The One About Selfies

I’m dating a wonderful man who is indeed addicted to selfies. He finds it entertaining since he’s kind of documenting his beard growth and comparing himself to his Pre-beard Era – it is something similar to Stone Age, but of greater significance for the human kind.

On the other hand, I used to find them completely pointless. I don’t even like having my photo taken, why would I take photos of myself on my own?

Until I realised that this is the reason why selfies are so popular. When someone else takes a photo of you, you risk a) looking ridiculous, b) looking ridiculous and fat or c) looking ridiculous and fat and having this picture posted on facebook. But when you take a selfie, you can change your pose restlessly until you find a version of duckface that doesn’t look very duckface-like but still give you a sultry look, until you twist your face into a grimace that looks funny but in a cool way, etc. Being able to control the photographic result – or better, manipulate it into what you want it to look like – is the real reason behind the rise of the selfie.

So, I started taking selfies. I’m serious. I’m not kidding, not even a little. There is even a folder on my laptop’s desktop named “Proof on Why Snapshot (the programme I used for taking photos with my web camera until the aforementioned man decided it wasn’t good enough and therefore deleted it, leaving me with no software for taking photos at all – imagine my despair after that!) Is So Stupid”. It’s brilliant, I know it, just imagine how the rest of my folders are named and organized…

Here comes the selfie with no makeup on. I thought they were called “belfies:, until I urbandictionaried the term and found out that the word “belfie” is a composite of the words “butt” and “selfie”, which I guess implies me taking a photo of my butt. This. Is. Never. Going. To. Happen.

The smiling selfie. Also known as the “Colgate Selfie” or the “She’s Not Aware That Her Semester Exams Start in 2 Weeks Selfie”.
The selfie I took using props to hide the lack of makeup, the signs of sleep deprivation and the fact that it was actually a bad hair day. Hence the added filter. Remember what I meant about manipulating the end result?
The “Blowing a Kiss to No One in Particular Selfie”. Well, I sent it as goodnight to my boyfriend, but still.
A selfie taken to indicate the level of boredom studying can induce. Like no university student was not already aware of that.
The selfie I had while I had the “adopt me” face on. If I had Instagram I probably post it to inform you about how I’m mourning about having my cherishes mane trimmed or something equally earth-shattering. Thankfully enough, I don’t own a smartphone, so no hashtags for this lady.

When I started taking selfies, I was thinking into turning it into an one-month experiment, but I am not consistent or narcissistic enough for that. However, there are some stuff I’d like to share about this process (there are more selfies saved in my computer, but I didn’t want it to become a too photo-heavy post):

  1. It can be extremely fun. Especially if you do it with friends, family members or bf/gf. Or if you find yourself bored to death during a university lecture. 
  2. It is not always as pointless as I used to think. When I take a selfie in order to send it to someone, e.g. my mom, it could easily perceived as a sign that I’m happy and healthy/ actually studying/ excited to be in Barcelona/ etc.
  3. It works as a kind of diary; a photographic documentation. Remember what I said at the beginning of my post about a Pre-beard Era?
  4. It is actually good practice for non-selfie photographic material. You can discover your good – and most importantly your bad – angle, your best pose or the pose that looks really fake and silly, so you will be able to alternate between them depending on the theme of the photo.
What’s your view on selfies? Yay or nay? 

Un beso enorme,

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The Strasbourg Diaries


Haven’t written in a month. Probably thought I was dead, huh?

Not at all.

Just a little busy (overstressed to having panic attacks) bee.

But now everything’s fine again. Still a busy bee, but not a chance of a heart attack in the near future.

There are good and bad news: My mom came to visit me and together we run off to (drum roll, please) Strasbourg. On the other hand, it only lasted two days; then she had to leave and I had a pile of homework sitting on my desk to catch upon with.
As well as many photos and much more food nostalgia. She tricked me into trying foie gras without me knowing what it actually is. Somewhere between “omnomnom” and “hmmm” – I can get very verbal when I’m enjoying my food – I decided to ask what it was. “Duck liver.”

I still find pretty sick the idea of turning duck livers into something edible, like was that really necessary? Was there some absurd lack of food and they decided to produce foie gras? Guess I’ll never know, but now I’ve gone duck, I’m never going back.

What was I saying?

Oh, photos.

The beautiful cathedral of Strasbourg. 

That’s my wonderful mom. Grabbing coffee while sightseeing wasn’t such a good idea, since one needs two hands to use properly a DSLR. I’m a little tyrant, so I asked her to “hold my cup for a sec” for about 2.567 times.

The view from the top of the cathedral. 66 meter tall and 330 steps (yes, you read right) later, we were able to admire Strasbourg from above. #no_regrets


In case you were wondering, no, I didn’t have all four of my wisdom teeth extracted before leaving for Strasbourg. 😛

Oh, you’re going to love this. According to Wikipedia – as well as the audio guide of the boot tour, which were handed down to us  by charming, tanned Alsatian men – that’s how this picturesque part of the city took his name:

The name Petite-France (“Little France”) was not given for patriotic or architectural reasons. It comes from the “hospice of the syphilitic” (Hospice des Vérolés, in French), which was built in the late fifteenth century on this island, to cure persons with syphilis, then called the “French disease” in German,[1] Franzosenkrankheit.

(My sincerest apologies to all my French readers and friends. We all know that syphilis is the “Grey’s Anatomy Season 1 disease”, right?)

Yep, it’s exactly what it looks like: vintage Yves Saint Laurent (someday I’ll be able to pronounce it without making a fool of myself).

The view from the boat tour.

Hello, future apartment!

Let me see, which building did the guide tell us this is?
While everybody was rising from their seats, trying to take proper photos of it (too lazy too bother standing up, I was lecturing my mom about how interesting the choice of words in the translation of the oversized poster. You see they used the word “power” in English, while in German they chose “Stimme” (: voice, as well as vote) instead. Hmm…

Getting closer to the bridge where our boat trip started. The building in the photo is Palais Rohan, if I’m not terribly mistaken.

Zoom on the bridge… Wait, what do we have here? A couple that is about to get married!
Their wedding photos are going to be so Instagram/Facebook/Pinterest worthy!
Needless to say, all the German tourists in the boat started shouting “Kiss, kiss, kiss!”

At Parc de l’ Orangerie.

No comments.

Festival Euroceltes in Strasbourg!
 Because what could be sexier than bearded men in midi tartan skirts playing bagpipes?

See what I mean?

Our last dinner in Strasbourg. Of all the ways my parents can spoil me – even though they’re totally not that kind of people – using food and wine is absolutely the best one. I still wouldn’t say no to a new pair of shoes, though. 

To be honest, I’m not a huge meat fan, but this trip in Alsace succeeded in converting me into a full-blown carnivore. Even though all meat was a little more… pink than I’m used to, it was insanely tender and well cooked. Check the photos below to see what I mean.

Sorry for the lack of focus in this photo, I just was at a loss for words when I saw this little mountain of Choucroute (directly translated: sour cabbage) and meat in my mom’s plate. She could use a helping hand to manage all this food and I was happy to oblige.

Something that I love when I’m in restaurants with my mom is that we both love to challenge our palates by trying out new dishes.

Omnomnom… Do you know that feeling when you smell something magical in a restaurant and it turns out to be your order? That’s how it felt.

And a last one photo, taken a few minutes before our departure…

Love how they decided to preserve the old building.

That’s all for today! 

Hope you enjoyed my new post!



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The Barcelona Diaries – The Ladies of La Boqueria

Oh, I fell in love with La Boqueria, one of the biggest food markets in Barcelona. Since I’m a big foodie and food porn enthusiast, I guess it was meant to be love at first sight. However, there is something different about the Boqueria market; it was not only about the food this time, it was also about the people working, shopping and eating there, the atmosphere, the noises and the aromas. 

To be honest,  at first it felt like La Boqueria didn’t want to be featured in my blog; I was truly unlucky. The first time I went there the battery of my camera died ten minutes before getting there; the second time I went there it was actually closed to local holiday and the third time… Well, the third time I woke up at seven in the morning in order to be there around 8 and be able to catch the train to Girona (that’s another story I’ll tell you about soon) that was leaving at about nine. Talk about true love and devotion.

My favorite part of the food market – as the title might suggest, as well – was the one with the fish and sea food stalls. In contrast to my homeland, where one only sees men working in such stalls, in Barcelona nearly all stalls were taken over by women whose names appear in bright signs above their stalls. I couldn’t stop looking at them; so strong and ladylike at the same time – some of them had their hair, nails and makeup done, but would be cutting and cleaning fish with the same effortlessness and poise Sofia’s Coppola Marie Antoinette was picking up cupcakes and macaroons.

Something that also drew my attention was the fact that, unlike in food markets in Greece, nobody was shouting to advertise their goods. All the noise came from unloading, arranging and chopping the goods as well as from the interactions between tradesmen and customers.


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The Barcelona Diaries

Missed me? I was in Barcelona for about a week; a long time dream that became reality. Barcelona surpassed all my expectations with its beautiful architecture, touristic attractions, food, weather and language; if it weren’t for the language I would totally love to spend my Erasmus semester/ my masters degree/ a year – or maybe ten – of my life there.

The building on the background is MNAC  – Museu Nacional d’ Art de Catalunya.

Inside the dining room of Casa Batllo.

At the veranda of Casa Batllo. 
“Look up!”

Signor Gaudi took care of everything; leaving nothing to chance.

Palau de la Musica Catalana. I strongly advise you to either have the guided tour or go watch a show with Spanish guitars, flamengo, classical movie, etc. (they host all kinds of music performances but opera). I was lucky enough to do both, so I got to see that artfully designed and built building both in the morning and at the night. 

Inside the concert hall of the Palau de la Musica Catalana. If you look at the ceiling from below it looks like the sun…

… but if you look it from a little higher, lets say the second floor, it resembles a water drop. According to our very polite guide, the architect of the Palau,  Lluís Domènech i Montaner, wanted to combine these two natural elements, in addition to another decorative/architectural elements refering to nature.

At the beach late in the afternoon. Ah, the Mediterranean sea…

Museums? Yes, but first let us take a selfie.

The view from Montjuic castle.
-Are you making photos of my ass?
-No, keep walking.

Apparently Joan Miro did WALL-E before Pixar. Outside Fundacio Joan Miro.

If you’ve liked my page on facebook, you’ve probably already seen this photo, but I couldn’t left it out of my Barcelona Diaries. The little guy over there was the only one paying attention to the street musicain (listening and moving rythmically to the beat), making me wonder if there’s something important adults miss out while being so busy? Here you see him waiting patiently during the short break between two songs.

And there comes another kid photo…

Fly, my little friend, fly.

(At moments like these I really like kids.)

Water fountains at Plaça  de Catalunya.

At La Rambla. #lotsofpeople #crowded #tourists #sun 

Happy Sant Jordi day! La Diada de Sant Jordi, also known as El dia de la Rosa (The Day of the Rose) or El dia del Libre (The Day of the Book) is a Catalan holiday held on 23 April. It is similar to Valentine’s Day but has some unique twists: Historically men gave women roses and wmen gave men a book to celebrate the occasion – “a rose for love and a book forever.” Nowadays, the mutual exchange of books is also customary and you can see many book stalls around the city (there were also in the airport!).

Since no blog post of mine would be complete without a healthy amount of food porn…


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The Patras Diaries

Last weekend I visited one of my closest – as well as oldest – friends who studies in Patras. Patras is relatively large city in west Greece that one wishes to visit in two occasions a) during the carnival season, or b) on his/ her way to Italy. However, Patras is also known for its university and the thousands (I guess) of students who live there.

I’ve been there twice before, both times during the last weekend of carnival, which is dominated by flamboyant events and parades. A. Total. Frenzy. During these days tens of thousands people swarm in Patras to celebrate, dress up, drink and party. Being there left me with endless beautiful memories, enough photos and videos to fill in memory gaps induced by alcohol consumption, a cupcake costume and – last time – a strained ankle. 

This time I had the opportunity to see a different side of the city of Patras, as I swiftly realized that it’s not as loud as I thought, yet still lively. Most of the following photos were taken during my last two hours there, that I spent exploring that serene aspect of the city.

(Camera) ready to climb up the (endless) stairs.

The view from the bottom…

… and from the top!

If you’re a cocktail fan, then I suggest heading over to Abbey Cafe or Banana Moon. The atmosphere in both is super cozy and the stuff is extremely nice. In addition, in Banana Moon everything is dotted (when I say everything, I mean it) which makes it super girly.

A friendship that counts at least 14 years…

….which makes them older, not neccessarily wiser.

Sunday brunch – it was supposed to be breakfast, but we got to his place only around noon.

 This pancakes needed a close-up, don’t you think?

Apparently I have become too German, nowadays I have have to wait until the light becomes green to cross the street. 🙂 

“If you behave, this nice lady will take a photo of you.”
And she did.

Love is not only in the air apparently.

Reason #1 to move to Patras: There are vespas pretty much everywhere!


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The One About Long Distance Friendships

What happens to friendships when you decide to move a substantial number of miles away? If there is one thing I’ve learned over the years is that long distance friendships, just like romantic relationships, are hard work. I’ve missed many birthday cakes, all-nighters, carnival parades and holidays over the years. Most importantly, I’ve missed all these tiny, almost insignificant moments that bond people, like shots that were far beyond our ability to handle alcohol, inside jokes, watching the stars late at night/ the sunrise, lunatic home-made choreographies, seeing someone getting the cold shoulder treatment from his/her crush, eating dessert from its container and so on. I’ve given and taken advice over facebook chat, seen people cry on Skype without being able to do something else, but try to console them with kind words. I’ve had catch-ups with friends I haven’t seen in years. There are others I know I won’t be seeing for a long time because they moved or live permanently in other cities.  I’ve been full of nostalgia, tired of saying goodbyes and browsing through summer vacation pictures while supposedly writing university term papers.

As I mentioned before, it’s hard work. Friendships are like the muscles of an athlete or the skills of a foreign languages enthusiast, they need constant work. Otherwise they fade away and finally disappear. I know it first-hand because I have done it once or twice on purpose, but that’s another story. One thing I’ve learned along the way is that you have to put your egoism aside; there are no “he/she didn’t call” or “he/she never writes to me.” My way of seeing it is thinking “what did/can I do?” Did I write to them to wish happy birthday or simply to see what they’re doing? Did I called or text them when I got in Athens? Do I know enough about what’s going on in their lives? Of course, facebook plays a hugely important role for me in staying in contact with my friends back home. I like to think of myself as a terrible spammer; I sent photos and links that remind me of them, post music video on their profiles and use their status updates as an excuse to chat them up.

However, it takes two to tango. Sometimes the response – or to be more precise – the lack of it makes me bitter. It’s pretty deprecating seeing that you are the only one trying. However, I try not to take it personally; I guess it is simply a part of the process of growing up apart, meeting new people and making new friends. In addition, it is something I only realized when my mom pointed it out for me: I view the time I spend in Athens as something limited and therefore precious. On the other hand, friends that live here permanently perceive time differently; it’s endless, so why bother plan things in advance? To make it more comprehensible, I’ll attempt to draw a parallel between that and Athenians’ reaction to rainy weather: Having lived a considerable amount of my life in Corfu, where it rains non-stop, and in Germany, where the color of the sky simply varies between different shades of grey, I’m not afraid to go out on a bad weather day. Living in those two places taught me that one shall go out no matter what the weather feels like; you simply put on your rubber boots, practice your layering technique, button up your coat and go out. If you’ve waited for a truly heavenly day to come along in order to go out, you’d probably spend an eternity at home. Athenians on the contrary are well aware that the sun is going to reappear sooner or later, so they don’t mind spending an afternoon cocooning at home watching PLL or Suits, instead of getting in weather’s way. Same logic applies to the aforementioned point.

There is a beautiful quote of Maya Angelou that goes like this: “If you don’t like something, change it. If you can’t change it, change your attitude. Don’t complain.”It would be terribly easy for me to let myself feel neglected and miserable (I’m by nature inclined to do so); unfortunately enough, there are always a few amazing people who love to spam me as much as I do love to spam them, pick me up for coffee and make me pray I don’t pee in my pants from laughing too hard.

I’d love to read your thoughts on maintaining long distance friendships.


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The One About Healthy-fying Pancakes

To be honest, when it comes to pancakes nothing compares to the original recipe –white all-purpose flour, eggs, milk, sugar. I want them all to be in the batter, making it fluffy enough and full of flavor, so that it’ll keep me eating until tears of joy (and satiation) run down my face. I’ve tried a couple alternative, healthier choices, but nothing beats Martha Stewarts’ easy pancake basic recipe. The only thing that makes it better – apart from a generous spoonful of nutella or strawberry jam on top – is when my boyfriend undertakes the hard work and does all the impressive flipping, tossing and turning. (Note: I do the cleaning afterwards.)

But as you know life is tough, so satisfying my taste buds and maintaining a waistline slim enough to fasten the zip in all the floral skirts and dresses I own is of the same importance. That’s why I didn’t roll my eyes when M. introduced me to a slightly healthier alternative. I won’t lie to you, their taste can’t compete with the real stuff, but it can do wonders (and make you feel less miserable) if you’re on a diet or generally watching what you eat, like me.

(photo via cookie+kate)
To provide breakfast to two hungry people you’ll need:

2 large ripe bananas

2-3 eggs, depending on their size (we had rather medium sized ones so we went with three)

4 tablespoons oatmeal (add more if you like the texture of the batter being thicker)

½ teaspoon vanilla

1 teaspoon baking powder
Cinnamon according to taste

Olive oil (or other vegetable oil) for the pan

Toss everything into a food processor, kindly ask your companions to stop speaking – these little things make so much noise, you won’t be able to hear them – and keep mixing until you achieve a nice, even consistency. Add a little oil to a well heated pan and then pour about three tablespoons of batter so as to form a little round pancake. If you have a ladle for soups use that instead; it’s exactly the amount of batter you’re going to need to make one pancake. Cook until surface of pancakes has some bubbles and a few have burst, 1 to 2 minutes. Flip carefully with a thin spatula, and cook until browned on the underside, 1 to 2 minutes more.

A proper blogger will tell you to set them aside on a plate and probably put them in the oven/ cover them with aluminum foil to keep them warm, but I was urged (by the cook) to try them as soon as they came out of the pan, so I’m leaving this up to you.

Since we’ve decided to be all healthy, I skipped the nutella and reached for the honey, but I think that all kinds of homemade marmalade and/ or fruits could have worked perfectly, as well. Later I had some kind of aha!-moment and realized that we could have added some raisins or dark chocolate chips in the batter to spice it up a little.


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The One About How We’re Not Hipsters (Yet)

And the Oscar for the cutest smile goes to… Stella!

Time to couple up; it’s spring after all.

All the pretty ladies, all the pretty ladies, now put your hands up…

Click, click, click.

The world through my eyes sunglasses. Pss, S. put them in front of the lenses. 

One sexy gentleman interrupted our conversation…

Uncomfortably close, maybe?

As sweet as a (laughing) squirrel.

One of the first thing people ask me when I tell them I’m from Greece and particularly from Athens is how close I live to the sea. Well, it’s about twenty minutes on foot and a little less if you’re being lazy and go by tram/car/etc.

I don’t live in any fancy, pretty or wealthy suburban area, but being so close to the sea makes me feel blessed.

The other thing that makes me even more blessed is my friends. And their totally improper sense of humor that makes me laugh loud (as annoyingly as possible) and gasp for air.

Which reminds me of one of my favorite quotes:

“Always find a reason to laugh. It may not add years to your life but will surely add life to your years.”


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The One Where We Went DIY

That’s my night table. Take a closer look…

“What is that mason jar doing on your night table, Kate?”, you might ask.
Well, do you know what’s better than seeing old and dear friends after a long long time?
(Ok, it was only two months, but still.)

Old and dear friends bearing homemade gifts!

S. told me about her latest DIY inclinations and gave me a body scrub she made on her own.

I found the idea so exciting I had to ask for the recipe.

Let’s take a closer look…


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The London Diaries – Can We Go Back, This Is The Moment

Ladies and gentlemen,  please welcome my last post about London! Since it’s the first day of spring, which happens to be the most magical of all seasons if you ask me, I’d like to start with the photos I took while in Cambridge – yep, I was there, too! Even though it wasn’t officially spring yet, the sunny weather and beautiful nature seemed to have a different opinion. 

A little too excited maybe?

The photos are a mix of shots taken in and around Trinity and St John’s College. Unfortunately we couldn’t get into King’s College, where you had to be a student or at least alumni to enter. Still, both of the aforementioned colleges as well as their surrounding were so picturesque – one feels like he/she is in Hogwarts!

And now back to London…

In front of the National Gallery. Considering we had spent the morning in Tate Modern, the National Gallery was a little disappinting. It has definitely a remarkable collections of works, but to be shamelessly honest I mostly enjoyed the rooms that were dedicated in the 19th and 20th century. I’m more modern art oriented I guess…

Channeling my inner Veruca Salt. This squirrel was way too cute to miss; I was taking photos of him from afar when he spotted me (?), run towards me and posed clutching the railing with a grace and poise only squirrels and Karlie Kloss have.

Tate Modern is definitely my favorite place in London. This photo was taken from the terrace of the exclusive members cafe.

The Palace of Westminster; in other words the meeting place of the House of Commons and the House of Lords.


Spot the hilarious photobombing in this photo!
Hint: Look right. 😉

When happy hour rolls in… #midsummer_mules

This is what happens when tourists decide to pse with Mandela’s statue while I’m trying to take a photo of it! 

Always keen to help fellow tourists capturing their memories in London…
2 in 1: capturing Big Ben and the classic red double-decker London bus in one shot!
Oh, and me, too.

We probably spend 5 minutes at those traffic lights waiting for it to go green (and take a good shot)!

That’s a wrap!

Hope you enjoyed my impressions of London!


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