Polly, a destination marketer of Easy Jet Holidays, has sent me few questions to answers and asked for some of my favorite Polaroids, which was not that easy to choose. I loved her questions, especially how did it all started and what have been my travel highlights of this project and why. To read all the answers and see which was the first images that started all of that, please read the full article on-line.
‘When I take a really good picture that tells a story, it can really make my day!’
What a nice surprise to come back home after a week in Paris and get a Birthday gift in the mail from one of my friends. I guess some of my friends know me too well! My friend has ordered it in Amazon way before she knew I would actually be in Paris. I’ve been actually planning to buy this book awhile ago, after following its author, Nicole Robertson, from the blog Little Brown Pen.
So now I am unpacking my Parisian suitcase, putting away my new Les petites Parisiennes shoes, my new favorite perfume from Jovoy Paris, making myself a cup of coffee and slowly getting back to my New York’s routine.
Having the feeling of ‘Feels like home in Paris‘, living in a street that has the same name of a wine. Drinking my morning coffee on a typical French rooftop. Le Marais as the back yard, North of Le Marais as the hood. Getting off the Republique metro station or walking to Temple. Walking in a Parisian rain with no umbrella. Two chocolate mouse as a breakfast. Cute street names as Square Clignancourt, Rue Daru, or metro stop Poissionniere, just for the heck of saying it. Photography walk with local photographers, Birthday dinner with friends in a local place. Chocolate cake all for myself, Bon Anniversaire, Joyeux Anniversaire and a Happy Birthday song in French. Le Baron club. Miss “Queen Misterio” mask, original Photography prints rolled in two tubes. A 5-wine and cheese courses in one evening, Lunch in Collette. Having a private tour with Fred Le Chevalier the Street artist. Waking up to the view of the Sacre Coeur every morning and going to sleep with the same sight. Sundown around 10 in the evening, Sunrise even before 6. New friends, old friends, a friend’s photography exhibit at Village Royal. Buying cheese at Le Marche des Enfants Rouges, getting bread at Du Pain et des Idees and having lunch on a bench in Canal St. Martin with Anne Ditmeyer of Pret a Voyager. Teaching my sister the art of the dyptich, running into a private party in the middle of the day. Counting baguettes on a Sunday. Jam and Cheese in one spoon. Pink Ballerina shoes at Les Petites Parisiennes, Meeting Lindsey of Lost in Cheeseland. Merci Merci. H&M, Mama Shelter Hotel. Poiray rare perfume, Godiva Chocolate as a starter. My favorite cheese gorgonzola mascarpone. Running up in the streets of Montmartre, running down toward Pigalle or Jules Joffrin. Cooking class and a morning Parisian market. The smell of chocolate croissants in the morning. Recognizing some streets, finding my way around and having my sister with me on my Birthday…Priceless!
I love it when I take a random turn and it turns out to be the perfect one, or the one with full surprises. That what happened to me few days ago in Lisbon. I’ve visited the city for 48 hours and in one of my strolls I got into a small but well designed artistic cafe, the Belmonte Cultural Club Cafe. I think I was looking for the restrooms and I also wanted to check my emails, therefore I got in. I ended up having an interesting conversation with the owner of the cafe and with the cute mysterious bartender who turned out to be an artist himself. I was very inspired by the interior, the endless books spread around and with the characters. While exploring the place, the bartender made me coffee and put it on one of the tables.
So this is how it looks when an Artist makes me coffee.
Drinking coffee at the local Starbucks but with a Portuguese flavor two times a day, running along the Tagus river instead of the Hudson. Climbing up the hills of Alfama all the way to Castelo S. Jorge just to have an amazing view of the city. Spotting a lot of Laundry shots to upgrade my photography series. Taking a random turn just to discover the artistic design of Belmonte Cultural Club Cafe. Joking around with the owner and getting a free access to shoot whatever I want in Palacio Belmonte Luxury hotel. Having a late lunch early dinner at Saint Antonio restaurant next to San Miguel church. Taking the yellow carreira number 28 instead of the yellow subway line in Manhattan. Croquette de Ovo for dessert. Joining a friend for a last minute call to watch the Companhia Nacional de Bailado. (The National Ballet). Two fish cakes during the break. Bolo de Arroz and Pastel de Nata for breakfast at the Gat Rossaio Hotel in Rua Jardim Do Regedor. Walking along Rua Augusta all the way to Praca do Comercio, Mudo Museu do Design in a Holiday morning. Grilled Sardines with mayonnaise twice at the same day. Another overview of the city but this time from Monumento Nacional. Empty streets of Baixa. Coffee break at the trendy Kaffee Haus in Rua Anchieta. Chocolate break in Xocoa Chocolate Place (Orange flavor). Walking along the streets of Bairro Alto, searching for A Vida Portuguese concept store. Pineapple virgin martini on a sunny afternoon in Pharmacia restaurant in Rua Marechal Saldanha. Having a special tour with the owner of Pharmacia to Petiscaria Ideal and Taberna Ideal. Sneak Peek to Pensao Amor, the newest sexy Nightbar in town. Drinking tiny cherry liqueur in the street with the locals, sleeping only 4 hours a night but walking the streets all day…Priceless.
One cup filled with foam to the top with one shot of espresso on the side. 3 times a day. 3 kilometers of swimming in an outdoor pool every morning. Creamy cottage cheese on a whole wheat hazelnut cracker for breakfast. Social Club, Friday afternoon drinks at Shishko, Wineberg wine bar on Friday night, Bazel street just before midnight. Pomelo. Touring the vintage scene in Old Jaffa. Arabic salad in Pua’a cafe and mint tea right after. The French movie La Delicatesse with Audrey Tautou, Delicatessen restaurant in Yehuda Halevi street. Graffiti walking tour all over Tel Aviv and a stopover for coffee at Loveat, Gan Hachashmal. Bauhaus buildings all over the city, Bakeri on Yavne street and avoiding bread on Passover. The great Intouchables movie, the new building of Tel Aviv museum. The renovated Habima Theater and watching the sunset on the beach. Catching up with old friends, catching up with new ones, catching my breath in some points at night. Celebrating a friend’s birthday at Nanutchka, having a dessert at Rotschild 12. 2 pairs of jeans, one full shopping day with my sister and many afternoons with my nephew. Getting upset because of some bureaucracy issues, and yet, enjoying the old style of celebrating Independence Day in the streets of Tel Aviv….Priceless.
In my current visit to Tel Aviv, I can’t ignore but noticing a common trend. Vintage! Or was it because I was visiting the old port in Jaffa the other day, where a busy, colorful vintage and flea market scene was taking place. I guess Tel Aviv is getting Vintage, and the more I saw it, the more I liked it. After a long shooting day in Jaffa, I met few friends for an early dinner. We were at that great restaurant, that holds a variety of old furniture, plates and kitchen ware. So eclectic! When I got my mint tea with the check, the waiter got it with a Nancy Reagan image! We couldn’t help but laughing how vintage can you go! Food was great, by the way :-)
Drinking my morning coffee at the neighborhood cafe, running my morning run in Jardin du Luxembourg, visiting foundation Cartier instead of foundation Henri Cartier Bresson. Rue Vavin, Rue de Bac, Rue de Montparnasse, Cimetiere du Montparnasse, Cimetiere du Pere Lachaise just before sun down. 3 underwear and 1 bra at Oysho in Rue du Rennes. Invalides at dusk. Candles and perfumes at Astier de Villatte, crashing a cocktail party at Parfums Jovoy at Rue de Castigliore and getting tipsy from a merlot. Bubbly champagne with a local friend next to Pantheon, Cheese and baguette for dinner, soupe à l’oignon for dinner, chocolate noir pour le dessert. Quick coffee with Paris Trikkes, Quick walk to St. Sulpice while eating pistachio and chocolate Macarons. Great Pastries at Laduree, Rue de Buci’s food market, Boulevard Raspail’s stands. Walk along the crowded streets of Le Marais. M. Chat, Fred le Chevalier, Space invaders and Jef Aerosol at Place Starvinsky, just behind the Niki de Saint Phalle fountain. Food market at Les Enfants Rouges, Rose wine in the afternoon. Hotel de Ville at night. Guided tour at Mama Shelter hotel. Floral suitcases at the Merci store at Boulevard Beamarchais, color beads at BonTon next door. Pont de Bir Hakeim in a very sunny day. Marc Jacobs and Louis Vitton at Les Arts Decoratifs. Rue st. Honore on an empty Sunday. Barefoot lunch along the Seine river on a very sunny day. Oberkampf on Monday, crepe suzette for lunch, graffiti walk along Canal st. Martin. Seafood lunch outdoors. Gallerie Wallworks at rue Martel, semi private tour with a local French. St. Sebastien Froissart, Sweet Honey bread for breakfast, Colette store at rush hour. The Conran shop, Petit Pan and so many I can’t even pronounce. Glittery tour Eiffel after midnight, foggy Boulevard Montparnasse at sunrise. Laughing a lot with a good friend and making jokes of almost everything we cross by. Catching up with old friends, and finally meeting with new ones. Getting the answer of how many space invaders are in Paris and around the World, without really making an effort….Priceless.
Living only 5 minutes walk from Harajuku train station, and luckily only 4 minutes away from Starbucks. Walking back and forth along Omotesando every day and finding some really cute boutiques in the alleys near by. Prada building in Aoyama, Comme des Garcons near by and Tod’s building by Toyo Ito. 2 Silver light coats, 2 grey heat-tech undershirts in Uniqlo Shibuya. The massive crowds in Shibuya and miraculously not getting lost in Shibuya train station. Special Tea seminar in Ippodo Tea place in Ginza. Not understanding a word, but enjoying myself to the fullest. Meeting a friend at the Meiji Jingu Harajuku Shrine, just to realize there is a religious ceremony going on. Throwing few coins to ask for a good luck, writing my wishes on a special paper and buying two lucky charms. Sushi for breakfast, Soba noodle soup for Dinner, snacking mochi all the time. Visiting a store for Kimonos only, Window shopping in Ginza. Stationary made of Japanese special paper after looking for the certain store for hours. Harajuku Girls, Harajuku Girls Malls, Harajuku Girls Culture. A must! Having a behind the scenes and a private tour at HP France company; The trendiest clothing company in Tokyo. Meeting new people and turning them into friends. Fish soup, sticky rice, mint chocolate and sweet crepes. Looking up all the time just to be amazed by the beautiful architecture. JR line, Shinjuku station, Quico boutique and tons of beauty salons. Walking in a city of 13 million people and experiencing serendipity quite often. Sleeping only 4 hours a night, just because there is so much to see. Feel like in the movie ‘Lost in Translation’ so many times during the day but still, always finding my way back. Seeing so many places, so many people and squeezing so many great experiences and surprises into 72 hours….Priceless!
Drinking so many Vietnamese sweet coffees with condense milk I can even count on one hand, trying to cross to the other side of the street when so many motor bikes are zooming around, Overlooking Ho Chi Minn city at night from the Rex hotel’s rooftop, helium balloons, street food vendors, walking to Ben Thanh Market and having Pho noodle soup for breakfast, squeezing lime into the soup, adding red hot chili peppers, The Notre Damn Church outside of Paris, Cu Chi Tunnels, walking barefoot into the Cao Dai Temple exactly at noon time, Spring rolls and Shrimps at the night market. Sitting on a stool among the locals while having dinner and experiencing all the cheers and celebrations of the Tet Holiday. Staying at the old French Quarter in Hanoi, right next to the St. Joseph Cathedral. Waking up every morning to the sound of bells of the Cathedral and heading for a run along the Hoan Kiem lake, Tai Chi in front of the red Tortoise Tower, walking around the ’36 streets’, looking all day long for a steam Bao and finding it at the bakery next door. Sofitel Metropole Hotel almost every night to get a fast internet connection, passing through the Opera house on my way back. Mango and Pineapple on a stick covered with sweet chili, Halong Bay in the fog, Taking the night train to Sapa and walking almost half day inside a foggy cloud, Baguette and chocolate for breakfast at the Austrian coffee shop, Kit Kat Village, taking the night train back to Hanoi at the same day. Hoa Lo Prison, Tran Quac Pagoda, and giving some fake money to the Gods. Temple of Literature, Ho Chi Minn Mausoleum and walking back through the Ba Dinh Square. Drinking lemon tea and eating sunflowers seeds like the locals do. Getting to Hoian just on time for the Full Moon Lantern Festival, floating a paper lantern on the Thu Bon River on that very special night and praying for some good luck. Sweet potato and coconut green bean cake almost every day. Condense Milk out of the can almost every morning, Grilled corn with chili lime sauce. Waking up at 4 am in the morning just to see the sunrise in a fishermen market. Speaking in English but have no one actually understands you, but still making your way around in a smooth way….Priceless!