travel

SAINT PABLO VS SUMMER SIXTEEN

It's concert season: that magical time when artists comes out with new music and then tour at the same time with no consideration of your bank account or day job. But I'm a hustler, so I went to the Atlanta Saint Pablo Tour and Summer Sixteen Tour within two weeks of each other. Here are my thoughts:

SUMMER SIXTEEN TOUR

  • HEADLINER: DRAKE AND FUTURE
  • SPECIAL GUESTS: DVSN, ROY WOODS, GUCCI MANE, YOUNG THUG, USHER

 CROWD HYPE: 9/10 | SET LIST: 7/10 | VISUALS: 6/10 |  ATTIRE: Grown and sexy

I saw Drake during his NWTS and Take Care tours, but this time was something special. Drake is on the top of his game now; his confidence was understood, but not rubbed in our faces. (I've been to many concerts where the artist acted "too cool" for his own show, but this was not one of them.)

Drake and Future brought out their greatest hits, not just their most recent albums. The concert felt more like a club; everyone was dancing (not just me for once). As a surprise to the guests, Drake brought out Gucci Mane to the tune of "Back on Road", which blew Atlanta's mind. On the second night of the tour, he apparently brought out Young Thug and Usher...much to my chagrin. Bringing out guests is the magic touch to any performance, especially when you're in the hip-hop capitol of the world. 

If I had one criticism, I'd say the concert actually went a little too long. While I enjoyed Drake's back-to-back bangers, it became draining. I wish he played a little harder-to-get because the crowd lost energy and interest towards the end. There are only so many songs to which we can scream our hearts out. 

SAINT PABLO TOUR

  • HEADLINER: KANYE WEST
  • SPECIAL GUEST: KANYE WEST

CROWD HYPE: 7/10 | SET LIST: 8/10 | VISUALS: 10/10 |  ATTIRE: Your coolest f*cking outfit ever

This was my first time seeing Kanye and I had been told that it was going to change my life. Of course, that's what every stan says...but I'm a stan, too...so. More than the actual concert itself, I was overly excited to get my hands on Saint Pablo Tour merchandise. There were around 6 different booths throughout Philips Arena that sold the merchandise (we'll save this for a future blog post). It's worth noting that everyone there was extremely well-dressed; it's like I walked into an Urban Outfitter's lookbook. 

No one opened for Ye, which was odd and buzz-killing; We figured he'd at least have a DJ hype the crowd. Instead, we waited an hour and a half past start-time to be greeted by his first song, "Father Stretch My Hands". It was rumored that Ye would only perform T.L.O.P. songs, but the crowd was pleasantly surprised when he played hits like "Gold Digger" and "All of the Lights". 

We've all heard that his stage floats from the ceiling, which was great because the back of the arena felt like front row at times. In true Kanye fashion, he was a perfectionist about his songs; If the sound team skipped a beat, he'd call them out to restart the song from the beginning. 

Bottom line: Summer Sixteen was a full-on party. Saint Pablo was a curated masterpiece.  

3 nights in DC

It was about that time...Zae and I try to see each other once a month in alternating cities. It was my turn to head to DC. This is about my 4th time in the city and I love it a little more each time. Zae lives on U Street, not too far from my favorite hangout spot, Georgetown. 

Taken in the weird wooden hallways they make pedestrians walk through during construction

Taken in the weird wooden hallways they make pedestrians walk through during construction

This was a particularly special weekend. Zae's best friend, Ryan, was planning his wedding proposal. EEK! We were tasked with documenting every moment on camera; Zae on video, me on the Nikon (duh). And of course...there was a Snapchat filter.

Just a couple of nuggets documenting memories

Just a couple of nuggets documenting memories

She said yes!

She said yes!

Plot twist: Porshia doesn't have a Snapchat

Plot twist: Porshia doesn't have a Snapchat

After the proposal went down, we thought, "what is the proper way to celebrate an engagement?" I really don't think any of us knew, so naturally, we hit the club. D.C. nightlife is what us kids call lit. I love any downtown experience that actually forces me to get dressed up and throw on a pair of heels.

Our group of 10 scored a prime seated area in a hip hop/reggae lounge. We grabbed drinks, a few hookahs, and danced the night away. Really. If you know us, you know we love to dance. Zae might as well be Chris Brown, and I'm the proud dance mom recording every moment on Snapchat. 

Last call...lights on...we still weren't ready to leave!

Last call...lights on...we still weren't ready to leave!

On my last day in D.C., we went to the Smithsonian National Zoo. I have to admit it left a little to be desired. No lions, tigers or bears?? I mean, come on. Not even an elephant?? However, there were pandas. Which are the only pandas in the U.S. besides in San Diego. But it wasn't too long ago that I visited the lavish panda exhibits at the Tokyo Zoo in January...and that'll change a girl, let me tell you.

atlanta chicago

I've been back and forth from Minneapolis to various East Coast locations. Mood: click here. One of my closest friends from high school got married in Atlanta in March. How crazy that we're all old enough to start getting married...that's for another time.

Atlanta was warm and happy. All of my best friends were in one place, which is something I took for granted when we lived at home; living away from your crew is tough! In Minneapolis, I stay really busy with work and freelance. But when I reunite with my friends, I'm reminded of how much I've missed their companionship. 

We spent most of our time in Midtown, Ponce City Market, drinking coconut water, eating Thai food. If you follow me on Snapchat, or have tuned into #DosCocosPodcast, you know I'm obsessed with coconut water. I've scoured every grocery store, marketplace and beyond for the finest coconut water. Atlanta did not disappoint.

No matter where I travel, I find myself passing through this beautiful Chicago airport. The mega windows and skylights almost make me feel like I'm in the air-- look at these blue vibes! The gates are lined with eateries and shops that make you feel less gross about being in the airport. Now that I'm back in Minneapolis, I'm already plotting my next trip. I'll be seeing you soon, CHI. 

most promising 2016 in new york

I traveled to NYC on behalf of General Mills to recruit from my alma mater, the Most Promising Multicultural Students conference. MPMS is where I got my start in advertising, and how I got my job at GMI! It was cool to return a year later, this time on the other side of the career fair booth. 

New York City was cold and rainy. But there's just something about being in the city that makes you feel elevated. There's litter all over the sidewalks, but it's New York City litter. You have to walk for 7 years to get anywhere, but you look so cool when you do it.