Sunday, 31 July 2016

The lady and the Spanish heat

The following is official: I am going to southern Spain to be a teaching assistant in English for eight months. So far so good.

But what about the weather? Let me quote what people have said and I think are problems:
"It can be 54 degrees in September." (Celsius scale.)
"I have been to Spain. 47 degrees is hell. You stay indoors between 8 and 14."
"We were there for six days and there was not a single cloud. Blue sky, blue sky and, blue sky. The wind blew once."
"My [Swedish] sister and her family have an apartment in Valencia. They have never been freezing so much during the winter. The houses are designed to take heat, but they don't do winters well."

So having intially thought that I should focus on lightweight dresses and that I will MAYBE need a pair of lined boots, just in case, and mostly for my Sweden visit, the climate turned out much more complicated. What I do not like in particular is freezing at home. Also, I saw two men that were wiping sweat of neck and face with fancy handkerchiefs yesterday. It is like being a fashion agent for heat: I liked it and I am getting it.

35 degrees is my record in heat experience and what I think I will be doing is: changing clothes several times a day. Sleep in the middle of the day (happened in warm Italy). Wear sunscreen, long sleeves, straw hat, sunglasses. Not touch unnecessary metallic objects. DRINK. Check the UV index.

Any other advice?

Saturday, 30 July 2016

A favourite outfit

These are my drug dealer shoes: besides being Italian and comfortable, their thick sole makes any member of the airport staff suspicious and I have to scan them when I fly somewhere. The top is made of scuba material, they call it, so it is a bit stiff in a cool way.

Photos by the enchanting  Martin Malík. 

Friday, 29 July 2016

Patterns in Berlin

Only the two last ones are from indoors, a church an a train. Come to think of it, patterns can speak a very special language, especially when integrated in a context AND isolated for comparison. 

Thursday, 28 July 2016

Once upon a time, when Jana was learning Spanish with Duolingo

I sent these screenshots to a Spanish friend who reacted with horror. Let us see why:
 Oh yeah. 
 This also goes for other fruits. And, Spanish friend says, more correct is actually plátano or banana.
 Can't wait to use this one.
Always, obviously, but I am glad you asked.
Culture shock alert! I always eat sugar.
And I am keeping it.
The rest is between the lines.

Wednesday, 27 July 2016

Swedish summer. A preview.

This is of course not true for all the days, but it has happened three times by now that tiny droplets turned into a northern style monsoon very sudden. So sudden and forceful, that bikini people on the beach went home and even standing under a tree with a thick crown did not help.

Tuesday, 26 July 2016

Favourites in Berlin - the do's

Do note how beautifully this German lady matches the umbrellas from the market. Do note that on a hot day, you might want an umbrella of your own.
The rainbow colouring happened (happens) at Charlottenburg park, where Thailandese food is served around lunch on Sundays. Dumplings is nice of course, but look for new dishes too. I had a rice desert wrapped in banana leaves and it was lovely.  
Proceed to the Mauerpark market. They have public caraokee, a crazy robot (sometimes), french fries fried not one but three times, cool teas and cool pens with many of the designers present themselves. Not all of them are there every Sunday. Have an early dinner here or just snack your way.
Continue along Bernauer Straße for memorials of the wall.
On your way, you may see this creative alternative to curtains. 
In a completely different part of the city: The Jewish museum. Takes 2 hours to walk through and longer if you stay and read and look more carefully. I especially enjoyed the bottom floor in the new building.
Across the street is the independent library and this super calm diaspora garden.
Check out the street art. It is hard to escape and often made by professionals when there are big, open wall areas like the next last one.
When night falls, go to Kreuzberg. This club has many events and people talk about it, so probably worth a visit.
The main focus could just as well be on the Kreuzburger. The ambition happen between the breads. You can have it organic if you like! Like many other, though trendy, places, bread is not home-baked and the french fries imported from some other store, but those are details. 
The next day, you could have a walk around the Bundestag and Brandenburg Tor. 
Visit the church at Zoologische garten, and the numerous shops next to it. Make sure to get lost on the small streets next to the big ones, find a bakery (Zuka with its only focus on pastry could be one) and make someone happy with a postcard.