Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Pumpkin everything. It's time.

Chicago weather has been a little crazy the past few weeks...big surprise.  It got really cold for a week and then went back to full on summer...but now autumn is finally here.  Two weeks ago I wasn't quite ready to say goodbye to summer, but now that September has come to a close I am ready to fully embrace my favorite season.
I even had the most delicious vegan pumpkin empanada the other day.  Yep, it's time.  Pumpkin everything.  Bring it on.

One thing I really miss about living in Michigan are the cider mills.  My goal for this year is to find a cider mill in Illinois that I can get to using public transportation.  Stay tuned.  It's going to happen.

In other news...Roibeard and I are finally moved out of our old place!  These will be the last photos of me in our Logan Square courtyard.  It has been a very odd transitional phase.  While I love my new apartment, Roibeard and I both agree it doesn't feel like our own yet.  We've both been having a lot of nightmares and sleepless nights.  I plan on spending some time organizing tonight, so hopefully it will feel like home soon!
Oh and I can't stress enough how much I adore my vintage fall coat.  It's floral and velvet and wonderful.  My favorite purchase from last year. <3

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Derry Part 2: Murals

Roibeard and I took a bus tour and also a walk along the Bogside murals in Derry.  The Bogside artists are a trio of muralists who began working on these walls in 1993. We were told that all of the most hateful ones (both from the Bogside and the Unionist side) have been painted over.  
The Free Derry wall above was painted on the side of a house in 1969 by local activist John Casey.  The surrounding buildings were all demolished, but the wall remained as a symbol of nationalist autonomy.
I'll end my text here and let the murals speak for themselves:


Tuesday, September 2, 2014

A trip to Derry

After spending a few days with Roibeard's family in Belfast we packed up our things and starting traveling along the coast.  Even though catching the buses and locating our b&bs could be stressful at times I absolutely loved this part of our trip. 
I grew up with a family that always "did things" on vacation.  We never traveled just to sit by a pool and soak in the sun.  What's the point of leaving your home town if that's all you are going to do?  So even though we slept very little over this part of the trip we managed to get from Belfast up along the coast to Derry and down to Donegal, Bundoran, Galway, Cong, and Doolin.
The first place on our little adventure was Derry.  For those of you who may not know, along with Belfast, Derry was one of the hardest hit cities during the Troubles.  The sculpture in the photo above represents peace between the Catholics and Protestants, but walking around the streets of Derry you can just feel the pain oozing from this walled city.
The wall was built by the British to keep the Catholics out of the city.  Walking it is very eerie and when passing the cannons on top it was just so difficult to think about the amount of hatred that once took hold over the people of the town.
All over the city you'll see the unionist colors and markings that tell any outsiders very clearly what type of neighborhood they are entering.  
As you can see from above the Irish also mark their territories.  I'll try not to get too into the politics on here, but when visiting a town like Derry it's something you can't just completely ignore.  These images are powerful and these streets are hard to walk.
Roibeard grew up during the tail end of the troubles and experienced a lot of the violence first hand, so much of this hit very close to home.  I am saddened when any group of people are denied their freedom, their basic rights, and their own land. 

(I'll cover the murals in my next post!)