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Welcome to the Instagram blog! See how Instagrammers are capturing and sharing the world's moments through photo and video features, user spotlights, tips and news from Instagram HQ.

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hashtag highlight, User Feature, deadtoyssociety, Athens,

#DeadToysSociety with @alef79: a Memorial to Childhood Days Past

For more photos and videos from Athens’s streets, browse the #deadtoyssociety hashtag on Instagram and follow @alef79.

Look closely along the streets of Athens, Greece, and you might find a forgotten world of past childhoods. For Alexis Efstathopoulos (@alef79), teddy bears, cars, bicycles, dolls and miniature soldiers—weather-worn by vigorous playtime and then left to brace the elements—have all become the subjects of a forlorn but playful series of abandoned toys on Instagram.

"I accidentally came across a small plastic horse toy, which I captured with my phone," Alexis explains. "What I mostly liked in the photo was the forms in it; the horse, the pavement lines, a fence. The following days I randomly encountered other toys on the street and this became more and more intense as the days went by. Obviously the toys have always been there, on the streets of Athens, I just never had the eyes to see them."

Alexis started using the hashtag #deadtoyssociety to document and capture the abandoned toys and soon fellow Instagrammers began to contribute from across the world.

"To me this entire process acts as a memorial service in honor of the discarded toys," muses Alexis. "This project has to do not only with toys, but also with childhood, nostalgia, past, memories and reuse."

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current events, photo feature, athens, greece,

Protests in Athens Over Chancellor Merkel’s Visit

Spotlight For more photos of today’s protests, search the hashtags #Athens and #Merkel, and visit the Πλατεία Ομονοίας (Omonia Square) location page.

Thousands in Athens, Greece flooded the streets to protest the arrival of German Chancellor Angela Merkel, who is visiting Greece to discuss the details of an unpopular plan to reduce the financially struggling country’s debt.

Germany is a major creditor to Greece and other struggling European nations, and is applying pressure on the country to continue with painful austerity measures, in order to meet debt reduction goals.