postcards from south beach, miami

postcards from south beach, miami

IMG_8598

 

IMG_8599

 

IMG_8636   IMG_8601

 

IMG_8602

 

IMG_8603

 

A quick overnighter to South Beach, Miami, which reminded me of my time living in Mexico.  I was speaking Spanish on Ocean Drive and loving the “see and be seen” mentality, which of course makes for great people watching!

GALLERIA VITTORIO EMANUELE II. milano

GALLERIA VITTORIO EMANUELE II. milano

IMG_6311

IMG_6333

IMG_6325

IMG_6330

IMG_6322

Milano knows shopping, and does it in style.

ARCHITECTURE AROUND TOWN. milano

ARCHITECTURE AROUND TOWN. milano

IMG_6336

IMG_6787

IMG_6784

IMG_6746

IMG_6744

IMG_6740

IMG_6573

IMG_6569

IMG_6341

IMG_6340

IMG_6788

IMG_6789

Some random amazing buildings that assault me with their beauty on the daily.

BAKTUN: THE END OF AN ERA

BAKTUN: THE END OF AN ERA

Fortunately for some & unfortunately for others, the world did not end today, 12/ 21/ 2012.  Ancient Mayans did not actually predict an apocalypse today, but rather the end of an era.  I am currently smack in the center of the supposed apocalypse, so I thought I should just go with it.  This & the following two posts are a few things I have seen today, in homage of baktun.

DUOMO. florence

DUOMO. florence

Usually when I am going to visit a new city, I do extensive amounts of research, and almost feel that I have been before I step off the plane.  I did not get to do this before my trip to Italy, and I was pleasantly surprised by everything I saw…this may be a new trend in the way I travel (still had to look up restaurant recommendations though…no one likes to be out in the cold on those important things!).

SANTO STEFANO. bologna

SANTO STEFANO. bologna

Nicknamed “the Russian nesting doll of churches”, this church has seven churches in one, each separate church being added at a different century.

DOOR DETAILS. bologna

DOOR DETAILS. bologna

Bologna has some beautiful doors and door pulls (Florence does too…photos to come soon).  These are a few that caught my eye.

THE COLORS. bologna

THE COLORS. bologna

When first arriving in Bologna, one of the first things I noticed were the beautiful color combinations on the buildings.  So many gorgeous, in my mind “typically Italian” colors, that might not look as beautiful set in a different context…but they work so well together in this specific country.

SUN YAT-SEN MEMORIAL HALL. guangzhou

SUN YAT-SEN MEMORIAL HALL. guangzhou

For those of you who are not familiar with Sun Yat-Sen, he was the leader of China’s republican revolution. He did much to inspire and organize the movement that overthrew the Manchu dynasty in 1911—a family of rulers that reigned over China for nearly three hundred years. Through the Kuomintang Party, he paved the way for the eventual reunification of the country.

WENSHU TEMPLE. chengdu

WENSHU TEMPLE. chengdu

Peeling Chestnuts
A new monk, posing for an introductory photo shoot! I felt very lucky to witness this.
The “dots” on a bhikkhu’s forehead are actually small, circular burns that are given to the monk when he ordains. The burns are created with small, coiled and waxed wicks. The coils are lit and then placed on the forehead and left until they extinguish. This method is used primarily in the Chinese Buddhist (Mahayana) tradition and it originated as a method to distinguish genuine monks from those pretending to be monks. During times of great famine or poverty in China, some people would pretend to be monks so that they could live and eat in a monastery.