Wanderlust

Noun

A strong desire to travel.

I absolutely love this word.  It’s origins are German of course, taken from the word wandern which means “to hike”, and lust which means “desire”.  It’s not a word that I hear very often, now that I really think about it, but one that appears in written form a lot.  Instagram is probably to blame for introducing me to the word.

Back last year, my significant other half who is way way way way way too good for me, suggested that she might like to spend her 30th birthday in the French capital.  Not one for ever knowingly letting anyone down I spent the next few weeks checking out every potential flight, train, hotel, bed and breakfast, restaurant, tourist attraction, flea market and sightseeing tour that I could possibly uncover online.  The girl has taste and high standards, which must explain why she chose me out of a world population of 7 billion.  I realise that approximately half of those are men, which brings the statistic down to 1 in 3.5 billion, but those are still decent figures.  Unfortunately for me it meant that finding “the right place” was tricky, but eventually I found what looked like a beautiful apartment in Montmartre, on TripAdvisor.  The flights then just fell nicely in to place, as did absolutely everything else.  TripAdvisor also helped with finding the best restaurant to spend her birthday night.  Seb’On in Montmartre is rated 3rd best eatery in the whole of Paris and has no more than 10 tables.  We got a table and had the meal of our lives.  Outstanding!

She who is WWWWWWTGFM (see above) isn’t one for spending an hour in line staring at a painting of some woman who didn’t smile.  She’s not one for the obvious tourist trails, but definitely enjoys a good wander and that’s exactly what we did.  4 days of walking everywhere, with a little help from the Paris Metro system.  We managed to cram in all of Montmartre and Sacre Coeur, Bastille, Notre Dame, Shakespeare and Co Bookshop, the Latin Quarter, a walk along the River Seine, hot chocolate, coffee and cakes at Angelina Paris (twice), The Eiffel Tower at sunset, and much more.

If I was alone and on a photography mission I confidently predict that I’d have taken over 2000 photos in 4 days.  As it was time for romance, smiles and making happy memories, I kept that down to just a few hundred.  We needed photo memories of course.  Most of the photos below were taken with my Sony Xperia Z1 but a small number were taken with a Canon 550d – mainly the night shots.

People in the know always say that you should keep your blog following a theme.  Keep your instagram following a theme.  Do everything with a theme.  Meh.  I’ll do what I like, and what I like is variety, so enjoy the pics – many in black and white, many in colour, some in the day, some in the night, some of food, some of the streets, some with filters, some without.  Something for everyone.

You can see these and a few more on my instagram page @dangleberrydan7

 

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Up and In, in Paris and London

Does anyone get the reference in this blog title?  I hope you do.  Last year I failed at one of my New Years Resolutions to read at least 4 books in 12 months.  4 books should be easy for anyone but I didn’t manage it.  Even a week by a pool in Spain didn’t help.  I got through about half of On The Road and gave up.   I did manage to pick it up again in the Autumn by reading Who Is Tom Ditto by Danny Wallace.

In January of this year I took my lovely lady over to Paris to celebrate her 30th birthday and one place that we just HAD to visit was the Shakespeare and Co bookshop near Notre Dame.  She insisted, and I really don’t mind a good bookshop.  I decided that I’d buy myself a book and maybe get 2015’s resolution completed in 2016 instead.  So that’s what I did, and I purchased George Orwell’s Books Vs Cigarettes as well as William Shakespeare’s Macbeth.

It had completely slipped out of my mind just how much I had enjoyed Orwell’s writing style back when I was studying for my English GCSEs and reading Animal Farm.  Books Vs Cigarettes reignited my admiration so it’s only right that I have now purchased 1984 and next on the list of course is Down and Out in Paris and London.  That’s that explained.

But this is a photo blog so what on earth does this have to do with the price of film?  Paris is great for the street art scene, and so is London, so I’ve decided to put together a few of my favourite images taken of graffiti and street art in 2 of my favourite cities.

The feature photo at the top here is of a face popping through the wall and the French flag, by Gregos.  You can find him on facebook and instagram quite easily.  I don’t know all of the other artists but Banksy, Stik, Invader, Sweet Toof and so many more talented artists always pop up in the right places when I’m out and about.  Talking of instagram if you want to follow I’m under the handle of @dangleberrydan7

Most of these photos were taken with my Sony Xperia Z1 phone but a few were captured with a canon 550D.  On that note – I have the new Sony Xperia Z5 coming this week which apparently has an incredible camera.  I may mention that in future blog posts!