Houston Favorites | Houston Heights, 19th St

(you can click through the images for the fun(ny)/insightful captions!)

When in Need of Inspiration

Every now and then, I find myself in search of motivation and inspiration. This weekend may have been one of those times... and when that happens, I have learned that there is a quick and easy fix to it: going to one of my favorite places in Houston: the Heights' 19th Street. 

I am actually rather surprised by how not busy this street is, given what it has to offer. Or maybe Sunday is the perfect day to frequent it. My favorite shops, such as Jubilee, 18 Hands Gallery, CODA, and Bespoke can get anyone's imagination going at a million miles an hour.  

My highlight of today's visit though? I got to know Katya (or Ekaterina, as she might remind you), one of the co-owners of 18 Hands Gallery. When I introduced myself, I believe Katya assumed I was Russian and therefore fluently asked me how I was in Russian... I thought my response to her, "I'm Bulgarian" would make her recant her Russian words. Little did I know that what followed would be a lovely and warm conversation in my maternal tongue, Bulgarian!! 

Katya is actually a US native who happened to focus her Bachelor's and Master's degrees in Slovak Studies which consequently landed her in Bulgaria for a year in the early 90's (a brave woman that is). Yet I was astonished by her perfect (or rather lack-there-of) accent captured from a merely year-long stay! Most importantly though, this encounter kindly reminded me of the amazing place I come from. Katya's fascination with Bulgarian folklore was a stark reminder of how easy it is to take the beauty in our lives and heritage for granted.  And sometimes, all it takes is a random encounter with someone else's passion to revive one's own appreciation and love for home. 

Posted on March 23, 2014 and filed under Be Inspired, Travel Diaries.