My roots lie in Antwerp, but many of my friends live around Brussels… so rain or shine (or snow), there is a lot of driving back and forth. Honestly, there is nothing better than snow on the ground and a rental in your hands. I just thank them lucky stars that my rental car had German plates, as winter tires are mandatory in Germany but not in Belgium.
The snow was amazing, all the years I spent in the Benelux and I’ve never seen such a blanket across the entire country (the south got up to 60cm). I was there for 10 days, and it snowed every other day… truly amazing. First white Christmas since the 60′s, and the most snow since WWII!
One morning I also went for a little hike through the Sonian Forest (Zoniënwoud / Forêt de Soignes) located just south of Brussels, which was simply amazing.
Thought I’d compile my most “interesting” (favorite, influential, etc.) shots from the past year.
Notable events: Welcoming 2009 in Belgium/Holland; Best Man at the TOMMEL wedding in Miami; Dystopia ¦ Utopia solo photo exhibition; Goodbye NY / Hello SH; 60th Anniversary of the People’s Republic of China; Taoist Monastery outside Chongqing; Shanghai/Shanghai/Shanghai; and of course all the people that made it happen.
For Tanley’s day-off we visited Jing’an Temple by day and then took the Line 2 subway (sorry for the bad pic, but someone was really asking what they looked like) over to Pudong and hit up Century Park by night…
October fourteenth… nothing special really, just fixed up a couple random images I overlooked the past couple weeks, enjoy!
The police car is the mighty Volkswagen Santana, which since its introduction in 1983 has sold more than 3.3million in China alone and had almost 50% market-share back in the 1990′s.
Tianzifang is definitely worth the visit. Not to mention only 15min walking from where I live (who knew?!). Quaint, and in a city like Shanghai that is extremely difficult to come by. Located between Taikang Lu and Jianguo Lu, it is filled with little boutiques, galleries, and restaurants and is situated in the traditional tiny backstreets that are massively giving way to apartment complexes elsewhere in this urban jungle. The locals still live in these streets, so it is somewhat strange to see the little old lady washing clothes in a sink next to modern art galleries (last picture).
Tianzifang still has a real feel, whereas Xin Tian Di (a more well-known and remodeled version of the backstreets) gave way to über expensive restaurants and bars. Xin Tian Di still holds a notch in my record books for most expensive beer I have ever bought ($20.29 for 1.0 liter of Paulaner Lager at the Paulaner Bräuhaus), beating out a 1.0 liter of Würzburger Pilsener for $12 from Zum Schneider in NYC and a $14.50 bottle of Stella Artois from the New York Palace Hotel, plus tip.
I ended up having a Long Island Ice Tea for 35RMB (same price of a Heineken) at an Indian restaurant called Lotus Land… my new-found friend is planning on opening an Indian fusion bar & grill in the very near future, so we were testing out the competition.
This blog will begin shortly… images, stories, and general nonsense about a lonely Belgian-American photographer-extraordinaire and his relocation from Brooklyn to Shanghai.