Posts Tagged ‘blue’

Alaska: an ideal escape

Monday, March 7th, 2011

After working basically nonstop for two months over the holidays on my graduate school applications and portfolio, I was completely burnt out. I needed to run away for a while and relax, and luckily Catie and her family were happy to have me come up to Alaska for just that purpose. We did what we always do – eat far too much of Linda’s exquisite cooking, play board games whenever we can find a third player, and play outside with the dog (and the sister, and the sister’s dogs) whenever we can’t. I tried to keep my computer packed away as much as possible, and I am rather proud to say that I did not do more than an hour or two of work the entire three and a half weeks I was there. (I work hard, and I laze hard, I suppose.)

Anchorage, AK (Feb 3, 2011)

Photo taken in Anchorage, AK on February 4, 2011.

I’ve had a few people ask me recently what Alaska is like in the winter… I guess I still don’t really know how to answer that question. It is beautiful, above all else. There is always a good deal of fresh snow on the ground, and the mountains absolutely shine. It’s true that there isn’t much daylight, but, being a lifelong night owl, that doesn’t really bother me. Plus, it just means that a good portion of the day is filled with magic-hour light from a recent sunrise or an impending sunset!

Anchorage, AK (Feb 3, 2011)
Anchorage, AK (Feb 3, 2011)
Anchorage, AK (Feb 3, 2011)
Anchorage, AK (Feb 3, 2011)
Anchorage, AK (Feb 3, 2011)
Anchorage, AK (Feb 3, 2011)
Anchorage, AK (Feb 3, 2011)
Anchorage, AK (Feb 3, 2011)
Anchorage, AK (Feb 3, 2011)
Anchorage, AK (Feb 3, 2011)
Anchorage, AK (Feb 3, 2011)
Anchorage, AK (Feb 3, 2011)
Anchorage, AK (Feb 3, 2011)
Anchorage, AK (Feb 3, 2011)
Anchorage, AK (Feb 3, 2011)
Anchorage, AK (Feb 3, 2011)
Anchorage, AK (Feb 3, 2011)
Anchorage, AK (Feb 3, 2011)
Anchorage, AK (Feb 3, 2011)
Anchorage, AK (Feb 3, 2011)
Anchorage, AK (Feb 3, 2011)

Photos taken in Anchorage, AK on February 2-7, 2011.

My last day in Lyon

Wednesday, November 24th, 2010

The day I had to leave Lyon snuck up on me much faster than I expected. I don’t feel like I was there for three months. It’s hard continually introducing myself to a new place to live. I feel like right when I start getting the hang of it, it’s time to move on again. It is great to see so many parts of the world and experience such different cultures. (I’m not sure I could name five similarities between Bangladesh and France…) But, I still don’t really have the hang of such a nomadic lifestyle, I think. It takes me a long time to warm up when I wake up in the morning, and similarly it takes me a while to warm up in a new city.

Catie and Emma gave me free reign on what we should do my last afternoon in the city. It was a beautiful day after a couple blanketed with rain, so I steered us toward the Parc de la Tete d’Or. (Just like a Minnesotan to spend his last day in a great city at the park.) Emma hadn’t been there yet anyway, so it was a good fit. The park felt different from the other times we had visited. The trees were almost all bare, and there was hardly anyone walking about, so the place felt very open. It was quiet, and a nice way to say farewell.

Lyon, France (Nov 16, 2010)

Photo taken in Lyon, France on November 16, 2010.

I will miss France. I wish I felt like I had become a bit “French” myself, but I don’t think I had enough time (or perhaps I have just too much “goof” coursing through my veins). Maybe Catie and I will make it back again someday, and I can try again (and maybe learn a decent bit of the language too, although Catie definitely has us covered in that department). In the meantime, I’ll be in MN for the next month and a half working on art projects and applying to graduate school, and generally enjoying the holidays at home for a change. (And unfortunately, I will probably be making a concerted effort to neglect this blog while I focus on those other things…)

I have no idea what is coming next… Domesticity? A hemispheric shift? Anything is possible…

Lyon, France (Nov 16, 2010)
Lyon, France (Nov 16, 2010)
Lyon, France (Nov 16, 2010)
Lyon, France (Nov 16, 2010)
Lyon, France (Nov 16, 2010)
Lyon, France (Nov 16, 2010)
Lyon, France (Nov 16, 2010)
Lyon, France (Nov 16, 2010)
Lyon, France (Nov 16, 2010)
Lyon, France (Nov 16, 2010)
Lyon, France (Nov 16, 2010)

Photos taken in Lyon, France on November 16, 2010.

A city by the sea

Tuesday, November 23rd, 2010

When I was living in Tasmania, I loved that my life in Hobart centered around the sea. My apartment was more or less in the city center, and every day I would walk ten or fifteen minutes to the University of Tasmania School of Art, which had its campus in an old jam factory directly on the water. I wasn’t much of a socialite in Australia (nor anywhere, truthfully), so when I wasn’t working at school or at home, I was often meandering around the docks, staring out at the water or (when feeling less pensive) hunting seagulls with my camera. I don’t know why I liked it so much. There was something about the constant presence of the water and the quietly lapping waves that just seemed to help keep me at peace.

So, I was happy when we got to Marseille and I saw that the city (part of it, anyway) centers itself around Vieux-Port. The seaport was first settled by the Greeks in 600 BC, and the harbor has remained an important spot ever since (although it is now used only as a marina and a docking point for local boat trips). I don’t know much more about it than that (and I freely admit I pulled even that pitiful historical tidbit directly from Wikipedia), except that it is now surrounded by what seems like hundreds of restaurants. I honestly don’t even really love any of the photos I took around the water. I just wanted to take a moment and note my appreciation of this maritime quality of Marseille.

Marseille, France (Nov 12, 2010)
Marseille, France (Nov 12, 2010)
Marseille, France (Nov 13, 2010)
Marseille, France (Nov 13, 2010)
Marseille, France (Nov 13, 2010)
Marseille, France (Nov 13, 2010)

Photos taken in Marseille, France on November 12-13, 2010.

Weekend spontaneity

Tuesday, November 23rd, 2010

We went to Marseille! (I just had to blurt it out!) Spurred greatly by Emma’s enthusiasm to take a weekend trip somewhere outside of Lyon (no offense intended to our great French city), we all headed south for 48 hours of delicious warm Mediterranean air. The venture was a great success. Marseille is a beautiful seaside city, and the weather could not have been better. We all abandoned our jackets at some point (as well as most of our remaining layers), and the two Alaskans in our party probably risked a bit of sunburn. (OK, perhaps the Minnesotan did as well.)

Marseille, France (Nov 13, 2010)

Photo taken in Marseille, France on November 13, 2010.

We ate as much delicious food as we could handle in such a short period of time, and we even stumbled upon a crêperie that would rival my favorite back in Lyon. (In fact, we ate there twice and devoured a collective eight crêpes in the span of 18 hours.) Thank you so much to Emma for kicking our slightly domestic butts into gear and getting us to Marseille!

Marseille, France (Nov 12, 2010)
Marseille, France (Nov 12, 2010)
Marseille, France (Nov 12, 2010)
Marseille, France (Nov 12, 2010)
Marseille, France (Nov 13, 2010)
Marseille, France (Nov 13, 2010)
Marseille, France (Nov 13, 2010)
Marseille, France (Nov 13, 2010)
Marseille, France (Nov 13, 2010)
Marseille, France (Nov 13, 2010)
Marseille, France (Nov 13, 2010)
Marseille, France (Nov 13, 2010)
Marseille, France (Nov 13, 2010)
Marseille, France (Nov 13, 2010)
Marseille, France (Nov 13, 2010)
Marseille, France (Nov 13, 2010)
Marseille, France (Nov 13, 2010)
Marseille, France (Nov 13, 2010)
Marseille, France (Nov 13, 2010)
Marseille, France (Nov 13, 2010)
Marseille, France (Nov 13, 2010)
Marseille, France (Nov 14, 2010)
Marseille, France (Nov 14, 2010)
Marseille, France (Nov 14, 2010)

Photos taken in Marseille, France on November 12-14, 2010.

Day trip to Pérouges

Wednesday, October 27th, 2010

After being sick for the better part of a week, I managed to get out of the apartment and into the mercifully-not-too-awful cold to make a second attempt at visiting the small medieval town of Pérouges. We tried to take the train again, but we found out last minute that it was cancelled, so we were directed to a replacement bus. We successfully (found and) rode that bus for about an hour until we arrived at Meximieux, a small city from which Pérouges is only a pleasant fifteen or twenty minute walk.

I didn’t know much about our destination before we got there, except that (as I mentioned before) it is a small medieval town, and it is completely surrounded by a wall. (Clearly, this was reason enough to visit in my opinion – perhaps related to my obsession with a certain board game.) It turned out to be an absolutely beautiful place to spend the afternoon, and I am considering going back to spend another since my available light started to fizzle by the end of our stay (and it was so dazzlingly brilliant nearer our arrival). It helps that the bus ticket is also delightfully cheap – only 10 euros round trip!

Lyon, France (Oct 23, 2010)
Lyon, France (Oct 23, 2010)
Lyon, France (Oct 23, 2010)
Lyon, France (Oct 23, 2010)
Lyon, France (Oct 23, 2010)
Lyon, France (Oct 23, 2010)
Lyon, France (Oct 23, 2010)
Lyon, France (Oct 23, 2010)
Lyon, France (Oct 23, 2010)
Lyon, France (Oct 23, 2010)
Lyon, France (Oct 23, 2010)
Lyon, France (Oct 23, 2010)
Lyon, France (Oct 23, 2010)
Lyon, France (Oct 23, 2010)
Lyon, France (Oct 23, 2010)
Lyon, France (Oct 23, 2010)
Lyon, France (Oct 23, 2010)
Lyon, France (Oct 23, 2010)

Photos taken in Pérouges, France on October 23, 2010.