Friday, December 30, 2011

As 2011 Counts Down To 2012


The year has been , it's almost gone .
Along will come another one
What will it hold for you and me ?
All we can do is wait and see
Yet this much I can say for sure .
A Happy New Year to you and yours

Friday, December 23, 2011

A Good Hair Day At Sassoon Berlin.


There is no such thing as a bad hair day when it comes to Vidal Sassoon . Today in Schlutterstrasse Berlin all the staff made it a really special Christmas even for everyone . Children passing by stopped to press their noses to the window and wonder at the visions. It's a tradition in every German Sassoon salon to have the final day before Christmas working in fancy dress. These people are amazing and so creative. I think you'll enjoy this collection of photos which illustrate talent with a capital T .
A big thank you to all, for not only did they make my day , they gave their permission for images to be used in order that you too can enjoy . Happy Christmas was their message and is also mine to all reading this .

Friday, December 16, 2011

European Council - Number 10

European Council - Number 10
At last a British Prime Minister who has kept his word and put the interests of the British before those of Germany and France.
Whilst other members lacked courage due to their being 'in debt ' or through fear ,Mr Cameron was steadfast . Brilliant.
It seems Frau Merkel a physicist, attempts to find a chemical formula aided by Mr Sarkozy who, as head of a country sliding into recession is joined at the hip to Angie in her vain attempt to give value to what is little better than monopoly money.
As one who lives here I meet numerous Germans who are sick of the Euro and long for the return of the D Mark. The madness of the Merkel and Sarkozy rettungs paket makes for hilarious stage comedy . Mathias Tretter a German comic sees it for what it is .
As for Nick Clegg and the British Press please do us all a favour . Be proud of Mr Cameron . He went and had more guts than any.
As for those who likened him to Chamberlin .There's a joke . Blair was the second Chamberlin , He gave our rebate away .
The British Pime Minister has nothing to apologize for. His first duty is to Britain . Not to Brussels . I for one say 'thank you '
*click on European Council to read David Cameron's speech .

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Blond Bond in Berlin

 


Spotted yesterday whilst riding along Wilmersdorfstrasse. This play on rather well known words made me laugh, stop my bike and take the photograph.
Posted by Picasa

Wednesday, December 07, 2011

A Window On The World


It's no secret that snow domes are , for me , magical . My little collection has grown as friends on their travels have spotted an item, bought then brought . Others I've found . The countries are UK, Ireland, Scotland, America, Australia, Austria, Spain, Germany, France, Luxembourg, Belgium, Holland, Hong Kong, Azerbaijan, Egypt, Turkey and so it goes. Most items contain a famous landmark or depict national dress. Some hold memories and never cease to surprise me. Finding a suitable home for these 'treasures' hasn't been easy but at last I did. A week ago delivery men brought to the door but assembly was the next problem. It needed two people and here a very good friend stepped in .She's amazing and together we solved the puzzle. The first proved a nightmare, the second was plain sailing . Here's Little Miss Fix-It and the finished product. We rewarded ourselves with Sekt and Aperol . Then came the arranging of schneekügel for which a data base is needed !

Thursday, December 01, 2011

East London In Berlin


Yesterday cycling around this city I made sure that Mehringdamm number 33 was worked into my route .
The reason being I was keen to see and sample the new British Restaurant ,' East London' . This fabulous place is open all day and serves the very best of British food . Their produce , delicacies and flare are excellent . On entering one is struck by how unusual and creative the decor is . Clean lines and toning colour schemes set the scene . The staff are friendly and service is very good .A feature I like is a huge glass wall window which enables the kitchen to be seen .It's spotless and the staff are likewise seen at their very professional work. These few stills are my 'appetizer ' for you. For too long British Cuisine has been ridiculed. It has a wealth of excellent dishes . Breakfasts , salads , roasts , three course set menu each day or a la carte .For those who wish there are vegetarian options .
Guess who is returning ?

Opening Hours ... Mon-Thurs 08:00-22:00 / Fri 08:00-23:00 / Sat & Sun 10:00-23.00
U Bahnhoff Mehringdamm or Bus M19

Monday, November 28, 2011

Sunset , New Moon and A Christmas Star


As I left one of my favourite shops in Budapester Strasse the sunset was wonderful and coupled with a waxing crescent moon, magical. For a short span these two heavenly bodies created 'stage lighting' over the City Christmas Market. Thus a must stop , must photograph moment for me . Hope you like it .
Coming towards the end of an extremely busy but fantastic day it counts as an early Christmas present , though not my first .

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Happy New Year .


Some of you may think I've got dates mixed , but that isn't so . Today being the first Sunday in Advent marks the New Church Year . What celebrations and what a joy Advent can be . This Sunday just one candle on the Advent wreath was lit . Next Sunday , two and so on until the fourth . Later off to the Christmas Market at the Gedächtnis Church and Europa Centre .It was full but not unpleasantly so. The atmosphere was terrific as was the gluhwein. Among my finds was a shop specializing in Snow domes .Talk about seventh heaven .If you've never experienced a real German Christmas Market then do try it .Well worth a fun weekend and take home some unusual presents .The short video is made up of stills . *There are numerous markets in Berlin. Each is unique and worth seeing . Every German city offers such with colour, fun, spices, food and so much more ..... So whether it be Hamburg ,Munich, Cologne , Leipzig, Berlin ,Dresden or Hamburg ( to name but a few ),you can't go wrong.
*Berlin has 60 Christmas Markets this year .Imagine how many litres of gluhwein and kilometres of sausage that will be .

Monday, November 21, 2011

Christmas In Berlin


No country does Christmas quite as well as Germany . Their decor , celebration of Advent from day one, markets, food ( especially chocolates and spicy biscuits ) is fantastic. As one who's never been a Christmas fan at last ,thanks to Germany things are a changing. This year will be different. Motivated I am. On Saturday on calling in Green Piece Florist to buy some flowers it was clear that Frau Köhler had surpassed herself with her festive creations. Decorations for Advent that simply took my breath away. The staff were busy arranging the displays. It was therefore with excitement that today I set off plus camera to take photos and make a film or two . My suggestion :-
If you are in Berlin , call in, to this colourful winter wonderland with an aroma that is Christmas, Christmas , Christmas. I've treated myself . This is Christmas and a time for enjoyment all round ......Above is a collage of items .Beneath a video made using iMovie .

This is a season for all ages .It doesn't have to be very expensive and as you will see from the pictures , colours bring light and warmth to the winter days. In all her work Frau Köhler uses quality products,natural products and thus her designs are not only beautiful , they are safe .

Friday, November 18, 2011

Planes Approaching Tegel Airport Berlin


A great place to sit and drink coffee whilst watching 'the world' arrive in Berlin.Sadly not for much longer as the powers that be plan to close Flughafen Tegel in 2012 with the opening of Berlin Brandenburg International Airport. It will be missed by more than yours truly .
Arriving early for an appointment today at Kurt Schumacher Platz I took a few minutes to film the air traffic as it dropped from the sky to a very low altitude. Always a sight to behold at this major traffic junction, today was more so due to intense cold and fog . Simply no idea what types of aircraft these are so any one with knowledge , here's your chance . I just love planes .Fact . To all who arrived on those flights let me say "Welcome to Berlin". The good news is Sunday should bring sun but only 4°c .

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Berlin to London From The ZOB Berlin


At this moment I should be in Ireland. However, due to factors beyond my control it was a lottery not to be. In three little words,"I was ill".
This posting first since Nov 6th ,with my Panasonic Lumix felt good. So here's a travel alternative tip .
With another frantic travel season looming as Christmas draws near, a quick look at any of the airlines shows lowest prices (pardon the pun) to be rocketing skyhigh . So it was with interest I took my gentle exercise for today by strolling to ZOB .
This is the Berlin Central Bus Station ,catering for long distance journies . Well designed it isn't an eyesore . Here's a film featuring the Berlin to London bus .Having interviewed those who are familiar with the route and asked them why, the reasons given were varied and often multiple ..a) financially sound ,b) stress free, c) good cancellation with full refund policy ,d) no rude treatment. In the film you see a bus leave for Paris and then out goes the London vehicle. It was all very civilized and maybe, just maybe one day I'll test my staying powers.
For none German speakers the abbreviation ZOB is Zentraler Omnibusbahnhof Berlin-Internationale .
It is reached via U12 UBahn to Kaiserdamm , SBahn Messe Nord ICC, Bus M49, X34, 104.

Sunday, November 06, 2011

Cafe K Serves Tapas and Music .

It was by pure chance that I spotted the poster advertising this event . My idea of a must try / must do . The result ? Absolutely fabulous .
The George-Kolbe Museum is a delightful place and there is the Cafe K . Their coffee and food are always good and last night was no exception .The group, are truly international, and very good musicians. Their programme was made up of soul , bossa nova and jazz classics .
Getting to the Cafe K is easy .Take the SBahn to Heerstrasse or the bus M49 , X34 to S Bahnhof Heerstrasse . Turn into Sensburger Allee and walk down 100m to number 26.

Friday, November 04, 2011

Tip For Today 'Recycling - cycling'

Save old toothbrushes and use to clean your bicycle chain. Dipped in chain cleaner these items are ideal for getting in all the links and working wonders .
Yes there are lots of fancy and expensive, chain cleaning gadgets out there but trust me, this tip saves you money, does a 1st class job and is 'recycling' in every sense of the word. Dirty chains rust and are likely to break . This can be avoided .

* I use a well known brand with a built in battery. These are excellent.

Tuesday, November 01, 2011

A Load Of Taramasalata


€€€€€€€€€€€€€€€€€€€€€€€€€€€€€€€€€€€€€€
It's really unbelievable but sadly true . The world stands on the brink of a very real financial crisis and for what ?
For a country with little to offer save seasonal tourism and Taramasalata. Greece. I for one would like to know just how much money and debt write offs they expect from a Europe desperate to keep a rather worthless common currency . Let the Greeks go back to their zero tax paying , early retrirement ,their Taramasalata. and the Drachma but at their own expense .
The constant comparison of Europe to the USA and it's many states one currency is a false one. They are but one nation with one central government.
Pouring money into Greece is akin to burning money. Not only is it coming at our expense but it will precipate a 3rd financial crash . When this happens ,don't believe your mortgages and debts will be written off Greek fashion . Indeed nobody will even give you a cheap tub of out of date Taramasalata.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

So Nice To Come Home To


Yesterday I called in 'The House Of A 100 Beers for my lunch' . Half a roast duck plus veg and dumplings . Choosing what to drink was a problem for one who isn't a real fan of beer. Then I spottted an English Stout made with Oatmeal and it sounded so good I decided to fly the flag and bring out my English side with pride. A fantastic choice. Dark as can be with a ruby red rim it had a head on it which was beautiful. Almost too good to drink . Then followed an idea .. Buy some ,take home , combine with very ripe bananas to make the ultimate in a smoothie . It was made and left to chill in the fridge .What a night cap to come home to ! It brought to mind two songs one of which was sung at the Jazz Club I'd been to . ie The Man I Love and You'd Be So Nice To Come Home To .
The man is Samuel Smith who was responsible for this incredible stout and yes, it was excellent to come home to.

note ) serious beer drinkers , especially Guinness fans may say 'The Lady is A Tramp' for such sacrilege.
I make no apologies

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Berlin, Bahn ,Bikes and Binz


Saturday 22nd October and rather than have that extra hour in bed, I got up at 4:40am .Left the flat at 5:45am and was at Berlin Hauptbahnhof for 6:10 am . The reason being I wanted to try my Dahon folding bike out. ie ) Get to the station, buy a coffee, then start to fold the bike. Done in no time .I can only say that it's a pity that a trek to the seaside from here takes so long . Four hours to be exact . Yet it gave me several good photo opportunities and at the other end a long bike ride ,not to mention getting lost in a forest .The little Red Riding character is not me . Binz is Binz . Sorry Germany you cant do seaside as well as Scotland and Ireland. (Dont despair few can) .They have the gold medal for majestic natural structures, fine beaches and that X factor. Never the less I had fun, lots of food and am now planning the next trip plus bike.The D Bahn remains as ever , brilliant. Now that does deserve a gold medal.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

The Kudamm Shines In the Festival Of Lights.



A very short film of a night to remember .Out on my bike and down to the Kudamm only to find that the police had made sure tonight belonged to us .ie ) the pedestrians and cyclists. We were free to walk, wander, wonder and film just as we wished .No traffic was allowed .I met some terrific like minded people .We took pictures of one another , for each other and swapped notes. My movies will take some time to edit in iMovie so here's hoping ....As usual the organization and constant clearing up proved impressive .The streets always shine here .

Panasonic Lumix DMC TZ10 Brings You More


One more to go and that will be on the move . I had considered attempting all 80 spots but , since some appear not worth it they are off my list ... plus , where building works make the filming ultra difficult the same applies .Believe me there is a great deal of building all over this city .I've climbed up ,balanced and sprawled out on the pavement in order to get shots .It's been fun though ......

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Going Up In The World .


Illuminations give us pleasure and for some strange reason so do viewing towers from which,almost like giants we can observe our surroundings from a different perspective. Here is my offering regarding Rauen and the new viewing or obervation tower which has been erected . The eastern part of Germany is rather flat but here we have some 'hilly spots '. This 40 meter structure is ideally situated among huge forests. Well worth a visit for excellent views , fresh air ,exercise .Try to take your binoculars .Then you will be doubly amazed.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

The Festival Of Lights Berlin 2011.

On the 12th at 19:30 the powers that be pressed the red switch and whoosh , 80 sites throughout the city were graduallly illuminated .I watched the action at Potsdammer Platz from afar,then traveled down to the Brandenburg Gate making snippets of film.
Over the next 10 days the plan is to travel the city ,by bike , plus tripod and camera in an attempt to capture all 80 . Reality may prove something else . Variables such as weather will play a role .However ,between 7 pm and midnight each day the city will be a blaze of colour come wind , rain or whatever .

Monday, October 10, 2011

Pumpkins For Colourful Cookery .

Whilst riding my bike last week what should I see but this astonishing display of pumpkins etc . The autumnal colours are superb and I was soon parked up to investigate( the beauty of a bike ). This collage illustrates the diversity and the display creativity of the vendors . So many items later I came away . Below are the purchases .

Top left) somewhat larger than a garlic bulb . It's for peeling , grating and adding to a salad. Top right) again a variety for peeling , grating and adding to salad.
Bottom left) Remove top .Then bake . Scoop out the seeds . Fill with meat or cheese and bake a little longer . Bottom right ) These are really different . One must prick all over . then bake as for baked potatoes . Cut in half , remove the seeds. Scoop out the flesh , mix with cheese etc , replace and place under the grill for a few minutes .

Sunday, October 02, 2011

German Unity , History and Sightseeing

Tomorrow is the big day .However today was great thanks to a visitor .We did the city on bikes and took in a lot.Here's a documentation of some of the best German history has to offer. Believe me this country does have a greater history, mainly cultural and it deserves to be aired . A book to be recommended for this is :-
The German Genius by Peter Watson............

Sunday, September 25, 2011

THE BERLIN MARATHON 2011

Here we see the tail end of the event after 20km. As I'm filming this the leaders are already nearing the Brandenburg Gate , over 20km further on . Yet what is wonderful is all keep going , get the lovely medal and are a winner in as much as they have taken part and given their best .Music cheered them and so did the public .

Sunday, September 18, 2011

X Marks The Spot .

X

Today wasn't just any day. It was Make Your Mark Day. In other words Berlin elections .
Special, since in Britain I have no vote what so ever. Even though I hold a passport and pay tax each month. Hence my
one X meant a great deal . It gave me some rights. Mr Cameron and Co like all before them are not at all interested in the 3 million Brits scattered around the world in the same situation . Why should they be whilst they continue to take taxes whilst denying us representation. How sick therefore that they are the first to throw stones and pontificate , yet fail to put their own house in order .

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Belfast , Peace and Walls .



Today began at City Hall where I was taken round . What fun it was to sit as the Lady Lord Mayor and as the member of the ALL Party. This splendid building was not paid for by rates or taxes. Instead profits from the gas industry were used. Less than 500,000 Pounds. Such sense and astonishing considering the marbles wood used.
Then off to one of the very many peace walls .For sure emotions and feelings are best expressed in art form as opposed to violence but do communities have to remain split by metal walls topped with wire ? Whatever the faith two 'rules ' spring to mind .
LOVE THY NEIGHBOUR AS THYSELF and THOU SHALL NOT KILL .
The Good Friday Agreement is holding , decommissioning has taken place. Is it really healthy to live apart labelled in any way ?
The video shows but a few of the pieces of art .My favourite is the scrabble 'Peace By Piece '

Saturday, September 10, 2011

The Giants Causeway Coast ,Antrim. Northern ireland



If you ever go across the sea to Ireland make sure you take in the Antrim coast . It's magic , myth and majestic rock formations will leave you spellbound and wanting one thing only ,MORE .
As will The Bushmills Inn . The cuisine here is outstanding and as you can see I indulged . My starter was poached pear with an Irish blue cheese. For mains it had to be Irish Lamb with asparagus, beans and a creamy mash with finely chopped spring onion . Finally I weakened and had honey ice cream . Today has worked it all off .

Friday, September 09, 2011

Belfast -- A Very Special City .


I'll let the pictures speak for themselves and may you get pleasure from seeing this superb city . All around the world there are so many cities plagued by 'troubles' .Belfast has suffered it's share yet the people have spoken and two things are clear .
1) peace is a must .2 ) the majority of Northern Irish wish to remain with Britain
A musical track will be added ASAP . Need to find something suitable....... and appropriate .

Sunday, September 04, 2011

McLaren Formula 1 Experienced At IFA.



IFA was as ever fascinating and fantastic .I'll need time to sort my photographs and movies. However this is worthy of the Guiness Book Of Records. I who've never even changed a bike tyre had a real thrill with this. OK no where near the time taken by the team. Still it set a record as the first pit stop wheel change performed side saddle .......
IFA is on until the 7th. Why not give it a try .

Saturday, September 03, 2011

Quote For Today


'When taking a photograph feels right,it's like falling in love'

Arthur Elgort ( Photographer)
------------
So here's a collage of some of my work that has given me this feeling.
Having read about Arthur Elgort I've ordered his book CameraCrazy . Something tells me it's a must have .

Friday, September 02, 2011

Bats are Beautiful



I loaded this onto my YouTube account last Sunday as it was the Night of The Bat . However there was a techno glitch with YouTube and their audio swap system. The piece used from audio swap is entitled Bugs . Very apt since a bat eats a third of it's body weight in insects each day .How amazing is that ? More bats and fewer toxic pesticides which drench our soil and too much of of fruit and veg would be ideal. So let's keep on protecting this delightful little mammal . They do us no harm, quite the reverse. Very difficult to film but I got close .See how many you can count .

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Looking Forward



The days are getting shorter. That wonderful smell of autumn is in the air some mornings and it's good .
My camera arrived back superbly cleaned . One lightweight folding bike has been bought and will be put to very good use .
Mode and Sparen my favourite boutique had this bright yellow top. Ideal for bike wear, warm and extremely visible at all times .
Then, wonder of wonders, IFA Berlin 2011 is due to start .The world's largest trade show for consumer electronics and home appliances. It takes place from 2 to 7 September 2011 here in Berlin. No prizes for guessing who will be there with her camera .
First stop Panasonic ... where else ? Should you be in Berlin do try and get to this. It's simply fantastic .If you see me say hello and who knows I may take your photo .There's so much to look forward to .

Monday, August 22, 2011

A Day In Dresden



The weather was delightful, as was the train journey ,so what a thrill to arrive in Dresden and discover the city festival in full swing. It's a city with a history which goes way back as can be seen in the architecture still being carefully and painstakingly restored. The WW2 carpet bombing of Dresden destroyed much, but not the will to hold onto the amazing and cultural heritage. eg) Wagner's Tannhäuser and Richard Strauss's Der Roskenkavalier premiered at the Semper Opera .Robert Schumann lived in the city and wrote much of his work here. In order to view one of the finest collections of Old Masters I must return. The Gemaldegalerie housing these is to be found in the Zwinger, one of Dresdens most beautiful palaces. A steamer trip to Schloss Pillnitz not to mention the steam train to Schloss Moritzburg... These are but a few of the 'must visit' places on my agenda. Note,during the week there are many splendid organ concerts and of course Pfunds Molkerai will either give you the energy for the day or refresh you at the close. Tram 11 from Hauptbahnhof takes you almost to the door .Not only did this astonishing place survive the WW2 bombing but it came through the austerity of the DDR years. To walk in there is to step back 119 years ..... Dresden has much to see and savour . Take the 's' out of strain and use the 'train' to get there.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Green-Piece in Berlin.


Berlin reflects a German passion ... flowers. By and large they are bought each week and a walk around the streets shows the smallest balcony is a blaze of colour most of the year . Though not an avid balcony gardener ( I travel too much), over the years here, flowers have become a regular purchase. Last week I went to film a very talented florist at work.
Frau Köhler is the owner of Green Piece ,a beautiful shop at Kaiserdamm 109 . Her training was three years, after which she worked as an employee ,then, over a year ago bought her own business.
She employs three others and they work well as a team . A working day begins at 8am and ends 18-00 Monday to Saturday.
Sundays the shop opens 9am to 13-00. Three times a week Frau Köhler is ready at 4-30am for a drive to the huge flower market In summer she likes to buy European flowers as this means lower prices . Roses tend to come from Equador as they are excellent quality .Her preference is for seasonal flowers when possible with not too many glass house blooms. Watch this film in the knowledge that as she works the following must take place. 1) The customer says how much they wish to spend, 2) they may want specific colour they may not, 3) the florist must then take blooms and greenery to create a work of art, at the same time calculating each item included. Whilst this mathematical element is important it must not detract from the creative process. What a balance . When I asked her why she chose her career the answer came that to work creatively and with nature was her dream . It's come true and with the flowers she is able to make sure that all who buy have 'sunshine' round the clock. Flowers do have a great power to lift our spirits and show us the beauty of our world . One single bloom can do that . Try it . For any new to Berlin try Green Piece .

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Slut Walk Berlin 2011 A March For Tolerance and Justice


A huge crowd gathered at Wittenberg Platz Berlin on the 13th August .Their reason -- the Sut Walk Berlin 2011. All ages, many men there to support women, terrific atmosphere , excellent placards , music and superb cooperation with the Berlin Police made it a huge success.
The walk made it's way via Nollendorf Platz , to Potsdammer Strasse, Leipziger Strasse and finished in Gendarmenmarkt .The main issue being that unwelcome sexual advances and rape are not only wrong, they are criminal acts . There is no way that a woman's choice of clothing is ever reason for such. We women have a right to dress for ourselves . No does mean no and the only appropriate kind of sex is consensual. As for me I wore my boots. One reason being that, in the not too distant past I was judged as being sluttish for wearing such.
For me boots have always proved an attractive and comfortable form of footwear and the fact that I also look good in such is pleasing not a crime on my part.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Die Badende ( The bather )


Yesterday I took the train to Hamburg to see, photograph and film the huge sculpture in the Binnenalstar known as Die Badende.
Created by Oliver Voss this is a spectacular and impressive work .As the wind blew the head would slowly turn thus giving an illusion of life . Here you see a short film made using a selection of stills. The best is yet to come via iMovie but this will take a day. By the end of this week she will have been lifted from the water and I,like so many others am oh so glad I made the effort to view .

Tuesday, August 09, 2011

London's Burning

Remember the song we sang as children ? Seems today we have nasty ,uneducated thugs to blame and not a bakers shop in Pudding Lane .
If only the authorities had looked abroad they would have done as many continental countries do and made use of water canon to wash this 'scum element' away and at the same time put fires out befoe they got out of control. No good just saying these riots are unacceptable and failing to use a very acceptable means of control. It still isn't too late to hose these criminals down .Chances are it's the freshest they'll ever smell !
As for any sentimental do gooders , let them pay for the damage along with those they seek to protect+.

Wednesday, August 03, 2011

Toilets , Lavatories , WC's




Maybe it's because my late father was a plumber,or it could be due to a personal quirk caused by too much standing cross legged at concert halls and theatres in the interval. Whatever the reason, it's fair to say I'm fascinated by public toilets.Their design, cleanliness , accessibility are all matters which interest me. Lack of any the aforementioned --infuriates.
To some this may seem strange, maybe eccentric but on returning from France where I did film some rather impressive facilities what should I hear last week on BBC radio4 Woman's Hour but a heated debate on this very theme . It appears that rather than improved provision being the case, the opposite is the truth. So much so a serious UK seminar / debate was covered. The French film is at the top and you also see a clip made way up on the north west coast of Scotland .
There are good food guides and stars are awarded to restaurants why not a good toilet guide . So let's make a stand other than in a queue , raise our glasses , say 'bottoms' up and improve the lot for females. Meanwhile my pictures and movies file about such is growing. Good provision is worthy of note. Lonely Planet take note .

Friday, July 29, 2011

The Trabi .


The Trabant or Trabi was the ultimate in the auto industry in the former DDR ! Waiting lists were long and once purchased a Trabi had a life span of approximately 28 years.Not due to great engineering , but rather a question of needs must ,make do and mend, and if you had smelled those 2 stroke fumes you would have thought the devil himself was driving .
According to statistics 3,096,099 Trabants were produced in 30 years. During this time no noteworthy changes were made.
I well recall the smog caused by the influx of these smelly vehicles. With the fall of the Berlin Wall, many were driven over and dumped as trash. Then a wave of nostalgia meant a few became collectors items . Others after much TLC have been used as ' Berlin experience items '.
For a fee you can rent a Trabi and drive around Berlin. However waiting seems to be the name of the game with these cars .
The picture is of a young man who had travelled especially from Zurich to try this mode of driving. Sadly the vehicle died on him and here you see him smiling at the irony whilst waiting for the man from the rental firm . It was made to cough and splutter back to life ... well enough to take back. I have a bike, there is the BVG and railnetwork but if engineering and odd cars happen to be your thing, plus you find yourself in Berlin then how about that for an adventure ? Seems the police were very good and helped out by moving the car off the road.

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Viola Profonda --'The missing link '


Last night I was at a gathering with a difference . Food , drink , people, music were all present. So what you may ask was so special. Composers and friends of the Viola Profonda project gathered at "Cafe am Ufer" in Kreuzberg for an evening of music including a live presentation of the Viola Profonda. It was sensational.
Present was Bolivian composer, director and instrument-developer Gerardo Yañez . He certainly has created a masterpiece with this instrument .Look it up on line and see why I've referred to it as the missing link.
The American composer Daniel Leo Simpson was the very special guest and presented a work he has written especially for the instrument. The rich warm timbre was a joy to hear. The talent was amazing and ensured a programme of music including classical, flamenco, tango and Bolivian pipe music and so much more. Proof once again that multi culturism works.

Friday, July 22, 2011

Sleeping Beauty .




































There was one shock on returning to Berlin . That most amazingly elegant tower , the Funkturm was not illuminated . Horror for yours truly . After four nights of no illumination I had to call and ask what was amiss. Above see the norm and what is for now.
The facts are that until mid September a massive cleaning and inspection etc is underway then all will be well and sleeping beauty will awake to bring light and elegance to the night sky of Berlin. Now that's something to look forward to .

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Back In Berlin .



Some people adore their cars but I prefer bikes . Others frequent high class luxury stores but my superb outfits all come from Mode and Sparen at a fraction of the cost . Finally cuisine ... for many only such when at a top class restaurant...Give me Rogacki Berlin any day . Late on Monday I arrived back in Berlin somewhat shattered . After a visit to Mode and Sparen where it was a joy to meet and be greeted by familiar and friendly people I realized why 'Ich hab noch einen Koffer in Berlin ' The weather remained warm and sunny until today when it rained and rained true British style , terrific . In steady luke warm rain I cycled the city finishing my day at Rogacki where this delicious plate of fish soup ( 4.50E with a basket of bread) , saved having to cook this evening.
The magic of this city is that it gives you affordable choice plus you can be as hectic as you wish or as quiet . Friendliness is genuine but not at all invasive on privacy .
I love Berlin and feel it has adopted me as I have it .

Friday, July 15, 2011

Helena Vix Sings To Four Legged Groupies.


Hardly a star is born but the cows are a very appreciative audience ..... You tube is already kicking up a fuss re copright issue .
I am Helena and the pun with Vix is a sketch . As for the singing and added lyrics that's me , best i could do on the spot plus bike and camera .Hope it gives you a laugh . Let's face it we can never have enough of such .

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Dishing The Dirt Murdoch Style -

To tap phones, pay for confidential information such as medical records and hack computers on a mega scale is not only disgusting it's criminal. The Murdoch 'Empire' is guilty of the lot yet they are walking free as indeed are all the small brained so called journalists who work for them .Shutting one paper will make not a jot of difference to these rogues .
The best way of dealing with Murdoch is never to buy his products. Not even fit for loo paper in an emergency . As for his other media concerns .Why not put him and Berlusconi together far away where they can leave the decent of this world in peace . Both these ignorant types use their money to wield power. Anyone who continues to read Murdoch filth is akin to those who get a thrill from lavatorial graffiti. Let Murdoch return to Australia and taint the air there .

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Tour de France 9 July 2011


Yesterday I went to see the 8th stage of the Tour de France .The route was very close too where I've been staying so watch and film was a must . Having selected a suitable spot for a tripod all that was to be done was wait . First came 'The Caravan ' and with it a selection of little gifts from the various sponsors. Real fun . Then later helicopters,, a signal that the cyclists were approaching.
As one who rides a bike daily I have to say this is something else . These guys leave me in awe and having ridden a few hilly parts in this region I have respect plus .They are astonishing.
One of my gifts was a yellow Tour hat . Not my colour or style but never mind it served as a superb 'rain coat ' later for my camera.

Friday, July 08, 2011

The Wolves of Chabrieres.

 
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Yesterday I went to a rather spectacular wildlife park.Set high in a forest it's home to many wolves, an endangered species, this place is proving successful at increasing the numbers within an environment is as close to the natural habitat as possible, It's well worth a visit and led me to further investigation on the internet. Britain has had no wolves since Henry Vlll. Germany now has a small group .France, Italy, Spain all have isolated groups with Poland being home to between 500--600 animals . Sadly in other Eastern countries a dead wolf still fetches a bounty .Later I'll upload a video of these elegant creatures to YouTube .
Should you be in France this park is well worth a visit :-
www.loups-chabrierers.com

Monday, July 04, 2011

Sunday, July 03, 2011

B Equals Brocante

 
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The word brocante does have a somewhat nicer ring than fleamarket and this event at Issoudun had flair, style, plus a very relaxing atmosphere, rendered even more so by some exceptional wines ( of which BVFL enjoyed rather more than she should ) The goods on offer were excellent and my 'treasures' are to be be seen on the tray , also newly aquired . Add to these,but unseen, six delightful tumblers perfect for my place in Berlin and no prizes for guessing who was happy . There were some exceptional bikes on sale. One I really liked was a Peugeot folding model .You can see it in the collage . Temptation said to get it but instead I had more wine. Cheaper . The roasted suckling pig was not quite as wonderful to eat as it was to to be seen grilled but an experience . Not all goods were second hand . Handicrafts were a plenty as can be seen from the knitted toys .The straw hat with raspberry decoration was a snip at 5 euro . Who needs to be a millionaire ? I don't .

Saturday, July 02, 2011

'Amazed' at Labyrinthe Geant De Gueret France


In French,the word labyrinthe means maze and today , for the first time in my life I went to such a place in Gueret. It was hot , very sunny , but a lot of fun which eradicated any fatigue .All in all , enjoyable .This little film is made up of stills .There is also a short HD video film. ( Only on YouTube ) The funny character above was a figure encountered next to a welcome bench . I rather liked Mr Cyclops....

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Accordion Talent .



I love accordion music .In Berlin it results in my leaving a train just to hear the players . There's always another train but not always
another musician . Imagine my joy therefore on going to this concert ...getting the green light to film and permission to use , wow , who could ask for more ?

Friday, June 24, 2011

The Hitchhikers Guide .


When public transport is simply not available and the bike too much there is an alternative. Hitchhiking . Something I did a lot of when a student .Yesterday it was with sensible footwear that I set off .Error being I'd forgotton that here in France they take a midday break so the result was no traffic for what seemed an age . Still, walking was an option and my physiotherapist will be proud of what I managed .Then along came a young man in his car . He took me to just outside Evaux les Bains. Our conversation was limited but fine. Another trek took me to a bus waiting point .Only to find that there would be nearly a 50 minute wait. So it was forward march, direction anywhere. Within minutes a young lady stopped and took me to Chambon-sur-Voueize. (Population 1014.)
After viewing an exhibition of water colours it was time for a coffee then to explore the very old church of St Valerie.
On to the rivers which make this place special . My legs said 'time to go back' so it was a happy Ms V when this king of the road stopped his lorry to give me a lift to Evaux. There,yet another coffee, time for a breather and wonder of wonders a lift to Sannat.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Lyon A City To Relax In Style .



it is a truth universally acknowledged that Helena Mikas is not a Francophile . However there are parts of this very large country that have an appeal and warrant comment , not to mention even a second visit. Lyon is just such a place. The city has 480,660 inhabitants. Ranked 2nd in France as an economic centre it was in 2010 rated 9th globally plus took second place in France for innovation It dates way back to pre Roman occupation times and if the museum is anything to go back it flourished under them. With the Rhone and the Saone it has a relaxed atmosphere and much in the way of fine architecture plus culture. I walked for miles and enjoyed each minute. The one sad part for me is the tower ( to be seen on this little film of shot by shot images ) Built in 1893 by a private invidual one M.Gay this construction, 80 metres high, had a viewing platform and lift where for a fee one could go. The ground floor housed a restaurant. Then in 1963 it was closed by the authorities. The reason ? To use as a TV mast . My views re this cannot be put in writing . I will however go so far as to say that now , since Lyons ranks so highly in the league for innovation , some one will authorize a mast elsewhere and restore this lovely work in honour of the man who financed it himself all those years ago. M Gay.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Filming the Summer Solstice June 21st 2011





"Solstice" is derived from two Latin words: "sol" meaning sun, and "sistere," meaning to cause to stand still. On this day at noon the sun will rise much higher than the previous day. Why the hype ? Summer Solstice , Winter Solstice are rather mystical days , linked as they are with the planets , ancient religions , calendars and cultures . They provide a spectacle and in many cultures, reason to celebrate. Thus today I had no difficulty getting out of bed at a very early hour to go and film these stills and make some HD movies .Worth it as I got to see the moon , film my 1st ever star, minus a telescope too ! Then watch the sky as it changed from pale pinks and custard yellows to bright orange and red....... it didn't cost a penny .What a 'theatre' we have around us each day - The HD movie has yet to be uploaded and processed, so may I suggest that if you enjoy, take a break , make a ritual of your choice and return for the second part main feature .There's plenty of time as today is the longest day .

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Red Moon,Silver Moon,Let's Fly There


A bit of cheating here on my part .
Yesterday I read how Berlin was to be the best place to view the Blood Red Moon Eclipse .Fine .but where was I ? Well in the middle of France .However, last month in Berlin was pretty spectacular for red moons so I start this short film a shot of one of my shots taken.. The moon being such was every bit as beautiful and a tad elusive at times - Pure silver it rose above the trees and as I began to film you hear PomPom, a donkey (singing donkey vocals to the music of a local guitarist who was clearly lunar ) Both gave their permission to be used ...Please Note..There is a short intermission created by the clouds. Nature's own direction.
Now a little collection of shots which show the final stages ( visible) here .

Monday, June 13, 2011

A Toilet You Could Let .


Magdeburg has The Green Citadel with what must be one of the most famous toilets in the world .However deep in the middle of rural France there is a the Resto - Bar La Regent where the toilet is so clean and so large it could make a small flat in a city such as London , commanding no doubt a vast rent . With stained glass windows and a cleanliness to make many a hospital blush I had to film .
These are places we all have to use from time to time and how lovely when the management take a pride . Unlike The Green Citadel toilet this was minus fish. Hence my delight at finding lots of such swimming happily in a river just down the road .
Should you be holidaying in France and passing through La Courtine do try to visit . Excellent coffee too.

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Who Needs Airlines ?



Air travel is no longer the pleasure it once was, so praise be for countries with superb, efficient rail networks . A journey from Berlin Germany to France proved comfort plus , civilized , and, adventurous .The night train is excellent both in price and timing. Not to mention it's rather nice being treated as a person . On boarding I was shown my room .. see photograph and given a complimetary bottle of sekt . Showers , no restrictions on luggage and transported almost door to door .A great way to travel. Woken with a lovely breakfast it was sensational .However in my excitement to see the the first daylight glimpses of France, I locked myself out of the cabin clad only in night attire. Help was at hand from a young French man who went for the inspector to bring a duplicate key. Yes I found myself blushing.The couple in the picture are two Australian artists, Andy Townsend and Susie Bleach. They were fascinating .Trains - Planes , vivre la differance .

Wednesday, June 08, 2011

FOOD FOR THOUGHT

Germany is a fantastic country but when it comes to data protection and food scandals it leaves much to be desired .
The Dioxcin affair due to feed supplemented with diesel deratives ( not the 1st such event here ) broke right at Christmas .Since the German word for poison is 'gift', it was not really in the spirit . Cancer can result from eating such damaged produce but as we know is slow to manifest itself . Eggs were not cleared from shelves in Berlin . The attitude was total complacency. Asking where produce came from in the shops brought no joy as they themselves had little information . The source of this awful and unlawful animal feed was Northern Germany .What punishments have been handed out to the firm responsible ? To this date none of us really know what the status quo is and I for one have eaten neither chicken nor eggs here since then .
Now we have ecoli and yes it too is terrible .Unlike Cancer the symptoms are rapid . What's more it has originated in Northern Germany .Fingers were pointed overseas and a ban made . Cucumbers have been blamed, bean sprouts etc .
I ponder the following .
Summer here has been extremely hot for weeks . Lots of ice cream and cream products many of which contain eggs .. Just a thought . Then scoops used in icecream parlours are often put in a container of water .Once this gets warm all sorts can take place .
I hope for the country , the people and the decent food producers that an answer is found soon. Pointing fingers overseas is not the solution. Germany needs to stop the data protection and put producers of dangerous animal feeds behind bars .
note ) last week I went for two filled baguettes .The lady informed me that no salad was allowed . ( this even after Spain was cleared ) I said no problem cheese alone was fine .What did I get ? cheese, yes but in place of any salad - egg ! Dual standards for sure. As for me, I removed the egg.

Thursday, June 02, 2011

Ascension Day in Berlin

Today was a religious holiday ie ) Ascension Day. More beautiful weather and a city full of people enjoying a break.So here's a little collage to show some of the events seen .
The group of gentlemen all dressed up and on the town informed me they were reclaiming their power. It seems they are of the opinion that we women have taken over . Hmm,none too certain about that but they were enjoying themselves . Last spotted boarding a BVG bus . A huge loaf had me wondering just how many bacon sarnies it could make. As one who is more than partial to this delicacy I felt hungry. The rather profound words come from inside a lovely top I purchased yesterday. Excellent 'thought for the day' material. Finally a collection of water colours painted whilst in France, framed at last .
The works are entitled 'hässlich' , which is German for ugly . Why so is another story. To round the day off a friend and I went to the best Indian restaurant in Berlin.
Then home to music including a much loved piece , 'Everything Happens To Me '.

Friday, May 27, 2011

Ms Vixen's Big Bang Theory


When a day starts with that 'very glad to be alive' feeling you can almost be sure it's going to be special. Maybe not a lottery win but many small much more significant things.
Today right out of the blue I was given a surprise gift by two people who happen to know I am a fan of all things lunar . It's seen here.:- one moon phase calendar. The photograph doesn't do it justice . Hand made , in Hamburg , it came in a marvellous black box and is absolutely beautiful.
Later I called at the Funkturm to ask just why the astonishing colours earlier this week. It seems that trials for colours are carried out from time to time .
The young lady there insisted on taking my photograph . So here I am somewhat wild and windswept after cycling miles around the city leaning ( not on a lamp post) but one of the Funkturm 'legs' .Much later, whilst on the phone to someone there was such a noise . It was the most sensational firework display, right 'out of the black'. This little clip is the last 1minute + So there you have it . A dip into a delightful day .

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Childhood Revisited At The Speed Of Light .





Growing up as I did in the north of England , a certain seaside resort called Blackpool was the place for a treat. With it's huge funfair, sea,sand ,fish, chips and famous tower it seemed to have the lot. Blackpool was also famous for The Illuminations .
Each year along the sea front ,known as the Golden Mile , thousands of lights were used to produce wonderful images. Trams to take you through this brave attempt at fairyland were also decked out .Blackpool was not a sophisticated town but it was fun and I loved it. As I have always loved my time here in Berlin. This fabulous city with so much to offer , lacks ultra sophistication but oh does it have a heart
It also has the Funkturm . A German 'relative' of Blackpool and Eiffel towers ,there are no prizes for guessing which I like best ? I needed an early night but was stopped by the Illuminations seen above (Full screen is the best way to view.) At 2 am filming and taking pictures kept me busy . The spectacular show of lights was too lovely to miss . When childhood is revisited it's magical . Just as I was about to finish what should appear but the moon . Waning but wonderful . Now at gone 3 am guess where I'm off to ? Or should I wait for the sunrise ?



Sunday, May 22, 2011

Daniel Barenboim & The West Eastern Divan Orchestra .


There are people in this world who rank as truly special. Daniel Barenboim is such .
It's ten years since he and the late Edward Said had the vision and energy to create an Arab - Israeli youth orchestra. No easy task, yet these two men managed it. After Said's death in 2003 , Barenboim , who is artistic director of the Berlin State Opera, travelling guest conductor and world famous solo pianist, continues the work with this wonderful orchestra. Some workload ! The players are 40% from Arab countries, 40% from Israel and 20% European. The results superb and today a packed audience at the Berlin Philharmonie were enthralled. Having been to many concerts in my life I can honestly say, never have I witnessed such applause. Also the interaction between players and conductor could be 'felt' it was so full of joy ,respect and spirit.
We had heard a chamber orchestra work for piano , violin and 13 wind instruments by Alban Berg. Then came Beethoven's Symphony Nr 3 Eroica.
The above picture of Barenboim has a quotation of his. For none German speakers :-
'What is music ? Is music some thing that helps us to forget the world, or is music something through which we can understand the world ? For me it is both '
Daniel Barenboim Zeit -online
Then a picture of myself and a fellow music enthusiast. Here you see us by a poster advertising another concert on 21 August in the Waldbühnen Berlin. Another chance to see and hear this orchestra. The programme , Beethoven's Symphonies 8 & 9.
Well worth making a note in your diary and looking for tickets.



Monday, May 16, 2011

The Beauty Of Our Universe As Seen In One Day .


My idea of heaven is seen here and all within a few hours of just one day. The photographs were taken yesterday in Berlin then put together using iMovie Hope you enjoy looking at some of the beauty which is our universe . Particularly dramatic are the clouds moving across the moon . Like gauzy veils they create a rather dramatic image. These are but a few images of what is to be seen and enjoyed every day.
It's worth taking time each day to pause ...There is so much. You never know it might have you carrying a camera at all times.
It has been said that the camera is an instrument which teaches the eye to see. Also it can stop time by taking a moment and capturing it. Thus the rainbow is for ever with me . As for my wish ? That is another matter entirely .

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Nessun Dorma & Freibad Season begins

So often come Sunday morning one is tempted to have an extra hour in bed. However today was special. Open air swimming ( freibad ) began at the Olympic Pool . I was up early and off on my bike . It was sensational to be back swimming out of doors.
There was much music being played within the huge stadium next door . On hearing Nessun Dorma (towards the end of the clip ) I was riveted . Not only is this piece one of my favourites but in the summer season it's quite apt.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Reunited With My Magic Footwear.

Reuniting with a loved one is always special and in this case 'a beloved pair '.
It's almost two years since I bought these boots ,soon to be renamed my 'magic boots' . In all that time never once have they been repaired . Therefore last week I decided to give them a full makeover . Today we were reunited and boy did they look good . Irrespective of the temperature it was off with my shoes and on with these ...... Come fly with me should have been my song as I took off !
For the best in shoes, care and repair try Schuh Koncept . Berlin-Store Bleibtreustr. 4, 10623 Berlin, Telefon: 030 31 50 80 67
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Monday, May 09, 2011

Magdeburg and the River Elbe.Two Versions

The last time I was here it was rather cold .Today however was beautiful . Clear blue skies , very warm and in spite of a strange start to the day it proved action packed and extremely colourful. This morning there was no water due to a major plumbing problem.
Easy solution --I washed my hair using a bottle of mineral water .( very effective ) Had a mini shower using a second bottle of such .Then off to the station on my bike to use their bathroom facilities .Cost 1 euro but I have to say they were so swish as to warrant every cent .My day can be seen here in this Picasa movie . From start to finish it's been a memorable Monday . By the way ,I returned home to find the plumbing sorted. German efficiency scores once more .
FACTS :-
Magdeburg is a very beautiful and friendly city . There are many extremely old churches which are part of the history of this area and country.
The landscape is wonderful and due to the woods , wetlands and vegetation is home for so much birdlife.
The Elbe ,one of Europe's major rivers . It rises on the borders of the Czech Republic and Poland . From there it flows southwest crossing Bohemia. After which it begins it's route northwest crossing Germany. This long journey brings it to the North Sea (Cuxhaven). Connected by canals to the Baltic , Havel River ,Ruhr region and Rhine River it is navigable upstream . After the war ,and before German reunification, barge traffic was severely hindered . Then came German Reunification, and the Magdeburg Water Bridge .This ensures that barges can always reach Berlin as they don't have to enter the Elbe where frequent low water levels had often proved a hindrance.
If you plan to take a mini break in Berlin add an extra day . The trains to Magdeburg are each hour . Once there you can rent a bike , see and enjoy this small but 'spacious' gem of a city.
Now here is actual film footage .Miss V on the go so to speak .Saying 'try Germany , it's a marvellous country to visit .'


Tuesday, May 03, 2011

Tulips In The Britzer Garten Berlin.


This little movie made from stills shows the real beauty and wonder which is our world. Nature. Today at Britzer Gartens in Berlin I was amazed at the visions before me . Tulips everywhere of so many varieties.(Watch for the Ice Cream Cone Tulip) Shapes, forms and colours so exquisite they took my breath away . As I sat on one of the viewing seats I couldn't help but think what perfect fabric prints these images would make,but most of all how perfect nature is . If you are in Berlin, this place is worth a visit .It's rather large ,(90 hectare) has lakes , cafes and all that goes to make a relaxing day out .I went on my bicycle but the bus number M44 or M181 will take you there.
Finally a link to all the information you could wish for on this amazing place.
http://www.gruen-berlin.de/parks-gardens/en/





Sunday, May 01, 2011

May Day In Berlin

The first day of May in Berlin . Sunny,,lots to do, so what better way to start than cycle down to Die Eins , enjoy terrific music , fine food and lots of fun . Although this was the last Jazz brunch of the season , you can still enjoy a fine feast there every Sunday whilst sitting outdoors watching the boats sail along the Spree. As for Acki Hoffmann and Friends , click on the link to his website to see where forthcoming gigs are .......Meanwhile ,'Come on and hear , come on and hear '

Friday, April 29, 2011

Nobody Does It Better.


TO KATE AND WILLIAM
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EVERY HAPPINESS NOW AND IN THE FUTURE .

Your happiness has brought so much joy to billions around the world and for this we say thank you .
This day has strengthened the 'Great' in Britain . It's a fact universally acknowledged that when it comes to ceremony , tradition , and Monarchy , nobody does it better . So I for one say here's to the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge !








Monday, April 25, 2011

A Celebration of Life , Freedom Plus Technology

I hope that your Easter has been enjoyable. Europe has experienced excellent weather and in Berlin the festival was reflected in the overall happiness of people . Easter Sunday had a particular significance for Berliners . Fifty years ago on April 24th 1961 they awoke to discover the wall had been built .Their city , families , places of work were to be divided. This could have meant 'death' to the western part of the city . Yet, after many frustrations plus an airlift to break the blockade they finally, in 1989, breached the madness . It was Germans who broke down that wall . The airlift was peaceful .No bombs were dropped . Cameron and Co do take note . So onto the collage . This marks a celebration of photography in my life . The box camera was a gift when I was extremely young .I still have it to this day .Top right is the tiny Tchibo camera I bought for approximately 68 euro .This had me hooked on digital , especially video making . Bottom centre is one beloved Pansaonic Lumix DMC TZ10 . These cameras serve as markers . The Panasonic has enabled the three main photographic colours effects to be seen :- sepia / black and white / colour. Fascinating contrasts. Each has a place still. The mini coloured collage within the collage is a Mac iPhoto Booth work . Imagine what an Easter posting will look like 50 years from now . Let's wait , see and use this tremendous technology for the improvement of our world .

Saturday, April 23, 2011

This Easter ,Imagine Then Imagine Again .

The following lyrics from the late John Lennon plus a quote of Benjamin Franklin are my choice for this Easter.
Easter is a celebration of new life triumphing over death . Of rebirth , thus a new beginning. How apt therefore, that in this world which , without blinking an eye ,spends over 1 trillion dollars annually on weapons. ,whilst ignoring that each day over a billion humans wake up to real hunger and abject poverty . Isn't it time we all imagined and worked towards the goals set out in this most amazing none denominational song. Over your BBQ's, chocolates etc I ask you to take five minutes to 'IMAGINE ' . It can become a reality .


Imagine there's no heaven
It's easy if you try
No hell below us
Above us only sky
Imagine all the people
Living for today...

Imagine there's no countries
It isn't hard to do
Nothing to kill or die for
And no religion too
Imagine all the people
Living life in peace...
You may say I'm a dreamer
But I'm not the only one
I hope someday you'll join us
And the world will be as one

Imagine no possessions
I wonder if you can
No need for greed or hunger
A brotherhood of man
Imagine all the people
Sharing all the world...

You may say I'm a dreamer
But I'm not the only one
I hope someday you'll join us
And the world will live as one

This beautiful work released in 1971 contains all that is worth believing in and working towards.
Then maybe these words of Benjamin Franklin will come true.


Thursday, April 21, 2011

Music Makes My World Go Round .


On a warm sunny day it was wonderful to sit on the ground in Gendarmenmarkt Berlin and film this talented Polish musician as he sat playing the clarinet. From Warsaw ,he plays classical as well as many other genre .Why I ask , are the arts and talented people so underfunded , and supported , yet money is never a problem for wars and the weapons industry .
Earlier I'd had a coffee whilst watching a jazz musician . Do note the bride and groom on the steps of the Konzerthaus . They certainly had the weather and the music .... Good luck to them for their future and to all musicians who bring so much pleasure to our lives .

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Night and Day, Berlin is the 'one'


The weather has been sensational so all the more reason to double my cycling *.A tip to all who visit is ... do rent a bike . It's a city built for such and you will see so much more of this wonderful capital .
Here are a few shots captured over the last few days .Just as at night there is much to see , do and experience , so it is during the day.
Late this afternoon after a hectic schedule round and about I was only too glad to spot 'Minouche ' a Cafe and Patisserie .Situated at Budapesterstr 6 not only do they serve excellent coffee etc , they have also created a wonderful oasis where you can unwind . In these surroundings one can read, snooze, listen to an iPod or simply people watch .It scores full marks on Ms V's scale . Then my final surprise find of the day . Photo Huber at Budapesterstr 22. They know their cameras and just what is possible . Using my experimental shot of the moon , (taken last night) they made a good enlargement and framed it for me . Other shops had said not possible. Two more places I will be frequenting and can recommend.

A Lunar, Lumix Experiment Ms V Style





For sure I need a telescope . Regular readers are aware of my lunar passion Tonight it is huge ,low in the sky and so yellow. No chance of sleeep for me until it has sailed by . To capture the colour and as much shadow as possible I stood for ages holding the camera lens to the right lens of a pair of not very good binoculars . Actually the were pretty decent when used as intended but this mini experiment has pleased me and shown me that a telescope is a muct have .......
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Sunday, April 17, 2011

'The Roaring Fifties' In Berlin



This group is sensational and with their wealth of experience one can't go wrong .Karl Heinz Wahren ( piano ) took time to answer some of my questions . These five musicians met years ago whilst studying music .They got together and began playing.as a group.
As is the way with student life , it comes to an end and each went his own way . Axel Knuth for example played with a major symphony orchestra .. Karl Heinz went into composition . Then approximately twenty years ago they reformed and began playing as a group once more.
Their next scheduled appearance is on May 22nd at Literaturhaus Berlin , Fasanenstraße 23 .. It will be from 11am - 14pm. A good way to start the day .

* double click for full screen viewing .

Saturday, April 09, 2011

Coming Shortly At A Blog Near You



My first movie trailer made using a Mac Book . Now there is an adventure .The film is due for release . However no oscars expected . Merely a pat on the back from myself for fathoming how to get this ...It's a laugh .

Sunday, April 03, 2011

Men Are From Mars- Women Are from Venus ?


Today,in Berlin, was like summer---26°c . So out on the bike along with what seemed like most of the city .Then all of a sudden I met this fantastic alien on the 17th Juni Strasse. In excellent English he informed me that his home was the galaxy ,Planet 88. (France will be peeved as it seems not only is English the world language ..it's now used out in space !) This alien was extremely friendly so let's hope more arrive .The collage shows some of Berlin's famous landmarks and a little of the city centre nature.