Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Days of Sunshine.

Playing at the lake near my sisters house in Fitzroy with the cutest little girl, my niece Isobel. The world requires endless exploring when you are just learning to walk - luckily Aunty will always be following close behind to make sure you don't stroll too close to that water.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011


I caught the early train from downtown Seattle. It was my first time on an Amtrak which was exciting and it was a perfect morning for it- the sun was already shining which is always a good start to the day. The train ride was four hours long and i got to see some amazing scenery. We travelled along the coast most of the way up so it was beautiful seeing the water and watching fisherman heading out on their boats. I have never crossed a border before to enter another country, it seemed weird not to have to fly anywhere or cross any ocean. I forgot that i had to go through customs as well. The Canadian customs officers were very pleasant. I booked into a hostel close to the train station so only had to walk around the corner. I stayed at C & N Backpackers on Main Street. When i got there my room wasn't ready yet which was fine, i dropped my bag off and headed out into downtown Vancouver. I spent most of the first day wandering around the city. I checked out Chinatown, the Gaslight district and walked along the waterfront to Stanley Park. I stopped in on my way to have lunch at the Steamworks Brewery. I had a cider and a delicious parsnip and carrot soup. It was nice to sit at the bar by myself and people watch, sometimes there is nothing better than your own company.
Stanley Park was probably my most favourite part of Vancouver. When you walk through it you feel like you are miles away from the city. It's like being in a forest with beautiful trees everywhere, lakes, squirrels chasing each other, geese, and even beavers. I walked down several trails within the park and then came out to the water around it. I then walked around the whole park which was about 5 miles of walking. It was really beautiful though. I could smell the salt water and see boats coming in off the harbour. It was a hot sunny day so the beaches were packed out with people but i was more interested in walking and seeing more of the city. I was getting a little tired by the time i got back to downtown and found a cute little organic market to stop and have dinner in. The lady who served me was hilarious. She was one of those larger than life types who sat by me on her break and told me her life story. It was nice talking to her, she was very interested about New Zealand and my adventures from my time in Seattle.
When i got back to my hostel i was tired from walking all day but eager to do something that night. I struck up a conversation with a lovely lady from North Carolina. Her name was Lindsay and she was roadtriiping around America and Canada with her friend Claire. They invited me to go out with them that night and we quickly became friends. We sat around drinking wine and headed into downtown Vancouver to check out the nightlife. We went to one bar which was apparently the 'travellers' bar. This would prove right as we met a group of Brazilians and a group of Irish people. All the people i met were super lovely and we ended up forming a little posse for the night. I met a nice Brazilian named Toby who may be visiting Seattle in the near future. We all ended up having a great night, we stayed till last call and then went to an apartment to hang out. I headed home around 3 knowing that i had to check out early in the morning..
The next day..
I got up to check out and started once again to roam the city. It was another hot day which was hard considering this time i had my backpack with me. I decided to walk to Granville Island. On the way i stopped to send a postcard to my Mum and Dad, i don't think i have really embraced the tourist side of me and it felt nice sending cheesy postcards home to the family. The walk to Granville was long hike but a really nice one - i walked over the bridge and got a beautiful view of the city and hills surrounding it. I like that Vancouver is surrounded by water, it think i would always have to live in a city that has water all around it. It brings a certain feeling of peace. I didn't really like the buildings though, there were so many condo's that looked almost plastic, shiny and fake. I think i prefer the older, dingier cities with rustic looking brick buildings and places with a little more history.
Granville Island was amazing. Little artist studios everywhere - you can look into the studios and watch the artists at work. There is also an amazing public market with great food and little knick knacks for sale. I stopped at a little cafe close to the park and got an iced green tea with soy milk. I sat for a while before heading out on my walk back to the train station. I decided to walk back along the waterfront and ended up napping in the park for a couple of hours. It was such a relaxing afternoon and very pretty seeing the little boats bobbing up and down on the harbour. I walked up South Main St before heading to the train. South Main St was probably my favourite shopping area. It was a little more bohemian looking and had some cute little vintage stores and cute bars. Unfortunately i could only have a quick look - before i knew it i was on the Amtrak back to Seattle. I met a really cute old couple on the train. The were from Winipeg Canada and told me all about their children and grandchildren and their little lives in central Canada. We talked for a couple of hours until we got to Seattle and then parted ways. It was a very pleasant way to end what was a great trip.

Friday, April 1, 2011

Cherry Blossom tree.

So lately i've been really into jotting things down. I carry around a notebook with me and when i feel the need or see something that inspires me i write it down. This way i never forget the exact feelings of the experience.
Just the other day i was taking a walk. Seattle is very pretty at the moment with all the cherry blossoms in bloom so it saddened me when i walked into a grassy field covered in cherry blossom petals. It made me realise how fast nature changes and i felt sad that soon we would no longer be seeing the beautiful cherry blossom trees.

Cherry Blossom tree.
It was an especially windy day in the city. I was busy watching the surface of the water as it battled against the gustling wind when a single white petal landed on my toe. Light as a feather it fell and despite the force of the Seattle sky it sat patiently on my foot waiting for me to look up. Soon it was joined by another petal, and then one more fell, this time a light shade of pink, the colour of sun burnt skin after an hour at the beach. Every gust of wind blew another petal closer, and soon the grass was covered in a blanket of cherry blossom petals. Like snow they fell until the branches of the cherry blossom tree were left bare. Naked and in shame the tree withdrew it's branches and stood watching in despair at all of it's beautiful petals now floating to the ground. Reaching out with it's long bone like fingers the tree grabbed desperately at the sea of white and pink around it's feet. But the attempt was in vain, the once picturesque cherry blossom tree was nothing more than a tattered and willowed soul looking out to the grey Seattle sky. Frail, small and afraid the tree shrunk into it's surroundings bowing it's head in disgrace as the other trees looked on in pleasure. No-one envied the cherry blossom tree now. The cherry blossom tree sat alone on the hill and there it would stay, waiting for the season to pass.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Poem for the water.

While i was sitting in my favourite spot at Gas Works Park i wrote a poem about the water, something about the way the water glimmered inspired me to write a few quick words.

The Water.
As i sit on the hill my eyes are drawn to the water.
One spot in particular.
This one spot in the water, like silver foil being crinkled in someone's fingers.
Like the flash on a million different camera's going off all at the same time.
Soon this one spot turns into a stream, then the stream becomes an ocean.
Millions of flashes coming from the water.
With all of our tiny cameras we thought we were capturing the sea.
But the sea had captured us.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Fashionable Rebels.

 Whilst in Barnes and Noble today flicking through numerous photography books i came across Rebel Youth by Karlheinz Weinberger. Weinberger documents a group of Swiss teenagers involved in the 'rebel' style of the 50's and 60's. I immediately became fascinated with this idea of rebel fashion. What does it mean to be a rebel in today's society? I believe we still attribute a certain level of coolness to the modern day rebel. For this idea we can thank the dashing Mr Dean whose images are plastered everywhere we go. Boys today are still rocking the chuck taylors (which i believe will never go out of style) with the cuffed jeans and rolled up shirt sleeves. Also popular is the nerdy wide framed glasses which James Dean was often seen wearing. While Weinberger's photography displays the more quirky swiss inspired rebel fashion the book still can be seen as a huge style imspiration. What better time to pop your collar and pull out your leather, rebels have never been hotter.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Seattle blog.

Cruise on over to my new travel blog

This is where i will be sharing all of my Seattle/American experiences.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

I'm back.

I return to thee dear blogging world after an extremely long hiatus. Life has surely been taking me down a twisty and turny path as of lately leaving very little time to update my blog. For those that are still here i thank you for your patience, i think however i have finally got my blogging mojo back and am feeling motivated to update again.
Oh and the fact that i lost my job the other day is helping also. Now don't get all worried, i can assure you i am feeling much better off for not working at that place. I admit i was super upset when my boss pulled me aside and starting feeding me a ton of lies before telling me i didn't have a job anymore. It was completely unjustified and unreasonable but i guess that is the type of person she is. There is no way i want to be around that type of negativity so i feel much happier today. Perhaps a little worried about finding a new job, but nevertheless happier.
As i am writing to you the rain is pelting against my window. I was told we are supposed to see rain for the next ten days in Seattle, everyone is moaning, i am happy, finally Seattle is living up to it's reputation :)
I feel like there is so much to be said that i don't even know where to start. I am feeling much more settled in in my new house in Wallingford and feeling more and more blissed everyday for having met these wonderful people. They really are a great bunch who have made me feel very included and looked after. I have spent the last two days frantically applying for numerous jobs and have my fingers crossed that i will be hearing back from some of them soon. I applied at a really cute clothing boutique in Fremont today which would be super awesome to work in. I have also applied at several cafes and restaurants. While serving work is hard it would be nice to be earning some decent money.
Lastnight i went to the Crystal Castles show at the showbox sodo. The showbox sodo is an awesome venue although i am told the showbox market is even cooler. I liked how misplaced sodo is, you take a bus ride to the southern end of the city and end up in this industrial area. It feels like you are in the middle of nowhere basically. My friend Andrea and I were a little unsure of where to go but found our way pretty easily. Crystal Castles were amazing. I knew it was going to be a high impact, high energy show but it far exceeded my expectations. Everyone was feeling it and the crowd were super hyped and crazy. We met up with my roomate Jess and her date Ethan and had a few drinks beforehand at a super chill bar called Hooberville. I was impressed to hear Daft Punk blasting away on the stereo, and was also impressed by the lovely strong whiskey and ginger we drunk. The bar was packed out with hipster types who were obviously heading over to check out Crystal Castles. It was a really fun night, although Andi and I had to put up with a weird cab driver making obscene sucking noises with his mouth while he drove. It was pretty disgusting and we spent the whole cab ride cracking up laughing on the backseat of the cab.
It's a weird feeling being unemployed. I know i should totally enjoy every moment of my freedom i just get a little stressed about finding a new job. I know it will happen though, i think tomorrow i'm going to head into the central district and hang out. Maybe check out Pike Place again, i totally love going to that market. Theres also some neat looking coffee shops that i would'nt mind spending some time in.
I also need to start taking some more photos so i can bombard my blog with pretty Seattle images.
Once again i apoligise for being a slacker, and thank you thank you for your patience. You should also check out my lovely sister Hanna's blog Living the simple life. There is a button to her blog on my page. She has really been busy blogging and her photos of my niece Isobel are beautiful. Stop on by say hello and don't forget to vote her in the top baby blogs competition.
Goodnight all, i'm going to sleep with the sound of lovely rain.
I promise we shall talk soon.

Saturday, January 29, 2011

More of Portland and throw in some Wallingford too.

Sorry I’ve been absent lately, I have just moved to my new house here in Wallingford. With the packing, and working full-time I’ve been a busy little lady. I know I promised part two of the Portland adventure but life just kind of got on top of me as it sometimes does. Anyway here a few pictures taken from the streets of Portland. My highlights were visiting the infamous Powells bookstore which is story upon story of beautiful new and secondhand books. I spent many hours browsing the shelfs and ended up leaving the store with a stack of secondhand treasures including William S Burroughs ‘Junky’, Salinger’s ‘Catcher in the Rye’ Hemingway’s ‘The Sun Also Rises’ and the beautiful Autumn de Wilde hardcover photo collection of my all- time favourite band Death Cab For Cutie. It was also nice strolling the streets of such a beautiful city with lovely brick buildings and footpaths and hidden parks around every corner. I found the waterfront area to be especially pretty and as it was a cold day we were left to our own devices to explore the riverside. I really hope to return to Portland in the spring time as I can only imagine how the city looks in full bloom. Also I wouldn’t mind checking out the Japanese gardens and rose gardens which we were unable to visit in the winter.

Back to Wallingford.

I’m so happy to have moved here already. I moved yesterday with the help of one of my new flatmates Jim. It was an easy move considering I own next to nothing and I was lucky enough to score a bed as well. I can already tell the environment here is much better. It just feels more relaxing and friendly. Within minutes of moving in the new roomates were discussing making me dinner! What a lovely bunch. I was also standing on the porch lastnight and looking out to the Seattle skyline and space needle. It is quite spectacular how you can see the lights from the city reflecting in the water. Seattle really is a beautiful place.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Portland! Part 1.

As promised, although two weeks late (sorry!) here is the Portland post.
Day 1.
We headed out for Portland from a dark and rainy Seattle. Driving wasn't going to be easy considering we could hardly see in front of us which also meant that i saw little of the roadside. However i couldn't let this dampen my spirits so we drove the three hour drive on the Interstate with my eyes glued to the window the whole time, waiting patiently for any break in the weather. The interstate is a funny thing. It just goes and goes in a straight line, void of any personality. Four to five lanes on either side, vehicles moving all in one direction. I like a road where you can take in the scenery but on a rainy day it wasn't such a problem. After what seemed like a blink of the eye drive we were hitting Oregon state and crossing the bridge into Portland. I didn't really know what to expect. I have always wanted/dreamed of going to Portland and then all of a sudden i was there. While the weather had cleared some it was still an exceptionally grey afternoon.

We went to check into our hotel, the Ace Hotel. I highly, highly recommend this hotel to anyone. We stayed in one of the dorm style rooms so it only ended up costing us around $35 each a night. The place had character, was clean, comfortable and had stumptown coffee right in the lobby. 

Our lovely room at the Ace Hotel, we managed to mess it up in less than an hour.

After checking in we were approached by a group of people filming in the lobby. They asked if we would be interested in attending a filmed performance in one of the hotel rooms. Turns out it was the artist Pictureplane from Denver. We headed up to room 406 to watch him perform. I can tell you know it was a very strange experience. We all squished into a room where others stood around looking as dumbfounded as we felt. As a bunch of scenesters sat on the bed having a photo shoot we all kind of looked at each other sheepishly. Then out came the drugs, alcohol and whippets and pictureplane began his performance. As millions of cameras circled around we danced in the middle of the room, not sure what else to do. The scenesters got high and did scenester things. Pictureplane performed three songs and then it was all over. We left the room giggling to ourselves wondering what the hell we just got ourselves into. Overall it was pretty fun though.

                                                                                 Pictureplane perform.

It was then time for dinner so we found a cheap pub serving happy hour special food. I had some greasy fries and a little burger which were actually quite delicious. I'm always slightly uncomfortable in places where football is playing on the screen in the background so needless to say we didn't stay around for too long. Instead we went back to the room and got ready for a night out and about in Portland. I had done some research so had some idea of what bars to check out. There was one that was recommended to us from a person i met at a gig in Seattle. The bar was called The Tube and had an amazing happy hour where spirits (or well drinks, as the Americans call them) were only $2 till 10pm at night. We ended up staying here for sometime before meeting up with a friend of Jill's and heading to Dantes bar. Dantes were having a circus type performance which was extremely entertaining, especially the double jointed stripper who pulled out a cigarette from it's packet, lit it and smoked it all with her foot. The night ended off with a gypsy type band and gypsy type dancing.

                                                                       Some of the performers in the circus.

So day one of Portland was over and was a very interesting and enjoyable day. I was looking forward to waking up and getting stumptown from the lobby plus exploring more of the streets. I'll tell you more about that in Part 2 tomorrow.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

I just don't know what to do with myself.

I swear i used to be so good at filling up my spare time but as of lately i feel sort of lost. I don't know what it is that i used to do but everyday i had off would be filled with some sort of adventure. I guess it's a mixture of things at the moment
  • getting used to a new city/country
  • not knowing a lot of people
  • feeling like a stranger in my house, i'm moving next week.
  • living in a weird area with little room to explore, once again i'm moving next week
  • getting used to wintery weather
I have two days off from my job. I wish i was able to drive i kind of feel like jumping into a car and driving somewhere by myself with my music blaring and nothing but open road. Then i would find somewhere to stay whenever i got tired and spend the day exploring unknown territory tomorrow. The whole idea seems rather romantic. I have been lucky to meet one fantastic person. We meet up on Monday night for coffee and food and talked for nearly 3 hours. It's a nice feeling when you meet someone you immediately connect with. He is actually on his way other now to hang out before he heads up to Bellingham for a couple of days, if i didn't have work on Friday i would probably go with him. So i'll keep this post short and sweet. I'm getting my Portland photos back tomorrow so look out for a post about that weekend.
Much Love xox.