Un peu “COMME UN BÂTEAU” (a bit of new french music)

Song by Indila. In her album Mini World.

Refrain: 

Un peu comme un bateau
J’avance face à la mer
Je navigue sur les flots
Un peu comme un bateau
J’avance et je suis fière
De ce que porte mon dos
Un peu comme un bateau
Qui trouve son équilibre
Entre les vagues et le chaos
Un peu comme un bateau
J’avance et je suis fière
De ce que porte mon dos
Un peu comme un bateau. 

Translation of the chorus: 

A bit like a boat
I’m pushing ahead against the sea
I’m sailing over the waves
A bit like a boat
I’m pushing ahead and I’m proud
of what I’m carrying on my back
A bit like a boat
which finds its balance
between waves and chaos
A bit like a boat
I’m pushing ahead and I’m proud
of what I’m carrying on my back
A bit like a boat

Reflections on my week in BOSTON… and a peek into Harvard/MIT.

IMG_0053 IMG_0056

Reflections on my short trip to Boston:

  1. I personally found Boston to be the older and more attractive sibling of New York: the streets are cleaner, the people are friendlier, and the architecture is diverse. (Boston is the perfect mix between tradition and modernity). Plus, Boston is quite small, making the walk from the North end all the way to Cambridge a charming afternoon.
  1. The city has a bustling culture scene. I was fortunate enough to catch a Puerto Rican festival this past weekend. First, my friend and I stumbled upon a full free night concert and the next day we saw a parade! The atmosphere was absolutely joyous due to the wonderful Bostonian people and hispanic pride. The cultural diversity of the city adds to its dynamic ambiance. (Fun fact from a local: Boston has a large Puerto Rican community).
  1. Boston could easily be identified as a university area. The actual city is filled with names ranging from Northeastern, Berklee School of Music, Tufts, Boston University, and Boston College. And just across the Charles River are MIT and Harvard in Cambridge. As a student aspiring to their high calibre, I found the two prestigious universities to be aweing and yet normal. By talking to current students, it became clear that going to Harvard or MIT was difficult (but DEFINITELY not unattainable through hard work). Insider information: Harvard students pee on the statue of John Harvard, so DON’T rub the foot. Also, MIT students love climbing on things… buildings, the alchemist statue, etc.
  1. The transportation was easy to use and efficient. I was staying at MIT in Cambridge, which was closely connected to the city through the T (metro). There were also buses and other quick links. I’m biased because I live in London, but hey, for an American city the public transportation was pretty good!
  1. So much to do! So much to see! So much to enjoy! There are museums, historical sites, comedy clubs, malls, movie theatres, Red Sox games, food markets, parks and so so so much more. Additionally, the city appears to care for its citizens. For example, the greenway is a park stretch from the North End to South Station. AND there’s free wifi on this strip (it also has benches, tables, fountains, and vegetation).
  1. The people were absolutely lovely. The population sample was probably skewed away from students because it was summer, but I found Boston to have a nice mix of students, young professionals, and established business suits. Although it heavily depends on the area, Boston also has a nice balance between the different socio-economic classes.

Personal recommendations for places to visit:

  1. Boston Commons
  2. Faneuil Hall Marketplace/Quincy Market – bustling food and clothing stores
  3. Beacon Hill – where the rich people live
  4. North End – Italian part (must try cannoli)
  5. Newbury Street – shopping and beautiful area
  6. Freedom Trail
  7. The financial district
  8. The Boston Harbour Inn
  9. The different university campuses (especially Cambridge)

Food/Drink:

  1. Eat lunch or dinner on top of the Prudential Tower for an amazing view of Boston
  2. Coffee and a sandwich at Thinking Cup
  3. Coffee shop experience =  Flour Bakery and Cafe 
  4. Brunch in Cambridge – Area Four (they serve pizza!)
  5. Boston Common Coffee (why go to Starbucks when Boston has its own chain?)
  6. La Burdicks – for a hot chocolate experience like a true Harvard Student
  7. Georgetown Cupcakes – there’s one on Newbury street

Final Conclusion: Boston… I’ll be coming back for you someday. You absolutely took my heart away!

In the Mood For Love (Wong Kar-Wai, 2001)

In the Mood For Love (Wong Kar-Wai, 2001)

Cinematography: Mark Lee Ping Bin, Kwan Pun Leung, Christopher Doyle

Have you ever stopped to look at the film itself? I mean actually STOP. and look at it. Acknowledge it. Not its narrative, characters, or realism. The cinematography can be absolutely beautiful and breathtaking with it’s enhanced colours, deep compositions, shifting focus and subtle reminders. Cinematography does not shout, it whispers. And those that listen will discover a hidden beauty that flashes every 24 fames per second. 

Coca-Cola at the Movies.

Coca-Cola at the Movies.

Some key dates:

1. It’s generally accepted that cinema was invented around 1895 with the first film made for projection: Workers Leaving the Lumière Factory. In the beginning, it is silent and in black-in-white (the first Coca-Cola bottle).

2. The first feature-lenght sound film to be projected was The Jazz Singer in 1929. However, not all studios immediately transitioned and believed that this evolution to talkies is good for the art form of cinema. Nevertheless, sound becomes the industry standard by the 1932-33.

3. The transition to technicolor changed the film industry between 1922-1955. This artistic transition varied the use of colour vs. black-and-white. Examples of this time: His Girl Friday, The Wizard of Oz, Singin’ in the Rain (and the second Coca-Cola Bottle).

4. Hollywood started experimenting with 3D technology in the 1950s with Cinerama and 3D projectors. However, ultimately the technology was abandoned until it re-appeared in the mid-1980s with IMAX. According to the MPAA report of 2012, 41% of the screens in the US are equip for 3D projection, there were 36 3D films released in the US last year, and 48% of US viewers have watched at least one 3D movie in 2012That brings us to today (and the third Coca-Cola Bottle).

5. The Coca Cola Company was founded in 1886. So funnily enough, it’s history is about as long as cinema.

Oh how far we’ve come! Time to put on my 3D glasses…. or maybe we won’t need them in the future?