I’m still in love with youuu booooy

I came back with no expectations. After one month in London, Oslo, Copenhagen, and last but not the least, Where The Sheep Sleep, my feelings could have changed. Moreover, we went through very difficult times, the last couple of months together. I mean, I’ve always known my feelings but, regarding love, you have to leave some space for things to evolve. It is so easy to get caught up in the routine and stagnate into boredom and nagging, but when you let things breathe and give yourself the chance to look at it from a distance, love might bloom once more. I was pretty cautious when I came back. I didn’t shed a tear of emotion when I landed (but I must admit I smiled from within when I arrived in Central Station). I was home. And my home was as beautiful as I remember it. So I basically started making a mental list of reasons why it is great to be back to this long-lasting case of love in my life, called Amsterdam.

Why is it good to be back in Amsterdam:

(If I was writing for SEO I would have made the sentence above the title for this post, right?)

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London diaries III: Celino and The Tate Modern

LONDON: MUSEUMS & FRIENDS

There were two things I absolutely loved about my trip to London. On a personal level, the reencounter with friends I have known for years and who have been very influential in my life. From an objective point of view, the museums. London is an extraordinary place when it comes to world-class art, and I believe there are few places on the planet that can rival that aspect. I have just visited four art museums + a couple of galleries, but art is everywhere in London, really. From the subway to the streets, including markets, cafes and abandoned public spaces. We can argue against the ways the British got hold of a lot of foreign art in their possession. For instance, the British Museum ought to be named after “The Museum of Culture Representation in Britain”, or “The stuff we got by means of British Imperialism”, or quite simply, “Shouldn’t we be flying to Asia, Africa, and America instead?”. But instead of focusing on the political ethics of the whole thing, the goal of this article is to tell you about moments of enlightenment I experienced in London. These are a synonym to art and friends, so I decided to combine one museum to each friend I met in the city. This is thus the first part of the series Museums & Friends.

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Sunday yoga in the park

Wake up to the Sunday morning, hop on your bike, cycle to the park, and feel the smell of the trees around you, listen to the chirping of birds, feel the wind breeze. It’s spring, and we’re at the Oosterpark. It’s 10 a.m. and unlike later on in the afternoon, it is quiet over here, and there’s SPACE. My friend Catarina from All In Yoga is about to start the class. As much as I love dancing the night out, the feeling of starting the day early, and in this fashion, is incomparable.

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Wonder and woe at the house of Rembrandt

The only moment of the day in which you can quietly walk along the city center of an overcrowded Amsterdam is at the crack of dawn: that’s the time when you carelessly go around parts of the city you would otherwise avoid. That is also the moment in which, as a local, you feel that the city is yours again ( was it ever…?) – even if just for a couple of hours, before the sea of tourists awakes. However, and despite the fact that I love this sensation, I somehow really need to have a strong reason in order to wake up early. And the good reason for me is always art-related.

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My all time favorite cafes in Amsterdam

I’m a cafe person, and hardly a day goes by without paying a visit to one of my hangouts of choice. Usually the process of deciding which cafe to head to is quite simple: I know my favorites, and I am well-acquainted with their dynamics, their menu, their barristas. I do happen to have conditioned myself to work in public spaces, where the cacophony of conversations and crockery, and the smell of coffee being brewed have this magical property of making me focus. I’m a sort of pavlovian dogspecialty coffee being my trigger.

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Yoga is the road. Tula, the vehicle.

It is 09.30 in the morning. My backpack is ready. There’s a laptop in there, yoga clothes, maybe a portable breakfast if I didn’t have the time to eat it before leaving the house. I hop on my bike, get out of the Staadsliedenbuurt, cycle across the Westerpark – that fresh morning wind bringing me back to life -, and then I find this tiny bridge which welcomes me into the Spaarndammerbuurt. In the wink of an eye I am unlocking the door of Tula Yoga.

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The Wind – or the farmer and his healing potions

Last weekend I had a city-break and ventured to Belgium, where I was hosted at a stunning little castle near the city of Ghent. It was a two full days in the countryside, listening to the birds, contemplating nature, and strolling around the property. That trip reminded me of the tale of the farmer – The Wind.

Once upon a time there was a farmer living in a castle. He was no duke, in fact he had absolutely no noble title before his name, but he lived within the property of one. The duke liked having such a hard-working man around, one he could trust to help protecting his domain, together with the concierge. The farmer didn’t come from afar but none knew much about him, except for he was named after the wind. The Wind – just like a native of some long lost tribe – the last man of his own people, one bound to a special mission.

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Koffie ende Koeck – a litle vegan paradise

The first thing you notice when you come in is this intense smell of cake – grandma style. Second thing: the friendliness of the girl behind the counter. She has a frank and welcoming smile and the very fact she is baking cake makes her adorable. Finally, ( in case you didn’t know it in advance): everything here is vegan. This is like you’re jumping into a witch-free version of Hansel and Gretel’s tale.

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