- Sunrise on Manhattan’s fire escapes
I woke up very early, thanks to jet lag. I was laying and waiting for at least a ray of light from my window. New York slept. Yes, it sleeps at 4-30 am, definitely. Then I found that our bed is right under the window with a fire escape. We tried to open it and voila, I was standing on those romantic stairs ever, just awaken still in my lingerie and with disheveled hairs. I felt I was inside of one of those Hollywood films just like Richard Gere or many other film heroes. That was so amazing!
Jolly well, we made a photo shooting there. The stairs like that is a symbol of Manhattan for me. We rented an apartment on Airbnb. It wasn’t neat by the way, but it was on Manhattan, it was in old building and it made me feel so Newyorky.
I found a piece of history about fire escapes in NYC. I was very excited to know.
The first law was enacted in 1860, requiring all tenement houses to have fire escapes. Then New York Labor – Title 3 – § 273, was enacted after the tragic Triangle Shirtwaist Fire in 1911 which killed 146 immigrant workers in a building now part of NYU. The law required that fire escapes on office and factory buildings built after October 1st, 1913 had to be made of wrought iron or steel with the ability to sustain a live load of 90 pounds per square foot or greater with an additional safety factor. Other requirements recommended a “continuous or straight run stairway” if possible, a balcony “firmly fastened” to the building on every floor with iron railings, and unobstructed opening to fire escape of a least 2 feet wide and 6 feet in height.
One thing you notice on street level is that last staircase, which is required by law to go “from the lowest balcony to a safe landing place bene
ath.” The staircase must either remain down permanently or arranged to swing up and down.
Ever wonder why some fire escapes are in fun colors? A later law, which affected fire escapes constructed after April 18, 1929 required every fire escape made of material that might rust “be painted with two or more coats of good paint in contrasting colors… Whenever a fire-escape becomes rusty, the owner shall repaint it with two additional coats of good paint.” The latest fire escape law also has a variation of this rule.
This picture is where we lived. Upper East Side 93th Street
The second law also had specifications about interior access and where fire escapes can be constructed in general, like in the photo below where fire escapes are permitted “in a court of a non-fireproof multiple dwelling to serve an apartment or suite of rooms which does not contain any room fronting upon a street or yard.” Additionally, it banned reuse of old materials or cast-iron in new construction.
The latest law appears to be 1 RCNY §15-10, available on NYC.gov, which goes through everything in great detail, down to what a “goose-neck ladder” is. But, the fire escape may not be long for the city. In April 2015, the FDNY spokesman Jim Long told the New York Post, “Those fire escapes are going the way of the dinosaur,” because fireproofing is seen as more effective.
What to pack to NYC in summer?
Preparing my trip I’ve read a lot of websites with advises about NYC. It is not easy to decide what to pack with you to stay light and to have everything you may need. You never know whats gonna happen there. By the way to pack your New York City luggage is very easy.
What girls need to have in NYC in summer?
- Carry-on bag, where you put all your stuff
- A pair of comfortable shoes, if you run take your best running shoes. Those are quite nice in black and fit almost with everything.
- Comfortable socks. The best are running socks. It will be very helpful to prevent calluses if you plan to walk there. But who didn’t?
- Comfortable clothing. I mean jeans or leggings with shirt, something sporty and casual. Here I have a black tee from 2XU and black shorts from Lululemon – also fits almost everywhere depending on jewelry and hairstyle.
- Toiletries TSA-Compliant (Toothbrush, comb and etc. less is better)
- Small make up kit. I use one black pencil, bb cream and a lipstick.
- Light fancy dress. I have this one from Athleta, which you needn’t iron, and it fits everywhere. Just add some jewelry and hairstyle in the evening.
- Pair of comfortable sandals to fit to the dress and which could be useful not just for one night.
- Internet in your mobile phone. It will make your life easier. To find a place to eat, to use map, to look for an event – all are quite easy in the Internet. We used [email protected] guest SIM card for $40.
- Backpack bag if you walk a lot. I have this one in brown, older model. I bought it when my daughter was born because I needed free hands to manage with her. It is very expensive but I have it more than seven years and I still wear it and it is still fancy. True Italian.
- Your photo camera and notebook are optional but I had mine with me.
I am back after a long trip through USA including Hawaii and then right after we had landed in Czech Republic we started driving to France Atlantic coast. It took me two month to get back home. I plan to tell about it here during this year. I hope so=)
I have not been training for two months also. So, I am trying to be back in form as soon as possible.
I had a 10k race this weekend, which was not successful, as you could understand. Moreover I was so unlucky to be caught on a cobblestone at 9th kilometer and fall with injured knee and elbow but finished with slightly under 54 minutes. I love this race. It takes place in the center of Prague every year.
The true Italian styled sandwich with
wholegrain ciabatta bread
Jamon Serrano is much cheaper than Iberico and it is sold everywhere, so we use it often.
Fresh hams are trimmed and cleaned, then stacked and covered with salt for about two weeks in order to draw off excess moisture and preserve the meat from spoiling. The salt is then washed off and the hams are hung to dry for about six months. Finally, the hams are hung in a cool, dry place for six to eighteen months, depending on the climate, as well as the size and type of ham being cured. The drying sheds (secaderos) are usually built at higher elevations, which is why the ham is called “mountain ham”.
And for cheering up Italian spirit on this post I will show you some of the pictures with me and my very tiny daughter seven years ago.
I would say this one is more Italian than Spanish, but as far as we have Spanish meat here I should explain.
“Lomo” is the Spanish word for tenderloin. It can be bought cured or uncured.
Lomo embuchado is an air-dried loin of pork that is considered to be a delicacy. The loin of pork is between 19 and 27 inches in length and has all the fat removed. It is marinated in a variety of fine seasonings. The marinated loin is stuffed into a beef skin and then lightly smoked. Thereafter it is air dried for up to four months to maintain its tenderness. You will often see it served as a tapa.
And we love grilled zucchini. They are amazing even only with Italian bread and olive oil. You can’t feel Italian spirit until you eat like Italians do. Soak a piece of ciabata in fresh olive oil and eat it with wine and meat.
Ingredients for Lomo meat sandwich
grilled sweet onion
dried tomato salsa
I believe that everyone who had visited Spain tried Paella. It is a very traditional dish and it has different variations. To combine chicken breasts and chorizo in this sandwich is about a Spanish spirit.
Here they are:
Grilled chicken breasts
If you prepare some chicken on weekend, this could be a fast breakfast combination.
This is my sandwich. its not perfect but its mine (c)
I lie. It is just perfect!
This one was actually mine. And it was not inspired by any country but our grill and veggies we had in the fridge. So one morning grill season has begun.
I like gluten free focaccia bread from Schar. I love veggies and cheese and that’s it.
I feel hunger when I see it again and again.
The most “français” sandwich ever you can imagine!
My first encountering with Foie Gras was when we were visiting a French family in Cognac region. We had a homemade Foie Gras as a starter and I have never tried so delicious Foie Gras after that. All canned Foie Gras can’t be compared with that one.
I tried a lot of the delicious food at the lunch for the first time ever, for example, lobsters and vintage champagne.
This recipe I would say is a weekend one. You even may want some cold white wine with it.
Foie Gras sandwich ingredients are:
Paul’s poppy seeds baguette
Foie Gras (I took Czech one this time and it wasn’t bad, but French is better.)
Fig Jam – must be in there
Balsamic Vinegar of Modena
Inspired by San Sebastian tapas bars this sandwich with jamon Iberico is the very Spanish. San Sebastian is a Basque country pearl city in the Bay of Biscay.
I took the picture from my other blog about that region. This one is from a hike in Spanish mountains, the very beginning of Pyrenees which starts from here and you could see San Sebastian in the bay.
I had not had this blog when I met an Iberian pig last summer on the hike in the mountains. I was freaked out and ran to my husband who had been quite far away already, while I was shooting every bush around. It looked like that on the picture below and was pretty huge:
Jamón ibérico “Iberian ham”, “black hoof” is a type of cured ham produced mostly in Spain, but also in some Portuguese regions where it is called presunto ibérico. According to Spain’s law on food products, jamón ibérico may be made from black Iberian pigs. The black Iberian pig lives primarily in western and southwestern Spain.
Jamon Iberico Bellota is my favorite one. It is sweet and tender and it has taste after acorns (the only food that pigs are allowed).
Once we ordered legs with meat like this Iberico Jamon Ham, but not sliced. And it came and was a size of a toddler.
Since then whenever we go to France, we buy a Jamon Iberico leg when we are in France on holidays.
San Sebastian tapas! Here they are. Enjoy!
But lets return to our muttons, when we are in Czech Republic, we definitely miss France and especially Basque region, so sometimes we make sandwiches, I call them “tapas style” but much bigger=)
It is so easy! You need just make a salad: chopped tomatoes, sweet onions, olive oil, black pepper and salt. I don’t mind sweet Balsamic Vinegar of Modena ( Aceto Balsamico de Modena) or something similar on the bread before meat;) and meet the second sandwich – “Tapas Basque style” with Jamon Iberico.
This one is inspired by French rillettes, which are quite common in sandwiches in France. We usually buy them when we are there, but it is not common here in Czech Republic, so we find a way to make our own one.
Rillettes (// or //; French [ʁiˈjɛt]) are a preparation of meat similar to pâté. Commonly made from pork, the meat is cubed or chopped, salted heavily and cooked slowly in fat until it is tender enough to be easily shredded, and then cooled with enough of the fat to form a paste. They are normally used as spread on bread or toast and served at room temperature.
Rillettes are also made with other meats, goose, duck, chicken, game birds, rabbit and sometimes with fish such as anchovies, tuna or salmon.
This French dish has its many regional definitions. In Quebec, cretons are similar to rillettes.
So how we make tuna rillette? We take soft creamy cheese, a kind like Philadelphia cheese, but more natural one. To tell the truth I don’t like Philadelphia since I read its ingredients. And we mix soft cheese with Rio canned tuna, maybe be in oil or drained one just with fork. It should contain pieces of fish. Those pieces are what make a difference between pate and rillette. Once you made it, just serve with salad and green onion. Very delicious and one of my favorites! I only make it with gluten free bread.