Vlog | Rome Off the Beaten Path: The Conca d’Oro Flea Market (Il Mercatino Conca d’Oro)

Conca d'Oro Market (Photo by D. Blake)

Conca d’Oro Market (Photo by D. Blake)

I took some time out last week to visit the Conca d’Oro Market. It is wonderfully organized and there are many interesting items to be found at low cost, everything from food to cleaning products.  Take a look at the video to see what else is on offer. And if you happen to be in Rome, why not take a quick trip on the metro line B to Conca d’Oro to visit the Market.

Hours: Saturdays & Sundays, from 9am to 8pm

Via Conca d’Oro 143/145

Throwback Thursday | Reblog: Roma, che cosa vuoi?

Statue of Giordano Bruno

Rome is a hard place and I am a hard person.  What I mean by hard is simply that Rome is all stone and little nature.  It is all grit and grime and movement.  I often feel now that I find myself to be same…  That there is no softness, purity, and no patience…  I am eager to build upon the last event and move on from the present one.   I feel as though my life has shown me too much in too short a period of time, and has made me too wise… but not wise enough to avoid this place where I have now found myself.

If you asked me what I want most right now, I would say to be free of all worry… then I would say to remember… then I would say to forget… then I would say nothing… for why should I want?

I despise Rome because it is so much like me – It reflects back to me so much of myself… or at least, who I have been in my many forms.   And it seems that now I am finding myself to be no different from many of my clients, whom I have seen over the years, i.e. wanting the past to go away… wanting to be far away from myself, but finding myself nowhere else but here with me.  I suppose I am human after all.  And so I have placed myself here in Rome, a physical manifestation of all of the parts of me I had come so to resent, but perhaps no so much anymore.  Now, Rome, what do you want?

Nessun Dorma

“Nessun Dorma” (“None shall sleep,” an aria from Puccini’s opera “Turandot.”)

Vlog | 4 Tips for Black Women Travelling Abroad

Snapshot 2 (02-Mar-15 20-36)

My most recent vlog post.  I offer 4 tips on how to survive travelling or living abroad, as well as share a bit about the more unusual experiences I’ve had while living in Rome.

 

 

Vlog | Black Women Dating While Living Abroad: Will Italian Men Feed You Pasta?

DatingAfter four years of living in Rome, I’ve learned a bit about dating, especially as a Black woman. In this video, I offer up my thoughts on possible dating experiences that Black women may meet while living abroad, the (ir)relevance of beauty standards, and reasons for travelling abroad, including cultural expectations.

Hope you enjoy it! If you do, please “like” (thumbs up) the video. Thanks!

 

Vlog |Travel with Me to Il Mercatino Giapponese (Japanese Market) in Rome

Video accompaniment to the recent Mercatino Giapponese post.  Hope you enjoy watching it! 😉

Travel | Mercatino Giapponese (Japanese Market) in Rome

Took the metro line B to Termini, then grabbed the 105 to Grotte Celoni, hoping that I would figure out the exact location of the Mercatino Giapponese (Via Casilina 713).

I came to this event two years before, and back then it seemed like a cross between a neighbourhood yard sale and a cosplay convention.  This year, it was more or less the same, except for the cosplay, which was the part I had been looking forward to seeing.

It’s the kind of event where everyone knows everyone.  It’s less about selling stuff than having a reunion with old friends. I didn’t mind it.

Still, it was more of a manga-meets-anime convention that just happened to be in a dancehall that casts several shades of shady upon entering it: stacks of comics and posters everywhere, Japanese dolls and anime/manga characters lined up, handcrafted jewelry and used clothes that reminded me of my goth days, and random Italian pop music playing.

It didn’t phase me when I saw the telltale Italian cornetti (croissants) and espresso at the bar. After all, I’m in Rome. Still, I was hoping to find something more…Japanese.

Only a handful of vendors were selling things other than anime/manga items. There were kimonos, Japanese socks, bookmarkers and, of course, food…but that’s a whole other tale. In the meanwhile, enjoy the photos. 😉

D.

 

 

Travelling While Black | In Rome, You Might Be A Prostitute, Plus Fire Dancing & Vegan Valentine’s

Vegamisu, Universo Vegano. Click to visit their website. Image by D. Blake.

Vegamisu, Universo Vegano. Click to visit their website. Image by D. Blake.

So, I took myself out for Valentine’s Day. Watch what happens. 🙂

 

4c Natural Hair: Bantu Knot-Out with KeraCare Products (Rome Off the Beaten Path)

DSC_0030

So, I finally put together my first natural hair video. 🙂 Product line featured: KeraCare.

Specifically, I used the KeraCare Leave In Conditioner, Essential Oils and Twist & Define Cream to do single strand twist Bantu knots.  The result was soft curls, and even softer hair.

I’ll be upfront and you’ll see in the video, the only product that I bought was the Leave In Conditioner, which I consider to be expensive (I tend to be really frugal)–but I decided that I really needed a leave-in.

The total cost of the Leave In Conditioner was 18.90€.  The rest of the products were samples that I received from the store–Lucky!! 🙂

I tend not to buy commercial styling products. Hair cleansing products, such as shampoo and conditioner, I go with Garnier Fructis line (price range: 2-3€).

Otherwise, I buy my oils (price range: 3-6€): extra virgin olive oil, coconut oil, sweet almond oil, argan oil  (tends to be expensive); and create a little mix with that.

Also, I tend to leave my hair alone, i.e. I don’t style it often to manipulate the natural curls I have.  As the title states, I have 4c hair, which is delicate and is best not to over manipulate. So, generally, I keep it in a protective style and call it a day. 😉

KeraCare in Rome:

Astri Beauty Shop & Salon,Via Giovanni Giolitti 93/95

KeraCare Online:

Avlon Products: KeraCare

 

 

Travel | Listen to Hang Drum Street Music in Vatican City

Although, due to policy changes, there are fewer musicians these days, Rome continues to have a very vibrant street music culture.  Every now and again, I come across some a musician playing an uncommon instrument, e.g. didgeridoo or (in this case) the hang drum.

Alessio playing the Hang drum on the streets of Vatican City. (Image by D. Blake)

Alessio playing the Hang drum on the streets of Vatican City. (Image by D. Blake)

Take a moment to listen to this wonderful instrument being played by Alessio, a young musician I came across while hanging out in Vatican City.

 

Vlog| Travel & Fibromyalgia in Italy: What I Learned Moving to Rome.

DSC_00121

Travel and fibromyalgia–from everything I heard and knew before I moved to Italy, travelling was something that I probably wouldn’t be doing a lot of because of the potential negative impact it could have on my body.

Still, I decided to do it. 😉

In these videos, I talk about my decision to move to Italy, how I prepared and what I have experienced while living in Rome and dealing with my fibromyalgia symptoms.

Thank you for watching! If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me! 🙂

Until Tomorrow?

D.

Part 1: Why I did it | How I did it.

Part 2: What I Learned | What I suggest.