• The Great European Adventure

    I Know Nothing About Architecture

    Facebook keeps reminding me that I was in Paris 4 years ago today and, on the one hand, I appreciate that. It’s nice to be greeted at the top of my newsfeed with a smiling photo of me and my mother. We had such a lovely time on that trip. On the other hand, it makes me nostalgic, and a little jealous of past-Emma, and also, didn’t I tell facebook to turn off that feature? Anyway, I was looking through my photos from Paris and I stumbled across the one at the top of this post. I can’t remember anything about this part of the city or the moment I…

  • The Great European Adventure

    Da Vinci and Me

    I’m currently working in an exhibit about Leonardo Da Vinci, and while the focus is mostly on his inventions, there’s also a large section on the Mona Lisa and an interesting video about The Last Supper. I could have seen The Last Supper in person when I was in Milan in 2012 but… I didn’t. There are a limited number of tickets to view the mural each day and you usually have to get one as part of a larger tour package and I wasn’t organized or motivated enough to make it happen. To be perfectly honest, I don’t have much interest in Renaissance art and I ended up in…

  • That Time I Studied Abroad

    Fleeting Encounters Over Tea

    There was an old woman listening in on our conversation. Or, maybe she wasn’t listening to us so much as simply noticing us. We were an odd-looking group, I suppose: two white women, barely older than teenagers, speaking jovial English with a Lebanese man in his early 30’s. We were in Perpignan at the time — a small city in Southern France. Noticeable, if not notable. I don’t remember what we were talking about, but we were in the courtyard of the Palais des Rois de Majorque (Palace of the Kings of Majorca). We smiled at the old woman when we noticed her noticing us, and she felt emboldened to…

  • Feeeeelings

    Travel is a bit like acting

    Throughout high school and college, I did theater. I loved being on stage with an audience watching, but unlike many of my friends, I didn’t want to pursue acting as a career. For me, acting has always been a fun hobby. I think one reason I like traveling is because it’s a little bit like acting. When I travel, I assume a travel persona, and this persona is different depending on where I am and how I’m traveling. I noticed this most obviously while living in Hana, Hawai’i for the last two months. Hana is located on the Eastern end of Maui, and is only accessible by plane or driving…

  • The Great European Adventure,  Travel Inspiration

    Weekly Travel Inspiration: Instagramming Paris

    I spent last week in Paris with my mother. And I discovered a new obsession. Sacre Coeur Paris is an amazingly photogenic city. I felt like a wonderful photographer while I was there because I took so many beautiful photos, but I think it was less my photography skills and more the city’s innate charms that looked so good. Nothing can beat seeing Paris for yourself, but I hope you’ll enjoy this sample of the photos I took there. I found that as awesome as these shots looked on their own, they also lended themselves well to instagram. Winged Victory, at the Louvre What I’m really enjoying about instagram is…