What a freaking awesome movie….!!!!
Just came acrross on IFC channel. ( taking a break from Barcelona writting…) No need to explain, Just watch the movie.
EasyJet to Barcelona descending. I already like the view. The ocean and the vibrant night lights. There’s no “too late” in this city…!! Emi, you ALWAYS have the best idea!!!
Aaaarrrriving at Barcelona!!! 9:45 pm. My first time ever to this Europe’s largest metropolis on the Mediterranean coast where is a home for impressive 5 million people! In fact I expect good fresh fish and olives, beautiful people, a city full of life and easy breezy sea breeze flirting my long flowing hair! Yes we are in Barcelona!!!!!
Not the most romantic picture of the city but I think one of the smartest picture of the city. The standing poll handle on a metro. I mean Why NYC couldn’t think of this simple genius metro handles. Two heads are better than the one head and the three handles are better than the one handle during the rush hours. Right? By the way going to the hotel by Metro. Always a good experience to get on the local subway despite that actual our ride to hotel was quite long…!
After quick check in, we are heading out to have some late dinner. Preferably some good seafood! Which means some fresh oysters and CAVA (the Spanish sparkling wine which is pretty much their Champagne). Ahhh the perfect warm breeze is so Sexy! The weather in Barcelona is just perfect for the night stroll and we can’t waste one second by just sitting in the hotel room because it’s only the midnight!
Hotel concierge considers the Olympico area because now it’s almost 1:00am and it would be the best area to catch the late dinner. The kitchen would be still open till now or even for one more hour. Olympico is bit touristy with many little touristy discotheques ( it’s located at south end side of the city). The whole vibe reminds you the South street sea port in NY. Actually this would not be the my preferable area to hang out but sure you can have the last minute dinners al fresco and actually the place we had our plate of sea food was very very good.
A bottle of Cava and a small Grilled mix. A perfect size to share. I have never eaten razor clams. I mean you know Seafood in new york in the market is pretty much boring and cliche’. Sole, Grey sole, Salmon white fish, Blue fish, shrimp and what else… Anyway, Razor clams in Italy is banned to be caught since they are disappearing for the moment. I feel bit hesitant at first but I try. I mean where else would I have fresh Razor clams? A first bite… Wow actually the clam tastes super sweet and juicy. It’s Deeeeelicious!!
It’s quite late now and heading back to hotel to conqure the city starting from ealry morning.
Barcelona, here we come, See you tomorrow!!!!!
The grand view of the park.
It was our last day with Tania at Freshford and we had the last minute plan to visit one of many National trust parks of England that are actually located throughout the country. I forget where this exact one was located but it was about 40 minute car ride from Freshford. I mean this view right here…. Its’ hard to believe that is a real view. Doesn’t this look like one of those 18 century’s oil paintings that you see at the Metropolitan museum or sort of thing? Everything is so perfectly placed and thought through I can’t find one little room to point out such something could have faced to a different direction or different tree or whatever that is. I find it quite amusing and amazing.
So the park also has park offices and quite a few of guest houses (not a little shack like, these are a real deal from those old days) that you can rent out for a few days or even get a lease for years to live in and can certainly enjoy this beautiful park and gigantic lush trees around. The park’s view is perfectly manicured yet has these wild bushes that are filled with humongous beautiful trees you can go hug and look up for hours. You can be a lucky member of this beautiful park by donating 40 pounds of yearly membership fee for unlimited visits and also staying at the guest houses.
Quite amazig, Aren’t they? This could be where the wild things were…. These trees are may be thousand of feet tall reaching out to the highest point of the sky…
Me and Tania resting on one of magnificent tree roots that excavated from the ground. It felt amazing to lie down on it..! It felt so soft and somehow safe like being protected… Again, the Nature is the mother. There are ton of flowering trees that I don’t know all the names of and pines and more kinds of pines that I have never seen, oak and what else… I mean there are trees and more trees…! And here is of my silly flower moment, Haha! ( I know you have this sometimes too!)
This tree right here has layers of thin skin that remind you of sheets of paper.
A super cool pine… I wished all the trees had name tags…!
Way to go Tania on your beautiful home and everything and everyone around you at Feshford! It was really wonderful to see you and your happy life you are making! Mmmmmwwwaaaa! See you very soon and catch us on a exciting journey to Barcelona!!!!
A cute little town built on Steep hills with much characteristic cobble stone streets Frome (read frum) is actually the 4th largest town in Somerset where there are many artists and interesting small boutiques including speak easy style vintage shops attracting many visitors from surrounding like Bath and Bristol. Just the evening before the Frome, we had visited quite famous Roman Bath town, Bath but Frome is the town where my heart really lays. Unpretentious and less touristic vibe really captured my heart.
Little streets along the hills houses small bakeries, vintage shops and diverse local businesses. I liked many places but the favorite would be the “Black Swan Galley” on the bottom of the hills. Below, the gallery from the outside.
Vibrant and funky stair case to the exhibition of Ralph Steadman and Keith Newstead on the second floor of the gallery: a collaboration of an well known cartoonist and illustrator Steadman and a mechanic Newstead. The most of pieces in this exhibition are pretty much Steadman’s fantasy world creatures came to a life turned into machines by Newstead’s fantastic mechanism such as one of music box as well.
The hand and ink drops of Steadman: it reminds me of Jackson Pollock. A lot of drawings also reminded me of the work of Tim Burton. The imagination that goes miles long that you can’t just stop…
The mechanic dragon. It is fantastically made and moves. Each piece has certain humor in it’s movement: naughty, creative, unexpected, attitude… So much more than just a moving machine. It’s certain move evokes the audience to think about the story behind and what could happen next…! I loved it!
Yes here’s another one. You can kind of imagine what’s going on. Right? Below wall shows drawings of Keith Newstead.
She was our favorite!!! Not only because of her beauty ( her hair, mouth, the fingers and the bras…) but also because of her amazing use of her arms when she swims: her moves are slow but has the will and strength in them like she’s after to save someone almost.
Also there is a series of these single simple figures. They move side ways in a naughty attitude. I believe I caught him below during his funny move.
Now checking out the ground floor and below walking through a cute cafe’ at the gallery. Love the checkerboard flooring and the Forna Setti’s wall paper on the back. And of course a little outdoor space. It’s perfect!
Right outside of cafe to the left, 3 artist’s studios and the hallway looking out the Cafe’s garden.
Wire work artist, Mel Day www.melday.co.uk
I find her work quite beautiful. She uses all different sizes and kinds of wire.
A wire woman cutting her hair. Can you see her scissors in her hand…? The artist told us this was commissioned piece based on her one of past work. I thought this could be a nice piece for Emi’s studio, but we ended up passing on it. There were so many great work of Day that we wanted to own, but we are traveling on a small carry on bags… next time…!
The artist said she was inspired by corals. Beautiful ha? And it’s quite flexible and soft rather than rigid without any motions.
Now moving on to the next studio Ceramic and glass artists, Adam Harvey & Emma Wells. Brilliant artists they are! Their work is familiar yet definitely unique. Those tiny leg like things remind me of suctions of octopus and beautifully broken and disappearing ends of ceramic in unconventional angles and proportion are quite amazing. They looked and felt so fragile so I was super careful to handle them…
Visit their website www.harveywells.co.uk
Tania Emi and Me strolling Catherine hill where small vintage, antique and also modern interior shops are lined up… cute little area.
If you are ever on this side of England, you should check out Frome for Black Swan Gallery, cute hills with small boutiques and the Weekend open market…! I really liked the genuine local feel of this town!!
After the tour of Tania’s home, visit her chicks and walk the garden, Now we are heading out to do some good walking and chatting along the fresh river, farm meadow and secret little spots that Tania will lead us. Here we start from a little yet long river near her home.
The scenery along the river looks somehow like posed props arranged by a painter. Everything seems at it’s perfect own spot. Beautiful….!
The one and only pub in Freshford town. Serves Beers and other drinks. Of course sunday roast and Fish and chips as well. The pub is located above the river that runs through the whole town. Outdoor tables and wooden deck is peaceful and lovely. Duckies…
Freshford is a village and civil parish in the Avon valley 6 miles south east of Bath, in the county of Somerset, England. It’s pretty much located about 2 hour train ride from south west of London. Freshford is in the Cotswolds Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB): an area of countryside considered to have significant landscape value in England, Wales or Northern Ireland that has been specially designated by Countryside Agency on behalf or the United Kingdom government. Freshford is a wealthy yet low key community who cares about their home and land with great pride to keep up the town to be one of the most beautiful countryside in England and you can definitely feel that spirit just by taking a walk around this beautiful town.
Actually the town greatly reminds me of the hills of Tuscany. Never ending smooth blanket like meadow gently covers the mother land just like the curve of a beautiful woman and the rustic yet warm yellow tone of limestone houses are truly the beauty that you can’t easily find. Some houses even sports the signature tree of Italy, Cyprus and the whole scene of Freshford somewhat doesn’t come as a stranger to me.
Every turn is a beauty and the peace! Just 3 of us walking through along the little roads, trees, stones and cows and all….
Picking off plums falling from the tree. Emi gave a good shake to the tree and we are running after them! So sweet and juicy. We picked enough to make a jam out of them.
3 hours of trail mixing in Freshford with Tania. It was a relaxing and beautiful one!
Walking into Tania’s, Freshford, England.
Yeah!! We are here visiting our dearest friend, Tania at Freshford in England! We are finally paying a long time overdue visit to Tania’s new nest. It was almost turning into guilty feeling for me that we haven’t done this for a long time, so the second I hit her land, it almost feels like a rain in the desert that quests the thirst that I was dragging around for all these time. It is such a satisfying feeling to visit Tania in Freshford!
We have been already woo and ahhhing about the beautiful scenery of Freshford from the Bristol Airport in the car, and the arrival at Tania’s home does not disappoint us either! She owns one unit with a beautiful garden out of this 6 family traditional Freshford limestone house complex. It’s a cozy home in a magical setting.
A view from the one of the guest rooms, which is our room! Me trying out the bed below…
Sitting on her amazing deck looking into the living room…
The view of Tania’s garden and her chicks! They make fresh & pretty eggs every morning!
More of her garden. It’s so good to see Tania doing well and living in her beautiful home and being happy. Tania, we love you….!
And… Earlier we had stopped at this cute pub on a way to Tania’s for a lunch. The general architects here consists of warm yellow lime stones. And the neutral tone of it really works well back to natural surrounding. It’s very lovely.
The lavender is almost surreal. It smells amazing.
A starter to share, warm baked cheese with garlic and honey and rustic bread, just waiting for a crisp bottle of white.
Ahhhh, Life is such a simple thing at the end. Simple things make you feel happy. Visiting a good friend. Have good food together and chatting and share laughs and share pains… 3 days at Tania’s home in Freshford and Bath, More to come!!!
I have wondered around Effetto Venezia so many times yet it still does add ‘It’ to good time in Italy for me. I mean the whole night out thing in al fresco under the stars and bumping into friends in Livorno is also something. The canals are really nothing like ones in Venice yet still has ton of charm especially at night time with beautiful lighting and hustle bustle people hanging out eating, drinking and checking out open markets and all. You will see people in traditional costumes strolling around and you will see good old Italian snack carts and Granita ( hand shaved ice with flavored sweet syrup), Cotton candy and whatever that would be. Here come stroll the canals of Livorno and the week long night festival, Effetto Venezia.
Hihi, mommy,, hihi Gael…
Zuchero Filato, Threaded Sugar= the Cotton Candy! You know the Pre packed one is just not the same! I remember the moment that magic happens when the cotton candy man drops a spoonful of sugar into his thing and it disappears then comes to a life as this cloud like or spider net like consistency and you go like ” Wowoooo, look at that!! You know what I mean?!!!
The hand shaved ice with sweet syrup, Granita. It’s very popular summer snack in Italy. yum!
The night goes on till 3:00 in the morning… People are dancing on the street and night market’s packed by people and it’s a beautiful summer night in Livorno…!
It’s all about making up some time up with Gael and we are having many great little moments together and another year of Effetto Venezia in Livorno (a week long of important festival of performance, night market, food, art and people to celebrate the canals that remind Venice in Livorno) is just happening right now! And this time, Gael and I are determined to get on the Ferri’s Wheel! Hey, He’s a big 7 and I’m also about to be 38 so we both are big enough to do this and most of all our reunite in Italy after 2 weeks of not seeing each others, it’s a perfect thing to do together!
Bright orange lights and pink cars are just festive as the Effetto Venezia! And We are going to have good old hand made cotton candy for a after ride treat! So excite!!! Hand in hand, we are in the line for our exciting ride!
No worries… Gael’s right next to me holding my arms tight! We are going up!!!
Now watch Gael! Ohhh he’s scared and also excite!
We got on it 3 times in a row and had much much laughs together!!
I missed you so much Gael, mommy loves you…!