Thursday, March 6, 2014

The Expat Diaries: A Family Affair {NYC circa 1970}

Over the holidays, my grandmother gave me something priceless: folders upon folders of photos she's been electronically archiving over the past several years. I have been pouring over the baby pictures of my dad romping around Paris in jumpers, army scenes from the first world war, vacations in the Alps and the South of France in the '60s, raucous New Years celebrations of decades past, and more. Some of the very old photographs from great-great-great-great grandparents depicting Paris and the French countryside are absolutely mesmerizing and I will have to share them on here.

But a few weeks ago I stumbled upon a true gem: my dad's family's first trip to the U.S. in 1970, to visit friends living outside of New York City. It was like discovering a time capsule, and I had to share some of the vintage images with you all. I sometimes forget my dad is a true expat; although he's lived in the U.S. for the past 22 years (nearing half his life now!), he is still French through and through. And to think I pride myself on living in Senegal for a mere four years... I guess expat-ism runs in the family ;) 

Harlem 1970
^^An eventful welcome to New York City: their train broke down and the commuters walked off the tracks in Harlem. My grandmother still loves sharing this story.

Harlem 1970
^^Harlem seemed to have really fascinated my grandmother, probably because of the famous riots of the previous decade and the urban grit not seen too often in Paris.

Rockefeller Center 1970

^^My twelve-year-old dad and grandmother at Rockefeller Center.

Rockefeller Center 1970
United Nations 1970

Empire State building 1970


^^Atop the Empire State building, trusty guidebook in hand.

NYC 1970

^^ Organizing a two-year memorial for Martin Luther King's assassination, the organizer dressed in wax pagne, no less.

NYC 1970
^^Street scenes of NYC.

NYC 1970

^^This photo seriously channels Mad Men. Or rather, Mad Men seriously channels this photo. Love it!

NYC 1970
NYC 1970

^^ I'm pretty sure this photo was highlighting the trash next to the produce.
NYC 1970
NYC 1970

^^"A surprising street for the French," my grandmother's thoughts at the time.

NYC 1970
































^^Hare Krishna, apparently completely unheard of in France at the time. (Mad Men is clearly my reference for this era... and its spot on again!)

NYC 1970
^^ Matching outfits and loafers :) Where is this, New Yorkers??

NYC 1970
^^MOMA. I love this picture of my grandparents.

NYC 1970
^^ Just some French tourists hanging out in front of the Met ;) 

NYC 1970

^^ Hippies in Central Park :) /Is this picture being taken from a tour bus?!

I guess my expat roots run deep ;)

P.S. I'm linking up for the Expat Diaries - be sure to check out more expat posts at the link below!

4 comments:

  1. Kim - this was so fun to see! What a neat and precious thing your grandmother is doing for you by preserving all of these pictures. I recently went through all of our family photos and organized them for my Mom and it was a wonderful trip down memory lane.

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  2. Elles sont géniales ces photos!!!

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  3. Wonderful! I always love going through old family photos.

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  4. Wow! So funny since you had just been to NYC a few months before you go these, and to some of the same places even ;)

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