Category Archives: USA

Inspiring travel sites


A couple in their Pissos, France home

Bert Teunissen photographs people in their own kitchens and dining rooms in a series called “Domestic Landscapes.” The photos are gorgeous, shot inside by natural light, but they’re also uncomfortably intimate like we’re looking at the inside of a person’s skin, not just their kitchen. Most of the series are shot in Europe (it’s broken up by country on the website) but there’s one series from Japan during which I kept asking, “Why is he shooting these people at a restaurant?” I guess I’ve never been in a Japanese home….

I’ve spent a lot of time in people’s houses as well, but in the US I rarely come across a home that exhibits a personality’s corners the way Teunissen’s European homes do.

The other website I’ve been loving is the David Lynch Interview Project. The filmmaker has sent a team across the US to conduct four-minute interviews with locals and they talk on a variety of subjects, but often about themselves.

While window washing I’ve had a lot of four-minute conversations and though I don’t think such passing glances can give a full picture of a person’s life, it tells you what they want you to hear in four minutes.

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Filed under Europe, France, Links, USA

Chatter

Glory Hole, Situk River, Yakutat Alaska

It was light at 4am because we were so far north and I laid on the couch where I woke and watched the men get ready to go fishing. For a few minutes I pretended I was doing serious independent travel and imagined describing the scene in my dispatches home: “These men are obsessed with coffee. They drink it every morning, at least two cups, and then bring a thermos with them on the boat. When they run out of coffee on the boat everyone crashes and takes turns napping on the narrow benches. They play cards late into the night and laugh constantly and have dedicated their lives to fish.”

I tried to pretend…

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Filed under Alaska, Stories, Travel, USA

Universal Language

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Barcelona 2004

Graffiti in Bogota

Bogota 2008

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Filed under Barcelona, Colombia, Europe, Photography, Spain, USA

A weekend in Yakutat, Alaska

I was lucky enough to win* (* from my dad) a trip to Yakutat, Alaska last weekend! The first day we got in we went to the Hubbard Glacier and navigated small icebergs to get close enough to hear the thunder of ice breaking down. The glacier is 70 miles long and we were looking at its mile-long face.

Fred near the Hubbard glacier, Yakutat Alaska

Hubbard Glacier, Yakutat Alaska
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Filed under Alaska, Travel, USA

Closure

Merci!

Hello Everyone!

Azure and I have been home for a week now and I’ve been searching for the way to wrap up this trip but I just couldn’t find it. I was thinking about listing my favorite parts, but that seems petty. I was also thinking about sharing what I felt was the overarching theme of the trip, but I think you got the idea if you read the blogs.

Last year I wrote about my first reactions on arriving home and a lot of people had strong responses to that, so I think that’s how I want to do it. My first reaction:

As we were flying south toward Seattle I saw the Olympic mountains, dark and low and folded, and I remembered that Washington State has been populated for as long as Corsica has (Kennewick Man is 9,300 years old). Our place is as ancient as theirs, it’s just not as celebrated and I’ve never given it its due attention… our predecessors in the Pacific Northwest built with wood. No stones to run my hands across, no stones for new populations to wonder about or rebuild into new structures or interpret. Certainly there’s an archaeological record, but we don’t physically navigate history the way they do in Europe. Our culture hasn’t pulled ancient magic into the present the way they had on Corsica, but our landscape does suggest it. Where are those myths waiting?

Anyway, thank you for following us to Colombia and Europe this year. We’ll be back on the road in November.

Our photos: http://www.flickr.com/photos/mikegoldstein/collections/72157608983320424/

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Filed under Corsica, Europe, France, Travel, USA

Safe flight home

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(And, you know, not to brag, but you know the band UB40? Well, I was sitting next to their roadies on the flight home and they thought I was cool!)

So we’re back! We spent three days in London grabbing the occasional pint of cider, we went to the London Museum where I learned about the great fire in 1666 – it destroyed 80% of the city.

We went to the British Museum where I learned that cuneiform writing started as pictures then became more abstract, in later years looking like random scratches organized into columns.

We watch a lot of The Office at Ellen’s place, our first real TV experience in a long time (we had the occasional hotel tv in France, but nothing we actually used) and had great Indian food.

Ellen was an excellent host, I suggest everyone get on the next flight – Tomorrow! in fact – and go crash her pad. You won’t regret it.

This is the 8th time I’ve come home like this, looking out the window at evergreens on low hills as I’m driven north from the airport. Few of the eight are distinguishable from the others, so here we are again, being gently placed back into the impressions we’ve made in Seattle’s fabric.

I learned a ton on this trip and I’m still trying to sort it out in my head. When it comes out, it will be here!

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Filed under Europe, London, Travel, USA