Friend of IT and fellow travel blogger Lauren Elkin tipped me off to a website that she's been working on called Hitotoki, a compendium of mapped travel "moments" submitted by writers and illustrated beautifully by local artists. The website explains:
The word Hitotoki is a Japanese noun comprised of two components: hito or “one” and toki or “time,” and is often translated as “a moment.” In common usage, it can be used to describe any brief, singular stretch of time (if we share a meal someday, you can call that a hitotoki).
I love the idea of experiencing a place through someone else's memories, and the website does a lovely job of contextualizing the story by providing a list of referenced works and a map that gives a detailed look at the location. Right now, the site features hitotokis from Tokyo, New York, Paris, London, Shanghai, and Sofia. And they accept submissions, so if you have your own hitotoki, you can share it as well.
This site also reminded me of a note I got from commenter Ben Keene about the City of Memory project in New York City. It's a website run by City Lore, a group that works to record the cultural history of the city, and it's a mapped collection of videos, recordings, photographs and essays that represent the people of the city. I love the Elite Checkers Club of Brooklyn, and Abe Lass, who played the piano for old silent movie houses, and the story of Stickball Blvd. in the Bronx.
Know of other great ways of mapping special moments that have a sense of a place? Share them below in the comments.