Tag Archives: fire

Llandaff Cathedral, Wales

Possibly one of the most underrated cathedrals in Wales, can be found in Llandaff, in the outskirts of North Cardiff. The Anglican cathedral is extraordinary, both visually and historically.

On the 2nd of January, 1941; during world war 2, Cardiff suffered the worst bombing of the war. With around 165 people killed and another 427 seriously injured, the city was at a chaotic state. The UK’s major towns and cities have been bombarded by then. And so, was Llandaff. Landmines have fell and exploded in the churchyard, cathedral spire and the roof. It destroyed many a graves, but especially the roof which collapsed inwards destroying most of the furnishings. Luckily a lot of its valuables such as the Victorian stained glass was taken out and put into into storage, and there was no outbreak of fire.

The architect, wanted to restructure the remaining parts of the cathedral by including a modern additional plaque to support the building itself and give it a new feature. To this day, visitors comment about this choice; you either love it, or hate it!

 

 

 

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Schloss Drachenburg

Built in the 1880s, Schloss Drachenburg is a fairy tale castle. The architecture is full on romantic Gothic, with spires, the style of a medieval cathedral and a beautiful clock tower. It stands on a hill above the Rhine River, with beautiful breathtaking view of the said river.

drachen

A story from the German folklore says, that Siefried has slayed a dragon up on this very mountain, which the castle gets the name from. Drachenburg, translates to Dragon’s castle in English. The actual story of this castle is however less glamorous as it was commissioned by a rich stock broker. Funnily enough it was built in two years, yet recently a 15-year restoration was completed for 31.5 million euro.

Completed in 1884, the castle started off as a private villa, then was converted into a museum, which later on was used as an “Adolf Hitler” college for boys. To this day, you can still see holes from the US artillery fires, as they smashed the stained glass windows and facade in the last months of the war. It was at this time that the Nazi schoolboys decided to stop resisting against the americans.

The inside of the castle is full of German art and craftsmanship.

See below, some photos I took of a day well-spent in the Dragon’s castle.

Such a dreamy castle!

Reflection

So this morning I was in work, and while I was sipping my coffee and working on my weekly reports, I hear the mention of a crashing plane. Being still not wide awake, at such an ungodly hour on a Monday morning, it took me some time until it registered in my head that there was an actual plane crash.

I was even more shocked when I Googled the words “plane crash” and I saw the word MALTA.

I have never in my 29 years of life, heard of such incidents on Maltese shores. I must say, this has shaken me to the core. I got goosebumps all over as soon as I read the article, and even more so when I watched the video. Two explosions, fire everywhere, people crying as they witness what has happened. It was crazy. Heartbroken.

There were no survivors, and if you watch the video, you can understand why.

In moments like these, I can’t help but reflect on my life. How short life is, how unpredictable it is. As a frequent flyer myself, tragedies like these although they won’t convince me to stay bound to Malta forever, make me realise how fragile we are, how although rare such things happen – even if it never occur to us that it will happen to us, or someone close to us.

With this in my mind, I urge you to hold on to your loved ones a little bit tighter tonight and to not be afraid to love and be honest always. Life is precious, and once our heart stops beating that is it.

My deepest and sincere condolences to the families of the lost souls.
Rest in peace.

Good Deed This Christmas

During the Christmas season, and its cheer, I do my best to be a better human being to see the people around me smiling and having a good time.

I don’t usually pride or talk about this with people or my readers, but this year, I thought it I share one of the things I’m doing because, perhaps you will find it in your heart to do the same 🙂

Meet Safyre Terry, an 8 year old girl who two years ago lost her father and three siblings when their house caught on fire. Although she is also a burn victim, she survived and is now living with her aunt. When Safyre told her aunt that her wish this Christmas was to receive Christmas cards from all around the world, her aunt made a plea on Facebook, and they expected perhaps 20 random cards arriving to her PO Box.

When I read this, I wanted to be one of those 20 people who would make this girl smile and happy this Christmas. But it turns out that thousands of people worldwide have answered her dream, but with my card in the post, hopefully already on its way, I know that this little girl will realise that even the tiny island of Malta loves her and cares about her happiness.

 

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Remember, Remember

…The 5th of November!!

guyfawkes
For those who are not in the know, the 5th of November is the night we celebrate Guy Fawkes.

But… Who was Guy Fawkes?
Imagine England in the 1600s.. Still under shock and divided between Catholics and Protestants; of course this goes way back since the reign of King Henry VIII. Four kings later, religion did not change and the pressure was still undergoing. The story of Guy Fawkes happened two years after James I was crowned as king. In fact, Fawkes was one of the main members of The Gunpowder Plot of 1605. A group of Catholics have attempted to bomb, or rather blow up the House of Parliament and kill the king. The idea was to protest against the rule of a Protestant King. Guy was the chosen one, the one to light the fuse on D DAY. Because of this reason, he got a lot of attention regarding the conspiracy story; and also a day named after him.

If the story sounds familiar to you… It is probably because you have watched the film V for Vendetta.
Join me tonight and make it a yearly habit; Join me by watching this. Lets remember this night of treason, together.

So, what are we celebrating on this day?
I would dare say, that for the Brits, this day is Thanksgiving Day. The tradition itself started on the same day and year that the Gunpowder Plot had the failed coup. It started as a joyful celebration of Londoners, relieved that their King was saved. This was done by the means of a bonfire.
As time went by, the celebration became more elaborate. Preparations for the Bonfire Night did not include just the bonfire, but also fireworks. Before this day, some would also dare making a dummy of Guy Fawkes, the Pope and some even of politicians. Guy’s dummy is placed on top of the bonfire, and once it is alight, people would throw into the fire the other dummies. Fireworks display fills the sky all over Britain, and some would also light their own fireworks from their home garden.

Bonfire Night is not just celebrated in Britain, as the tradition itself crossed oceans all over and has become popular in a lot of the British colonies along the years. Canada and New Zealand for instance still celebrate it.

steffisays-guyfawkes-2012
When I lived in England, I was very keen about this Day. I even got my own mask. X

I’m not dead, just been busy

I’m not dead, just been busy… and I am struggling with a massive writer block… A lot has been happening, but instead of writing about it, I am just enjoying the ride…. ….Except that this week has been the feast week in the town I’m living in. Usually the feast week lasts 7 days… but the Siggiewi people have decided on a 10 day long celebration. So every day, I have been struggling and annoyed at:

  • Lack of parking
  • Closing off the town during feast hours
  • Lots of loud music; be it orchestra-like or singers singing at the main square. This, I can hear from my house, even with all windows and doors closed.
  • Fireworks
  • Lots of rubbish left in my street

I am not a fan of feasts… Never was, never will be… So, I just can’t wait until tomorrow is over. Maybe then, I can get a goodnight sleep and even better, park my car close to home.

Fire & Ice

fire and iceIn the moment
Whilst darkness caresses
the light

…and the light embraces
the darkness

I struggle to stay alight
leave thoughts behind.

Emotions in dire
my heart afire:

wondering
conflicting
constricting
refraining
from believing –
your eyes so cold
daunted, unbold.

________________________
//By Steffi ~

Victoria Grayson’s Master Plan [Revenge]

Things are never the same, when your favourite character dies in a series…

I am still under a shock, and traumatised following the death of Victoria Grayson. How and if I will ever get over it is another question. There is so much that I loved about this woman;

1. Her sense of style and the way she portrays herself physically in every single episode… Should I look half as good as her when I am her age, I would be so happy.

victoria dress

2. Her fashion statement was not only her clothes, but also her furniture.

victoria chair

3. Her ability to manipulate people and have several men falling for her

4. Her evilness and her wickedness

victoria gif 1victoria gif 2

5. And most of all, how her suicide (sadly), was her master plan to ruin Emily Thorne’s (Amanda’s) life… Lets see if Amanda would be able to get out of this one! [Read more here]


HA.