable. Less intimidating. Because eventually they will be overcome, the sky will clear and the sun will shine and all will be forgiven. Not forgotten. Never forgotten.
I do regret my absence in a sense because one of the greatest things about sharing my adventures here with y’all is the fact that I have some kind of archived diary. There are many chapters that have unfolded in the past year and a half, and even though it was a hurricane it has probably been the best year of my life.
At the age of 29, I, a Southern girl with big desires and too much energy, and Francisco, my Argentine boyfriend opened a small Gastropub here in Buenos Aires. Nothing was pre-planned and we had no clue as to what we were getting into. There was no dream of opening a restaurant. Yes, maybe a small shack on some Costa Rican beach where I serve fresh catch and tropical plants from my jungle tree house villa, but those were day dreams (and still are). Truthfully we just got bored with the puerta cerrada, wanted something more consistent that didn’t involve tourism and liked the idea of offering a cool space where one could grab a tasty beverage and a decent plate of food in the afternoon hours and indulge in some fatty goodness. Surprisingly there isn’t much of that in this city, so we just did it ourselves.
I knew we’d be successful but was not prepared for the speed of it all. Having accountability for everything. The challenges of being a team leader, working side by side with your partner day in and day out, running a kitchen. Argentina.
On opening day I had three panic attacks. Balling crying on the office floor too scared to open our doors and have everyone critique our creation. A creation that Fran and I developed on our own, no outside help, no copy catting, just us, our ideas and a lot of hope and hard work. Once the doors opened the tears dried and we found our groove.
Exactly a year later I escaped back to the office to have a quick bite away from the crowded chatty salon. I needed a quiet moment alone. And as I sat on the freezer with my fabulous chicken sandwich in hand I started balling crying once again. However this time they were tears of joy. Endless amounts of pride for both Fran and myself, gratitude overwhelmed me and I couldn’t help but finally feel accomplished. Every table was full, strangers became regulars who became friends, guests thanking us for our work, respect being given from our peers, our happy and healthy NOLA team, it was all built from love.
So the good outweighs the bad.
So I sit here a year later from my favorite cafe as the rain pours and I sip my tea.
I buy lemon cake and other sweets to take to NOLA so our team can nibble on something different while we drink mate and discuss this weekends ‘special dish’ to be served at Sunday lunch.
Joaquin is visiting from Barcelona which makes Fran very happy which makes me happy.
Our new apartment is everything and more, just like most of you predicted after my rant back in October.
We adopted a dog, Oliva, which reassures me, I do not want human children. Nola + two animals are all I can handle for now. Momo is doing well, enjoying being a big brother, most of the time.
We escaped to Rio a few weeks back, a mini milestone for us as it was our first time Nola was open with the both of us being out of the country. We + Nola survived, applause all around.
I got to see some of my most favorite people in one of my most preferred places in the world, more on that later!
Good friends have left BsAs, a heartbreak I will one day hopefully overcome.
Dad and sister booked tickets for Christmas in Buenos Aires. YES, sister is finally coming.
I practiced yoga this morning to beautiful Spanish guitar music while the animals ran around and the boys slept. I’m having a calm and quite day resulting in a tranqui and present Liza.
Life is good. Great, really.
Back online and reminding myself to be compassionate.
Compassionate to both myself and others.
And most of all grateful for where I’m at and how I got here.
Hasta pronto amigos.