Towards a Dark Night ~ Brooklyn, NY

If you only walk on sunny days you’ll never reach your destination ~ Paulo Coelho

Ominous thunderclouds, the roar of thunder, and the crackle of lighting. New York’s heat wave finally broken.

On these summer days, I can’t imagine not being near the cool breeze of the river. Today though, lunch was interrupted.

~Willing the ducks back~

~ Ducks aren’t willing ~

~Back to their East River home ~

~ A simple lunch, before the rain ~

~ East River Ferry headed from Williamsburg to Midtown Manhattan~

~ Watching the storm brew; listening to the thunder rumbles of an upset sky ~

~ Final moments at the shoreline ~~ As the raindrops started to fall and lightning zigzagged over Gotham, the Park was pronounced ‘closed’ for safety reasons ~

~ Wind gusts and a torrential downpour ~

~ Life goes on despite the rain ~

~ On the rooftop ~

~ Dark Night ~

Loving Summer ~ Brooklyn, NYC

A life without love is like a year without summer ~ Swedish proverb

Wading through the think humidity that weighs down on Williamsburg, there’s sweet relief in looking up. Up at the leaves that provide shade, listening to their rustle as a breeze runs through them; up at the grey cotton ball clouds, set in formation against the iridescent colours of a NYC dusk.

The days of New York summer are hot, humid, and sensuous; they tease with thunderclouds while wrapping you up in a steamy embrace.

(above) Empire State Building seen from East River

(below) a coconut Italian ice to make the humidity more palatable

(below) Williamsburg Bridge joins Brooklyn to Manhattan. 1 World Trade Centre to the right

A Sunday in West-Ho-Burg ~ NYC

Summer in New York.

It’s when life takes on a slower pace. Manhattan wakes up later. On Sundays, the streets are uncomplicated and easy to navigate given the lack of foot and car traffic. This is in large part due to the island’s residents escaping the heat of the concrete in favour of shorelines in far-flung Jersey Shore, Rockaway Beach, or The Hamptons.

Summer – a perfect time to appreciate the city. Starting with breakfast in the West Village, meandering in the quieter and more industrial parts of Soho, then cooling down in my home ‘hood of Williamsburg. This is what Sundays are all about.

Sunday, summery Sunday. My pictorial of New York, today. Enjoy!

Caffe Reggio on MacDougal Street. An institution since 1927 – apparently the first cafe in the US to serve a cappuccino.

Sidewalk breakfast dining…

Tableside cab spotting, pop art style

Traditional is always good when it comes to breakfast

Dave Chappelle, Gary Shandling, Jerry Seinfeld, Chris Rock, Ray Romano, Robin Williams… they’ve all got this place in common.

Not a bead of sweat in sight.

Waiting for the late rising brunchers.

Sunday news, sidewalk style. By the way, Alec Baldwin got married.

The streets of Soho decorated with pasteups and fire escapes.

One World Trade Centre – its construction is visible from Williamsburg, Brooklyn to Central Park, Manhattan. Seen here from Soho, at 1,776 feet, it will be America’s tallest building.

Graffiti isn’t exclusive to Manhattan’s walls.

A true delight in summer: blend a few cups of watermelon, add a squeeze of lime… maybe a splash of vodka. This is the season’s easiest cocktail to make – effortless, and one of the most delicious!

Historical sticker street art.

My husband took this photo. He thinks it’s a cool angled shot – I feel it is a little misaligned. What do you think?

Tourist shops of New York can be so rude sometimes, but I love them anyway. Only NYC could get away with such shenanigans.

Old-school.

The coffee bean aroma of the Porto Rico Importing Company can be smelt stores away.

I wish I lived on Minetta Lane. It is perhaps NYC’s quietest street – but so central!

What? Exactly.

Teary street art in Williamsburg, Brooklyn

July 1: Happy Canada Day….

The (above) swimwear and briefs brought to you courtesy of:

Attacked by a friendly pet.

See, very friendly, pawed out, and perhaps a little thirsty.

The Empire State Building, freeze framed by Strawberry, Ginger, and Rhubarb pops.

Couldn’t have said it better myself. This is what life is all about.

A Crafty Weekend ~ Brooklyn, NYC

In Brooklyn for the 8th year, Renegade Craft Fair (RCF) set up tent by the foodie stalls of Smorgasburg and the trash ‘n treasure finds of Brooklyn Flea this weekend.

Instead of scrolling through beautiful artisan wares on one of my forever favourite websites, etsy.com, I strolled by dozens of stallfronts selling innovative handmade products… live.

Usually held at McCarren Park, this was the first time the RCF was held by the East River. With a front row water facing view of the Manhattan skyline, this *new* location is genius. Over both sun drenched days, the event attracted many summer lovin’ DIY inspired New Yorkers. Such is the appeal of Williamsburg; a dose of collaborative craftiness injects the ‘hood with excellent added-value.

An event I highly recommend, even if it’s simply for inspiration and ‘stallfront shopping,’ RCF weaves its way around the US and UK throughout the summer, and into fall.

The Renegade Craft Fair differs from traditional arts and craft fairs by focusing on DIY and indie-craft culture. Each individual fair is juried by our Chicago-based staff from hundreds of applications to purposefully feature a curated, eclectic array of young and emergent designers producing original and handmade goods in a wide variety of media.

 We feature artists creating innovative work using traditional craft methods, but not based on preexisting patterns or products.*

Take note: At the end of this post are some dates for residents, or for fortunate travel hoppers, of LAX, SFO, ORD, and LON – the fair is coming to a location near you.

Until then, enjoy these images in, and around, the fair.

Across at Smorgasburg ~ ice shaving at People’s Pops. Handmade equals hard work.

Meanwhile, along the East River waterfront…

Los Angeles and San Francisco, US

LA’s 4th Annual event will take place Saturday + Sunday, July 28 + 29 at Los Angeles State Historic Park.

SF’s 5th Annual event will take place Saturday and Sunday, July 21 + 22 at Fort Mason Center Festival Pavilion, from where you can see the Golden Gate Bridge and Alcatraz.

Chicago, US

Chicago’s 10th Annual RCF will take place Saturday + Sunday, September 8+9, 2012. Vendors will stretch down Division St. between Damen + Paulina, in the Wicker Park neighborhood.

London, UK

The 2nd Annual Renegade Craft Fair London will be held Saturday + Sunday, September 15 + 16 at The Old Truman Brewery in Shoreditch, London’s East End.

For more info, see their site: renegadecraft.com*

The Kite ~ By the East River in Brooklyn, NY

Throw your dreams into space like a kite, and you do not know what it will bring back, a new life, a new friend, a new love, a new country. ~ Anaïs Nin

Twisting, turning, twirling ~ eyes blinded by the sun from looking up to follow its course… I can’t remember the last time I flew a kite. Can you?

Presently being in Williamsburg, Brooklyn

One belongs to New York instantly; one belongs to it as much in five minutes as in five years. ~ Thomas Wolfe

I usually associate habits with something I need to break.

Thankfully, documenting my everyday is one less habit to worry about… because I have no intention of breaking it. (Though I do need to work on eating less pastry treats when I stop for a cup of coffee.)

I was thinking about my habit as I walked through Williamsburg today; my little Sony C in hand. Why is it that I find the ordinary so intriguing; that I have to photograph nearly every detail that grabs my attention? I came to the conclusion that a large part of it has to do with loving New York and the neighbourhood in which I live – this city is always alive and evolving.

Another part of it is because I know I won’t live here forever.

Creating a chronological account of days is like looking over a series of the mind’s flashbacks: a smiling chef grilling seafood at the local street fair; a graffitied door covered with posters; seeing a sunburst through a tree’s branches; the panoramic views of Manhattan from across the East River; the bright green leaves of a fig tree against a home of red brick. I don’t want to forget any of it.

As I sit here, having come home from an afternoon out in the sun, a thunderstorm rumbles. The rain is pouring down. The weather seems to change as frequently as the neighbourhood’s street art.

I hope you enjoy Sunday in Williamsburg!

~Deck chairs: East-River side. Looking out over the Williamsburg Bridge and the One World Trade Center Tower, to the right.

Here resides a community of cyclists, surfers, artistic workers…

… and skaters.

A series of paste ups cover erratic graffiti.

A typical street scene: garage storefronts alongside new condos, across the road from row houses.

A Fig Tree Grows in Brooklyn.

Musicians in the ‘hood.

Band, Cleveland Jones, fills Grand Street and its surrounds with the sounds of electric guitar and Lenny Kravitz inspired tunes. #love

Two victims, getting the movie star treatment by Gotham Fx, at the Grand Street Alliance ‘Grand Slam BBQ Battle’ Music and Food festival.

Apparently, the creation of a ‘look’ is all about cotton wool balls and gauze… and Hershey’s Syrup?

BBQ calamari.

A chilled out crowd. Happy days.

Homemade fresh mint lemonade – gone too soon.

Hangover cure anyone?

Longboards at Bustin Brooklyn.

A neighbourhood of body ink…

… of steel fences, industry, and blooms.

There’s always something to celebrate – even if it’s just ‘being.’

And I’ll continue to be present; to record those everday moments.

(Nearly) Summer Lovin’ – New York City

Basking under the sun’s rays, lounging on the greenest of grass, sneaking in a little sweet indulgence, browsing through treasures at the local flea,  listening to the sounds of salsa…

If all the days of Spring and Summer could be like those that graced New York this weekend, I don’t think I’d ever want to leave the city. Here’s a taste.

Admiring nature’s elegant fringe.

Reclining in the great outdoors. Empire State Building, to the right.

Greeting the new espresso bar Sweetleaf to the ‘hood who lucked it with a perfect opening weekend. An americano, made with precision, accompanied by a cherry and chocolate scone – so worth it.

Walking through the Graham Avenue Fiesta in East Williamsburg.

Queueing up for sugary-sweet snow cones.

Browsing the stalls for garden inspiration.

Grooving to the tunes; dancing in the streets.

Now’s the time for hat shopping.

Catching some shade after a long sun soak.

Picture-worthy windows under the afternoon’s rays.

Visiting the delightful Sunday Brooklyn Flea Market.

Thinking ahead – gifts for Father’s Day (on June 16 in US).

Spotting adorable hand painted hanging art.

Rifling through trinkets and treasures.

Smiling over stuffed drawers of old photographs and postcards.

Wondering what stories these suitcases could tell.

Thinking up uses for these tiny bottles. Beads? Seeds? Potions?

Remembering the rotary telephone – now an antique showpiece next to the smartphone.

Hanging T’s against uptown views…

Williamsburg Bridge and New York’s tallest, One World Trade Centre, in Manhattan’s downtown.

Appreciating the best of both worlds.

Rotating street art points in the direction of home.