meaganmastriani (Part 5) My guest house was nestled in a narrow, bustling alley. The place attracted a lot of young travelers on their own like me. On my last day, I joined several of them in the common room to watch movies and talk about books. One of the dudes who had been staying there a few weeks invited me to go eat dumplings at a little restaurant he'd found a few blocks away. We had a Great Big Conversation, the totally open kind that it's easy to have when you're with strangers you'll never see again. He asked if he could email me some of his poetry. I read it a few weeks later, and it was awful. I felt so bad about it, I couldn't think of anything to say, so I never wrote back. The end. .
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#35mm #diana #dianamini #china #beijing #instagood #vscogood #vscocam #streetdreamsmag
3d

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meaganmastriani (Part 4) The tour was cheesy and filled with thinly-veiled attempts at getting us to buy overpriced souvenirs. We stopped at a silk worm farm, a massage parlor, and a tea tasting room. We endured mandatory demonstrations and sales pitches, the Middle Eastern couple silently watching while my new friend and I cracked silly jokes about it all. Eventually we did make it to the Great Wall. It was an amazing hike, and I was glad to have had someone to share it with. When we got back to the city, the French man and I went to a small market. He insisted on buying me a white and blue qipao. No matter how many times I tell this story, nobody ever believes he wasn't being creepy. But he really just wanted to do something nice. Still, I've never worn the dress. .
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#35mm #diana #dianamini #china #beijing #instagood #vscogood #vscocam #streetdreamsmag
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meaganmastriani (Part 3) The next day, I was walking through the Forbidden City when an older French man approached. He said he had seen me in Shanghai and noticed I was traveling alone. He was flying solo, too, and wasn't it strange we had crossed paths twice? He asked should we go see the Great Wall together? I said of course we should. We booked a tour for the following morning. The van picked us up early, and we rode along with a couple of extremely quiet and polite Middle Eastern newlyweds. They giggled nervously when I asked the driver to pull over so I could pee on the side of the road. I had to walk through a bunch of thorny bushes to get to a secluded area, and the scratches on my legs stung for days. .
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#35mm #diana #dianamini #china #beijing #instagood #vscogood #vscocam #streetdreamsmag
3d

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meaganmastriani (Part 2) A few days later, I took a train to Beijing. There, I reconnected with a fellow expat I'd met on a hiking trip in Seoul. She invited me to dinner and drinks with a bunch of her friends, self-proclaimed anarchists who admired Ayn Rand and produced a controversial podcast about Chinese politics. We got sweet and sour pork that had inexplicable rainbow sprinkles on it. We drank cheap liquor and I slept it off at one of their apartments. I snuck out just before sunrise and creeped back to my guest house. I haven't spoken to any of those people since. .
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#35mm #diana #dianamini #china #beijing #instagood #vscogood #vscocam #streetdreamsmag
3d

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meaganmastriani (Part 1) Was looking at old pictures I took in China and realized I have never really written about my trip there. Not in a blog or my diary or even email. This is weird - I write down everything. Now I have to fix it. Come along on this bizarro journey if you want. It all began at the Incheon airport, where I discovered my boarding passes were fake, purchased from a scam artist posing as a travel agent. They wouldn't let me in the gate. I'd lost hundreds of dollars. But! I was going to get to China, damnit! I already had my visa! I already booked my hostels! I would not be stopped! I stomped over to the nearest airline desk and bought real tickets. I got on a plane. I arrived in Shanghai just a few hours later. .
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#35mm #diana #dianamini #china #shanghai #instagood #vscogood #vscocam #streetdreamsmag
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meaganmastriani Sometimes I look over at him and it's beautiful just like we are in a movie. #vscocam #vsco #vscogood #300zx #drivetastefully 2w

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meaganmastriani (Part 3) ... the bird recovering and flying away, the silly things he mumbled in his sleep, the Luna moth diving into the glowing light of the hot tub, the sunrise, the dark cemetery where we got lost, the rainy ride home. When we came back, I taped the photos into a little album I made. I spent a lot of time practicing writing the title "Ellijay" in a bunch of different scripts. But in the end, I didn't write it on the cover. I felt it would have implied it was a place we could go back or that other people could visit.
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#film #35mm #diana #dianamini #lomo #lomography #lookrookie
1mon

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meaganmastriani (Part 2) We went to pick up groceries, and everyone at the market was moving so slowly. Unbelievably slowly. We knew it was just the switch from city to rural pace, but it felt a little like entering another dimension. The whole weekend felt that way, actually - like time was sticky. Moments stretched on and on like pulled taffy, lengthening and folding onto each other. I can't remember the sequence of events from those days anymore: the card game, the stars, microwaved marshmallows, the bird with beautiful blue feathers who smacked into the window and fell down...
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#film #35mm #diana #dianamini #lomo #lomography #lookrookie
1mon

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meaganmastriani (Part 1) This was the first trip we took together. We planned it the day before. He picked me up with a bouquet of yellow daisies in hand, and we drove his flashy 1980s convertible with the windows down - north, to a cabin in the mountains, to be alone. He brought a guitar and I brought Salinger's 'Nine Stories.' He read one of them to me aloud that night. We played cards, and I asked if he thought it was possible to deal a neverending game of War. He thought maybe he could write an algorithm for it. It only felt natural to talk about infinity. .
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#film #35mm #diana #dianamini #lomo #lomography #300zx #lookrookie
1mon

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meaganmastriani (part 2) At the Biltmore, we saw three couples get engaged. There were even designated proposal spots, with a team of photographers on hand to capture the "candid" moment. As we climbed a stairwell hand in hand, a woman asked if I had just gotten a ring too. We laughed. It was actually kind of surreal though, like we had stumbled on a weird matrimonial cult headquarters. We needed to escape. We fled to our room and watched Star Wars on James' laptop. Our idea of romance. A year later, we're still doing the same thing, except this time we will have a much bigger screen. IMAX, here we come. .
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#35mm #film #analog #yashica #asheville #nc #vsco #vscocam #vscogood #instagood
2mon
  •   getyourgardengrowing Ha-ha, that hilarious!! I can believe they had photographers on hand to capture the moment. 2mon

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meaganmastriani Around this time last year, we took a holiday trip to Asheville. After doing all the traditional tourist stuff, we decided to go see Shadrack's Christmas Wonderland, one of those cheesy drive-through light shows. You're supposed to turn your dial to their perfectly timed holiday music channel - but we decided to make our own soundtrack instead. We played the creepiest, most goth songs we could find. The display became sinister and scary, with reindeer games looking more like nightmares. It was the most fun and festive thing we did all season. This year, we're repeating our favorite tradition in ATL. Time to make some dark magic.
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#35mm #film #yashica #asheville #nc #vsco #vscocam #vscogood #instagood
2mon

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meaganmastriani Berkeley was surprisingly goth. 🏴🌚🕷 #vsco #vscogood #vscocam #igerssf : @erasedcitizen1984 2mon

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meaganmastriani We found the secret swing! #igerssf #sanfrancisco #vsco #vscocam #vscogood 2mon

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meaganmastriani I hadn't had Korean Chinese food since I left Seoul. Thanks for driving out to eat jjajangmyeon with me, @jae_win. #welovebuhi #vsco #vscogood #vscocam #yestergram 2mon

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meaganmastriani (part 4) We agreed we would stop taking suggestions from travel writers and follow our hearts into less "cool" territory. We chose a restaurant called Coop's Place because it had a hungry alligator on the sign and that was good enough for us. Our waitress was drunk. The Saints game was still going, and she kept shouting at the TV and her coworkers. Maybe because we were so happy or so hungry, the chicken tchopitoulas was one of our favorite meals from the trip. We wondered why Coop's Place wasn't in the guidebooks – but we found out later that it actually is. Hannibal Burress even did a sketch about the time he saw a giant rat there. We listened to it on our drive home.
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#nola #neworleans #film #dianamini#minidiana #lomo #lomography #35mm#analog #igersneworleans #igersnola #lookrookie
2mon

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meaganmastriani (part 3) The New York Times' travel section recommended a dive bar in the Bywater that was supposed to feel local and "authentic." Reportedly Solange Knowles had been seen there. We took a long taxi ride to get to the place, and when we arrived it was the only lit building on the block. We tried to open the door, but it was locked from the inside. By the time we turned around, the cab driver had already sped away. The bartender buzzed us in, and the only other patron was glued to a TV watching the Saints. We ordered a couple PBRs and telepathically decided to get the hell out of there as soon as possible. The jukebox did have a great selection, though. We played Marvin Gaye and B.B. King while we waited for another taxi to pick us up.
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#nola #neworleans #film #dianamini #minidiana #lomo #lomography #35mm #analog #igersneworleans #igersnola #lookrookie
2mon

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meaganmastriani (part 2) An old chess master named Jude sets up a table in the French Quarter most nights, and he'll play anyone for $5 a game. A man of style, Jude is always wearing a red beret and hurling colorful insults at his challengers. We stopped to watch him go a few rounds against a clever college kid, Jesse, who had a Robert Frost tattoo on his inner bicep. Jesse played standing up, clenching the corners of the table and hunching over the board, smiling as he traded barbs with Jude and punched the clock. Jesse won, then Jude won, and then we walked away. Later that night, we met a poet who was lugging a typewriter around the country, funding his travels by selling impromptu compositions. We asked him to write some verses about speed chess. They weren't half bad.
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#nola #neworleans #film #dianamini #minidiana #lomo #lomography #igersneworleans #igersnola #35mm #lookrookie
2mon

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meaganmastriani Looking at old NOLA pictures and having *~memories~*: We were the only guests in a bed and breakfast owned by a retired dancer named Gil. He cooked us french toast each morning and told us bawdy stories about Russian ballerinas. He loved to talk and had a beautiful way of doing it, with a Louisiana drawl and a good sense of humor. Gil's partner had recently died, and he no longer wanted to live in the house alone, so he was selling it when we left. We won't be able to visit again, and I don't have a picture of him, but I see his presence in these images. He was our welcome and introduction to the whole city.
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#nola #neworleans #film #dianamini #minidiana #lomo #lomography #35mm #analog #lookrookie
2mon

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meaganmastriani We got the ugliest tree they had. He was $25 and looks nothing like the fluffy options pictured. We like him a lot. : @erasedcitizen1984 #vsco #vscocam #vscogood 3mon

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