Saturday, April 19, 2014

The end is near....but so is the beginning

I've decided it's time that I start blogging again because since my last post, more things have happened than I know where to begin. I'm going to try my best to recap everything that has happened and share some photos, and then i will begin fresh and continue through the journeys that lie ahead of me.

Since my past most in November 2012, I moved back from Lyon, France to Tallahassee. While living in France, I took over an au pair position from a friend who had decided he didn’t want to be an au pair. I lived with a wonderful family with three amusing, energetic, and sweet children and learned so much more French living with them. I got to see what living with a French family was like and experience their culture and lifestyle. They took me skiing in the Alps and to Bandol in the south of France where I walked along the shores of the Mediterranean Sea and saw some of the most beautiful landforms I have ever seen. I made incredible friends with a group of amazing people. They came from all walks of life and all types of different countries. We spoke a mix of languages and every time we were together, nothing could stop us from having the times of our lives.

Maria Alejandra, Sophie, Jeannie, Julian


Abi, Jeannie, Axel, and Juan Carlos in Emma's apartment

me on Christmas eve freaking out over pumpkin pie

Alyssa and I

Alyssa, Oren, and I


I went to Paris and stayed with my friend Elisa twice, and she sowed me the time of my life each time I visited. Her mom was the most welcoming woman in the world and I often told her than if she and my mom had a language in common, that they would be the best of friends. I explored Aix-En-Provence with my friends Leya and Alyssa, had numerous day-drunk picnics with friends at Parc de la Tête d’Or, puked over the side of Ayers Rock more than once after drinking on the steps of the Rhône, took more photos than I could afford to develop, saw the Molière play L’École des Femmes, and EXPERIENCED LIVING IN SNOW.  I saw Death Grips play a show in Lyon and made friends with a few English girls who were more obsessed with Death Grips than I was. I could go on forever about things I did in France, but now I want to talk about my return to Tallahassee.
snow from my apartment

Leya visits me in Lyon! in my favorite restaurant Mathilde

Axel Jeannie and David at Parc

Me in Vauvenargues

(Not) Skiing in Les Menuires

La Côte d'Azur

My Au Pair Kids

Everytime we roam the streets it's a party

Everyone at the parc skipping our classes


My first week back in the states, I went up to Tallahassee to see friends and meet my new roommate for the first time. I ended up having an amazing weekend seeing friends I hadn’t seen in over a year. A month later I moved into this amazing house with my roommates Tyler and Kelly. It’s a huge 1800 square foot house with wood floors and huge windows in the back room. I’ve finally got my room set up perfectly and I love it. I started my last year at FSU, and did pretty well in the fall semester, and I’m hoping to do well once I finish this spring semester. I have to take three courses this summer to meet graduation requirements, but after that my undergraduate degree will be over!

Since moving back to Tallahassee, I have made some incredible friends who fuel my life of life and art and music. I am constantly surrounded by creative and great musicians, talented writers, and amazing artists and it encourages me to keep doing new things and trying. I hosted my first house show called MEGABRUNCH, and had a bunch of local bands and two touring bands play a show in my back yard while we all sipped on mimosas and ate the biggest brunch ever. I got a Casio MT-100 a few months back and I love playing with it. I’ve recorded a few things and put them on soundcloud. I got to go to SXSW this year and see Austin for the first time. It was incredible and now I’m certain Austin is the place I want to move to, after my year off of course….

My front yard, and stolen sign from Seminole Grand

Kyle, Kasey, Me and Dylan

Friends at Total Bummer 4 Ever

Vacation dad, Meth Dad, so many dads, so many hawaiian shirts

Meth Dad at Megabrunch

Dave and Steve at Megabrunch

Kyle at Megabrunch

Amanda and Jordan

More friendssss

Junk's first show at Cuddle Punx Riot House

Which brings me to what the future will soon hold for me. I am going back to Europe in the beginning of august, less than a week after I graduate to be exact, to be an au pair again for a family living in Switzerland just 30 minutes outside of Geneva. They live in a beautiful apartment less than 5 minutes walk from the lake. They are very funny and nice people and I am so excited to become part of their family in just a few months. The wonderful part about all of this is that they will be paying for my language courses during my entire stay! And I’m also going to be making a ridiculously good amount of money, which will help me start paying off some loans from the first time I went overseas. I’m going to get to travel so much more this time around and spend time on bettering myself, developing the thousands of photos I have yet to develop yet, and perfecting my French.


There is so much change happening. One part of my life is ending, and another is just beginning and I only hope for the best.

Monday, November 19, 2012

Fineshrine

Last night I saw one of my favorite bands for the second time, Purity Ring, on a small boat venue in Lyon. I'm broke as broke can get, but i dished out the 10 euros to see them and Doldrums. I only have so much time in Lyon, so why not. This venue was, tiny, to say the least. Compared to when I saw them in Berlin in July, the sound system was not as good, and the crowd was boring, but I still enjoyed the show. I have started taking photos at shows, so i usually get really shitty shots because I know it must be awkward for bands performing to have their photos taken. I know I'd feel awkward. I did manage to pull a few decent shots, and because the quality of my Nikon is slowly deteriorating because of many factors, I'm starting to get this beautiful ugly grainy look to my digital photos with the lack of good lighting and I love it.




Sunday, November 18, 2012

DREAM HOUSE

Yesterday I went to the Musée d'Art Contemporain in Lyon and there were a few small exhibits and the last one on the third floor was called Dream House. Before you could enter you had to take off your shoes, as a recommendation by the artist. The exhibit was in a dark room with white carpeted floors. There were burning incents and loud drone music playing. the exhibit was for some form of meditation. There were three walls with projections of blue and red lights and objects hanging on the wall to make projection of these colored shadows. there were only a few people when i was there, thankfully so i was able to take some photos. I spent about 30 minutes in that room and it was so cool.








Monday, November 12, 2012

Creepy Teepee, July 14th-16th, 2012


I thought I'd talk about one of the best weekends I've had in europe so far first because I'm getting really nostalgic about it right now on a rainy sunday night wishing i could relive every minute.

Here's some background of how I ended up having this amazing weekend. When I started getting into the music scene in Tallahassee, one of the first shows I saw was with my friend Jon on the last day of finals freshman year. He told me I needed to go to this show with him because it would change my life. Well, I had a 3,500 word paper on Allen Ginsberg's "America" and a final exam in economics at 7am the next morning, but I STILL went. It was Great Beer and Terror Pigeon Dance Revolt playing at the AF house, like some warehouse that was turned into a place for people to live and it was killer. Like, I've come to tell people seeing Terror Pigeon is like going to the best group therapy session of your life. Anyways, I've seen Neil, who is Terror Pigeon at least 7 or 8 times by now in my life. Before I left for Germany, I asked him if he'd be coming to europe at all in the next year to play shows, and he told me he'd actually be in France in the summer so I told him to let me know where he plays and I'd find a way to go to a show.

So while I was in Germany, Neil messaged me and said he'd actually be playing shows in germany for a week in mid-July and be doing a small tour with Tyler (Meth Dad) and Dom (Little Ruckus) and if I wanted, I could join them. Because of my au pair job, I could really only get the weekend off, so I made plans to meet them in Pegnitz to go to Waldstock and then to drive with them to Kutna Hora, Czech Republic for Creepy Teepee. So I left super early saturday morning on the 14th at about 5:30 am and took a train from Munich to Nürnberg to Pegnitz. I ended up getting off at the wrong stop, one stop before Pegnitz, and I had to wait an hour for the next train. I finally got to Pegnitz and went to look for the hotel that Neil was staying in. He said he'd hang a green t-shirt out of his window so I could find him and call up to him when I got there. Turned out, Neil didn't sleep at all the night before and didnt know what time I'd show up so he just stayed up. When I got there he crashed and I walked around Pegnitz for a little bit because everyone else was sleeping although it was almost 1pm. it started pouring and I headed back to the hotel once it calmed down. I ended up falling asleep on the floor until Dom and Tyler woke us up saying they wanted to get a chinese and put it on a pizza. Neil stayed and slept and I went with Dom and Tyler to look for chinese, which was closed, so we went to a pizza place and ordered a pepperoni pizza, which ended up NOT being like a pepperoni pizza back in the states, instead it was covered with a million banana peppers and it was spicy. We talked about really cool teachers we had in high school and friends and such. After a while we payed and went back to start getting ready for Waldstock and wake up Neil. We loaded everything in the car and then played some music in Dom and Tyler's room and they showed me remixes and stuff they'd been working on.




We left to go to Waldstock which was literally right up the mountain, about a 10 minute drive from the hotel. So, we all piled in the car and went to the top of the mountain where Waldstock was taking place. Neil and then were friends with this guy named Andy, who put the whole festival together. they all got passes that said they were playing in a festival and asked Andy if he could get one for me, and he gave me one of the passes from a band that had played the day before. the back stage area was soaking wet and there was mud everywhere because it had been on and off raining all weekend. There were tables and couches and stuff under these tents where we could hang out and talk to people too. Also, there was almost an unlimited amount of free beer and food as long as you had a back stage pass. Tyler and Dom filled up three cups, which were bigger than a pint and we started drinking right away. Neil, I found out, didn’t drink at all, but I’d already had that feeling since every time I saw one of his shows he never had a drink in his hand. We went around and looked for food. Dom and i got some bratwurst thing and shared it and covered it in mustard. tyler got some burger and we talked with some other guys that they all knew, most of them german. After a while Andy rounded up a group of people for Neil because he wanted people to be on stage with him dancing and going nuts while he performed. Everyone had back stage passes and as neil was talking to them and telling them all what they’d be doing, everyone was getting pumped and excited and a feeling of pure happiness spread through out the group. Neil had Tyler and I look for cardboard to make signs for tonight. It took us a while to find markers and cardboard, but we did. We wrote on one “And you know what I know” and on the other “And you feel what I feel”, lyrics from one of his songs. Tyler wrote the letters and I filled them in with these markers and we drank beer the entire time, and since it was only about 6pm or so, we had tons of time to hang out and talk to people before they even played. I made acquaintances with a ton of people who were all from Germany, either Pegnitz or Berlin or Frankfurt, and a few people from Nürnberg. I practiced my german with a few people and told them about why I was in Germany, doing a job as an au pair and then soon going off to France to study french in Lyon.

About half an hour to 10pm, Neil rounded up the troops to be ready to go on stage. He, Dom and Tyler get all the stuff together to be set up on stage. I suddenly remembered I had a tube of lipstick with me and was talking to the others and came up with a brilliant idea to put lipstick on everyone's cheeks to look like warpaint or something. At first a few people were like, okay, yeah, put some on me, but after about 15 minutes all of us had red lines under our eyes and were totally prepared and excited to go dance our asses off on stage. Neil told us Dom would give us the que to jump on stage after they started. After the first song, Dom waived us all on stage and we piled up there in a giant mass and started dancing and going nuts. I knew every word to every Terror Pigeon song so it was just great to get to be a part of it and some what perform with Neil. I got to crowd surf for the first time too! and I didn't die!! At one point, we pulled out all the jackets and blazers that had the lights on them and all of us on the stage jumped into the crowd and told people to put them on. It was so muddy and dirty out and I ruined the shoes I was wearing, but it was worth it. At the very end, as usual, Neil played Ride Frindship and we brought out the giant purple parachute and pulled it over the crowd and told everyone to get underneath and get super friendly, and I was attempting to use my poor german skills to get people to join in. We were screaming at the top of our lungs and once we got to the part saying "we're alive, we're in love, we've got hope just because", we had everyone singing along in a giant group hug in the muddy pit in front of the stage.

After the song ended we rejoined back on stage for an after set dance party and it was great. I went back stage a little later and found Tyler and we were hanging out with some of the germans we had met before the show. Let's just say that by this point in the night, I had drank more beer than I had in a very long long time, and I discovered I get really sarcastic after one too many drinks and I was telling people about pranks my sister and I used to pull on my mom and each other, leading to an entire conversation with my new german friends about pranks they'd pulled. One guy told me that he once filled the air vents in his friends car with glitter in the middle of summer, so that when he turned the ac on, the glitter shot out and went everywhere, and he still finds glitter all over his friends car. I met back up with the guys after a bit, and we watched the last artist perform for a bit, called Dubstepper, and he did like, a combination of Jazz and Dubstep and i was laughing just trying to imagine what that would sound like. It wasn't half bad though. At the end of his set, we all went back stage again and someone had brought all of the liquor from the bar and also a children's bike wheel attached to a trashcan that had numbers labeled between each spoke. The numbers coordinated to an alcohol bottle and you had to take a shot of whatever it landed on. THANKS TO TYLER WHO MADE ME GO FIRST, i spun first and landed on the slot that was the german equivalent to "double shot" and then landed on number 16, and let me just say, I was not thrilled when i found out what i had to drink. Fair warning, if alcohol is ever pink, don't drink it. If someone tries to get you to drink mai thai, don't do it. Just the smell of it was terrible, but i had Tyler yelling at me through the megaphone to drink, so i drank about half and was like, HEY TYLER TRY THIS IT'S GOOD, and he tasted it and said, "Hell no that tastes like poison you drink it!" After drinking that I knew I was not going to be drinking anymore for the night. everyone else kept playing the game and I sat back and watched, bummed a cigarette from someone, had a few good conversations, and a bit later went to find Dom and Neil. They were at the merch booth selling stuff. It was getting cold out and I only had a cardigan on over a short sleeved shirt, and Tyler was telling me I should just steal a Waldstock sweater because they'd probably never miss it. I told him I couldn't steal it, so he just went up, took a light blue sweater off the hanger and said "Merry Christmas! Hope it's your size." I put the sweater on because I was actually freezing and no one said anything. I still have the sweater and every time I wear it I think, I can't believe we stole that sweater.

Not too long after, we decided it was time to leave because we had to drive to the Czech Republic in the morning at about 10am and wanted to make sure we were up in time for breakfast. On the way to leave I was totally going out of it. I got in the car after we loaded everything in. On the way to leave someone told us someone who is sober should drive, because police sit at the bottom of the hill and check cars to make sure the driver isn't drunk. Neil was the only one sober, but he couldn't drive manual, Tyler said he would drive to almost the bottom and then neil could get in the drivers seat and we'd make it work. I was sort of blacking out at this point, but I slightly remember getting stopped by two drunk germans trying to talk to us about the cops but none of us could speak to them and I remember saying over and over to the guy in german "he didn't drink anything" but they wouldn't go away so we just rolled up the windows. we finally got down the hill, I don't even remember if there were police. we parked next to the river close to the hotel and when we got out to go to the hotel we started walking and I wasn't feeling too well. Mark it, July 14th, 2012, the first time I ever got sick from drinking, and the last time I have drank that much alcohol since. I told the guys to go ahead without me and I stayed a few minutes behind and puked in the river about 3 times. Ugh, sorry if you are actually reading this. It was such a great night and then for me to get sick like that was a total bummer. We went back to the hotel and I put pajamas on and just passed out right away.

The next morning Dom woke us up and said breakfast was downstairs. I showered super quick and got dressed, still feeling drunk from the night before. I ate, but not very much, I just couldn't see eating too much after how bad my stomach still hurt. The guys were talking about stories from the night before, things I missed, and then told me I threw up like a champ -______-. It was pretty embarrassing. We packed up everything else in the car and made sure we had everything from the hotel. Next stop, Kutná Hora, Czech Republic. Oh and I just remembered something! The guys had a GPS in the rental car and they changed the symbol that represented the car after every city they traveled to on this tour. While in Pegnitz, it was an eagle. On the way to Kutná Hora, we changed it to a beach ball.

Neil doing his finger drumming thing, and Dom and Tyler


Neil and Dom bein cute

stage

back stage Waldstock

The drive to Kutná Hora was really nice. Passing through Germany we saw lots of fields of solar panels that convert sun energy to power. Tyler just kept calling them dark farms because all the panels were black and he thought it sounded appropriate. We sang along to the radio and got off onto a huge a capella remix of Bad by Michael Jackson. And, Call Me Maybe came on the radio probably about 6 times during the entire trip, and we sang along each time. We arrived to Creepy Teepee at about 4pm and it was really cloudy and looking like it was about to pour. We got our wristbands for the show, and I actually got to meet the girl who I was supposed to couchsurf with, Zuzana, before I made plans to go to Creepy Teepee with Neil. Neil asked me if I could lay out the jackets so they could dry since they were still a little wet and dirty from the night before. I hung them out on some bushes and then hung out the parachute to dry too. Still wasn't feeling the best from the night before, but better than I was in the morning. Most of the afternoon I just bummed around watching some bands play, talking to people, taking photos. at one point it started raining and I moved the parachute and jackets inside so they would stay dry. I hung out by the merch table for a bit, sold a few cds and shirts, and I have to say converting between czech money and euros was difficult, as i was still learning converting usd to euros myself. People were really cool about it and never jipped me out though. I ended up meeting people from the band King Dude, and they were really cool. They were from Seattle, I think, and I got talking with them for a while. Come to find out, the lead singer of the band was the guy in charge of Actual Pain and I wasted to die. I was so excited and almost starstruck because I had been following the Actual Pain blog for years, and I wanted to buy so many things from the store but was super broke all the time. I told him once I had enough money I'd probably buy half the inventory because I loved their stuff. I started getting hungry but didn't know where to get food, and it was pouring outside. Turns out, they moved the food stand right at the other end of the merch table and I bought a grilled wrap and ate it so fast because I was starving. Tons of bands played, inside and outside, Emancipator, King Dude, and others that I cannot remember the names. I walked around for a while sat off against the wall, bummed a few cigarettes and talked to people. I don't remember exactly when they started setting up for the Terror Pigeon set, but it was way after it finally started getting dark out.

road to Kutná Hora

drying coats and parachute

Jakub and the cool guy with the Miami Dolphins jacket


Neil

crowd @ Creepy Teepee
I ended up meeting as well that night this guy named Filip who is from Slovakia and who runs Start-Track and we actually have become good friends since. I found out he is really into the Florida music scene and I talked to him for a long time about all the bands in florida I knew, turns out he knew more that I did. We've become good friends since and we're already planning to hang out before Creepy Teepee next year and I'm more than excited. I also met some people who put the festival together who were from Prague, Jakub, Nik, and Anezka, and there were tons of others, but I added those three on facebook

So Terror Pigeon played first and it was insane, as usual. Everyone danced and sang along and next to the first time I saw TPDR, this was the craziest set I've been to. I was already exhausted by the end of the set, but then Little Ruckus played, and this was my second time seeing Dom perform so it was pretty exciting. Dom is so full of energy its so great. Everyone loved him and I just didn't want it to end. Next Meth Dad played and I saw Meth Dad the first time in august last year and I ended up with a sprained ankle because Tyler jumped from the top of one of the speakers into the crowd. I had no idea what to make of his show the first time I saw him but now I was excited and ready and we partied so hard and danced and sang along to all the songs. I was in total bliss the rest of the night. I wasn't even drunk or anything that night, just totally high off of the experience. It was about Midnight by the time all of their sets ended, and then we commenced the worlds best after party dance party. Throughout all of the night we kept chanting "creepy teepee, creepy teepee" I took a whole film roll of photos with my cheap 3 dollar good will find camera, which will be the next set of photos you see if you've stuck around this long (sorry again for the lengthiness of this post). I remember getting Tyler to play this remix of Call Me Maybe and we all went nuts. Just the over all best dance party I've been to. We did finally call it quits because we were all exhausted and Neil, Tyler, Dom, and I headed back to the Hotel after we made sure with everyone that it was okay to leave all of our equipment and stuff there and get it in the morning. I grabbed some clothes from the car and my laptop and we walked with Nik back to the hotel. I literally slept like a rock that night.

Tyler napping before the show started

Neil//Terror Pigeon Dance Revolt

crowd

Tyler

Happy faces during the Little Ruckus set

Little Ruckus

Tyler, Dom, and Neil

Jakub

I dont remember what time we woke up, but eventually we went back to the old beer factory where the festival was in the morning and the guys started packing up all the equipment and lights and stuff. I had to get directions from someone to the train station because i needed to get back to munich since it was Monday, and I told Goetz, my au pair dad, that I'd be back by monday evening. I said goodbye to everyone, to Neil, Dom, and Tyler, wished them safe travels back to Berlin and on their flight back home. I say bye to all the people I'd met working Creepy Teepee and packed up my bag and got it out of the little rented Golf Mini and headed to the most obscure little train station in the world. I almost got completely lost because I don't speak Czech, but I met a nice lady who spoke a little german and directed me to the station. I asked for a ticket in the simplest english I could, and was able to get a ticket to prague for 18 Czech Korunas, so like $5, I think. And then I took a really calm train ride, looking at all the country side and just staring out the window as I went to Prague. I arrived at the Prague Central Station and went and bought a ticket on the next train back to Munich. I had 45 minutes until the train arrived so i bought some puta bread, a water bottle, and some gouda from a little shop since I hadn't eaten all day. the whole way back to munich I tried to sleep with no luck. I can't sleep on trains for some odd reason. I needed a shower so bad and I could not wait to be back in my own bed. I bought a beer from the guy bringing food around on a trolly, we had a very brief conversation in german and I had to tell him my german was not so good, and I traded him the last few of my Czech Koruna for a beer and put on my ipod and somehow got list in my thoughts and arrived in Munich around 8pm.

And that was literally one of the best weekends I've had since I arrived to Europe. I know there is probably a lot of stuff I left out or that I've already forgotten, but this post has been long enough and I don't think there is much more I could add. So with that, here are a few remaining photos.

sleepy babes

us being confused about signs in the Czech Republic

some graffiti I found

Kutná Hora

Kutná Hora Station

Czech countryside

on the train back to Munich