Go North

As has been typical with Montreal weather lately, this weekend called for shit in the form of rain. However, after mulling it over, Mother Nature (a.k.a the whore) had a change of heart and we were the well-intended recipients of <GASP!> sun… So, I headed North to the mountains for some peace and quiet. These are a few awesome things that I came across on my morning power walks – complete with a feline stalker. Now, in the spirit of full disclosure, I will admit to you, dear readers, that I hate cats. Yes, it’s true. I’m a dog person. Quite frankly, I consider cats to be evil masking around as innocent-looking fluff balls. Anyway, I ran into the fellow you’ll see below while walking on a secluded path in the woods and well, the little bastard adopted me. He followed me all the way home and he MADE ME LOVE HIM. The little shit. Every time I leaned down to try and take a decent pic, he ran at me like a damn dog and the rub fest would begin. No matter how I tried to escape, dude just wouldn’t have it. Well… he’s pretty good-looking for the spawn of Satan, don’t you think?

Evil feline [Photo: RAnnDomized]

Evil feline [Photo: RAnnDomized]

Photo: RAnnDomized

Photo: RAnnDomized

Evil feline in a bed of clover [Photo: RAnnDomized]

Evil feline in a bed of clover [Photo: RAnnDomized]

Evil feline coming to get me [Photo: RAnnDomized]

Evil feline coming to get me [Photo: RAnnDomized]

Now on to more interesting things.

Photo: RAnnDomized

Photo: RAnnDomized

My favorite tree ever - it looks like it's standing in Vriksasana [Photo: RAnnDomized]

My favorite tree ever – it looks like it’s standing in Vriksasana [Photo: RAnnDomized]

Photo: RAnnDomized

Photo: RAnnDomized

Photo: RAnnDomized

Photo: RAnnDomized

 

Peace,

A

In A Hood

Sometimes, you manage to get a perfect shot simply be looking up. Great light, beautiful architecture, and lovely floaty clouds to complete your composition. What more can you ask for? This one reminds me of an HDR image but it’s not – I shot it with an iPhone and applied no filter.  Now,  you really should be careful when  you’re walking around staring up at the sky – those over-sized Montreal pot holes are just waiting to swallow you up. I should know – I tested it out myself. Ouch!

 

Photo: RAnndomized

Photo: RAnndomized

And on an unrelated note, it appears that no amount of yoga can make up for the shit-streak that I’ve been on the last 2 weeks, so I found this to be bloody well fitting of my mood lately – at least the one between 9-5…!

Image courtesy of e-Cards

Image courtesy of e-Cards

 

Peace

A

Finding Solitude

I found myself in need of some introspection this weekend and as always, I sought out clarity and enlightenment in nature. More and more, I find myself drawn to trees swaying in the wind, their leaves rustling with every breeze – to the sound of waves lapping up against the shore, and toward the sound of birds chirping happily away on a glorious sunny day. This is where I find solace and sustenance, equally. This is where everything seems to come together for me. I think it’s because there is absolutely nothing fake about nature – it’s as authentic as it gets. I’m so sick and fucking tired of social media and all of its bullshit – of constantly having to be ‘ON’ or connected – of listening to inauthentic discourse from anyone and everyone. Just get real, already.

I awoke this morning with head and heart cluttered. My immediate response was to lace up and head out the door at 6:30, where I was greeted by sun and silence – the absolute perfect remedy. I’ve got this very specific walking route that allows me to avoid people and cars (well, for most of the walk, anyway), and that always leads me to my secret Zen spot. I don’t even need to think about it – my internal GPS automatically directs me there, and ‘there’ is where I ponder in peace, while appreciating the beauty of my surroundings. The reality is that my friends don’t always get me or understand what I need despite my clearly stating “I need X”, so I go inward and deal with shit on my own. This is when nature comes in handy. Isn’t this the perfect place to seek out answers? I think so. And no, I can’t tell you where this is – I’d have to kill you.

Photo: RAnnDomized

Photo: RAnnDomized

Photo: RAnnDomized

Photo: RAnnDomized

Photo: RAnnDomized

Photo: RAnnDomized

Photo: RAnnDomized

Photo: RAnnDomized

Photo: RAnnDomized

Photo: RAnnDomized

And last but not least, last week’s stress lead to much cursing and other assorted potty-mouthedness (Annism). This spoke very well to my state of mind:

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I’m not sure where this image originates from, but I got it via Reddit.

 

Peace,

A

 

Girl in da Hood

After spending the winter in what I’m now referring to as Hibernia (a.k.a my house) , I decided it was probably time to venture out into this great big world of ours to see if anything of interest was going on besides Rob Ford’s crack addiction. Today’s adventures led me to a part of town that, to be quite blunt, used to be a shit hole. The southern part of Montreal has been undergoing gentrification over the last few years, and it’s shaping up to be the next big thing (read: trendy area in which to live and/or open a restaurant). As I randomly wandered from street to street, I came across some great art that I thought I’d share here instead of on Instagram because let’s face it – this blog ain’t been getting no love lately. So… check – check – check – check -check it out! What – what – what – what’s it all about? C’mon on now, sing it!

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YUL2

YUL3

YUL4

YUL5

What did the fox say? Or maybe that should be wolf?

What did the fox say? Or maybe that should be wolf?

YUL7

YUL8

YUL9

YUL10

YUL11

YUL12

YUL13

YUL14

 

Peace,

A

Hello Instagram & Updates

I’m ba-aaaaack! (Sort of)

Let’s face it – I have been a terrible blogger lately. I haven’t written a damn thing in months because I’ve been too busy Yelping and looking for things to shoot (as in, photography, not people).  Truth be told, I don’t like to post bullshit, so if I don’t feel inspired by the written word, I don’t write. I’ve got a LOT going on in this ol’ noggin (no, I haven’t lost my mind but thanks for asking) – but it’s not always easy to write shit down. Anyone have a remedy for writer’s block?  Anyway, as you’ve seen from my latest posts, I’ve been feeling more inspired visually, so while I re-think the purpose of this blog, I wanted to let you know that I’m finally on Instagram and you should DEFINITELY follow me. Definitely. As in, right now, people. Is that too blunt? Tough shit. I mean come on – just show me some love! I can promise you one thing: NO fucking selfies. Fuck, I hate that shit, especially those people who insist they’re not vain or narcissistic by posting pics of themselves every single fucking day. No, they’re not vain at ALL.  So, ignore those vain assholes and check out my gallery – let’s connect.

In other news, I’ve been contributing to Yelp for a little over a year now, and love it! There seems to be controversy surrounding the Yelp community and what its purpose actually is (i.e. why are reviews filtered and others not, are reviews ‘real’ etc.). On my end, none of my reviews have ever been filtered and I guarantee that every single review that I write is real and unbiased. I don’t get paid to visit any of the establishments that I’ve reviewed and thus, if I hate a place, I’ll tell you. Personally, I love to discover new local restaurants and businesses, and Yelp allows me to do that while sharing my feedback with everyone. Plus, I get to write and take pics at the same time. Bonus!  I’ve also had the chance to meet some great new people and had the opportunity to participate in some awesome events.  If you’re looking for new local businesses (mainly places to EAT!), you can check out my reviews on Montreal (mainly), Vancouver, New York and Istanbul. For now. I’m going to Italy this summer and I get the feeling you may see an influx of reviews around that time. Mmmmmm Italian cuisine….. So, feel free to connect with me on Yelp as well as Instagram.

Lastly, Italy. If anyone’s been to Rome or Florence, share your experiences with me here. I’d love to get your input on must-see places and of course, must-eat places. If you’ve written a blog post on your adventures, share!

On that note, I’m off. I’ll be back at some point – don’t leave =-)

Peace out,

A

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Express Yourself (Final!)

You can check out Part 1 here, and Part 2 here.

My only complaint is that most of these murals are in parking lots, so it can be hard to get an unobstructed view (i.e. there are cards parked) or the perfect angle.

Photo: RAnnDomized

Photo: RAnnDomized

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Photo: RAnnDomized

 

And ending things on a Zentastic note:

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Jah bless y’all,

A

Express Yourself (Part 2)

To view Part 1, click here (you better do it!)

Photo: RAnnDomized

Photo: RAnnDomized

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Photo: RAnnDomized

 

And along the way, I found myself participating in a Hare Krishna festival… Hare Krishna Hare Krishna, Krishna Krishna, Hare Hare…

Photo: RAnnDomized

Photo: RAnnDomized

Photo: RAnnDomized

Photo: RAnnDomized

Photo: RAnnDomized

Photo: RAnnDomized

 

Stay tuned for the final post – coming at some point this month!

 

A

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Express Yourself (Part 1)

This past June, MURAL hosted an event that allowed both local and international graffiti artists to spray Montreal’s main drag red (or any other color of their choosing) across 2 km, and over a period of four days. I finally found the time to head over to Saint-Laurent Boulevard to see what all the fuss was about, and snapped a few pics along the way. By clicking on the above link, you can find out more about the artists who participated in the MURAL festival, as well get a map that calls out where the murals are located.

 

Photo: RAnnDomized

Photo: RAnnDomized

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Photo: RAnnDomized

 

Stay tuned for part 2, coming soon!

 

A

 

Merhaba, Galata

The view from the Galata Tower on a clear day is breathtaking. Once you get to the top, the tower offs a 360° view of Istanbul. Again, the thumbnails don’t seem 100% clear so click on the image(s) for 100% focus! Damn WordPress!

Photo: RAnnDomized

Photo: RAnnDomized

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Photo: RAnnDomized

Photo: RAnnDomized

 

Asia-Bound

While in Istanbul, I headed over to the Asian side on a very gray day – sunshine is so much better for picture-taking, but what can you do? I took most of these on the way to Kadıköy, and some in Üsküdar. For some reason, the images don’t look sharp if you’re viewing them on the main page, but if you click on them, you can see that the larger versions are focused.

Photo: RAnnDomized

Photo: RAnnDomized

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Photo: RAnnDomized