Tag Archives: school

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.

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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!

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I’ll be there for you…

It seems that in the past few years, several people who I used to know or I was at school with, have decided to give up. They have realised that it is time, they’d let their struggles win, and simply let go of their physical life.

The news I read today, has devastated me.

It just makes me realise how fragile we are… How people can appear like they are having the time of their life from the outside, yet they feel dead inside; empty.
I can speak from experience when I say, that some of us can hide their feelings very well from the society we live in, and only break down when alone, in a safe place. I guess, it is difficult to admit that we are weak, in the fear of being ridiculed or shut down, when we show our true feelings. Experiencing neglect and being misunderstood is definitely much worse than feeling sad and insecure in your own head.

But this is our problem. If we don’t admit defeat, if we don’t ask for help… how do we get better? How can we win a fight we are not even trying to battle?

Moreover, if it is not you, but a friend of yours, how would you manage to detect their depression, insecurities and concerns? How can you help them, without making them admit they are suffering and going downhill?

I keep wondering, if someone knew what was going on, maybe the death could have been prevented? If someone cared enough, offered a cushion or a shoulder, tried to understand… Maybe the world could lose less people to suicide.

Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution

One of the people who have inspired me a lot in the past years is Jamie Oliver. I have started to follow his work mainly because to me, he is one of the top chefs; not just in Europe but worldwide. He offers tons of recipes online, and sells various books with his cuisines, targeted towards healthy food as well as not too “expensive” so that us, the plain Jane and regular Joe can afford to try it out.

Along the years, Jamie has become more than just a chef. He owns his own Franchise Restaurants “Jamie’s Italian” which are magnificent by the way! As a non UK resident, I still had the same privilege; I subscribed to the gold club, and am taking advantage of several offers and features while dining in one of his restaurants.

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Furthermore, Jamie has been campaigning to instil a healthier Britain; to educate people to eat healthier, by inspiring them to cook at home rather than buying cheap eats on a regular basis; to help the nation fight obesity, by mastering a healthier lifestyle – food-wise and exercise-wise.

Last November, Jamie Oliver introduced his own recommendations to tackle childhood obesity. He suggested a new tax on sugary drinks, fairer marketing as well as a school food plan among others.

Today, 16th March 2016, in London, the parliament has decided that within the next two years the sugary drinks tax will be implemented. This is not just a win for Jamie, but Britain as a whole. It is one of the steps to fight obesity, not just in children but adults alike.

I personally think, that such tax should be present in all the world. MALTA are you listening? If fast food and soft drinks weren’t so cheap, one would think twice buying these products.

Lets fight the ticking time bomb that is obesity, together!

 

Read about Jamie’s campaigns here
Join the Revolution here

Bikers in Traffic

I love bikes; I think they are gorgeous and I admire each and every one of the bikers who pluck up the courage to drive in Malta and Gozo.

In case you have never visited Malta, or never driven in Malta… Maltese roads are hell to drive in… Not even the devil himself dares to set his foot here and drive in this pit of danger and death. Angry, irrational drivers, chaos of traffic and to top it all shitty bumpy roads throughout the islands. (Sometimes I wonder why we pay the driving license to be honest!!)

Considering all the above, would it make more sense, to have some kind of rule/law enforced with regards to which side of the motor-lane a bike should drive in? Should bikes overtake or undertake? I’m thinking that this would help everyone on the road, as all car-drivers can pay some special added attention to that side of the road via the mirrors, and hopefully the bikers will also feel slightly safer on our roads… Especially during the peak hours of traffic, namely 7 to 9 am and 5 to 6 pm, when everyone wants to get to work/home and all the main roads are packed and crammed with cars. Zigzagging around cars is not the way to go in these circumstances.

Dream Job

I have been asked the question of what is my dream job several times. When I was younger, this used to change depending on my moods, or what I was going through. I remember me wanting to be a scientist, and even a hairdresser; until I was told I had to study biology for that. I hated anything that had to do with biology and the dissection of a human or animal. One of my childhood friends had to buy a heart of a cow and cut it in half in one of the lessons. Don’t get me wrong, I’m all up for steaks, but this was to me disgusting.

Then, I wanted to become a teacher because it would mean I get the summer off from work like all the students. Then I started thinking on how bored I would, and how much I despised the summer heat that this didn’t sound like such a good idea either.

Growing up, I decided to get into IT, because, I thought, this would mean, working in peace, and not get distracted constantly by customers and people with questions. A couple years later after my graduation, I can tell you that this was very untrue as stakeholders come and go on a daily basis, and I get bombarded with questions face to face, by email, by chat and what not.

No, my current job is not my dream job.drmjob

But, the more I matured, the more I realised, that IF IT IS SOMETHING I LOVE DOING, AND I’D CALL IT A DREAM… HOW ON EARTH CAN YOU CALL IT A JOB? Isn’t it more like a vacation, a hobby, or a pastime.
This got me thinking further.

Oh, I know!

My dream job would be, traveling from one place to another, photographing, and writing about it… And in turn sharing it with my readers…. Companies would pay me to do this for them, and from my end, I would enjoy one holiday after another for free.
Both of us win right? Adverts, promotion and generating buzz for your country, and traveling experiences for me.
Yes please.

Farewell to Someone who I used to know

This weekend, while I was browsing through local online newspapers, I came across an article about a missing young lady with the name of Ruth Attard. Later on, I learned that she is from my home town Hal Qormi, and that she is the same age as me. When her body was discovered in Ghar Lapsi, my childhood friends started getting in contact with me over Facebook and on a group we are all part of.

Turns out that Ruth Attard went to school with me both at primary school and secondary school. She was a year younger than me, but a very sweet looking and well behaved girl. She always carried a smile on her face and was ever so cheerful. We were all trying to remember instances from our childhood where we met her; How she was in Mr. Saliba’s class and how she was Snow White during one of the yearly school plays; How she was so devoted to gym and how often we glimpsed her at the gymnasium during the school breaks.. climbing up ropes, doing somersaults. But none of us stayed in contact with her when we finished school. We never spoke again, we only remember her beautiful face. 5498932469_fd0886c60d_zIt comes to us as a shock, that Ruth is no longer with us. Even more so, because we wouldn’t have ever expected something like this to happen to her, or any one of us.

We are so young, we still have all our life before us. Truth is, we take these things for granted.  We should be thankful to be alive, thankful that we are happy… Glad that we are strong, and surrounded with people who love us, appreciate us and are there for us. That because of all of this, we won’t break apart from ourselves or one another…

While we keep Ruth and her family in our thoughts and prayers, let’s learn something from this. Let’s be more thoughtful about those around us; forgive and move on. Love not hate. Teach not shout. Let’s all communicate with one another. Let’s be in contact while we can… Let’s not forget one another… Farewell to Someone who I used to know… May you rest in peace, dear Ruth.

Funeral is tomorrow 10th June at 14:30 at Saint Sebastian Church, Qormi.

Just can’t get enough! Silicon Valley (Series)

Over the weekend, I found some time to relax… which in most cases means, I found some time to start a new TV series. This time round I have finally gotten around watching a series which has been in my Must Watch List for the last year or so. The series goes by the name of: Silicon Valley. When I saw the trailer, I knew this would be one of those guilty pleasure series.

You might ask, Why?

Well, the geek inside me, craves for nerdy-techie-silly-geeky series. You guessed it! Silicon Valley hits all these terms, and even more. The guys in this series, and the alternative chick which joins in season 2 make me miss a side of me, which I hide from most people. This weekend, the geek in me squealed with pleasure, as the series unfolded and as the inside jokes reminded me of when I was still at MCAST being a full-on geek-goth girl also known by most as the alternative weirdo.

If you are into jokes such as the below, the series is definitely made for you 🙂

1. I know HTML (I know How to Meet Ladies)
2. An app called Nip Alert
3. Hand job / Dick Jerk jokes
4. Witty jokes on technologies such as Apple’s maps, Microsoft’s Vista
5. Mumbling geeks that cannot interact with normal people

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Of Dogs and Traffic

This morning, like all other mornings during winter, spring and autumn… When kids go to school… I was stuck in traffic. Today I spent 45 minutes in traffic… Yesterday it was an hour and 15 minutes… I guess, not starting work at 7 am is taking its toll on me… Getting to work in 20 minutes made so much more sense…

But at least, this morning, I had a cute sight right in front of me… for almost half the time I spent in traffic:

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That did make me smile. I hope it did to you, too!

GermanWings plane crash; 150 dead

Today I will dedicate my blog post as a remembrance for those 150 people who are presumed to have lost their lives this morning in a plane crash aboard GermanWings Flight 4U9525. The passenger list is said to include two babies and 16 students who were on a school trip. The crash happened in a remote snowy area in the French alps. The plane left Barcelona to its destination being Düsseldorf in Germany.

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A little under an hour since its departure, the officials received a call of distress.

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A rescue helicopter from the French Security Civil flies over the French Alps during a rescue operation after the crash of an Airbus A320, near Seyne-les-Alpes. (Reuters)

Since the weather conditions are considered to be drastic, with local storms, snow is above 1,800 metres and relatively low clouds, it is proving to be very difficult to land in the area with helicopters. French police explain that due to the difficult terrain, it is expected to take days to retrieve the bodies and debris.

During the conference, GermanWIngs CEO stated that the pilot has worked with the company for over 10 years and has over 6,000 flight hours under his belt. He continued saying that the crash itself lasted just 8 minutes. The crashed plane; A320 is 24 years old and has been serving with GermanWings since 1991, according to online database airfleets.net.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel says she will head to the crash site.

GermanWings is a low-cost airline based in Cologne, and is part of the services offered by Lufthansa. 

Lazy and Smart

Most of us bluff and blurt out, that we are smart. And intelligent. But, I think we are all stupid. We are greedy, and we only want what we cannot have. And in the rare occasion where we get what we want, we’d want something better. We are never happy, we always want more, more and more.

We are smart, but what we really are in reality, is puppets on a string, or even worse – parrots. We learn by heart what we are taught, as long as we get good grades. This is how we impress ourselves. Not by knowing the reasons behind things, but by repeating what we were told.

When it comes to life, we are scared. Scared like a mouse is scared from a cat, scared like a little kid who has misbehaved. We complain that life’s unfair, we are barely ever positive. We get angry for the slightest of reasons. We appreciate nothing, until we lose it.
And yet, we pretend we are smart
good enough
intelligent beings

But all we do is spend our life on cyberspace, or sitting down watching TV…
we barely go out
enjoy life
talk
take initiatives
have hobbies

Because we are lazy.

Lazy and smart.