15 Days In Europe
March 22, 2016
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Current Day: 15 Woooo! (read from the bottom of this post and move upwards)

//This blog post will be a living post in which I will be updating every day or so (throughout the day) during my time in Europe. Make sure you come back daily to see what you’ve missed!

4.7.16 16:41 EST

I’m back in the States! Still not home as I’m in NY for a connecting flight to LA. Still a long flight ahead. The last flight had some onboard entertainment in the ceilings but for a nine hour flight, headrest entertainment is necessary! I’m assuming it was an older jet.
4.6.16 13:56 CET

Back at the hostel resting it up before I leave tomorrow morning. The food from Bob’s Kitchen was okay. Nothing to rave about. They did however have a really good fruit smoothing (mango, banana, orange).  And here are some shots from today:

heineken traffic

4.6.16 8:38 CET
Stayed up until around three this morning doing some work. Up early today to go meet a friend for breakfast at a spot called Bob’s Kitchen (74 Rue des Gravilliers, 75003 Paris, France) near the 10th Arrondissement.

(Menu if you care to translate)

(Inside Bob’s Kitchen)

4.5.16 14:18 CET

Back in Paris once again! I just got to my favorite Starbucks

Unfortunately, only a a few people from the original crew still work here. However, I was greet with pleasant smiles and hugs from the few who remained. This morning I was in Bordeaux and had to catch an early train to Paris around 7:23. I almost missed my train trying to decipher which platform to go to with the construction happening in the station. With budgeted money running low, I knew I wouldn’t be able to afford to miss it. So I ended up being that guy that rushes by you at the airport/train station, etc lol. With little sleep, I napped on a the train. The countryside in France is absolutely gorgeous. Green everywhere with old quaint homes scattered about.

Feels good to be back in Paris though. Make sure you follow me on Snapchat for live updates: mr.dabney.

4.3.16 16:20 CEST 

(Panorama of Bordeaux, France)

4.3.16 15:09 CEST

As you can probably tell, my posts have been sparse and late in the day…I’m enjoying myself. Bordeaux is a very quaint place with a beautiful French culture. Very different than Paris. If you haven’t been keeping up with me on Snapchat (@mr.dabney), I’ve been staying with my friend and client whom I met in Paris about three years ago. He’s from South Africa and lives with his girlfriend now in Bordeaux. We’ve worked on a three or four projects over the course of our relationship and he’s always been an amazing person to work with. I’m here not only to travel but to sign documents and meet the investor of our newly formed company! Super exciting! We have about three projects that we have lined up. Tomorrow is the meeting to sign the contracts and legal docs.

4.3.16 1:40 CEST

New friends from tonight…

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(Maïlys & Marie)

4.2.16 13:13 CEST

My first day/night in Bordeaux was amazing!

4.1.16 9:15 CEST

I’m on the plane now, on my way to see my client in Bordeaux, France. I booked a cheap flight through EasyJet. Should be a quick flight. Once I get I didn’t get much sleep last night because…well…it’s Amsterdam and it was my last night.

The weather in Bordeaux is going to be about 60 F. Once I get there I’ll meet my client at the train station.

3.31.16 19:57 CET

Today I’ve just been working for the most part at Coffee and Coconuts. I’m supposed to meet my new friend Frido around 21:00 for a drink at a spot called Cafe Troost. And then maybe I might visit a speakeasy here called Door 74. Make sure you’re following me on Snapchat (mr.dabney) to follow what’s happening.

Tomorrow morning I’ll be traveling to Bordeaux to stay with my client and his girlfriend. I’ll be there for about five days to see the South of France, sign contracts for a new company I’m apart of with him, and to spec out new projects that are on deck. Meanwhile, the weather will be beautiful so I’m sure I’ll be getting some good shots.

3.30.16 20:24 CET

My friend (and host) Fenna recommended a place called Coffee & Coconuts to me…it’s a dope spot indeed. I’ve been here since 17:30 working. It has great lighting, three levels and decent food. There’s a community table on the first level that I’m sitting at right now and met a great guy by the name of Frido van Driem (pronounced Free-doh von dreem) who launched a startup that helps people learn how to “Growth Hack, Experience Design, Code or Create Content within nine Months.” It’s called BSSA. We spoke at length about what he’s trying to do as well as personal projects we’d like to launch. Suffice it to say, we’ll be helping each other with projects.


(Frido and me)

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3.30.16 14:21 CET

Soooo, I decided to stay in Amsterdam until Friday! My friend has graciously allowed me to stay here until then. Plus, the weather has been amazing since I’ve been here, even though it was supposed to be cloudy and raining most of the time. Today I’ll be doing a little work then walking around the city.

3.29.16 17:05 CET

Today has been a super lazy day. After getting back from the show last night I went for drinks a bar not to far away. A place called NJoy in Leidseplein Square. An area filled with restaurants, bars, and shopping. Similar to the Grove in LA or Atlantic Station in Atlanta. Had a good time! Although, the drinks at NJoy weren’t that great so I wouldn’t suggest visiting that particular place, but there are tons of others to choose from.

Right now we’re getting ready to head out and grab a late lunch. Today is my last day here in Amsterdam and I really don’t want to leave. Something about this place has a piece of my heart.

My flight to Paris is at 9:45 (in the morning, just in case you haven’t noticed I’m using 24 hour time format) so I’ll be leaving my friend’s house around 7:00. I’ll be in Paris for two days leaving on the 1st of April to stay with my client and his girlfriend in Bordeaux.

3.28.16 17:50 CET

I just experienced an awesome performance of the musical, “Grease” — it was in Dutch! The troupe did a wonderful rendition of this 1971 classic.    (Ending of the show – my friend and awesome host is in the yellow!) 

3.28.16 9:50 CET

I can’t believe it’s already day 6. It feels like I’ve done so much in such a short amount of time.  

Today I’m heading to Rotterdam (South West Holland) to see my new friend perform in Dutch version of the musical, “Grease”!

(Warm up)

(Downtown Rotterdam)

I will tell you more about her in coming posts but essentially she opened up her home for me to stay during my time in Amsterdam. She’s an actress currently touring with this musical.

3.27.16 18:01 CET

Caught in the rain


3.27.16 5:23 CET

I finally got to meet up with Etienette! We’ve followed each other on social media for a few years now and I always told her I wanted to shoot when I visited. It didn’t happen last time I was here and a year has gone by since then. Finally I’m back, and guess what I did:

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It was so good to finally meet and catch up with her. We talked life, love, friends, and travel. She’s in a good place in her life and that’s always pleasant to hear. As you can probably tell, her energy is awesome (and her hair too). One thing I love about Amsterdam is the multicultural aspect. Not just here but many countries in Europe. Etienette’s background is rooted in Venezuela and Curaçao. There are plenty of multi-ethnic people here and it’s really a beautiful thing.

3.27.16 14:56 CET

Headed out to Centraal Station which is like the city center of Amsterdam. Lots of restaurants, shopping, tourist stuff etc. I’m headed there to meet a friend of mine that I haven’t actually met! The beauty of social media right?

I’m jumping on the metro system which is super easy to use and traverse the city.

 A little later I’ll be meeting another friend and heading to a food fair in Utrecht. Excited about that since I’ve only heard of Utrecht, but never been.

3.26.16 21:30 CET

Just landed in Amsterdam! That lack of sleep is kicking my ass though :/ 

3.26.16 13:46 CET

At the airport in Stockholm getting ready to head to Amsterdam via a 1.5 hour layover in Kiev. Bonus: complimentary upgrade to business class courtesy of the pleasant woman at the ticket counter 😁 

3.26.16 9:37 CET

Not sure if it was just the excitement of traveling to one of my favorite places today, but I didn’t get any sleep. However, I took a long nap yesterday so maybe that’s why I’m up. Soon as it hit 9:00 I got dressed and headed to what’s become my favorite coffee shop:

Espresso House

This place is amazing. Plugs and seating are ample and most that I’ve seen.

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Today I leave for Amsterdam around 15:00 with a layover in Kiev, Ukraine, ultimately arriving at AMS at 21:45. Before I leave though, I’m going to back down to Old Town one last time for a photoshoot. There’s a man that makes chess boards by hand and sells them down there on one of the main streets and his name is Danut (pronounced “dah-noot”). Last night I met Danut while shooting. We talked chess for a bit and then he mentioned to me that he needs photos for his website; inquiring about the length of my stay. Ultimately we agreed that we’d meet up down there around 11:00 and I’d take some photos for him in exchange for a hand made chess board and possibly some “money to my PayPal” as he put it haha! I couldn’t pass it up. I love unique chess boards and he was a nice guy. Sooo…photos soon of Danut and his chess boards!

3.26.16 1:44 CET

While wrapping my shooting in Old Stockholm, I made my way to Wayne’s Coffee, a dope café with some good coffee and relaxing atmosphere. Also, check out Espresso House (they’re all over). Love this place. The atmosphere promotes being social and people are always in there working. They have some pretty good pre-made bagel sandwiches too.

So anyway, I’m in Wayne’s Coffee shop and two young women come in that I passed by while shooting earlier. They sit near me and start having a conversation in Swedish. All of a sudden, I hear the word “Trump”…of course the token media word in the U.S. right now. So I lean over and rhetorically say, “Are you speaking about Trump?”. Emphatically one of the women replies, “Yes!” Thus, we proceed to discuss politics in America, social climates, both in the U.S. and abroad, philosophy, personality types, and astrological signs. Beautiful synchronicity. Meaningful conversations are something that I live for. We chatted for a little more than hour, exchanged contact info, and parted ways with the intention of reconnected in the near future. Only one of them has visited the U.S. but both would like to visit this year.

Meet my new friends, Zeinab (left) and Harerta:



3.25.16 23:04 CET

Here are some official photos from tonight:

3.25.16 21:37 CET

Just finished walking around Old Stockholm getting some shots of the city at night before I leave. By the way it’s raining and cold out. Not exactly the ideal conditions to shoot in but always fun! 

 (Photo of te Nobel Museum)

3.24.16 16:24 CET

We got a late start today. Last night was crazy we went to this club called opera. It was super packed in there!we had a good time though and made some new friends.

After finally getting out of bed and came down to old Stockholm. Photos coming!

3.23.16 22:03 CET

First drinks since we’ve been here. Bar hopping tonight! Super cold here. About 34 degrees but it’s absolutely worth it. Everyone is friendly and I haven’t had any language barriers yet. 

3.23.16 17:08 CET

Just sat down to eat after a long and much needed nap!  

3.23.16 10:18 CET

Landed safely in Stockholm!

3.22.16 14:50 PST

Just boardes the plane. Schedule for a 15:15 take off, landing in Stockholm, Sweden around 10:10.

3.22.16 14:17 PST

Pre-eating before this long flight (10 hrs). Found out that my neighbor got the same flight and deal to Sweden as I did! 

3.22.16 12:40 PST

Headed to the airport 

3.22.16 10:45 PST

Never travel abroad without one of these: 

Power converter with surge protection a bonus USB port. Got from Target for about $60.

3.22.16 10:22 PST

I just confirmed with SAS that I have one carry-on and two checked bags with the SAS Plus level seating. Good to know!

3.22.16 10:06 PST

Just got up and made a banana orange protein shake. On the phone with Scandinavian airlines trying to figure out their baggage policy. Last night I upgraded to the Plus seating, which seems to have a little more room and I believe you can take one more carry on than normal — verifying now! I thought I could fit everything in my carry on but then I remembered that I at least need two pairs of shoes. One for just walking around in and the other pair that are a little more casual. Or can I get away with just one pair — the steadfast Chuck Taylors? lol.


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Vaughn Dabney

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