London: 2016 Summer Pavilion by Bjarke Ingels in Hyde Park

Every year, the Serpentine Galleries in Hyde Park commission a temporary pavilion by a well-known architect. When I was exploring Kensington in October 2016, I wandered through Bjarke Ingels’ 2016 pavilion. As you can see from the photos, it was spectacular.

Elsewhere in Hyde Park, I snapped this great shot of Aleksi mid-coffee sip.

[35mm taken with my Canon EOS Rebel 2000. For more pictures of my trip to London, click here.]

London: View from the Dome of St. Paul’s Cathedral

Back in late October 2016, I took an incredible two-week trip to London to visit Aleksi. His student housing is in Southwark, within walking distance of all the big sights. You could even see the London Eye from his window. We explored and visited museums together, and I also did some solo-exploring while he was in class. To start of my London pictures, here is the view from the dome of St. Paul’s Cathedral.

[35mm taken with my Canon EOS Rebel 2000. For more pictures of my trip to London, click here.]

Atlanta, Georgia: MLK Birthplace, Hometown, and Tomb in Historic Sweet Auburn

We actually ended up walking all around the neighborhood MLK Jr was born in and grew up in on the anniversary of his “I Have a Dream” speech. That was total coincidence, but it made the experience that much more significant. The house in which he was born was closed off for renovations, but we did get to see a firehouse from the time-period that he would have played around and the church he would have attended growing up, where he watched his father preach. We also visited the King Center, where he and Coretta Scott King are buried.

“The Sweet Auburn Historic District is a historic African-American neighborhood along and surrounding Auburn Avenue, east of downtown Atlanta, Georgia, United States. The name Sweet Auburn was coined by John Wesley Dobbs, referring to the ‘richest Negro street in the world,’ one of the largest concentrations of African-American businesses in the United States. A National Historic Landmark District was designated in 1976, covering 19 acres (7.7 ha) of the neighborhood, significant for its history and development as a segregated area under the state’s Jim Crow laws” (via Wikipedia).

 

Atlanta, Georgia: Art and Americana in Sweet Auburn

In October 2016, a Nashville friend mentioned she was house-sitting for a few weeks for her brother in Atlanta, Georgia. Since I’d never been to Atlanta, I promptly invited myself to stay with her for the weekend, and we spent two days exploring this amazing city. I didn’t really have any idea of what Atlanta looked like, and I didn’t do much trip prep, so I was blown away by how cool and beautiful the city was.

These photos are from the Sweet Auburn neighborhood, mostly from Edgewood Ave SE, which was covered in gorgeous street art and murals. My favorite was the detailed statement piece, “Education is Not a Crime,” pictured in the first photo on this post. Take a sec to open the image in a new tab and zoom in. It’s a powerful visual essay on the way African American history is sanitized into a single paragraph in textbooks. You can learn more about the mural and the artists here and here.

This is a very important part of Atlanta’s political and cultural history: “The Sweet Auburn Historic District is a historic African-American neighborhood along and surrounding Auburn Avenue, east of downtown Atlanta, Georgia, United States. The name Sweet Auburn was coined by John Wesley Dobbs, referring to the ‘richest Negro street in the world,’ one of the largest concentrations of African-American businesses in the United States. A National Historic Landmark District was designated in 1976, covering 19 acres (7.7 ha) of the neighborhood, significant for its history and development as a segregated area under the state’s Jim Crow laws” (via Wikipedia). It’s in this neighborhood that Martin Luther King Jr was born and grew up. It’s also in this neighborhood that Coretta Scott King built The King Center, where both she and her husband are now buried.

[35mm taken with my Canon EOS Rebel 2000.]