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Lisa Birnbach's Five Things That Make Life Better on March 1, 2019

By Lisa Birnbach

Just back from vacation Greetings Friends,I did not forget you while I was escaping winter and reality for a bit, but I honestly was more introspective and indolent. It was a vacation, not a business trip, and I spent the week with friends in Mexico. We laughed. We ate guacamole and quesadillas. We lounged. I read. There was more guacamole. We walked on the beach. We looked for whales. We ate guacamole while we looked for whales. (I drank the occasional margarita.). We laughed the whole time. There were hard laughs that turned to tears. They recharged me. It’s not going to be easy to give you five things that made my week better without guacamole, but I’ll give it a try.   1). Traveling with friends. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED, especially when your friend Marsha organizes it. It’s also wonderful to travel with family, to travel with kids, to travel with your husband/wife/partner/BFF but this trip was special. It was only 7 people, and the place we stayed had 8 bedrooms, so we didn’t fill it up, and no one had to do anything they didn’t want to do, or in fact anything at all. And, as I said, I just showed up; had no hand in selecting the place, making reservations, or hiring taxis. Thank you M!!! I made a new friend and reaffirmed good warm feelings with everyone else.  I can read this menu all the way from home! 2). PERHAPS THE GREATEST INVENTION of all time is something I saw for the first time at the Aqua restaurant at the Pamilla One & Only resort. It is …. an iluminated menu!. How genius is that? No more stress! No more hunting for reading glasses. No more jimmying the candle to right under your bangs (“What’s that smell?” “Something’s burning”) so you can see the minuscule type. {One day someone can explain to me why menus are printed in such small fonts. Are restaurateurs scared of pages? I’d rather see a 3-page menu I can read than a one-page menu that I can sort of see if I squint.). PLUS, the menu, which only lights up when you open the cover, is a fun toy. I felt like a toddler with a present. I hope these take off at restaurants everywhere. 3). Winter is still here. As long as I’m dressed for it, I don’t mind the cold, particularly when the sun is shining. When not prepared, winter feels like a siege. With so many layers and so many temperatures to deal with in a day — subway, streets, offices, home, shops, and brisk walks — the core tends to get overheated, or at least mine does. But my feet are often cold. . If yours are too, here’s some unsolicited advice. Get a pair of these — sheepskin inner soles — to add to your boots. You can find them at your local shoemaker or online. Make sure they are not too thick for your boots. (They come in sizes.). You’re welcome.  4). Ad Hoc Book Groups. I bet quite a lot of you are in book clubs of some kind. For some they are the only excuse you have to do pleasure reading. For others they are a purely delightful social opportunity, but more like a wine tasting. Still others I know find their book club an obligation that’s too fraught to quit. My friend Jamie just sent me this book, which we are going to start on the same day and discuss as we go along. We live across the country from one another, but this is a brilliant way to stay connected. I salute you, Jamie for this ingenious idea.   5). Robert Mueller comes in at number 5 this week. I honestly didn’t think about him much while I was in Cabo, which means, scientifically, it’s not a crush. Which I already knew. But I did wear my I HEART Robert Mueller t-shirt while I took a walk on the beach (thereby combining two of my favorite things on earth.)Stay cozy and act natural!

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