Saturday, 23 August 2008

Traffic Lights

It's funny how everyone has myths and fetishes. For many it is woman's shoes, others prefer Broadway musicals and some loose their minds for music boxes or cheesy souvenirs in transparent balls where thousand glittering little stars simulate snow...

In my case, I'm crazy about taking pictures of traffic lights.


What is wrong with me?


Saturday, 16 August 2008

Gotham impressions

It is said that as in New York it is 3 in the afternoon in Europe it is 9 PM of ten years before.

In spite of its relatively short history as a city (the Dutch founded New Amsterdam on Manhattan's southernmost tip in 1624), you get the feeling you find yourself right in the middle of a place where big things happened and continue to happen. As if the History, to compensate for a late start, raced by at vertiginous speeds.

Cab 01

That's maybe the reason why New Yorkers live fast: people talk fast, people eat fast, cabs drive fast, pedestrians walk fast, people laugh fast and, I guess, they dream fast. Or maybe it is the other way around, and it is precisely them who accelerate the Big Clock's pace with their uncorrectable crossing in red and their never ending horn symphonies.

Bus Cab 02

Cab 03

New York City has a soul, even though the multiple and surprisingly contradictory identities she possesses, turning one into the other as you walk few steps, even as you cross to the other side of the street. This is nothing new, though. Visitors to the seventeenth century Dutch settlement marveled that eighteen separate languages were spoken on its streets at a time when its total population was below one thousand. But New York City has a young and strong soul. You just need to stand in the middle of the street, in the middle of the roar, to feel its powerful beat below your feet.

Blumenthal Chrysler
SoHo LowerEastSide

New York City conveys a strange feeling of familiarity in all her faces, in all her images. No matter where you look at, a known icon will impress your retina, the frame of that one movie, a picture that maybe never existed, but which was long ago digested by the collective subconscious after decades of audiovisual exports.

ESB Icon 01
Icon 03 Icon 02

As you walk out the door, you face the most difficult decision of the day: should we turn to the left (to the south, downtown) or to the right (to the north, uptown)? But in fact it's the same, because this city is great in all directions.

Metropolis 02

It is said that comic editors gave instructions to new illustrators and writers to help them with the locations for their stories. Metropolis, Superman's city, is Manhattan's Midtown on a sunny day at noon. Gotham, Batman's city, is Downtown Manhattan on a rainy night. And Harlem is Harlem, of course. We could walk around Metropolis to exhaustion. But unfortunately we did not get the chance to see Gotham. The only time it rained we were in Harlem.

Sunday, 3 August 2008

The City (with a capital C)

We've just come back from the City with a capital C, the city that all the other cities wish they were.

In his Historias de Nueva York (New York Stories), Enric González tells that, in order to survive in The Big Apple, you need to have good luck.

As we arrived to the apartment we had this last week, the owner, Chris (who, incidentally, could perfectly appear in a Paul Auster novel) wished us Good luck!

And it was in that same moment that I knew, although I did not dare saying it loud, that everything would be perfect, and that we were going to miss that city as soon as we take the train to the airport. And so it has been.

nyc - seagull

I have not been able to sleep for 28 hours now. Clearly, sleeping in planes is not my thing. I hope tomorrow I am some more of a person and tell something more. Until then, good luck!

Saturday, 2 August 2008