Travels, Adventures, & Life in general.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Today I Learned #2 - At the Park

1) Pepsi > Coke (I'm actually all for Coke, but I saw some people filming what looked to be a Pepsi ad).
2) Young boys are already wearing skinny jeans and v-neck t-shirts. What happened to the awkward years?? No one should be that fashionable at age ten.
3) Benches are good for napping.
3.5) As is the grass.


4) People smoke weed relatively publicly in parks. More often than one would think.
5) PDA is perfectly ok in public parks. Scratch that--Barcelona in general.
7) All of the signs depicting that said dogs must be on leash at all times mean NOTHING.

Here are some images from my walk around the park today.
Creative Sunblock

Drying Clothes

Today I Learned #1 - Generally

I've kept a little notebook with me as I've traveled. Mostly, I've just jotted random things I've seen/want to research/ find amusing, interesting, sad, etc. So, I'm going to be posting a few today, and a few as the term progresses. This post is just a general list of things I've learned so far in Barcelona!

1) You can spot American "bros" (and Americans in general) from miles away.
2) No matter what time of day, gelato ALWAYS looks appetizing.
3) Some vintage stores in Barcelona sell Minnesota Vikings jerseys?

This one was short, but maybe I'll add to it later.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

New Media 2011

The study abroad program has officially started!
I don't know how my posts will work from now on.

Also, I am officially a Cinema and Media Studies major. Or rather, declared to become one!

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Parc de la Ciutadella

I. have found. my Barcelona hang out spot.

Barcelona's central park, Parc de la Ciutadella, is absolutely BEAUTIFUL. As today is the last official day of spring break, we went there to relax before classes start. The sun was shining (despite a forecast for rain), couples were making out, and vendors were quietly attempting to sell visitors beer cans kept in plastic bags. Ok, it' s actually a lot classier than I just made that sound.

Yesterday we visited Parc Güell, which was designed by Gaudi. It was also really beautiful, but a bit crowded. Part of the park overlooks the entire city. The map I have doesn't really convey how expansive Barcelona is, so it was really cool (and a tad overwhelming) to see the city from above.

Anyway. Tomorrow we move into student housing! Hopefully it's as awesome as their website claims.

Thursday, March 24, 2011


And so we reach Barcelona, the first long stay (until April 23rd) of our trip. We haven't done much yet; just walked down La Rambla and to the coast and stopped in the Gothic Cathedral (not to be confused with La Sagrada Familia--that visit comes tomorrow). The cathedral was gorgeous, but there was a lot of construction so we couldn't see much.

So far, Barcelona has a really interesting feel. Maybe it's because we've only been on the main, touristy drag, maybe it's because I don't speak the language, but I do really miss Paris and Barcelona seems a bit less exciting in comparison. Perhaps Paris has just been so romanticized...Barcelona, on the other hand, I hardly know much about. I'll have to read up on the city's history.

Anyway, I didn't take many photos today. It was more of a relaxed/shopping day. [THERE WERE 3 H&Ms WITHIN 3 BLOCKS OF ONE ANOTHER]

Here's a photo taken at the Gothic Cathedral.

Camera Prayer
I found this man's pose really captivating. While this was in the cloisters rather than the actual cathedral itself, it just seemed like an interesting way to capture tourism in holy places.

Monday, March 21, 2011


Parisian Sunset

Well, we've been in Paris since Saturday afternoon but today has been the first absolutely gorgeous day of the, well, whole trip really.
Yesterday we visited the Louvre (gah! So overwhelming!) and walked the entirety of the Champs Elysées to the Arc de Triomphe. I climbed to the top and it was quite lovely. I can now officially say I've used the loo near the top of the Arc de Triomphe--that's pretty exciting!
I'm contemplating putting a photo essay together called "Tourists," or something of the like; I really enjoy taking photos of tourists interacting at all of these incredibly historic sites. It's interesting 1) Because I am also one of them 2) Because they're all from different places yet have very similar ways of interacting with the environment 3) Because it's far more interesting than just taking photos of buildings over and over again [though don't get me wrong, I love architecture].

"La Jaconde" (Mona Lisa)

This past Saturday we decided to just walk around Paris, enjoying the sites. The park in front of Notre Dame was by far one of the highlights of the trip so far. A woman and an old man had a bag of bird seed and were feeding the pigeons and handing the seed out for free to the various visitors as well. Pigeons roosting on your arms/shoulders/head is a very odd feeling. They're a lot heavier than one would think. The old man came up to us and asked where we were from, when we told him "America," he pointed to a pin on his collar and said that he loves America and that he fought in WWII. He still carries around his war identification card (for the life of me I can't remember which division he fought under) and showed it to us. He spoke very limited English and even had a strange accent while speaking French, I'm pretty sure he was from Germany. Later, he told us, "Without the help of America, I never would have been able to return home to Germany." The translation is not exact and I can't remember the exact phrasing, but it was close to that. It was amazing how powerful just one sentence can be.

Our Friend with Sparrows

I've loved Paris more and more each day that we've spent here. Today we visited the Eiffel Tower but didn't go up (too crowded, too pricey), l'Hôtel des Invalides, and Sacre Coeur/Montmartre. I think Montmartre is my favorite place we've visited so far. A service started in Sacre Coeur while we were admiring its interior, and it was absolutely breathtaking. The nuns were singing and playing music and it was just a really relaxing place to be despite the tourists. The contrast between the inside and outside of the basilica was absurd. Even the contrast in environment between the front (where all the steps are) and the back (where there's a small park) is absurd. I was shocked by how few people seemed to realize that Sacre Coeur looks beautiful from all sides...

Sacre Coeur, View from the Park

Door and Shadow

You can see the rest of the photos here.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

London [pics]

From top to bottom:
Venison and rabbits, Borough Market
Dusk, Random park whose name I can't remember
The clock room, British Museum
Lamb carcasses, Borough Market

I haven't had time to edit much yet, so sorry that the middle two are a little dark. Paris photos will be on display shortly!

Friday, March 18, 2011


So, London has been awesome.
Like I knew I would, I've been a terrible blogger. It will probably only continue as we don't have WiFi at our next stop (Paris).

In any case, I've thoroughly enjoyed this leg of the trip. I've met interesting people (including 2 members of the 4th gen. of the British tele show "Skins"), sipped on delicious cider, seen dead game rabbits, conquered 7-year-old-self fears, and found my way home using a bus line at 3am.

I'm terribly sorry but blogger is being silly at the moment and therefore is not letting me upload photos. I promised I'll do so in Barcelona!

Monday, March 14, 2011


Goodbye Watson 603! We had a nice run together, you and I.
I'm almost entirely packed for the trip and only stressing out a little bit.
Oh, here's the rundown on where I'll be going (in chronological order):

  • London
  • Paris
  • Barcelona
  • Prague
  • Berlin
  • Copenhagen

On another departure note, I had to say goodbye to Scoville (the building where the Carleton CAMS department is currently located. The department is moving here next year). While the Weitz Center for Creativity is bound to be awesome, it'll be hard to match Scoville's coziness.

Goodbye Scoville! I lurb you!

Ah, well.

Adventure awaits!

Sunday, March 6, 2011

The Easy Goodbye

Murder! Mystery! Rihanna!

Here's our final for Digital Foundations... hope you enjoy.