My friend Mel and I just touched down from an epic trip down in South America. Thanks to a very meticulously planned custom itinerary in Brazil by Audley Travel, a UK-based travel company, we were able to get together for another one of the infamous Mel-and-Dara adventures in a country neither of us had experienced before. More pictures and narratives to come about the three places in Brazil we visited: Iguassu Falls, Rio de Janeiro, and Pipa Beach.
Photo above: my super-model friend at Copacabana Beach, taken on 25 Aug. 2014.
The past weekend’s family road trip down to Myrtle Beach, SC was just what the doctor ordered in terms of a mental health break. We stayed in an oceanfront room at Captain’s Quarters after a long 13-hour trip driving from Boston all the way to South Carolina…I can’t even remember the last time we did that as a family, but as always, adventure ensued. We were so exhausted from the trip down that the only desirable activities from day-to-day were to eat and sleep—from bed to sand—and talk and talk and talk until we all feel as though we haven’t all been a bit disjointed before between college, work, and travels.
This past weekend was one of those weekends that makes you forget that winter ever happened. Just when you think the world is going to end with an intercontinental arctic freeze, Mother Nature throws a much-anticipated reward: beautiful picnics in the park, a mid-work-day lunch break on the Charlestown dock, and an early dinner tapas snack al fresco at Tapeo.
Yesterday, I got out of work early enough to see the last bits of daylight and the beautiful tailend of another winter storm from the hotel. Woke up this morning to sunshine and 48 degrees (heat wave!)….only to hear of more snow?? (?!?!???)
This winter has run me ragged. One more month and all I can think about is sunshine and shorter workdays. Any cures out there for the seasonal blues?
After a long and (at times) upsetting search, I’m so very pleased to announce that Niti and I will officially be residents of the North End come February. The apartment search has been only occasionally documented on the blog, mostly out of fear of jinxing a prospective dwelling, but in the next few weeks, I hope to share some more decorating plans and favorite resources as we now we on to the (arguably) best part of getting a new apartment (Hellooooo, Pinterest!).
Photo above taken this past weekend from the view of the North End from 60 State Street.
My recent New York City trip really hit the spot in terms of a perfect post-exams getaway. All in all, I ate perhaps indulgently, drank probably a little too much, and walked and walked and walked until my feet were blistered and swollen (they still are, a little). Thanks to some great company (and a wonderful host, I should add!), I managed to check off most of the items on my to-do list and even then, spontaneity brought several unexpected but much welcomed diversions, including reunions with friends—old and new.
To see all my NYC snaps, check out the Pinterest board I dedicated to it!
Dairly Week: a weekly roundup of my current favorites
This has been another fairly quiet week of studying. But! This weekend begins a very exciting couple of days and weeks ahead, including attending some Boston Fashion Week events this weekend, my last test early next week, and an upcoming trip to New York City. Enjoy your weekend, friends!
1. An autumn sunset reflected in beautiful cloud layers, as seen from the backyard.
2. I’m so excited to be attending the launch party for 19th Amendment with my good friend Christina this Saturday. 19th Amendment is a new fashion start-up based in Boston, and I can’t wait to learn and see more of what they do at Saturday’s party and fashion show. Follow along on my Instagram or Twitter — I’ll be live-tweeting/updating!
3. After lusting after this Rails Hunter Shirt for weeks, I finally bit the bullet and purchased the white/navy for myself. It was more than I normally intend to spend on a plaid shirt, but I love the fit, color, weight, and the perfect softness of this California staple. It’ll definitely make itself home in my closet for years to come. [Photo c/o Revolve Clothing]
4. I love this feature on Erika Bearman’s Southampton home in Elle Decor. Erika Bearman, perhaps better known as OscarPRGirl, has an amazing style I adore, and her home is no exception from her impeccable taste. I’m picking up so many tips for my dream
home apartment! [Photo c/o William Waldron for Elle Decor]
Since construction for a new home began earlier in the year just a couple doors down, this patch of land, once home to a tall forest of beech-birch maples, became a sort of eye sore to beautiful landscape of the neighborhood, and everyone simply glanced over it…until the other day when two solitary bright pink flowers (annuals?) danced into the corner of my eye while on my way to some errands. A picture is worth a thousand words, isn’t it? And while my initial reactions to this sight were sad and depressing, I began to think (after tossing the image around and around) that maybe—just maybe—there was some secret, disguised message of hope in here.
Recently, a friend of mine who works at Bain Capital in the John Hancock Tower downtown invited me to lunch at his company’s private cafeteria. I completely underestimated 1. the quality of the “gourmet lunch” he promised and 2. the breathtaking 41st floor view from the reception area. “Breathtaking” as in I choked and almost choked up. “Underestimated” as in it was the only thing I noticed when I stepped off the elevator. Not the sleek marble, the minimalist decor, and not the expensive works of art. Non. Just the floor-to-ceiling windows overlooking the beautiful, beautiful city of Boston.
Let’s talk summertime. Some things we like: ice-cream trucks, no school, lazy work days, walking out without needing a sweater, sundresses, Sam Edelman’s Gigi sandal, flowers, Cape Cod, that supple green foliage everywhere you go!, beaches, tan-lines, and the salty air. Things we love: thunderstorms. Those that seem so ominous and foreboding at the time but somehow always end by 8 pm, allowing just enough time for a breathtaking après-storm sunset, yielding results as pictured above. When I think wistfully back at summer in the dead of a biting New England winter, that is what usually comes to mind.
Photos: Shrewsbury, taken from the evening of June 2, 2013
Because I wasn’t going to believe I actually graduated Boston College until I had the piece of paper in my hand and even then, I believe it was our class speaker who said it best: “it was like a beautiful dream you didn’t want to wake up from.” Thank you to my family and friends for being a part of this wonderful experience. xx Dara
Boston College, my playground for the past four years, in all its New England autumn glory. Am I excited to graduate? Yes. Yes I am. College is supposed to be the best four years of your life—isn’t that what everyone says? Four years down and well, I hope it’s not. But I’d be lying if I said I didn’t shed a tear or two when I think back to both good and bad times I’ve had here (mostly good). Without you, BC, I wouldn’t be the person I am today. And the person I am today? I’m pretty pleased.
The first signs of spring blossoming at The High Line.
Photo taken this past weekend in New York City.
I ain’t no Hemingway, and I ain’t no Einstein either. But I do still feel the intellectual wavelengths that pulse through little cool cafes such as The Smile, originally recommended by a blog I follow. Cities like Manhattan amaze me for this reason—well, for many reasons but this in particular: there will never be a shortage of inspiration.
Five Moments in Time:
- Shopping for trinkets with Dad at Chenghuang Garden, which usually involves me ogling at something, and Dad helping me barter for it.
- A serendipitous afternoon along Nanjing Road, during which I stumbled upon Eileen Chang’s L’s Book Cafe and was fortunate to have met the woman herself.
- A beautiful sunset near Tianmen Mountain on our last day of the Hunan tour.
- The cutest souvenir ever: crème brûlée from Lillian Bakery at Shanghai’s First Foodhall (720 E. Nanjing Road) came in an adorable mini mug.
- The beautiful exterior decor of a little shop in Fenghuang, Hunan.