Graffiti

the whirlwind of highlights : 7 months based out of england

time in england, meant a superb base for travelling in Europe - and there was a a lot  of that.  time for the next new thing: Ibague, Colombia for 2018.

capturing what I saw and did here is pretty simple: the Thames

 

from the belltower to the start line of the Henley Royal Regatta

from the belltower to the start line of the Henley Royal Regatta

Henley on Thames at its gloaming best

Henley on Thames at its gloaming best

well maybe second best

well maybe second best

boating

boating

winter bike commutes do pay off

winter bike commutes do pay off

countryside walking

 

summer storms

summer storms

dartmoor national park

dartmoor national park

sunday morning are made for snow walking 

sunday morning are made for snow walking 

galleries, museums and public spaces

the ghastly and awesome surgery museum London

the ghastly and awesome surgery museum London

chester catherdral

chester catherdral

cathedral st andrew

cathedral st andrew

leake street

leake street

and the two things I'll miss the most:

Reebok CrossFit Reading

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RCFR has definitely been one of my favourites about living in England - had such a great time training with everyone over the last 6 or so months, was made to feel so incredibly welcome. 

And these amazing Henley gentlemen:

 

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sure there’s the antiquities, but

yes I adored the history, walking in the footsteps of the Romans, being blown away by the opulence of the Medicis but really the surprising highlight of both Roma & Firenze was the street art 

Roma: by @tvboy for Greenpeace 

Roma: by @tvboy for Greenpeace 

Roma: can’t remember the last time I saw this, and complete with tagged insides too

Roma: can’t remember the last time I saw this, and complete with tagged insides too

Roma, as close as I got to faux gladiators 

Roma, as close as I got to faux gladiators 

Firenze the everywhere art of @cletabrham, @exit/enter, @apo_art and plenty more legacy from #fcvfirenze

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and then the last walk before leaving - ironically to the Uffizi  - threw up a few more.... 

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another city stealing my heart

bizarre end to the bike lane 

bizarre end to the bike lane 

Lisbon has totally captivated me - is it wrong to have a list for what a city needs, I am definitely erring on the not side. 

So the attributes required to make it gritty and liveable I've learnt for me are comprised of four simple things:

Amazing urban spaces and art

street scapes and buildings where too much decoration is never enough.  The 18th and 19thC building tiles have morphed for 21stC into tags, throwups and murals; adornment seems to be in the DNA here.

 

why limit yourself to one lion

why limit yourself to one lion

crazily they get stolen off the walls and sold : who does that? 

crazily they get stolen off the walls and sold : who does that? 

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can't believe I found @utopía.artist again - Valparisio via loads of places to Lisboa  

can't believe I found @utopía.artist again - Valparisio via loads of places to Lisboa  

Killer coffee and food 

since 1950 cork tree wood fired coffee roaster  

since 1950 cork tree wood fired coffee roaster  

where coffee with milk is an abberation

where a steak sandwich is dessert

where a pasteis is breakfast

where you get ripe cheese and aged port at the local store 

when I grow up my bodega will only sell cheese, fruit and port too

when I grow up my bodega will only sell cheese, fruit and port too

where you can eat barnacles

Gooseneck barnacles and an imperial the best second lunch 

Gooseneck barnacles and an imperial the best second lunch 

Close to the water

Pedestrian friendly

and lastly totally walkable ideally with hills and doubling back narrow roads (and yes ok, old school gyms) 

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aptly named

road tripping - and car camping, except for the super cold north side wind chill anyone - through Iceland has been the most visually stunning experience.

nothing except being in the car and hiking following our eyes with wheels and feet onto the next gorgeous vista. 

just a typical next bend view

just a typical next bend view

Day 1 : Exploring the Snæfellsnes Peninsula

Road 4 > Road 1 > Road 54 

Braarbaut 

Braarbaut 

right on the edge of the Greenland Sea

right on the edge of the Greenland Sea

Day 2: Exploring the wild Westfjords in splendid isolation

Road 54 > Road 60 > F Road 66 > Road 61

sunrise at Grundarfjörður

sunrise at Grundarfjörður

mark II

mark II

the stunning fjords

the stunning fjords

thermal pool addiction commences at Reykjanesvegur

thermal pool addiction commences at Reykjanesvegur

Day 3: North Iceland and ridiculously only 60km south of the Arctic Circle

Road 61 > Road 68 > Road 1 > Road 85 > Road 87 > Road 1 > Road 860 

Akureyri Harbour  

Akureyri Harbour  

Godafoss  

Godafoss  

Myvatn Lake top of the crater

Myvatn Lake top of the crater

Myvatn Lake, well the lava fields bit

Myvatn Lake, well the lava fields bit

Day 4: Finishing the North and heading down the East

Road 1 > Road 93 > Road 92 > Road 96 > Road 1 > Road 99

Hverir lava fields  

Hverir lava fields  

Eastern Fjords

Eastern Fjords

late afternoon sunshine near Hofn  

late afternoon sunshine near Hofn  

Day 5: East Coast Glaciers and Waterfalls

Road 1 > loads of unnumbered turnoffs > Road 1

Yep.  not a glacier, but who can resist Icelandic Ponies... 

Yep.  not a glacier, but who can resist Icelandic Ponies... 

  Jokulsarlon  glacier lagoon

 Jokulsarlon glacier lagoon

end of the Jokulsarlon galcier lagoon

end of the Jokulsarlon galcier lagoon

hiking the Skafatell national park 

hiking the Skafatell national park 

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Fjardragljufur Canyon  

Fjardragljufur Canyon  

Day 6: South Iceland black sand beaches and waterfalls

Road 1 > Road 215 > Road 218 > Road 1 > Road 30 > Road 35 > Road 37

start of the hike to look over Reynifsarja Beach

start of the hike to look over Reynifsarja Beach

basalt columns Reynifsarja beach

basalt columns Reynifsarja beach

only 468 steps to reach the top of Skogafoss

only 468 steps to reach the top of Skogafoss


Day 7 : South West, Golden Circle, Reykjavik and the Reykjanes Penisula

Road 365 > Road 36 > Road 1 > Road 41 > Road 45 > Road 44 > Road 245 > Road 43

the bloody thirsty and macabre Þingvellir historic site & national park

the bloody thirsty and macabre Þingvellir historic site & national park

mark II

mark II

Reykjavik street art  

Reykjavik street art  

basalt church Hvalsneskirja

basalt church Hvalsneskirja

relics and reclaimed city

So Berlin, totally captivated.

It's the simple stuff super connected public transport, a city brought back to life by immigration, repurposed public space, super cool legacy reclaimed spaces.

been about street art    

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can't remember last time I saw #paintedtrains

can't remember last time I saw #paintedtrains

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sunsets and beer 

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unbelievably awesome linked up public transport, with essentially an honour system ticketing approach plus crazy on the spot fines

beer gardens like you imagine, plus crazy arts/music/outdoor space mashups  

and rhubarb juice @https://www.pratergarten.de/

and rhubarb juice @https://www.pratergarten.de/

and coffee @raw-gelande

and coffee @raw-gelande

and trying to get a handle on the Cold War, I now know I wouldn't cope in a 14 day shelter with 3338 people!  lucky they've all been decommissioned  

Machinations of Stasi, completely worth exploring, gorgeous furniture vs appalling techniques and legacy  

subway station Pankstrasse doubling as a fallout shelter

subway station Pankstrasse doubling as a fallout shelter

H1 Stasi main administrative building, now http://www.stasimuseum.de/

H1 Stasi main administrative building, now http://www.stasimuseum.de/

Prisoner transfer van, disguised as delivery truck 

Prisoner transfer van, disguised as delivery truck 

stained glass

stained glass

Minister's Secretariat phone - complete with instructions about who he would speak to and how his breakfast had to be laid out

Minister's Secretariat phone - complete with instructions about who he would speak to and how his breakfast had to be laid out

NYC in delay

NYC - and to be specific Brooklyn was all about art and walking.

Manhattan storms  

Manhattan storms  

So much beauty in the street art, all the way back to the subway commissions to memorials to pieces.  

words not in the least necessary

 

little Italy @solusstreetart

little Italy @solusstreetart

East Harlem #segoyovbal

East Harlem #segoyovbal

Bushwick

Bushwick

bed-stuy #rockoandzimmer

bed-stuy #rockoandzimmer

Bushwick 

Bushwick 

East Williamsburg FC Crew

East Williamsburg FC Crew

7th Avenue subway  

7th Avenue subway  

multiple countries in one (and a lot of 70s/80s)

astonished by how diverse Colombia is: the climate, geography, flora/fauna and cities

it's been like spending time in four different countries

heydey? contemporary cars are plated by city  

heydey? contemporary cars are plated by city  

Bogotá: far, far colder than I care for, kickarse street art, Museo de Oro which is going to pale every future gold museum I go to into insignificance, corner stores doubling as bars

bling to covet - articulated joints & around 40mm2

bling to covet - articulated joints & around 40mm2

Totally in a time warp, made all the more amusing by what appeared to be a 1970's gangsta movie being shot in the main plaza

main plaza Villa de Lleyva

main plaza Villa de Lleyva

Medellín: suddenly warmer, super agreeable spring weather, pockets of green loads of neighborhood parks, one way loop streets and the cleanest metro I have been on worldwide.  Fell in love with the tea salons and the la memoria museum photos and video montages

 

La Memoria : Medellín  

La Memoria : Medellín  

Guatape in the background of what was obviously a drug money summer house

Guatape in the background of what was obviously a drug money summer house

Cartagena: indescribable light, gorgeous colonial buildings, boganvillia, pretending to be a pirate and an inquisition museum with real gallows and guillotine.  Who does that?

 

the cliche sunset Cartagena shot

the cliche sunset Cartagena shot

Pretending to get lost in the jungle, 4 days lost city hiking.  I didn't know there was so much green.

 

tiny portion of all the greens

tiny portion of all the greens

And just off the coast, Caribbean islas with national parks and views to melt for

 

Isla Grande - sunset

Isla Grande - sunset

Isla Grande all the blues

Isla Grande all the blues

Bogotá + rain = finding the street art

wanting to be outside but rain hampering biking meant the day on foot with the streets as my gallery

 

wall of cats : APC www.animalez.org

wall of cats : APC www.animalez.org

@orfanatostudiograffiti

@orfanatostudiograffiti

sublime stencil work : @stinkfishstink

sublime stencil work : @stinkfishstink

mandala : APC www.animalez.org

mandala : APC www.animalez.org

metamorfosis : nepo son corographico apc records

metamorfosis : nepo son corographico apc records

saint hell cat exert : @wardesignco

saint hell cat exert : @wardesignco

Bogotá via Mexico : @Hugo.Huitzi

Bogotá via Mexico : @Hugo.Huitzi

@veraprimavera

@veraprimavera

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1/3 wall : APC www.animalez.org

1/3 wall : APC www.animalez.org

@stinkfishstink APC www.animalez.org

@stinkfishstink APC www.animalez.org

DJLU @JuegoSiempre

DJLU @JuegoSiempre

DJLU @JuegoSiempre

DJLU @JuegoSiempre

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eyes I : @rodez_art

eyes I : @rodez_art

eyes II : @rodez_art

eyes II : @rodez_art

nómada : nomadagraffiti.blogspot.com.co 

nómada : nomadagraffiti.blogspot.com.co 

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marker of the city : La Paz

Always a marker of how much I like a city is the street art.  La Paz has it in spades running the gamut political, murals, tags, pieces, throwups. All over.  Love this city^

no further words necessary

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 El Marsh ojocerrado.com

 El Marsh ojocerrado.com

@jodidodiego

@jodidodiego

@jodidoiego

@jodidoiego

acme2

acme2

#asarte21

#asarte21

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#21F Día de la Mentira [day of the lies] one year since the referendum results ignored

#21F Día de la Mentira [day of the lies] one year since the referendum results ignored

^21F tear gas and all

^21F tear gas and all

other worldly

Unbelievable and super hard to articulate the beauty and diversity of the Bolivian southwest corner.

 

playing with reflections - Salar de Uyuni

playing with reflections - Salar de Uyuni

The obvious one, Salar de Uyuni - otherwise known as the worlds largest salt flat.  Which pretty much equals blinding blue and white, with the bizarre and beautiful fish island.  First up it's an island that you drive to, second filled with cactus that look soft and huggable (don't be fooled) and coral; third only two species live on it - well 3 if you count 2 pet llamas - finches and rabbits.

salt plates formed by temperature changes between day and night 

salt plates formed by temperature changes between day and night 

Isla Incahausi  

Isla Incahausi  

Deserts ringed by volcanoes, with other worldly rock formations.  And Dali's inspiration.

Dali: it all makes sense... 

Dali: it all makes sense... 

mirandaesque (there's a lot out of shot)

mirandaesque (there's a lot out of shot)

Thermal geysers complete with shooting stars, red lagoons filled with flamingoes, and aquamarine lakes.

who contributes the red? 

who contributes the red? 

Train graveyards complete with more of the brilliant Bolivian graffiti.

 

Uyuni carriage art

Uyuni carriage art

Uyuni wreckery and art (favourites)

Uyuni wreckery and art (favourites)

Giants, pharmaceuticals and gymnastics

The south west corner of Peru, is most agreeable.

advertising tag mash up : Arequipa  

advertising tag mash up : Arequipa  

The vast majority are very short, it's taking some adjustment to be at the taller end of the spectrum.

So much that sits well with me.

70's & 80's cars proliferate, most much more beaten up : Tacna

70's & 80's cars proliferate, most much more beaten up : Tacna

Getting up early is normal, running with thetown waking up one of my favourite things - less so the running at altitude thing.

Food, especially the markets hyper organised, fruits seperate to vegetables, aisles labeled and full of deliciousness to explore.  Learnt that iridescent lurid fruit skin usually equates to the most delicious flesh. Beach and street side ceviche.  

Favourite snacks: roasted corn kernels, 100% cacao chocolate, it's almost black and so so bitter.  Totally lost to it.  

And of course the mysteriously named raspadillas - shaved ice layered with juice usually tamarind, strawberry, orange and mango.

Lax attitude to pharmaceuticals.  Bring dodgy looking supplements over the land border.  Sure.  

Unpackaged - but blister packed - over the counter painkillers, well more thru the bars.  Of course.  

Traditional cure for altitude sickness, coco leaves: by the freezer bag.  Everywhere.  Have been asked not to try my luck with those over next border.

not so many street cats : Huacachina  

not so many street cats : Huacachina  

Hiking and landscapes to die for.

day 2 : Canon del Colca  

day 2 : Canon del Colca  

overnight hiking : San Juan de Chuccho

overnight hiking : San Juan de Chuccho

walking out : San Juan de Chuccho

walking out : San Juan de Chuccho

sand dune sunset : Huacachina  

sand dune sunset : Huacachina  

And very much a Peruvian imprint of a posse of little girls playing on my Olympic Rings, joining me on the monkey bars and tumbling.    Whilst their brothers too cool to join in and just looked on. 

sunday arvo beach & ceviche : reserva nacional de paracas  

sunday arvo beach & ceviche : reserva nacional de paracas  

BA: unwieldy SUBE & amazing animal art

This city is made for awesome PT, which it delivers handsomely thru buses, subway and trains.

Getting a smart ticket - no paper ones so no choice - is an expedition in itself, which you have to do on foot!

my tips: 

  •  take your passport, you need it to register for your card which costs 25 pesos without travel credit
  • can be bought only at select locations this map shows you all the spots: https://www.sube.gob.ar/MapasSUBE.aspx?id=127
  • recharging is easy either in machines but know they don't give change or at kiosks

The bus stops are also a little tricky, look up high for your number on the correct road and get in the single file queue and flag that thing down.  You also need to tell the driver the stop you want to exit at so they can load the reader for the SUBE to the correct fare.  Have fun.

A selection of my favourite animal street art, mostly from the middle class barrios.  The city council actively supports creation of murals on the side of their buildings and individual property owners do too.   

Makes for a gorgeous street scape.