Tag Archives: travel

Glimpses of Seattle

Everything I imagined and knew about the US, from past experiences in the US, has been around the Bay Area. As such, I was unprepared to experience the more laid back vibe in the city. It was and felt much different. A happy surprise.

Missing luggage is how my trip to the US began. Security on my way out of baggage area was eyeing me curiously and then proceeded to stop and ask as to why I only had a carry-on. Once I got out, I went and bought a shirt, checked in, ate some food and headed straight to work, which was just a block away. My colleagues offered to take me to Kerry park, which was another two blocks away from the workplace, for a break. The views were spectacular.

Later after work, few other friends were going to see the cherry blossoms in the Washington State University grounds. As I just missed out the cherry-blossoms in Amsterdam at Kersenbloesempark, I was more than happy to go check it out.

View of Mt Reiner from the WSU area

At night, jetlagged and luggage-less, I went and sat down in one of the cafes, to do some people watching on the street. I was truly “Sleepless in Seattle.”



The next day evening, colleagues invited me to hang out with them at a bar near a marina. I fail to remember the name, but I would certainly love to go back there and take the float plane from the club situated there.

The weekend arrived, and I met up with a good friend who showed me around Seattle. Starting with the iconic gum wall, which I never knew existed. It was as gross as it was good-looking.

The next day after I parted with my friend, I went around exploring to the edge of the city. I was on my way to rent a car to drive out to the countryside. The way sunlight lit up, and casted shadows couldn’t help me but attempt to capture them.

I got back at night and went to Kerry park yet again for getting some night shots of the city view.

The two weeks ended and before I realised, I was already on my way back to Amsterdam

 

Streets of Paris

Paris is an incredibly enchanting city whose air forever smells of romance. Its filled with gorgeous buildings and facades which invoke a sense of nostalgia. Its always crowded with gorgeous women and fashionable people of all ages. There are delights hidden in every nook and corner, in places one would least expect, like the back lanes of Eiffel Tower to alleys near the Seine; Crowded areas around Pont des Arts to empty streets behind Musse d’Orsay.

I have no words to describe the sights. I only have some pictures

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Delft

After the trip to Paris, I needed a break to settle in and to let the fact sink in, that I actually crossed an item off my bucket list. Most of my time went into the usual work, personal projects and editing photos. It was over a month, before I felt I was ready to travel again. One sunday, with all my friends down being lazy, it was becoming evident that the day’s plan to visit the Tilburg fair was not going to materialise, at which point I decided to take off alone to visit Delft – a very cute university town in the South of Holland.

Two trains and 45 minutes later, I was greeted by the sight of cycles…

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Graffiti..

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Alternate modes of transport

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Gorgeous canals, most of which were calmer, narrower and prettier than those in Amsterdam

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Open parks and grounds

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Shops and old buildings that look like they are making faces

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Scheveningen

One bored Sunday afternoon I decided I needed to go somewhere and hopped onto the next train to Rotterdam with absolutely no plan, which to my dismay was a disaster, as most museums and attractions were closed. There was too much sun to be able to do any photography. Boredom lead to an itch for adventure and soon I found myself on a train, alone, headed towards a spot I picked randomly on Google Maps. What I stumbled on to my delight, was the beautiful coastal fishing district of Scheveningen, in the city of Den Haag.
Here are some pictures from that visit and from 2 later planned visits.

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Paris Underground

Oblivious to the world above ground, is another world, hidden below the ground, which is the Paris underground metro. The first time I came across underground metros, it was in Hong Kong and I thought it was as complex as it could get, but boy was I wrong. I have never ever seen anything like this before in my life. Entire city of Paris sprawls with underground stations, situated at several underground levels, below historic monuments, beside rivers, inside hills, below buildings, basically everywhere. The rail lines pass through the city from one end to another, in several levels, never intersecting, going under every possible imaginable structures and water bodies.

Some of the metro stations themselves are so large, that for an outsider it would take an easy 15-30 minutes just to get to the right platform, that is after you have figured out the entrance to the underground, most of which inconspicuously blend into the streets, sometimes with the only indication being a staircase leading into the ground, in places where they strangely appear to have no business of being there. Trying to use connecting trains to get from one place to another is an entirely different deal altogether. In my 5 day stay, I would have walked almost 5-10 miles just underground, while trying to get to the right platform.

What I can neither understand nor comprehend is that many of these rail tunnels that are still in use, were built almost a century ago in the early 1900s, for electric locomotives – talk about having vision! Few routes are now completely automated and are devoid of any human intervention. That for me represents the culmination of old meets new.

Enough words. Here are some pictures…

Paris Underground

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Not knowing that the french word ‘Sortie’ meant ‘Exit’ in english, caused quite a bit of confusion the first 2 days, when I tried to find my way out, until I realised it can’t be possible to get to a station named ‘Sortie’ from every corner of the city.

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