Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Asian Adventures

Gasp! It can't be true...but it is, I am actually posting in my long-abandoned blog. A few months ago now I took a trip to China with 17 fellow students from my graduate program at NYU, followed by a short visit to Tokyo as a personal stop with my trip roommate Carolyn (if we were going to fly to the other side of the world, it only made sense to at least see one other country along the way!). 

What I expected was complete cultural immersion into the mysterious ancient far-east culture, stretches of rice paddies dotted with farmer rice hats, and temples galore. What I got was complete shock at how trends in urbanization, growing population, and a need to house and accommodate for a 1.3 billion person and growing population actually looks on the ground. Giant tall cranes perforated the grey sky, the future product of which was a scene made familiar upon the first day of our arrival- rows of identical housing units all lined upright like soldiers at attention. A pervasively hazy horizon that had been the subject of much media attention stood before me. People sprawled everywhere! We were able to see the grandiose skylines of Shanghai, the average day of a factory assembly line worker in action in quiet yet bustling manufacturing towns, the ubiquitous groups of Taichi'ers assembled in parks in the evenings, shops, temples, older men gathered in random street corners hovering over card games, the well documented beauty of the Great Wall of China, the dismal conditions of the squatter toilets, the nightlife in Beijing, and maybe the occasional rice hat. 

Tokyo was a rich, colorful, technologically advanced, anime haven replete with a kind and curious culture with the most pristine hospitality skills I have ever witnessed. Simply opening a map in a subway station elicited thorough instructions on how to get where we were going. My most prized souvenir? A long bleach-blonde wig from one of the many extravagant costume stores in Tokyo's famous Harajuku district. 

Shanghai View from Hotel

Factory Line 
Street Life in Shanghai
Street Life in Shanghai
Woman and stroller in Rose Garden in Shanghai
Cyclists in Shanghai
Temple in Mongolia 
Great Wall of China
Great Wall of China
Historic Housing Area in Shanghai


Gaming Arcade in Tokyo (yes, those are all adults)
Shopping in Tokyo
Garden- Tokyo

 Amusement Park
 Mt. Fuji View from Hanoke
Shinjuku Shopping Area 
Harajuku District

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

These pictures are long overdue! I made a small road trip to the Adirondacks in upstate New York about two months or so ago with three friends, with the intention of witnessing a magical ascent of hundreds of hot air balloons into the twinkling dawn sky. As it turns out, hot air balloons can only operate within a narrow range of wind speeds, conditions which never did materialize themselves for the hundreds of eager participants at the Adirondacks Hot Air Balloon Festival. 

The trip turned out to be memorable nonetheless, with Lake George as the perfect backdrop to trees painted in rich shades of red, orange, and yellow; a beautiful mural of the changing seasons. We rented a cozy cabin that looked much like an adult-sized tree house right on the lake, and spent a delightful couple of days away from the city. A couple of pictures were also taken from my brooklyn rooftop of a particularly breath-taking sunset and in the city.

Thursday, September 12, 2013

The past couple of weeks have been ones of profound reflection on what direction I’m headed in professionally, personally and otherwise. This has been somewhat of a mini-existential crisis, if you will. That surely makes it out to be rather cataclysmic, but I suppose I’ve always been one for unnervingly thorough self-analysis. The burning question is whether I should stay in my graduate school program and accumulate an asphyxiating amount of debt, and if it would lead me towards the kind of life I think I’m seeking in order to make that debt worth it. I’ve had that nervous feeling in my stomach like something isn’t quite right, although pinpointing what that something is has proven to be quite an elusive pursuit.

What I do know is that I’ve been seeking more creative outlets of self-expression. I’ve spoken to my parents, boyfriend, best friends, strangers, and having exhausted the advice of every possible outlet, I begged for the clarity to come to me in a dream (naturally, how else should one solve life’s most pressing problems?). Anyhow, at the risk of sounding slightly like I’ve gone off the deep end, I will share the dream I ended up having last night.

In it, someone called me on the phone to tell me my mother had died. Now for those of you who do not know my mother, she is buzzing with creative capacities. The woman can paint, sew, draw- you name it. In the dream, I am not sad, but rather intensely curious, so I go to my parents house to collect her belongings, but the only things I can find are her paintbrushes, paintings, and other art-related belongings, so I take them and place them around my apartment.

This is what I found on dreams about death:

“To dream about the death of a loved one suggests that you are lacking a certain aspect or quality that the loved one embodies. Ask yourself what makes this person special or what you like about them. It is that very quality that you are lacking in your own relationship or circumstances. Alternatively, the dream indicates that whatever that person represents has no part in your own life anymore. In particular, to dream about the death of your living parents indicates that you are undergoing a significant change in your waking life.”

So what do you think, should I leave school and seek something else, perhaps something more creatively in-tune, or should I stay on track and bludgeon my unsettling impulsivity with a sledgehammer?

On a less serious note: a couple of pictures from my lomography camera:

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Frightful flower, with what vehemence do you dare not to grow?
Is it oft that the sun does now shine in your favor,
Pouring down upon you its glimmering golden vessel of all life?
Does not your patch of soil provision all the food and drink to be had at your hearts content?
When the jovial skies, in a frenzied deluge of manic bear upon the earth
A sleet of iridescent tears,
Do you not emerge yourself the better, endowed with the vigor of a penitent having performed the nights sacred ablutions?

Have you stopped to consider your opulent dress of velvet so fine the highest royals seek it, and blues and reds so bright the finest painter contemplates it?
Perhaps familiarity has robbed you of your very scent,
Fragrant as the honey of the sweetest bees.
Is there a thing for which you truly want,
that has not been ordained to you in the cosmic order of life?
I think it not that you may have encountered an existence more immutable than your own.

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

I have spent the last several days packing, cleaning, painting, heavy lifting, and otherwise moving my excessive belongings to my new apartment in bushwick! This will be not my second, not even my third, but my FIFTH apartment since I moved to New York three years ago. Talk about living in a transient city, and every time I do it, I promise myself it will be the last time I move. My room is coming together nicely though, and is considerably bigger than my last, which is always a good thing- particularly when you've accustomed yourself to living in closet sized bedrooms because its simply the norm in this city. I also found the perfect 1970's vintage white dresser with gold trimming (craigslist, you never let me down) and that has made me extra happy. 

Thursday, August 29, 2013

A few pictures of James and I's overnight trip to philly. The original purpose of this trip was to visit a thrifting mecca where I was hoping to score some great finds. These dreams were quickly dashed when we pulled up to the front door to find out the warehouse is only open on mondays and saturdays. Obviously, this is the type of thing that would happen to me, but thats ok, because as it turns out philly is perhaps the most historically significant city in the U.S. Among other things, we read copies of the Declaration of Independence (ok, briefly scanned), saw Benjamin Franklin's grave, and peeked inside of a Masonic Temple. Granted, these pictures don't depict any of those things; and are more the product of walking around the city and enjoying my few last days off before school. 

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Dearest fashion-lovas, if you haven't checked out lookbook yet, it's a fun site for the fashion enthusiast that is basically dedicated to "street-style" photos. You can post your own looks, or explore those of others to get color and style inspiration from people all around the world.

Show me some love (please & thank you) and "hype" this look on lookbook by using the "frolicking in flowers" link on the right!