Crown Prince Philippe and the prime minister (blue shirt)
This sunday the Belgian boyscouts celebrated their 100 anniversary. 100 years ago, Colonel Baden Powell invented the Boyscouts. 90.000 boyscouts and their leaders gathered in Brussels. (more than 100.000 people) They came from all regions of the country. The wallons (french speaking) the flemish (dutch speaking) and the germanophones (german speaking) With no politic involved, boys and girls had no problem to communicate, celebrate and have fun together. (usually a language quarrel).
Of course the Crown Prince Philipp was there too, he also had been Boyscout. They celebrated in 3 of the biggest parcs in Brussels from morning on with competitions, music and a lot of fun ! Police had barricaded streets for them so that they were no danger with the traffic. Thirteen camps had been put up with tents and a lot of food of course !
10.000 scouts aged from 5 to 8 where hosted in the parc in front of the royal castle and Crown Prince Philipp visited them in the afternoon. Scouts aged from 12 to 15 could camp in 5 different places in the center of Brussels. The others from 16 to 18 participated to the activities organized by Amnesty, Oxfam and the Red Cross.
In the afternoon a big show was organized in the biggest stadion of Belgium in Brussels the "King Baudouin Stadium" with around 50.000 seats.
This was the biggest Boy Scout meeting ever realized in the whole world this year. In comparison the UK boy scouts were 40.000 last year in July.
And the most positive was communicated today. There had been no incident at all, strictly nothing. The police could celebrate with them. There was only fun and joy.
Sunday, April 29, 2007
This is the "Edo Koma" from Japan.
"Edo" is the former name of Tokyo. In the Edo period(1603-1867 AD),the capital of Japan was called Edo. Craftsman uses the same technology as that time.
"Koma" is spinning-top in English.
This masterpiece is made by the person who recieved the prime minister award.
You spin a top,then the second parts(small daruma) will slowly spin with the friction.
The face of small daruma stop pointing the number on the third parts(big daruma).
We can use it like a dice.
You can see the movie from here.
Jeita Grotto is a compound set of caves in Lebanon located 18km north from Beirut in the Valley of Nahr al-Kalb (Dog River). The caverns of Jeita are on two levels: the lower, which can be seen by boat, over a subterranean lake 623 meters long, and the upper that is dry and is a gallery which can be seen while walking on foot.
These caves and galleries, known to man since Paleolithic times, were re-discovered and fully opened to the public in the 1960's.
The action of water has created cathedral-like vaults beneath the wooded hills of Mount Lebanon forming magnificent caverns. Distances as far as 7 km into the lower caves and over 2 km of the upper caves have been reached.
Because of its beauty and close proximity to Beirut, Jeita Grotto is an attraction to most people who visit Lebanon.
Among all the places of worship of North Africa, Ghriba is regarded as more crowned. “It is the anteroom of Jerusalem”, often intends one to say to Jerba. According to the oral tradition of the rabbis of Tunisia, the history of this holy place would go up with the destruction of the first temple of Jerusalem by king Nabuchodonosor, into 565 before the Christian era.
Servants of the temple, Cohanims (plural of Cohen), having escaped with the massacre, succeeded in carrying one of the doors (or was a flagstone?) temple. They fled in boat, while following the road (where were they simply pushed by the winds?) of Phéniciens builders of Carthage, and that of Ulysses who, retained in Jerba by flowers enivrantes, had given him the name of Island of Lotophages.
Cohanims thus chose this island with the thousand feeries which, collapsing under the fruit trees, medlar trees, pêchers, fig trees, evoked for them the garden of Eden. They beat there the first synagogue of Africa under which they celebrate the invaluable relic of the temple. The current synagogue, set up at last century, was it on the same site.
Joined with the wire of the centuries by the descendants of the other tribes of Israel, the Jews of Jerba converted with the judaism the local Berber tribes - whose majority will be Islamized later on by the Arabs.
The word Ghriba means the foreign one, the astonishing,the recluse. Another legend says that the synagogue would owe its name with a very beautiful woman come from nowhere, who would have installed her hut with little distance from the Jewish village of Hara Sghira. This woman would have been surrounded by one will have holiness and it would have had miraculous gifts of cure.
It however never was completely accepted by the community. One day, the villagers believed to see a fire on the side of its hut, but they did not intervene, for fear it is not devoted to activities of sorcery. The following day, they found the foreign dead one in its hut destroyed by the flames, but its body was intact.
The villagers, regretting their attitude would then have built the synagogue on the site of the hut and the miraculous capacity of astonishing foreign, would always act. But officially, the pilgrimage celebrates every year the death of two eminent rabbis kabbalists: Rabbi Meyer Baal Nich, man of miracles, and Rabbi Shiméon Bar Yohai, to which them Jewish of North Africa allot one of the comments of Zohar - the book of Splendours -, one of the great works of the Jewish mystic.
This picture was taken several weeks ago. It was a perfect day for kite flying. It was a lovely sunny day and the breeze was so ideal for some summer fun. We took advantage of it and had a marvelous time.
Happy weekend everyone!
Saturday, April 28, 2007
This mosque is called Valide Camii, surraunded in Aksaray area in İstanbul. It was built between 1869 and 1871 by Sultan Abdülaziz's mother, Pertevniyal Valide Sultan. It is at the heart of Aksaray. It is well condition. It is nice to looking at the mosque.
Usually food. From what I can see around, more than 70% of the Romanian people prepare their own food. This includes not only daily lunch or dinner, but also the preserved aliments like a boiled vegetables salad called “zacusca”, the tomato sauce, the jam or the pickles (tomatoes, peppers, cabbage, cauliflower etc.). The most interesting is that, although they can find in stores all this aliments and overall at a lower cost, people keep preparing them each autumn..
I’ll take for example the “zacusca”, which I suspect to be one of the Romanian specific foods. Traditionally, the woman (usually it’s the woman who does the cooking so…) goes to the market and buys the vegetables. (In the next topic I’ll describe one of those markets for you, because... it really is a special place.) Those vegetables are red peppers and eggplants. Most important: you don’t buy them from the supermarket or things like that, you buy them from the man who planted them in his own garden. So. You buy the bell peppers, the eggplants, than you need some vinegar, oil, sugar, salt, pepper, laurel leaves, savory or whatever spices you prefer. You wash the vegetables, take the seeds out of the bell peppers, you cut the vegetables in cubes and put them to boil for 15 minutes in a pot with water, vinegar, salt and sugar. Than you let them chill for a half an hour or an hour. Then you have to put them through the mincing machine. Then you put them to boil in a large pot and you keep adding oil, every 5 or ten minutes. You also put there the spices and stuff. The thing is you have to stay near it for more than an hour, mixing it. Otherwise it can stick to the bottom of the pot and burn. You don’t want that to happen :D. After it is well boiled you put it into glass jars you have cleaned and prepared earlier. You have to pour the hot “zacusca” through a funnel with the ladle. So you don’t get burned. You also have to put a knife under the jar, so it won’t break because of the heat.
The home made “zacusca” tastes good. And I suppose it’s also healthier. You can keep it all the winter and the spring. And you can still eat it in the summer, it won’t alter. But you’ll lose about half a day making it. And you risk burning your hands when mixing it while boiling. And if you’re not careful and you turn the boiling pot over you…well you can imagine. The thing is you waste a lot of time only with the “zacusca”, not to mention the other aliments and, if I made the right counting…..it’s cheaper to buy it from the supermarket.
If anyone wants the recipe… just ask and I’ll be glad to post it as soon as possible.
It is a magnificent place described as suburban living in the city. Serendra is a fascinating residential area with a remarkable "7.5 hectares dedicated to wide open spaces, exclusive themed gardens, and courtyards."
Serendra's modern architecture and wide common spaces make it ideal for family living. Another highlight of this community is the Piazza, which includes both the residential and themed-retail sections. It is a fast booming area worth visiting.
I found a very nice musical video of a song called "Tico de Corazon" (Costa Rican at heart). The song was composed by Eduardo "Balo" Gomez but sung by Mauricio Penagos. It is a nice melody with the sounds of our traditional music and spectacular scenes of our beautiful country. Even if you don't understand the lyrics of the song, the images of our country make watching the video worth it. Enjoy!
The famous actor Michael J Fox Foundation for research about Parkinsons disease is together with other American Parkinson's organizations, giving away 1,5 million dollar to research groups.
Two of the receivers is Swedish researchers. Professor Thomas Perlmann at Ludwig institute at the Karolinska Institute, will together with Anders Björklund at Lunds University (South of Sweden) investigate the proteine Nurr1:s function in the adult mouse brain.
This news is several months old, but never the less good news. How neat it would be if they could come up with something new!
The Karolinska Institute is one of Europe's largest medical universities. It is also Sweden´s largest centre for medical training and research and it's Nobel Assembly is the ones that handles the awarding of the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine.
Spring greetings from Sweden
PS. You can read more about the research money here:
Michael J Fox Foundation News
Thursday, April 26, 2007
I’m sorry that this post is rather long, but it is a complicated subject.
First, I need to say that we have a gun in our house. When my husband was a teenager, his father gave him a .22 rifle. They would go out hunting a couple of times a year, shared moments of quiet in the woods between a father and son, with sometimes a squirrel brought home to be stewed or fried. The father is gone, the rifle oiled and wrapped carefully and stored, probably not to be used again. But it is kept and I would not ask that we get rid of it.
Also, my son-in-law has a gun at his house. It is kept clean and oiled, locked in a gun cabinet, but ready to use if coyotes or other animals threaten his calves. He fires to scare the animals, and would kill them only if they were actually dangerous (rabies, etc).
So I cannot say that all guns should be banned, I just cannot be that hypocritical. But I do have major misgivings with the attitude of many people here toward guns.
Some background: Hunting and rifles run through US history- the settlers that came to this natural land felt the need for protection and wanted to feed their families. A man carving out a niche for himself and his family would keep a rifle (musket) handy, to be used if necessary to defend from dangerous animals or people, but mostly to add meat to their diets. Many had come from countries where they could do neither- as tenant farmers, they could not defend themselves nor hunt game. This desire to be independent was a strong force, we call it the ‘pioneering spirit’, and the rifle was just a tool to help them.
While few families now hunt to feed themselves, many retain the hunting tradition, using it as a bond between fathers and sons, and sometimes with daughters, too. These are the majority of gun owners in the USA, and although I don’t like hunting, I don’t have a problem with people who choose to hunt, if they follow rules and safety procedures.
Now we come to what I perceive as the major problems (**with some personal notes):
A. Laws concerning firearms vary widely from state to state, with too many states having very lax laws or poor enforcement of existing laws.
**There needs to be a strong, consistent, national law requiring background checks, waiting periods, and registration of all firearms.
B. People who feel vulnerable will sometimes legally buy and keep a handgun in their homes for protection. Often these guns accidentally or through carelessness kill the owners, or their children.
**The laws should be stricter and harder to circumvent. There should be required classes.
C. Under the guise of the 2nd amendment to the US Constitution, some people claim that they are guaranteed the right to own any kind of gun that they wish. People who need to feel empowered will buy large handguns and high-powered rifles/assault weapons, to make themselves feel ‘macho’. Most of these people will never shoot anyone, they just want to swagger. But this puts these guns on the open market, where anyone can get them, one way or another. A criminal will not heed gun registration laws or regulations.
** These yahoos need to grow up, get over it, and find another hobby. We don’t need any of these guns in private hands.
D. A person who qualifies can get a gun legally and later turn violent.
**When someone turns violent, they will use what is at hand, be it gun, knife, baseball bat, or automobile. Outlawing handguns and automatic weapons will help by limiting their choice of weapons, but it is treating the symptoms, not the cause. There are deeper issues here.
The debate in the USA is intense and has been going on as long as I can remember. The National Rifle Association and other groups have the strongest lobby, and legislation is fought every step of the way. The laws that are passed are challenged in the courts and loopholes abound. If the local authorities turn a blind eye, the laws may as well not exist. It would seem that an incident like the killings at Virginia Tech would make people change their minds about gun control, but that is apparently not the case. Americans can be a stubborn lot, and I’m afraid we’ll continue to shoot ourselves in the foot rather than face the facts.
**discussion and questions are welcome, but please don’t yell at me.
Wednesday, April 25, 2007
The Barong Tagalog is an embroidered upper garment and known as the formal men's wear of the Philippines. It is very lightweight and worn untucked, similarly to a coat. It is the common wedding and formal attire for Filipino men. Barong Tagalog literally means "Tagalog dress" in the Tagalog language.
As the Philippines' national dress, the Barong Tagalog enjoys a distinction all its own. Its fine needlework or hand-painted designs in cool cotton or handwoven pina or jusi have given it a flair that has won international recognition and acceptance.
My husband has two Barong Tagalog which he wears in formal gatherings such as weddings. My three year old son recently had a Barong custom tailored for him when he was asked to become a bible bearer for the wedding of my husband's cousin.
Tortilla de patatas is a thick potato omelette we use to eat all over Spain. With paella, it is one of the most famous spanish dishes, and it's served in many bars&restaurants. I like it very much, over all with onions, and since I arrived to La Rioja, one year ago, I love it with spicy red pepper on it, as served in bar Sebas, one of the bars of the calle laurel I talked about some time ago.
I'm going to tell you how to cook it, it's very easy! Just tell me when you try it. Good luck!
- 4 medium-sized potatoes, peeled and thinly sliced
- 6 eggs
- 1 onion, chopped
- ¼ litre olive oil
First, heat the oil in a large frying pan and add the sliced potatoes, fried them until almost soft, stirring from time to time so that they don't burn on the bottom of the pan. Add the onion and continue frying until both vegetables are soft.
Beat the eggs in a bowl and season with salt and pepper. Add the potatoes and the onion and mix well. Heat a little oil in a frying pan on a moderate heat. Pour in the potatoes and eggs and shake the frying pan from time to time so that the omelette doesn't stick to the bottom. Once the bottom of the omelette has set, turn the heat down low and cover the pan. After about ten minutes, turn the omelette by placing either a flat plate or saucepan lid on the frying pan and quickly turning over. Gently slide the omelette back into the frying pan and continue frying, once again shaking the pan from time to time so that it doesn't stick to the bottom, until it has set all the way through.
I like it hot, but you can eat it cold aswell. Add some olives and a bottle of red wine and you will feel spanish! But, overall, don't forget to get your friends invited: One tortilla de patatas has to be shared!
(ooops! too late, we finished it!)
Tuesday, April 24, 2007
All of you have done a great JOB.....
next Against the AUSI........
Juan Carlos Paniagua, left back, and Abelardo Araya, right back, broadcast during the inaugurati-on of the first radio program produced by and for homosexuals called Diversity in San Jose, Thursday, April 19, 2007. Araya said the purpose of the program is to create a space for debate on human rights issues for homosexuals in Costa Rica. (AP Photo/Kent Gilbert)
Note from Tico: it will be interesting to see how people react to their program and how long they can stay on the air. In a country where Catholicism is the official religion and people are not used to talk openly about these issues they may very well struggle to find program sponsors and get good ratings.
Monday, April 23, 2007
I'd just like to start off by saying thanks again for the comments and the nice words. I appreciate them.
Anywho, a few more info on the island I live. Right after Easter comes the slow days. Not many visitors coming for a while and everything pretty much getting mellow. The days are hotter which means you do not have much to do while the days are hot, not a good combination
A couple days ago, I took a walk on the beach and for the first time I took a picture of the sunset. It was nice but I know I could've gotten a better one. I have started getting into taking picture more lately, so hopefully I will be getting some nice pictures to post here.
Also, this weekend is Belize's National Agriculture and Trade Show. Hopefully, I will be able to make it this year as I have not been for a number of years. If I do, I will post some pictures when I return. On this note, I will leave with that picture of that sunset I took. :-)
At least 10 people were missing today after a large earthquake in southern Chile caused power cuts, landslides and large waves off the nation's Pacific coast, authorities said. The 6.2 magnitude quake hit at 13:50 local time with an epicentre 1320km south of the capital Santiago, near the city of Coyhaique. At first it was not thought to have caused material damages.
Sunday, April 22, 2007
If you can join with a MSN /Yahoo Chat Service we can directly talk about you country and you as well as we can improve our Blog to high Level. Because I feel we are alone. We just post articles. Sometime others may not read good articles. But if we can communicate in a one place we can give good ideas to each others. And think if one of blog member wants to visit to Sri Lanka. i can arrange all facilities on behalf of your visit.
Before that we have to know each member well.
Hope you understand this well …
Pls comment on this.
your comments are highly appriciated !
From next weekend,we'll have consecutive holidays in Japan.
Some people have 9 consecutive holidays.
We call these consecutive holidays as "Golden Week".
Do you have this kind of consecutive holidays in your country,if so, when?
You may meet many Japanese in your country around this season.
Please be nice to them. m(_ _)m
m(_ _)m <- We use this face mark when we ask someone.
This is from "Dogeza",Japanese style of asking or apologizing,and obedience.
Dogeza is to kneel and bow until his forehead touched the floor.
This photo shows how to do "Dogeza". v(^o^)v
Saturday, April 21, 2007
For policemen of course it is different as a gun is part of their work equipment. But this has changed too. Since yesterday a policemen is not allowed anymore to take his gun home. He has to leave it in his locker before he leaves.
Of course there have been a lot of pro and cons because sometimes a policemen even private could settle some fights in a subway for example if he would have a gun.
The decision to make this new law came finally up when a policeman had shot his wife in a fit of jealousy last year.
The law of last year also includes switchblade knives, nunchakus, or other japonese weapons,
electrochoc weapons, self defense sprays, bow and arrows, clubs, metal rings (to knock someone out) etc.
With these laws Belgium has become or still is a quite safe country. Of course there are burglaries, car and home jackings but these are all criminal damages and can be replaced. It also happens that people are murdered but never such massacres could happen like in the USA for example.
With a knife you can only kill one person at the time, with strangling, beating etc. too. It's therefore impossible to shoot around like a mad cowboy and kill more than 30 people at one time, as it had happened last week in Virginia.
Earth Day came to Canada in 1990 and has become quite popular.
The event is popular in Victoria and has grown into a week long affair. This year marks Victoria's 26th Earth Walk.
There is always something interesting at Earth Walk and sometimes you see some really odd things.
Jane has also posted about Earth Day.
Friday, April 20, 2007
I remember the 1960s. At that time, the air in cities was yellow-brown, acid-rain was killing trees and the Cuyahoga River caught on fire. People were looking around at our not-so-beautiful America, and getting fed up. So when Senator Gaylord Nelson asked for public support for the environment on April 22, 1970, 20 million Americans turned out for rallies and demonstrations on our first “Earth Day”. Congress responded to this show of concern by passing the Clean Air Act, the Water Quality Improvement Act, The Toxic Substances Control Act, and many other pieces of legislation to help clean up the environment and by creating the Environmental Protection Agency.
We have come a long way: the air and waterways are cleaner, environmental protection is a regular part of the school curriculum, most communities have recycling programs, and more.
But the work is not done, and sometimes the powers in charge want to go backwards. We have to stay aware and work to keep the protection of our environment as a priority for our government and our citizens.
We will celebrate Earth Day on April 22, 2007 with projects and activities all across the USA, and, hopefully, make more progress toward cleaning up the environment.
Does your country celebrate Earth Day? Who helped get it started?
Thursday, April 19, 2007
It was a beautiful garden reception and the weather was perfect. The groom said they offered 2 dozen eggs to St. Claire prior to the wedding to grant them a good weather (a common Catholic wedding tradition in the Philippines).
Wednesday, April 18, 2007
Yesterday was April 18, the day Zimbabweans commemorate Independence. It’s an emotive issue, the changeover from white (minority) rule to Black rule, self rule, majority rule. The symbol of the new way, the raised fist, the symbol people all around the world saw on April 18, 1980, stirred many hearts. It was the dawn of a new day, the beginning of hope and a future for the people who were once strangers in their own land.
So yesterday should have swelled the hearts of many Zimbabweans. Yesterday should have reminded us of national pride. It should, really. The truth is that Zimbabwe has not always been a thing of shame. I know many Zimbabweans who now cringe when they must state their nationality, many who feel ashamed of that green passport that is now rejected by so many. Even I have been considering lately how I could shake off my citizenship- not because I am not patriotic, but because I am young, and I want a future for myself and my family, a future that Zimbabwe, limping along, cannot hope to provide.
Self-rule brings challenges. For a while we slip and slide along on sheer euphoria, we only eat hope and the promise of a brand new life. Freedom is like a drug, and Zimbabweans loved the thrill of it. And it lasted a long time; we felt invincible, we felt like our nation was born under a lucky star, on that day in 1980.
Today, we have a new struggle. What people from without cannot understand is why Zimbabweans do not resolve the economic issues. Why the economy is in tatters, with inflation predicted to hit 2 000 % by year end (and that’s a conservative estimate). What people simply don’t get is why people have gone to the polls and voted the same person in for over twenty years.
How can one ever explain? The simplest answer is that Robert Mugabe still represents the fondest hopes and dreams of many Zimbabweans. He is the symbol of our release from oppression, a hero of the time when we were less than people, mere dogs who could be kicked to the kerb. I have been told the story of a man who went to the shops with his father, pre-independence, when he was still a boy. His father walked boldly in through the front door. The shop owner cursed at him, kicked him, called him names, told him to come to the little window where the “kaffirs” (a derogatory term) were served.
I bring this up not to stir up hatred or violent emotion. Just to gently remind the world that the generation that witnessed these things is still alive. Just to remind people that Zimbabweans are not fools, as you might expect; because we all know how easily confrontations in Africa degenerate into civil war. And we have that legendary African patience, that waits for change and never gives up hope. After all, we have a Shona saying: chisingaperi chinoshura. Roughly translated, that means that which does not come to an end is an abnormal thing, it portends disaster, it refuses to fit into the scheme of things.
I am reading a book right now that reminds me of the trouble with the euphoria of self-rule: Half of a Yellow Sun, by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie. I am only halfway through, but I am already moved because of man’s inhumanity to man, because of how easily something good can turn to something bad. It’s not that long ago that Zimbabwe was a symbol of all that could be right with Africa. It’s not that long ago that we were called the “bread basket of Africa”, and the jewel of Africa. And now we are in the news for the wrong reasons…
So, young Zimbabweans, well-educated and able to, will continue to flee the country, rather than start things that may worsen the situation even further. Zimbabweans are known for their ready laugh; and it won’t be long until we can laugh again. Africa has survived so many things; it is an ancient continent that has been ravaged over and over. Zimbabwe has the African spirit; Zimbabwe will live on to see another day.
In 1994 he played for the Bulgarian National team at the World Cup in USA and won the Golden Foot prize for most scored goals. Later he won the prestigious Golden Ball award. Apart from the many sports awards, Hristo Stoichkov has been awarded other titles such as Man of the Year in Bulgaria.
Today Hristo is a coach. He started his coaching career in 2004 when he was hired to train the Bulgarian National team. Many people criticize him of taking a greater responsibility than he could bear. With no experience as a coach whatsoever, he led the team to many embarrassing defeats and draws. On April 11, 2007 he resigned and went to Spain, where he became the head coach of Celta Vigo. He lost much of his charisma and reputation. No one questions his talent as a football player and goal scorer though.
PICTURE; Sari Sarkomaa is a new minister of Education in Finland
FINLAND is a democracy. The citizents can vote every fourth year a new parlament. This year the great winner was Kokoomus (right wing) and the great loser was SDP ( socialdemocrats). In a shot time we got a new government, that has ministers from four parties (Center, Right Wing, Greens and Swedish party). The Prime Minister is Matti Vanhanen from Keskusta (Center Party). The new minister of Education is Sari Sarkomaa from Kokoomus.
in FINLAND the government sits four years- to the next election. When the government starts its work, it writes a program of policies. This paper will be presented in the parlament and the represenatitives of parlament say yes or now to the program. Because the parties in the government have about 130 representatives from 200, the program will be accepted.
NEXT week I will tell You more about the program concerning schools.
Costa Rican biologist Idalia Valierio, left, and biologist Ronald Sanchez, right, take measurements and stool and blood samples of captured Congo monkeys at the Nogal Reserve near Sarapiqui, Costa Rica, Saturday, April 14, 2007. Scientists from two Costa Rican universities are studying effects of climate change such as cataracts caused by damage to the ozone layer, loss of pigmentation due to pesticides and other diseases in a primates' genetics and general health study. (AP Photo/Kent Gilbert)
Sidi Bou Said is a town in northern Tunisia ,it is located only 20 km from the capital of Tunisia, Tunis.
The town is a tourist attraction as it is known for the extensive use of blue and white colors all over the town.
Monday, April 16, 2007
Here is a little trip across Canada via Canadian blogs. All of these blogs are listed at my Big Blog Directory.
Blog: Flotsam and Jetsam
Location: Victoria, BC.
Blog: Ocean and Forest Walks
Location: Victoria, BC.
Post: More Flowers in Our Garden
Location: Yellowknife, NWT.
Post: Spring has Sprung in Yellowknife
Blog: Eco Planet Canada
Post: Grape growers crushed
Blog: Brian Cormier's Blogtastic World!
Location: Moncton, NB.
Post: Canada's first national lottery draw was 33 years ago today!
Ok people, it seems I created quite a stir when I posted the entry about the Tico Croc tradition.
I have to admit that I probably used the wrong word to describe the event. In truth the event is not a crocodile hunt with the aim of killing the animal, but a crocodile capture.
The inhabitants of Ortega, in Santa Cruz, Guanacaste have captured a crocodile on Good Friday for more than 150 years. The tradition just involves catching the croc and keeping it for a couple of days. After the festivities are over the animal is released unharmed.
This year, as it has been the rule for four years now, government representatives of the Environment and Energy Ministry, are present during the festivities and they are allowed to stop the event if they consider that at any moment the life of the crocodile is being put at risk.
Another reader from Turkey asked me if there is a crocodile hunting season in Costa Rica. I want to clarify that there is no crocodile hunting season in Costa Rica. If people hunt crocodiles in Costa Rica they do it illegally. In fact, this so called "hunt" is allowed only because the crocodile is now released unharmed and because it's a tradition over 100-years old.
Ecotourism is one of our main industries and thus the conservation of the earth and its species is very important for most of us Ticos.
Pura Vida from Costa Rica!
The summer this year is going to be so-so this year - at least if you believe the forecast implied in the traditional burning of the Böögg, a large white puppet not unlike a snowman is burnt each year in Zürich's traditional Sechseläuten. The faster the explosives in the Böögg's head blow up, the nicer the summer is going to be - today, it took a pretty lenghty 12 minutes and 9 seconds! But at least, it worked. Last year, the Böögg was abducted by political activists, which was quite embarrassing for the Zürich government. So, this year, they had two replacement Bööggs ready just in case, and they were kept in a bank safe ...
The honeybees are disappearing.
Honeybees pollinate most of the world's crops.
Albert Einstein once said that if the bees disappeared, "man would have only four years of life left".
100% of almond trees (crop value $2.2 billion), 90% of apple trees (2.1 billion), 90% of blueberries (0.5 billion) are among the fruits, vegetables, nuts and other crops pollinated by honey bees each year in the United States.
Therefore, when the honeybees start disappearing at a rate reaching to 70% in some regions of the
It is still not clear why this is happening, but there is speculation that the use of cell phones may be the culprit.
(This post was also published on my blog, I believe it is worthy of sharing with you all.)
In Belgium women are almost equal to men. I say almost because there is still some discrepancy in salaries for the same work. But in our government a lot of women are represented and also have top jobs.
This hasn't been always like that. At the beginning of the 19th century the woman was nothing, had no rights and was treated like a kind of slave to men. A married woman was not allowed to earn money for herself, if she earned something she had to give it to her husband. She was not allowed to buy something of her own or get something without the permission of her husband.
From 1900 on it got better. A woman now was allowed to have an own bank account and could handle it without authorisation of her husband. She also was allowed to work and earn money.
From 1921 on a woman could become a maire or have other activities for the city. At that time already 74 women were elected for local politics. From 1932 on she was allowed to keep for herself and administrate all her personal fortune which she brought into marriage, but it had to be stipulated in a contract. This is valid still up today.
Belgian women never change their names. When they marry they keep their birth name and officially don't take over her husband's name. This had always been like that.
Sometimes it can provoke some funny situations especially in countries where unmarried couples are not allowed to take one room. This has happened in the past (until end 70) when a Belgian married couple travelled to Italy or other Southern countries because they always had to take their marriage certificate with them.
To other nationalities it may seem quite strange to read that in a family everybody has the same name, except the woman. The children are always named by their father's name.
On visit cards or home addresses the two names are always present. That way each married couple has two names. Of course in private life women are always called by their husband's name, Mrs Smith for example and not Mrs. Jones her maiden name.
Maiden names don't exist in Belgium, because the woman keeps her name from birth till death.
Sunday, April 15, 2007
Japanese famous TV animation started lately.
Its title is "GeGeGe no Kitaro".
It was originated from Japanese comic,MANGA in Japanese.
The story is that good specter "Kitaro" and his friends protect people from evil specters.
Various specters show up and annoy us a lot.
We ask for Kitaro a help,and he beats evil one.
You can see some of them at here.
Are there the same kind of stories in your country?
Saturday, April 14, 2007
Costa Ricans carry a crocodile captured during the traditional Good Friday crocodile hunt near Ortega, Costa Rica, Friday, April 6, 2007. The inhabitants of Ortega have captured a crocodile on Good Friday for its curative properties for more than 150 years.(AP Photo/Kent Gilbert)
Friday, April 13, 2007
Bangla speakers across Bangladesh and in many other places around the world celebrate Pahela Baishakh today, ringing in the new Bangla year, 1414, with much fanfare and enthusiasm.
Thousands of people in Dhaka converge on Ramna Batamul, the main venue of the celebrations, at sunrise as Chhayanaut, which has been observing the day since 1965, ushers in the new year with the song of Rabindranath Tagore sung by its students.
The crowd, in small groups, will then head for other places of celebrations such as the Institute of Fine Art at Dhaka University, from where a mangal shobhajatra or a procession seeking wellbeing for all, with marchers in masks and traditional dresses, will walk down the campus roads, Teachers-Students Centre, Nat Mandal, Suhrawardy Udyan, Shishu Academy, Central Shaheed Minar, Rabindra Sarobar at Dhanmondi and other parks and public places of baishakhi mela, or traditional fairs.
People in other metropolises also converge on the respective cultural hubs for a share of the celebrations and to attend fairs as people in the rural Bengal observe the day visiting fairs and folk performances and exchanging pleasantries. Traders in rural areas and also in small towns open new ledgers settling the accounts of the year gone by.
People customarily cook special dishes and visit and entertain guests today, although the ritual has increasingly become an urban affair, especially in cities.
Bangla speakers of West Bengal and Tripura and in many other places, however, will celebrate the day on Sunday as a modification in the calculation of the luni-solar Bangla calendar, done by a Bangla Academy committee headed by Dr Muhammad Shahidullah in 1963 to match the Gregorian system, was adopted by the Bangladesh government in 1988. Pahela Baishakh, however, is a public holiday in Bangladesh and a national holiday in West Bengal.
Visit daily star supplement for more pictures and news
Willem Alexander and Maxima already had two daughters named Princess Catharina-Amalia Beatrix Carmen Victoria (Amalia) and Princess Alexia Juliana Marcela Laurentien (Alexia). Their 3rd child was born a few days ago but the name was not known until today so 'everybody' made guesses.
It was obvious that the daughter's first name would start with an 'A'. I expected (and hoped) on 'Anita' but the parents decided different.
And yes! No surprise as their 3rd child is named Ariane Wilhelmina Máxima Ines (Ariane), a nice name and pronounced as 'Ariaan'.
Her other names can be explained as follows. Wilhelmina is the name of Willems grandmother, Máxima is Maxima's grandmother and Ines is Maxima's youngest sister.
The three children are born between December 2003 and April 10 2007, quite an achievement.
She is fourth in line to the Dutch throne. Our current Queen is Beatrix, Willem's mother.
Closing the gap...from the Netherlands
Thursday, April 12, 2007
I’m not a big fan of ‘reality shows’- the kind where a camera crew follows a group of people around, waiting for them to do something stupid or outlandish. So when I heard there was going to be a reality show featuring a family of ‘little people’ (aka dwarfs), I was a bit disquieted. But one day, while channel surfing, I ran across the show. I watched a bit, waiting to see just how awful it was. It didn’t take long to change my mind.
The show features the Roloff family, sharing their very normal daily lives. They deal with home and jobs, kids and school, chores and vacations. They point out the problems faced by the little cast members (both parents and one of the four children) and how they deal with these problems. But it is done as a matter of course: just their lives and the methods they use to get things done. While some people probably tune in to the show to see the ‘funny people' , I think they quickly learn that being different doesn’t make much difference. It also gives ‘average’ people a bit to think about- especially when they feel like whining about life’s little problems.
As Brooke Runnette, the program's executive producer for TLC, puts it:
“…people have written in to say that through watching the show they are developing a new understanding of the abilities of people with dwarfism.With all the lousy programming offered today, I find it encouraging to find a good, positive show on television that also receives high ratings.
"We hear all the time from families who say that the show has spurred discussion in their living room about what it means to be different, and that's incredibly gratifying."
Tuesday, April 10, 2007
I went to Kapalıçarşı (Grand Bazaar) today for some reason. I took this picture there. This is one of the shops. They sell hand made Turkish china. Some people are very fond of that. I am personally not interested in. You can find whole Turkish traditional stuff from gold to scarf. Ladies...this is the place for you!!!
- The clock tower built in 1814. The original clock mechanism is still working;
- The Daskalov house: a 200-year old house turned into a museum keeping the best works of woodcarving I've ever seen, as well as authentic workshop where old masters worked;
- St. Archangel Michael Church: one of the oldest historical sites of Bulgaria that is believed to have been the built in the 1190s by the Asen brothers to honor the final defeat over the Byzantine Empire. Most of it was restored after the devastating attacks from the Ottomans in 1798.
Monday, April 09, 2007
"City of Angels is an English language film directed by Brad Silberling in 1998. The film stars Nicolas Cage and Meg Ryan. Set in Los Angeles, California, the film is a remake of Wim Wenders 1987 German film Wings of Desire, which was set in Berlin. In the film, an angel(Cage) falls in love with a human woman (Ryan) and has to decide whether to become mortal to spend his life with her or to stay an angel. The angel who becomes human is a sort of herdsman for the dead, known simply as Seth. He listens to music every dawn and dusk, which apparently originates in the sunrise and sunset. With him are scores of other angels, invisible and undetected by human adults. Seth spends considerable time thinking about humans; he becomes very interested in their thoughts and feelings, particularly those of a female heart surgeon (Ryan)." From Wikipedia
I know that this film is old, i saw it more than 20 time.
I like it so much
But do you think that we can find a real love like this??
Sunday, April 08, 2007
This year happens to be one of those rare years when the liturgical calendars of the Orthodox Christians and Catholic Christians coincide. For that reason, all Lebanese Christian communities celebrated Easter together.
Last week also witnessed the birthday of Prophet Mohammed (eid ma'w lid al Nabi). All Lebanese Moslem communities celebrated it.
Schools are on their yearly, almost two weeks, spring break. The whole atmosphere is that of laziness.
I'll Leave you to enjoy the photo above of Lebanese Roman Orthodox Christians lighting their candles from a torch that came to Beirut from Jerusalem via Jordan.
Photo from the Lebanese daily newspaper: Annahar
The bells of Rome, our church bells, are ringing every day of the year, to invite people to church, but not during Easter time. They stop on thursday until saturday evening. During these days they go to Rome and rest from the whole year's work. Then on Easter sunday they come back with a lot of eggs which they drop in parcs or gardens or sometimes also in flats and houses.
For all children Easter egg huntings are organized in parks by the city and colored eggs and chocolate eggs are hidden in bushes or behind trees.
In the past the chocolate shops were full of chocolate bells, wrapped in golden foil and yellow ribbons. But slowly slowly the Easter Bunny replaced them although children still believe that the eggs and bunnies are brought by the bells of Rome.
In the 50th you didn't see one single Easter bunny in the shop windows. There were chocolate fishes symbolizing Good Friday and eggs. Unfortunately also little living yellow chickens, some of them survived but most of them died. Beginning 60th it was not allowed anymore and they were replaced by fluffy false chicken.
With the arriving of the EU (Commun Market at that time) the Easter Bunny arrived too and today you will see everywhere Easter Bunnies and eggs and only sometimes bells in chocolate.
Happy Easter to all people and countries !
New commercial complex "Tokyo Midtown" opened in the center of Tokyo.
It has offices,a hotel,shops,a park,a hospital,and museum.
Lately large real-estate company "Mistui Fudosan" continuously produced this kind of large commercial complex.
Other big company "Mori Building" also produced these large complexes.
Omote Sando Hills
You can feel cutting edge Japanse fashion and culture in these areas.
The situation in Zimbabwe continues to be difficult, and as usual when elections are coming (next year, 2008), tensions continue to rise. There are major problems in Zimbabwe (as those of you who read the papers would know), problems that are difficult to solve. Nothing is as obvious as outsiders assume, and we have continued to be in this situation not because we are apathetic, but because we who live there see and know things that outsiders may simply not "get". As with any other country. So, no, the solution is not simple; in fact, it would be nothing short of extraordinary if someone found a simple solution now.
In the meantime, we continue...
Saturday, April 07, 2007
251/8 (50 Overs)
184/10 (48.3 Overs)
Bangladesh Won by 67 runs
Man of the Match: Mohammed Ashraful (87 runs)
Wishing you all a meaningful, lovely and fun Easter celebration with people close to your hearts. ~Thanks Kia for the cute sigtag~
Last year, I had time to prepare lovely Easter treats for my son and his cousins. See those eggs in the middle? My husband dyed them in different colors while I dressed them up using some computer print-outs. There was a cowboy, an Indian, a king, a baker, a bunny, and more.
This year my sister-in-law is organizing an Easter Egg Hunt for the kids at my in-laws place later today. Egg-citing! :)