This summer, I made a promise to my boyfriend: We’d go biking together. The thing is that I hadn’t been on a bike in at least 10 years. I was secretly terrified and kept putting it off until it felt silly to do so. There was no way I would dare to ride on the city streets, even on the well designed bike paths. We found the perfect spot for me to feel comfortable as I straddled the rental bike, looking like a little kid learning to ride for the first time: the Musée plein-air de Lachine (Lachine outdoor museum).
I’m slowly working through my travel bucket list. Every few years I do a list of 10 countries I must visit before I die. When I get to cross one off the list, I add a new one in its’ place. I’m such a travel freak that whenever I’m not traveling, I feel the need to do it virtually. One of the ways I do this is to listen to music from all over the world. Over the next few months, I’ll be posting playlists I have created for each country that is on my current top 10.
Here is my list, in no particular order:
Argentina, Brazil, South Africa, Sweden, Turkey, Cuba, New Zealand, Portugal, United Kingdom, Senegal
First featured country: Sweden
I created a list of 10 songs by Swedish acts that are interesting to discover. You’ll notice that all of the songs are in English, I didn’t do that on purpose. Many of Sweden’s artists choose to sing mostly in English, perhaps so they can reach a wider audience. The music produced in Sweden is undoubtedly varied, but many artists hailing from the Northern European country are known for their experimental sounds and daring aesthetics.
Artists included in this playlist (in the order that they play): Ane Brun, Lykke Li, Fever Ray, Robyn, Shout out louds, First Aid Kit, Loney Dear, Anna Von Hausswolff, Jose Gonzalez, El Perro del Mar and Peter Von Poehl.
For inspiration, here are some gorgeous photos that were submitted by users on Your Shot by National Geographic:
It’s been a while since I’ve linked to the articles I’ve written for Untapped Cities. Since June I’ve been writing two articles/month about fun, unique things to discover in Montreal.
Here’s what I’ve been writing about:
The environmentally friendly Ruelles vertes (green alleyways) being created behind the tightly packed facades of buildings in residential neighborhoods:
A fun pedicab tour of Hochelaga-Maisonneuve, an area with a rich past that earned a bad reputation in the last few decades but is currently experiencing a creative transformation:
Mural festival invited twenty street artists to come and give part of Saint-Laurent boulevard a colorful makeover:
After a successful test season last year, four public pianos have been installed for the summer in the district of the Plateau-Mont-Royal:
Miyuki Tanobe is a Japanese painter that fell in love with Montreal in the 1970s and became known here as a painter of street life. On a nondescript street corner in Verdun, a mural has been painted in her honor:
Every Sunday (weather permitting) a group of fighters meet to hold friendly foam sword combats: