28 November, 2013

Stockholm: 17 to 22 October, 2013

My only relatives who live in Europe are my cousin Karol and her family, who live in Stockholm. I hadn't seen them for around 5 years, so I was determined to see them.

Ate Karol, her husband Pele, and the younger of her two sons, Uriel, live in Sundbyberg (her older son Michael is currently studying at Parson's in NYC).  Sundbyberg is a municipality in Stockholm county, just north of downtown Stockholm city. It is a part of the Stockholm urban area, so it is still served by the Stockholm city metro (or T-bana).

26 November, 2013


I've been here in France for almost 3 months, and I have since been enlightened about some things :P

  • My "French speaking skills" can't really be called skills, because I'm not as good as I had thought.
  • Cooking rice without a rice cooker is hard. Hard. Just like my rice after I cook it.
  • If needed, I would rather die than interact with people--during my first few weeks in France, I hated doing groceries and going to the boulangerie because I would have to speak (bad) French.
  • I walk very slow. On my way to school everyday,  I always find myself being last of the crowd to arrive.
  • I cannot survive without conditioner--I had trouble finding "après shampoing" the first few weeks, and I wanted to cut my hair off!!

06 November, 2013


Belgium Escapades with J: October 2013 - Ghent

Belgium has plenty of cool old cities. And I love old cities. And I love Belgians. So of course I went. Of course with J.

Belgium Escapades with J: October 2013 - Antwerp

"I love you" - Under a bridge next to Antwerp Berchem train station
 Jarne lives in Antwerp, with his twin brother. The headquarters of Jarne’s company, Twinski, is based in A-town.  Twinski creates websites, apps, and other cool digital stuff :3

So I paid Jarne a visit and he showed me around his turf :P

Belgium Escapades with J: October 2013 - 2nd trip to Brussels

Parc du Cinquantenaire

For my second trip to Brussels, I didn’t ride a train. I carpooled with Aurelie, a Belgian lady who was headed to Brussels after her weekly visit to her French boyfriend. I use covoiturage.fr to find carpool opportunities—some cost only 5 euros, which is a third of the price compared to TGV.

Belgium Escapades with J: October 2013 - 1st trip to Brussels

The famous pissing boy of Belgium, Manneken Pis
What I wanted to see the most in Brussels (besides Jarne :P) was Manneken Pis. I think it's a good representation of how I see Belgians--they're naughty, sometimes they're annoying, but in the end, very loveable. The story of this statue is interesting, because there are many. The most prevalent legend behind the boy is that a long time ago there were two troops battling, and the duke of one of the troops was a 2 year old boy. The troops put the young duke in a basket and hung it in a tree for encouragement.  From the tree, the duke peed on the enemies which led them to lose the battle :P

La Piscine, Roubaix with J: 2 October, 2013

La Piscine, the only tourist attraction in the city I live in (Roubaix), is an old indoor swimming pool turned into an art museum. I went with my boyfriend Jarne :) Have you guys met him yet?