March 30, 2015


When you travel and move so many times it's normal that you lose a photo album here, kitchen ware there. I was pretty sad I couldn't find the cds I burned with my USA pictures, when I lived in Maine for a year. It was such a special year and I want to see the pictures again, I just couldn't find in all those boxes at my grandpa's basement.
Few days ago I went to the basement to get my Summer clothes and to collect clothes and stuff I don't need anymore to sell in the Flea Market this last Sunday and guess what? I found an unopened box, first thought was my USA cds were there and yessss they were :) Now I can go back on time with beautiful memories and also can share my experience there and give you travel tips about New York, Boston and a special East Coast (From Maine to Florida) road trip. Together with the cds I found this amazing book I'm going to talk about now and show the beautiful pages.

Seven years ago I was living in the States, Once a week I used to drive to Waterville (Maine, USA) for grocery shopping and explore thrift stores. The huge shop Fosters (not sure about the name of the shop) was close to the place I used to go for groceries so I always visited the shop in hope I could find great bargains. It's this kind of shop where goes all the articles shops cannot sell anymore or the shop is closing and don't know where to leave the stuff. 
One day I was looking in the book shelf of Fosters' and found this pretty book for a buck. Win! The cover called my name, I can say it was love at first sight :) I just don't understand why the book was in a bargain shop, it should be a Best Seller! I never seen a best seller in this kind of shop, maybe is something normal?

New York Notebook by Laurie Rosenwald is a mix of guidebook, journal and sketchbook related with New York with pretty colorful design, enough blank space in the pages you can fill out with your thoughts, notes, lists and it's also filled with alternative tips of what to do, where to eat and where to shop guidebook, including addresses and phone numbers. 
I never used it as a guidebook, I don't really like guidebooks anyways but the pages were too inspiring to be true so I had to grab the book to fill up with my year in USA with photos and some notes. 
For some reason I only filled up 6 pages but I remember I printed out many pictures, now I gotta find them and finish this 7 years old project. I know it will be though, it's so much easier to make this kind of Photo Album in the present but I'm super excited and motivated enough to finish it. Just need to find the pictures and post the progress here. When I know I'm going to share a project I'm even more productive and motivated. 

This are some of the pages I filled out already, seven years ago when I was still living in USA:
I joined ILEX - International Learning Exchange - Program to work as a Social Worker out of Portugal. After graduating I didn't want to work in Portugal, I felt like living an experience far away so after a lot of searching I decided to join this program with great benefits: rent and all bills (besides internet connection) covered and find a social worker job for me depending on my interests and profile. I had to pay for my flights and the worst was buying a car! I had to work in 2 different jobs to make sure I had about 4000€ to buy a car (I bought a seven seats van) and to live the first month.

This page represents my first week living in the States: a lot of partying and a warning from police because I passed a red light that was blinking and had no clue what was that about (we only have yellow blinking in Portugal but yeah I could use my common sense). I was so lucky that the police caught me :( My accent and conversation convinced the police man just to give a warning instead of a fine :)

You cannot read well but I wrote a list of my experience with police and cars the first month in USA:
- four parking tickets
- one time warning (Didn't "see" the red light)
- one time towed for parking in the wrong place

Those crazy people in the pictures are my ILEX fellows, we were a group of 40 social workers from Portugal, Netherlands, Germany, Belgium and Denmark.

This Hippies Party was hosted by an ILEX who was celebrating her/his birthday, cannot remember who exactly. It was madness as you can figure!

I have been in New York City three times, it was "only" a seven hours drive. Me and Silvia (portuguese ILEX) had the same three days off so decided to head to this busy and wonderful city for few days. I couldn't stop taking pictures of the city that never sleeps. True!

New Hamphire is full of different colors and shapes during Autumn. This was a relaxed day with the Mother Earth.

My first Halloween in USA and it was memorable. Some ILEX came to join us and my friend Octavio from Portugal living in NYC as well, this house party hosted by an ex ILEX that got married with an american. We tried mouse meat this night bleeghhh :P

Introduting my room mates Faith and Wout, the best ever! We never had an argument, really. They were party animals and trouble makers just like me ;) 

Some more pretty pages:

I kinda feel bad of writing and place photos in these pretty pages, the design makes me smile :) 

Thanks guys to let me share a tiny part of my life in the States, living the american dream. Really. 


  1. The cover of that book is wonderful, I'd have bought it, too! What a clever idea to use it for photos and memories. xxx

    1. Thanks Vix! I just wish I did finished the book, I wonder what I was doing one year in USA? :)


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