chasse au trésor

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Each time I go to Paris, there are certain things I just must do. A picnic along the Canal, a nap in Place de Vosges, un tradition from my favorite bakery. I thought I’d share a few of them here with you, starting with a trove of treasures that was new to me this time around…

If you should find yourself with nothing to do on a Sunday in Paris, put on some walking shoes and make your way over to Les Puces de Saint-Ouen to peruse one of the city’s most bountiful flea markets. If you push past hoards of folks peddling dress shirts wrapped in plastic and “designer” sunglasses for €10, your persistence will be rewarded with a enclave of antique gems and oddities, ripe for the cherishing.

Practice your french bartering with sellers for a pair of tiny tin soldiers to bring home for your brother. Pick up an antique Dijon container to fill with flowers back in Providence. Fall in love with a random, romantic napkin ring- of all things- boasting your mother’s first initial elegantly scripted in metallic. Remember the sound of the Edith Piaf crooner in the lively restaurant sinking into the market’s mid-section, savor the smell of a dusty summer in the city.

*Pro tip: Stop by the hip commune-style café La Recyclerie to fuel up on fresh assiettes du jour, homemade in an eco-forward oasis of a cafeteria. Again, not for the timid traveler, but fully worth the one-of-a-kind experience and healthy helping of trendy french fair.

 

to the moutains

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rising up before the sun
with fuzzy stardust eyes
through sherbet-tinctured pink webs we blink
to wake the sleepy sky

a cozy Coffee Pot sign
says “celebrate everything!”
so strawberry waffle, pockets all full
my REAL maple on the side

out and up the mountains now
towards the clouds we climb
we sneak and peek and dare to swim
in the veil of a marvelous bride

on the road we snack and sing
over lakes we row in time
these hearts a part of the same blue chart
under stars our two combine.

 

 

photos of me by Michael (cutest) Collins.

hello, sweaty july

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Greetings from the hottest day of the year.  Let’s backtrack…

If you are looking for something original to do on the 4th of July, consider walking around your nearest city (bonus points if it’s the Creative Capital).  While everyone else burns at the beach, take advantage of the quiet.  Stroll from one end to the other and hit every nook and cranny (winky face).  Explore with iced tea and curiosity.  Consider trying the old penny walk trick or making a list of things you’re thankful for over yummy samiches (extra bonus points if you get free pickles, too).  Feel the sun, find the shadows.  Download a timer cam app (no one is around to take a cheesy couplish photo for you, and no one is around to watch while you struggle to capture yourselves in the frame).  Take touristy pictures.  Sit down on every bench, read about famous singers you never knew lived (and died) in the area, pretend you go to RISD (and then Brown).  Choose your favorite building on the block, and then choose again.  Regale your patient manfriend with every architectural fact you’ve learned in the past month, and feel dang smart doing it.  Trek home, commence nap.  Wake, pack picnic, and place yourself under fireworks.

Actually, forget all that.  Continue running away to the beach and leave the secluded city to us. :)

 

photo of me by Michael Collins, photo of us by iPhone-gen youth taking exorbitant amount of selfies.

get lost

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I’ve grown to love my remarkably terrible sense of direction.

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It leads me off the beaten path, through the scenic route and onto adventures I wouldn’t have otherwise found.  This extended summer has provided ample time for such misguided endeavors, whether that means sipping iced tea to the sounds of the Grey Album

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Or driving an hour sans copilot in pursuit of a solo beach trip, only to realize I’ve forgotten my wallet in Providence and will have no way to pay for parking.  Luckily for me, a small portion of Westport, MA agrees that our beaches should be free for all to enjoy, and my absentmindedness led to the discovery of this little slice of nirvana- free of charge:

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To those of you possessing the inner compass that will forever allude me, I suggest you “pull a Keeks” (as my friends so lovingly refer to it).  Get lost.  Forget the map, miss the exit, take the wrong turn.  Follow the road until you hit water, flowers, lights, buildings, trees, the edge…

Leave no breadcrumbs, no stone unturned.  You may just find something worth finding.

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PS- for more on loving your flaws, check out my guest post over at onballence.

unplanned

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we Watch july’s final sunset from a Hill
cheap thrill
golden full moon rimmed by stars that spill
melting into the blue waves’ sound
surround
a striped sky globed protectively around
like this small beach town is
all there isIMG_1668pink
drink, tipped matches,
tea room, my mind attaches
Marcia’s cats are mischievous
fishing grey smiles and jungle spotted thievery
palm trees
a reminder never to drink alone
from a framed man and his talismans
a bar cut into thirds
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winnie-the-pooh walls and wooden beams
sing us to sleep, but the morning steams
all sunshine, hot tea, and muffin crumbs
you call me Lady
my hands go numb

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amber honey, thin syrup, glass bottles, iced tea
buttery rolled lobster in the clouds
artichoke hearts and vitamin d
a soulful walk to Hammonasett
tiny towels steeped in sand
our day in lists, firsts and new places we’ve kissed
all so perfectly unplanned.

sing me to sleep

FullSizeRender 8IMG_1196FullSizeRender 9IMG_0789IMG_1081FullSizeRender 13FullSizeRender 11IMG_1129FullSizeRender 12 FullSizeRender 14IMG_1274I’ve become a bit of a lady of the night as of late.

That’s not to say I don’t rise early to pack my days to the peak with iced tea, research, ballet class and freeze dance (oh, the joys of 10-year-old bunheads).

I do.

But I’ve developed an affinity for indulging in as much adventure as 24 hours will concede, stretching long days into late nights, a hot summer sun taking its sweet time to slip into July’s hot, sticky sheets.  The birds that wake most, often sing me to sleep.  Midnight’s tired eyes linger hours longer before puffing up into a mug of English breakfast and beginning again.

So how is it these humid dog days blend into nights so outsrteched?  Well that is a simple one word answer, my friends: Providence.

The Grange, The Duck & Bunny, The Avon, The Dorrance.  The rooftop at G Pub and some lesser authorized rooftops closeby.  Old friends and new ones, learning, teaching, and loving.  Over cities, on beaches, in cafés and under stars.  These are the summer nights I could live in forever.

end of summer bliss

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Ahh, the sweet sights of late summer in New England.

Colorful, shiny, enlightening, trips to the Institute of Contemporary Art, Boston.  Rustic flower arrangements by the beach in York, Maine.  Summer fruits in the spotlight for a healthy breakfast in Providence.  These are the captured moments of happiness and creation that have fueled my curious mind these past few weeks.

It’s all too easy to find one’s self unmotivated, uninspired, stoic, and stir-crazy as mid-August approaches and the nights lose their humidity.  Luckily, that hasn’t been much of a problem for me this year, as planning for my upcoming trip to Ireland (!!!) has kept me beyond activated in the inspiration department.  In 9 days I will fly from Boston to Dublin to meet up with le boyfriend’s family in celebration of his graduation from college.  When the rest of his family returns to the states, K and I will spend another week exploring the beautifully green postcard-ready viewsof Ireland.  Already on the itinerary: a visit to Galway City, Connemara, and hopefully a few more destinations close by.  We plan to hike through the Cliffs of Moher, check out the art museums, hop on board a ‘ukulele bus’ and be lead through the woods of the countryside by donkeys.  If you have any suggestions of sights, restaurants, pubs, or anything else that cannot be skipped- please let me know in the comments section!

all photos via my instagram (@keeksevans)