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When Tara Met Blog
Wednesday, May 25, 2005
Back to Life, Back to Reality
Now Playing: (see above)
This song has been repeating in my head ever since our plane started to land back in New York and I spotted the miserable and rainy 50 degree weather. Welcome home! :( I also had an article due today and just started my full-time position at work. On the upside, I did manage to schedlue a vendor briefing with a journalist.

Here's the recap of my trip to Marco Island:
Marco is off the West Coast of Florida, south of Naples, but the closest airport, Fort Myers, is 45 minutes away and at least 10 miles from the shore. But the smell of the ocean's mist and the balmy heat can be inhaled and felt through squinted eyes, the moment you walk out onto the hot pavement, just as my heavy Soring clothes began to stick and cling to my body.

A high, arched bridge leads you to the City of Marco Island, where you are welcomed by palm tree lined streets and clay tiled roofs, reminiscent of a more tropical Beverly Hills. Elaborate manatee and seahorse shaped stone mailboxes try and outdo the dolphin and seashell ones of their neighbors and mark the entrances of amazing homes.

The weather was perfect and cloudless each day and remained in the high 80s despite the forecast, which called for scattered thunderstorms every day.

My friend and I opted for a day at The Spa, which was of course lovely and completely booked with guests. I had my first Sweedish Massage, LOVED IT!!

Instead of meeting laid-back locals and Bob Marley, Jimmy Buffett types, the people we met were mostly the same inhabitants of my native island. The majority of the barefoot tourists are New Jersey women and Wall Street men looking to unwind by escaping to their summer rentals. New Yawkers can easily be spotted in summer frocks and strappy, elaborate sandals, daringly incorporating colors into their normally black filled wardrobes.

The Mr. Perfects that I had secretly hoped to meet had Mrs. Perfects in the beach chair next to them, their kids playing in the wave-less water with their grandparents lying a few feet away under an umbrella. And their stares were not the ones I had in mind, when I sported my new black bikini for the first time this season.

It seemed, from family vacations to romantic rendezvous for two, Marco Island makes for the perfect paradise for both. Just do not expect to see many single people under the age of 35 to socialize with. According to Wikipedia, for every 100 females age 18 and over, there are 95.8 males, and the median age of inhabitants is 60 years old. So although the ratio is not that horrible, an older sugar daddy was not who I was looking to luau with.

Oh but the sunsets on the white sandy beaches, over the Gulf ocean, were amazing!!

CAUTION: I wasn't aware of this but apparently if you put your room key card near your cell phone it can erase the coding and you wont be able to get into your hotel room. It happend three times to us and each time I was either dripping wet from the pool or in grubby gym clothes when I was forced to trek down to the front desk and wait for our keys to be recoded.

Posted by Tara at 2:15 PM PDT
Updated: Monday, May 30, 2005 1:48 PM PDT
Thursday, May 19, 2005
I am here:

Spending 5 days in Marco Island, FL, curtosey of the trip that I won on the Tony Danza Show. It's my first vacation in a year, and I'm soo looking foward to it.

This is the hotel I'm staying at:

These are hopefully the drinks I'll be drinking:

and the guy I'll be meeting, lol! (wink, wink):

Posted by Tara at 9:01 PM PDT
Updated: Tuesday, May 31, 2005 2:15 PM PDT
Wednesday, May 18, 2005
This day last year, I saw a kid die.
The newspapers identified him as a 'man,' and I suppose he was, but being only 21-years-old, he was still just a baby who should have had his whole life ahead of him.

It was three days before my graduation from Wheaton College in Mass, and everyone was excited for the senior formal, especially because it took place every year at Rose Cliff Mansion in Newport Rhode Island. It's where they filmed the ballroom scenes in The Great Gatsby film and we were going to be able to sway on the same dance floor while a big band played. The night was going fine; I was the designated driver though, so I couldn't have too much fun with the open bar part. While taking a breather in between songs with some of my girlfriends, I was introduced to a friend of a friends date. He was a very handsome guy in a tux, who said it was a pleasure to meet me and kissed my hand before they went back on the dance floor for a slow song. I admit, was a bit dazzled, I mean who gives a kiss on the hand except for in old movies?

Around two a.m. on the streets of Newport, still in our gowns and tuxes, my group did not wind up at the main bar with everyone else but at some local one. We were still waiting for some students who didn't go to the dance to join us, and then we were going to move on. Just as I was leaving and walking out onto the main street, I finally saw my late friends walking towards us, but I looked away from their happy faces when I heard "FIGHT FIGHT FIGHT!" being chanted a few feet away. I looked over at the crowd of people, when suddenly a guy in a tux, I couldn't tell who (could it be a friend of mine? I thought) was pushed or lost his balance and began to fall backwards off the curb, waving his hands in a quick effort to catch himself.

Everything went into slow motion, when in reality I suppose it had to happen really quickly. Behind him, a crowded school bus was turning the corner onto the street we were on. My mind knew instantly what would happen, the twenty or so people outside must have known too, because there was a group intake of breath. I looked away for a moment. Heard the screaming! Looked back and saw the bus still driving, and about to parallel to me. A student that I knew ran along side the bus banging on it's side to stop it. College kids from Rhode Island College who were on their senior pub crawl were screaming and hanging out the windows of the bus. I slowly turned my head back to the fallen kid in the tuxedo, knew he had to be someone that I knew, someone I probably went to school with. Saw his decapitated body lying lifeless on the road. Suddenly everything went into real time again, I grabbed my friend who heard the noise but thankfully didn't see what I just saw and kept her from looking. A guy friend of mine threw up, and I knew I was going to faint, so I had to get me and my friend that I was holding out of there. Sirens were in the distance, people were crying and I didn't want to faint and make things worse so dragging my drunken friend, I drove to were we were staying. Waiting to find out who the guy was, forcing the images out of my head.

Finally my friend, who didn't even go to the dance but was questioned by the police after having had the bad luck of arriving just then and being even closer to the accident than me, sobbed over the phone and told us that it was a friend's date. My mind instantly registered that it was the handsome guy that I met that night, the one who kissed my hand.

For the next three days, the events played like a film scene on loop: meeting him, leaving the bar, FIGHT, falling, swinging bus, screams, body, then rewinding and playing back again. Needless to say graduation was a somber event for all three colleges involved, Wheaton, Rhode Island and Fairfield U, where he was about to be a valedictorian of his graduating class. I still think about him sometimes before sleep, seeing the images play again while thinking of the bright future that he would have had, his parents and girlfriend grieving somewhere, the familiar pain they were going through.

For the actual news story about what happened go to:

Posted by Tara at 9:01 PM PDT
Updated: Thursday, May 19, 2005 1:55 AM PDT
Tuesday, May 17, 2005
Office Foosball Tournament
We have a foosball table in the small conference room of our office. Games are held on a daily basis and everyone takes it pretty seriously :) This week we are having a foosball tournament with 10 employees competing. The schedule is written up on the dry erase board.

I'm the only female playing and my first match is against the President and CEO of the company!! He admitted yesterday that he's a sore loser and he would be humiliated to lose to a girl, lol. Yikes, and did I mention it's his birthday? So, now I'm gonna feel bad when I kick his ass ;) Hopefully I'll still have a job! haha!

UPDATE: Oh how the mighty have fallen, the 'mighty' being me. I lost by two goals :( He got to practice earlier though when I was in a video conference and I had a big crowd cheering me on against the boss. It made me nervous. It was a lot of fun though, I'm still charged from the game!

E-MAIL that my gloating boss sent out to the whole company:
Sent: Tuesday, May 17, 2005 3:00 PM
To: Fusion New York
Subject: tara shmara

I AM FOOSBALL?I AM KING?I AM?.MOVING ON. Let no player be left unturned and no goal unjustified for I have succeeded where other failed. With courage and grace, though unpracticed, I have left my mark on the game and on the field. Ryan, put me down for the next round!

REPLY: Haha, glad to see it?s not going to your head!

Happy Birthday!


RE: RE: tara schmara from another coworker:
A clear birthday's better to lose at foosball than to have to climb out of a cake like someone did last year...

Posted by Tara at 10:07 AM PDT
Updated: Monday, June 13, 2005 10:15 AM PDT
Sunday, May 15, 2005
AIDS Walk New York
I did another charity walk and again it was in the rain, but at least this time it was warm and it only drizzled.

It was the 10k AIDS Walk NY -- the world's largest AIDS fundraiser! I walked in honor of a college friend with HIV and of course the millions of other people who have it.

I joined the Ralph Lauren Polo team, because my friend works there and the company encouraged their employees to invite friends and family and walk together, thus why I'm with them. They gave me a nice t-shirt to wear, surprisingly it's not a polo tee though.

As we walked by the opening ceremony area, I briefly heard John Spencer, Rosie Perez and Judith Light speak and cheer everyone on.

Unfortunately since my friends donated to the Revlon Breast Cancer walk two weeks ago, I wasn't able to raise anything this time, besides my entrance fee and the money that I donated myself :( If anyone would like to make a contribution to raise urgently needed funds and send the message that the AIDS crisis is not over go to:

2.9 million people died from AIDS in 2003; nearly half a million were children under the age of 15.

4.8 million people were newly infected with HIV in 2003; that's 14,000 a day!

38 million people are currently living with HIV/AIDS

25 million children will be orphans by 2010 because of AIDS

70 million deaths from AIDS are estimated in the next 20 years (HOLY SHIT!!!!)

PS: I finally got a letter from MY SOLDIER, after months and months of sending care packages to him. He's from Colorado and on a 30 day leave.

Posted by Tara at 4:52 AM PDT
Updated: Tuesday, May 17, 2005 10:09 AM PDT

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