Monday, August 31, 2009

Eat, shop and see in FLORENCE, ITALY

Eat, shop and see in FLORENCE, ITALY
Let's cut the crap, shall we? While most travel guides provide their readers the standard, sponsorship-driven tips, W.A.M. inaugurates its newest section, Eat, shop and see, to help readers find their way in the city of their choice. And what better way is there to kick off this section than to start in Florence, Italy.
  • Eat. Other than the usual finds of gelato and bistecca fiorentina, three things in Florence are worth sampling. For cheap but filling pasta and gnocchi, I strongly recommend La Cantinella on Via Borgo San Lorenzo (Tel nº: 055-213-525). Do go downstairs in the tavern to have an extraordinary Florentine gastronomic experience. Then if you're on Via Isole delle Stinche go to the salumería in front of the gelateria Vívoli and sample the shop's herbed cheese in olive oil. Simply divine! And of course, go to the revered lampredotto store in the Mercato Nuovo.
  • Shop. If you're looking for something to bring home, try the Enoteca Lombardi inside the Mercato Centrale. Their sun-dried tomatoes are yummy and hold well during long trips. The lady who speaks impeccable English is very accommodating and suggests products you could take home.
  • See. In the area of the Ponte Vecchio in an obscure corner near the opening of the bridge is a metal stand teeming with padlocks. Tourists from the world over are just dying to come back. Who wouldn't?

Discovering New Zealand North Island

Discovering New Zealand North Island

10 Movies I’ve Seen This Month

10 Movies I’ve Seen This Month
netlix Over the last few weeks I've been watching a lot of movies. I guess you can blame it on the 100+ degree weather. Or perhaps due to the fact my girlfriend and I both work from home. Here's a bunch of reviews of some of the movies I've watched over the last month:

500 Days of Summer

The main reason we went to see this move is because it was playing at the Alamo Drafthouse. If you've never heard of it, it is a movie theater that serves food and alcohol. I figured it was better to watch a random movie with beer than to go see a different one at a normal movie theater.


Over the last few weeks I’ve been watching a lot of movies. I guess you can blame it on the 100+ degree weather. Or perhaps due to the fact my girlfriend and I both work from home.

Here’s a bunch of reviews of some of the movies I’ve watched over the last month:

500 Days of Summer

The main reason we went to see this move is because it was playing at the Alamo Drafthouse. If you’ve never heard of it, it is a movie theater that serves food and alcohol. I figured it was better to watch a random movie with beer than to go see a different one at a normal movie theater.

Luckily, this movie turned out to be a great movie. It was funny and a lot more entertaining that I would have thought. It’s a story of a guy that dates a girl for 500 days and over the course of the movie it looks back at each day of the relationship.

Highly recommend checking this one out if you get a chance.

District 9

I was not sure what to expect from District 9. I had never seen any advertisements or anything and simply heard of it through word of mouth. All I heard was that it was an awesome alien movie that was shot in a documentary style like Blair Witch Project.

Wow was I impressed! This movie was awesome from the beginning to the end. It’s basically a movie that shows exactly what it would be like if aliens really did come to planet Earth. The movie is seen though the eyes of a news channel so it feels like the real thing.

It sort of reminded me of Independence Day only better. Probably the best alien movie I have ever seen.

The Hangover

I’ve seen the Hangover a few times now and it’s still one of the funniest movies I have seen in a LONG time. The entire movie is straight up hilarious. From missing teeth to tigers in the bathroom, it’s a trip. And nothing beats watching Mike Tyson sing Phil Collins.

I would probably say this is going to be my favorite movie of the year. Unless something super funny comes along.

Public Enemies

One of the main reasons I wanted to see Public Enemies was because it was shot where I used to live in Wisconsin. I thought it would be cool to check it out and see if I could remember any of the buildings in the background.

The first thing I recognized in the movie was the Oshkosh Public Library. It was an easy one to spot out since there are two lion statues in the front of it. Here’s a picture I took of it back in college:

If you watch this movie, you’ll probably notice it as they drive by it.

As far as the movie goes, I really enjoyed it. It’s a gangster type movie about bank robbers and all that good stuff. My girlfriend on the other hand did not like it. It’s a long movie so you really need to be in to it otherwise you might get bored with it.

The Ugly Truth

Romantic comedies are usually a hit or miss for me. I’ve seen some I really liked while others I hated. This was one of the ones I liked. Gerard Butler was hilarious in this movie and I really liked it.

The plot of the movie is pretty funny as well. Gerard Butler is the host of a late night TV show about sex, dating, and women. He ended up getting a job on a regular news channel to spice things up a bit. He then ends up liking the producer of the show and the movie goes on from there.

Overall, it’s a pretty good movie and has some funny parts that will make you laugh.

Sunshine Cleaning

Just watched this one yesterday and actually thought it was pretty good. It was another movie I hadn’t heard of prior to watching so I wasn’t sure what to expect. Turns of it’s a movie about two sisters that start up a murder/crime scene cleanup business.

What can I say, it was pretty interesting. A good movie and different than some of the other ones I’ve seen lately.

The Brave One

The Brave One was a great movie. A very good thriller style movie that had me interested the entire time. Jodie Foster loses her boyfriend in a street beating and she is also hospitalized. She wakes up to find out that her boyfriend hadn’t make it and she struggles to pull it together.

She then decided to get revenge and buys a gun. From that point on, she starts to take out bad guys and ultimately hopes to kill the guys who attacked her and her boyfriend.

Great movie and I recommend checking this one out if you like thrillers.


I’m not going to lie but I hated this movie. Not only was it like 4 hours long but I could not get into whatsoever. I kept drifting off and ended up sitting on my computer the entire time because I was so bored with the movie.

I guess I’ve never really been in to comic books so that might be one of the reasons I was not in to this movie. Though I did love the Batman movies as well as Spiderman.

The Soloist

This was another one of my favorite. I’m a big fan of movies that are based on true stories because they feel so much more real. Jamie Foxx did an amazing job and made the movie was it was.

It’s a sad movie because it makes you realize that things can happen to anyone. It makes you look at people on the streets in a completely different way.

Lakeview Terrace

For me, this movie was nothing but a waste of two hours. The plot was pretty boring and it never took off. A couple moves into a new neighborhood and their neighbor is a cop who’s overly protective of the neighborhood.

That’s about all I have to say about this one.

Any Recommendations?

Have you seen any movies you would recommend checking out? If so, feel free to leave a comment and let me know. I’m always looking for some more movies to watch.

© Justin Wright - please visit Life of Justin for more great content or subscribe to the feed. All content copyright of Justin Wright unless otherwise stated or implied.

Record HIgh Temperatures for British Columbia, Canada July 29, 2009

Record HIgh Temperatures for British Columbia, Canada July 29, 2009
Record High Temperatures, July 29, 2009
No doubt about it. Vancouver is in the midst of
record breaking high temperatures.
39 Celcius at the Vancouver Airport yesterday.
That's not even factoring in the humidex.
Humidex is both temperature and humidity
added together, since the temperature
isn't the only thing to make you feel
sticky. The humidity is sure
to give the old sweat glands
a good work out.

This is not good news for the forest fires
raging across the province.
The fire hazard is running on "extreme"
right now.

No kidding.

I've decided I like my fan.
"Minimizing energy use"
doesn't relate to them.
Or air conditioners.

I'm not even going to start
looking at the air quality.

I think my fan is calling me again.


High Fashion Clothes for everyone!!!

High Fashion Clothes for everyone!!!
One of the biggest retail businesses in the US is the fashion and garment industry. Everyone irrespective of their age, sex, or size shop for fashionable clothes. People who are on the heavier side have access to plus size fashions which make them look beautiful.
I recently came across this website which has some amazing costumes for not only people for pets too. I found the fireman costume for dogs very cute. The bright red fireman's suit with jacket and a toy fire extinguisher is bound to be the talk of the town if one goes around with his pet attired in this. That is the beauty of fashion from Better Half.

Best Free Legal Advice You’ll Ever Receive

Best Free Legal Advice You’ll Ever Receive
I came across an outstanding post on another Blog entitled:

“In one of the more engaging, convincing and easily understood presentations I've ever seen, Prof. James Duane of the Regent University School of Law explains why even angels devoid of the slightest moral blemish should never speak to police officers, tax collectors or other law-enforcement agents investigating crimes.

Prof. Duane assumes no malice on the part of the police -- just human failings and motivations. In a 27-minute lecture, he details the legal pitfalls people can wander into even by telling the absolute truth."

Of course, "innocence" is relative. At the very beginning of the video, Prof. Duane addresses the -- literally -- unknowable extent to which federal laws and regulations have grown, so that even the government itself has no idea how many punishable offenses there are. It's very easy for people with clean consciences to admit to violating laws and regulations they never knew existed.

Responding in the same classroom to Prof. Duane, Office George Bruch of the Virginia Beach Police Department says ... the professor is absolutely right.”

So grab a cup of your favorite beverage, sit back and watch both videos. Your Eyes will open and your Jaw may drop.



Trocadero; the rotten heart of London

Trocadero; the rotten heart of London

Trocadero Centre; It looks a lot better at night and from a distance!

Visitors to London invariably gravitate using some secret magnet to the bustle of Piccadilly Circus and gaze in admiration at “Eros”, actually meant to represent the winged angel of Christian charity in honour of the Victorian reformer and Philanthropist, Ashley Cooper later Lord Shaftsbury after which Shaftsbury Avenue is named. Indeed Piccadilly Circus is NOT a Circus; Oxford Circus is the only one in London which is actually circular and not many Piccadilly’s are sold around here today as this was the oversized flounced collar worn by Regency gentlemen, the precursor of the shirt making tradition in nearby Jermyn Street. But after their initial amazement their eyes come to rest on a tatty development in a prime site, the perpetually reincarnated Trocadero Centre which is directly connected to the famous Piccadilly Circus Underground Station and incorporates the Pavilion Theatre and what was the Trocadero Restaurant.

The Trocadero Restaurant of J. Lyons and Co. opened in 1896 at a site on Shaftesbury Avenue, near the theatres of the West End, which had been formerly occupied by the notorious Argyll Rooms, where wealthy men hired prostitutes. The stylish connotations of the name "Trocadero" derive from the Battle of Trocadero in southern Spain, a citadel held by liberal a Spanish force that was taken by the French troops sent by Charles X, in 1823. The battle was commemorated in the Place du Trocadéro, Paris, and the monumental glamour of the Parisian site has given rise to a variety of locales bearing its name. Alas, London’s version does not echo the style of its Parisian namesake.

Buddy Holly with the Tanner Sisters, Trocadero Theatre 1958

In 1984, the Trocadero was redeveloped as a tourist-oriented entertainment, cinema and shopping complex by a joint venture between the former boxer George Walker’s Brent Walker and the Irish Power Securities owned by an Irish developer Robin Power. It retained the external Baroque facade, but gutted the interior and added a Guinness Book of World Records Exhibition. It is hard to believe this property was valued before the last big UK property crash in the 1990 accounts of its then owners, Power Walker, at £627 Million and I don't think Asif Aziz’s Criterion Group got a bargain when they paid a reported £225 Million for it in 2005. The place is a graveyard which has destroyed many businesses’ and their owners. Power Securities persuaded a number of tenants in their Dublin developments to open up here to “cash in” on booming London and they invariably lost their whole businesses’ as a result. Tenants were limited, and the half-finished development was eventually sold to the Nick Leslau and Nigel Wray headed Burford Group plc.

The launch of Segaworld, a large amusement arcade occurred on 7 September 1996, which included a large statue of Sonic the Hedgehog over the front entrance. Pepsi sponsored the Pepsi Max Drop Ride and from 1997 the Pepsi IMAX cinema, the first 3D IMAX cinema in the UK. It was also home to the second series of Channel 4's daily reality show The Salon. However, resultant visitor numbers were poor, and the Guinness Records exhibition closed in the mid-1990s and following the loss of Sega's sponsorship in 1999, Segaworld became Funland and was subsequently reduced in size, and the Pepsi-sponsored IMAX cinema and Drop Ride closed around the same time. Remains of old attractions can still be seen around the centre, such as a wall with a gun-barrel motif that used to house a James Bond ride, while a disused escalator now blocked off with a drinks machine was the entrance to Segaworld.

Lately the centre has hit a new low with the indescribably tacky Amora, the self-proclaimed Academy of Sex and Relationships, the “Spanish” dungeon of horrors “Pasaje Del Terror” and “believe it or not” Ripleys Odditorium although for my money the whole sad shipwreck of a centre could qualify for the title!

SegaWorld - The way it was!

Ripleys, who’s ‘Believe it or Not’ museums have been running for 85 years, has taken the London Pavilion in the centre at £70/sq ft. According to “Property World” The 25-year lease brings in rent of £1.75m a year, which will be subject to annual rent increases linked to the retail price index. The rent is a major boost from previous tenants Body Shop and Coordination Studies who were paying a combined yearly rent of £552,000. Ripley's Believe Or Not’s newly opened “Odditorium” in the Trocadero, Central London, features 22 galleries of oddities gathered from around the world including a two headed cow, and a portrait of Diana Princess of Wales created from dry lint, a crystal-covered car and a life-size model of the world’s tallest man. How London is enriched by such “Treasures.” Indeed so unique is this exhibition that it is one of 30 such freak shows Ripleys run worldwide.

Read more:

Now in another desperate throw of the “Trocadero Reinvention” dice permission is being applied for to turn The Trocadero into a "pod" hotel offering tiny rooms at knock-down prices. With rooms of just 12 square metres and 17 square metres, the hotel aims to be London's answer to the Pod Hotel in New York. It will occupy part of the second to seventh floors in the Grade II-listed building in Piccadilly Circus, and be run by the same US operator.

SegaWord Escalator blocked off by vending machines

Corridors will run around the outside of the building, and 495 rooms, all ensuite, will be grouped around internal courtyards. A planning application for the scheme, provisionally named the Piccadilly Hotel, will come before Westminster council this week. New York's Pod Hotel has a loyal following among travellers and critics. The Washington Post praised its design that made the best use of the bedrooms' 10ft by 10ft floorspace. It is described by its operator Accor as a "budget-minded traveller's dream come true", with rooms from about £70 a night.

The newspaper's travel writer Gary Lee wrote: "The Pod is proof that you can be hip on a budget. The rooms are all equipped with iPod docking stations, LCD televisions and free Wi-Fi. The decor is an inviting mix of mod and Fifties retro." On the downside: "Almost half the rooms have shared baths, and the walls are thin enough that you hear doors shutting down the hall."

The Pod to save The Troc?

Some reviewers found the rooms claustrophobic, but others felt the low prices justified the squeeze. Emma Mills, from London, stayed at the hotel in May. She said: "It was compact, but when you're in New York you're not there to sit in a room. I would much rather stay there and have more shopping money."

The Trocadero plan would be a boost for property investor Asif Aziz, whose Criterion Group purchased the building for £225million in 2005. Since then the centre is said to have struggled to attract tenants and, in January, lost one of its most high profile, Planet Hollywood, after 16 years. The restaurant has moved to a new £5million venue in Haymarket. The floors above the third level have been vacant since indoor theme park Segaworld moved out. Westminster's report raises concerns over the lack of natural light or ventilation in rooms. But adds: "It will provide affordable accommodation for visitors to this part of London." However I suggest Westminster Planning Committee should step back here and consider how The Trocadero has deviated from the proposal the approved in the 80’s for a high quality mixed use tourist-oriented entertainment, cinema and shopping complex which would enhance this strategic location.

In fact, for too long the Trocadero Centre has been a boil on the bum of London's West End as it has gone through many confused re-inventions. It is has looked and felt like an end of pier show where the sea has gone out. This POD hotel could go anywhere in loads of 1970 office blocks which need to be recycled and found new uses - it does not need to be in this strategic site which is London’s shop window for visitors. Westminster Council should refuse permission and make clear that it will only approve permission for an imaginative proposal which will add value to this World Class City (?) and I suggest this will be somebody with deeper pockets and better expertise than the current owners.

It is time that this failed monster of the Trocadero was humanely put down and London has a venue / centre it can be proud of, not reworked tat. Let us reclaim Piccadilly Circus and ensure that the Trocadero site is enhanced by a quality development which doesn’t make a mockery as we approach the 2012 Olympics of London’s claim to be a World Class City.


Most People Think Parthenon Marbles Should Be Returned To Greece

Most People Think Parthenon Marbles Should Be Returned To Greece
Photo: Urban (Creative Commons)
The Guardian newspaper in the UK set the question "Is it time to return the Parthenon Marbles?" to its readers and up to now the replies are Yes - 96.8%, No - 3.2%. An overwhelming vote in favour of the return of the Parthenon Marbles to Greece to be housed in the new Acropolis Museum. The online survey still has 3 days to run, so if you wish to vote, you can do so here.

As I mentioned in my previous post here, the British Museum is fast running out of arguments or excuses as to why they should keep the Marbles. Remember, they were stolen from the Acropolis in the early 19th century by Lord Elgin (which is why some people call them the Elgin Marbles) and then sold to the British Museum.

Over the years, the British Museum claimed that there wasn't a suitable venue for them to be displayed, but that argument no longer holds since the opening of the much-acclaimed Acropolis Museum earlier this week. So now all we can say to the British Museum is - Time to return the stolen goods to their rightful owner so that they can be displayed in their rightful setting - next to the Parthenon - for all the visitors to enjoy.

For more information on the Marbles and their return to Greece, you can visit The British Committee for the Restitution of the Parthenon Marbles and you can also sign a petition, if you so wish, at Return The

Featured Travel Site: Atlas Obscura

Featured Travel Site: Atlas Obscura
Atlas Obscura is a collaborative project with the goal of cataloging all of the singular, eccentric, bizarre, fantastical, and strange out-of-the-way places that get left out of traditional travel guidebooks and are ignored by the average tourist.

How To Avoid Ending Up in Jail When Traveling

How To Avoid Ending Up in Jail When Traveling
... or What To Do When Bill Clinton Isn't Coming To Your Rescue!

The cases of Euna Lee and Laura Ling in North Korea and the 3 hikers currently being held in Iran shows the difficulty when you run into trouble abroad.

In both cases it appears more and more that they caused their own bad situations. The reporters now admit they stepped into North Korean territory and the 3 hikers were warned not to go to the border area between Iran and Iraq...and yet they still went.

He's PROBABLY not coming to get you if you get in trouble...just saying!
credits: wikipedia

If you or I are being held in jail while traveling, the odds that a former President of the United States will not be coming to get us and fly us home on a private jet. What can we do?

Register With Your Embassy Before Your Trip

I admit that I did not do this when I went around the world. Trust me I would do that now. The embassy may be your first and last line of help in a foreign country. They know the lay of the land, they know who to talk to, can bail you out of jail and arrange for legal representation. Your tax dollars are paying for them. Register your next trip and use them if you need to. I posted on this before.

DO NOT Accept Packages To Carry
DO NOT Let Anyone Pack Your Bags

I've talked about Locked Up Abroad on The National Geographic Channel, the 'Scared Straight' program of international travel. Whether desperate for money or just naive, these folks end up in custody, usually for carrying drugs. While US and European drug laws can seem harsh, drug laws in many other places are downright brutal, with prison conditions that are considered inhumane by many.

If you are that desperate for money, go to your embassy for help. It's even better to beg on the streets than try to smuggle drugs. You're asking for trouble that can't be fixed with a simple call.

Not on your vacation itinerary...

Heed the Warnings of Locals

I don't know if it was arrogance, stupidity, overconfidence or a combination all of the above that caused the reporters and hikers to venture into forbidden territory. The hikers in Iran were warned beforehand. Lee and Ling definitely had to know the consequences of getting caught inside North Korea. This is not Americans getting caught crossing over the border in Canada, or even Mexicans getting caught crossing over into America. At least the Mexicans will get 3 square meals while being held and then get deported back to Mexico. That happens everyday.

You can't reason with dictatorships like North Korea...unless you call a photo-op with Bill Clinton 'reasoning'.

Ask your taxi driver, the person at the front desk of your hostel or hotel, any random person on the street, what are the do's and don'ts. Don't be afraid to ask. And when they tell you something, listen.

This was a rarity in Tokyo, a police car. I was so surprised to see one I took a photo. As long as I'm not taking a pic from the backseat.

Know What the Laws Are

Here in NYC, there was a big stink about taking pictures of the subway system after 9/11. I haven't heard many stories about that in a while, but it was big news when native New Yorkers were being arrested.

Being a drug mule is the extreme and obvious case, but countries and individual cities and regions have their own laws that may seem ridiculous to you, but could land you behind bars. You can Google or ask when you hit the ground what laws you as a foreigner should be aware of.

Don't be paranoid about it, but keep your hands where everyone can see them and be respectful of the culture you're in, even if you don't agree with everything in it.

Remember the kid who was caned in Singapore for spitting chewing gum AND spray painting cars? Don't talk badly about the Thai royal family. Here are 12 other things you shouldn't do while traveling.

Your best bet, stay away from drugs and that is more than half the battle.

When I was in Egypt a few years back, a friend and I got the bright idea to rent a car and driver and try to roll to Southern Egypt, close to the Sudanese border. Someone else on the trip, not a local but a frequent traveler to the country, 'politely' told us that is was a bad idea. Sometimes our love of adventure and new experiences has to be tempered by practicality.

As much as I advocate solo travel, your best bet SOMETIMES is going with a tour group, especially in developing countries, countries that have a history of political violence or war, or countries that would have a problem with your citizenship.

There are guided tours of Afghanistan, North Korea, Iraq and Iran. Google them, they are out there. Would I consider one of those? Absolutely. Would I go to any of those places by myself? Nope, not right now at least.

But if you do it smartly and know where you can go and where you can't, you can go anywhere and come home without causing an international incident.

Any more ideas on how to stay out of trouble while traveling abroad? Let us know in the Comments below.

Chill on...

Chill on...

Tro det eller ei, men de har faktisk en bar her i Melbourne laget av is... Vi bare måtte sjekke det ut. Vi drakk cocktails fra isglass, og vi hadde en "timer" slik at vi kunne vite når våre 30 minutter der inne var over...haha. De sa at folk i snitt ikke klarte være der inne i mer en 20 minutter. Vel, når man er fra nord-norge så er det ikke noe problem å holde ut i 30 minutter i minus 10 grader :)

Believe it or not, but they actually have a bar in Melbourne made of ice... We just had to check it out. We were drinking cocktails from glasses made of ice, and we had a timer so we would know when our 30 minutes was up...haha. They said the average time people stayed in there was about 20 minutes. Well, I'm from up north in Norway so 30 minutes in minus 10 degrees was not really a problem :)


Theme Parks: Hard Rock Park

Theme Parks: Hard Rock Park
Theme Parks - Hard Rock Park, Myrtle Beach, South Carolina: Wow, when's the last time you visited a brand spanking new theme park? Well, here's your chance! Hard Rock Cafe has spread their interests to include theme parks. Hard Rock...

Timeless Friendship Award

Timeless Friendship Award

Time for another ‘Token of Appreciation’ post…  I am overwhelmed Baron. So sweet of you to give me another award. This time 'Timeless Friendship Award'. U r so sweet. Thanks a ton, dear.

This award too comes with the instruction to be passed on to other newly discovered blogs. So, below is the list and its not in any particular order.

1.   Venky – A cricaholic who is absolutely crazy and has ridiculous imaginations… He fights with rain, he freaks out the shopkeepers, finds funny inside meanings of regular things.

2.   Mojo Arasu – The man of little things. He zooms into everything. A clock, a strand of hair, a leaf, a ball of cotton everything he puts his hand on.

3.   Kcalpesh – He either clicks great pics or edits ordinary pics in an extraordinary way to make it great.

4.   Anya – First she blogs about cats. Then, she blogs about cats. Later, she blogs about cats. Further later too, she blogs about cats. This award is not for her, but for her cat Kareltje. :)

5.   Aysegul – Aysegul Tastaban Erzincanoglu – Her full name, which I like a lot. Her blog is esp. about Turkey. It’s all about Turkey.

6.   Brian Miller – ‘Married to the most amazing woman and dad of two adventurous boys’ – as he says himself. I love the posts he makes about his kids. They are cho chweet!

7.   Winifred – She’s retired now and blogs about all those wonderful places she visited, beautiful memories and day to day ramblings as well…

8.   Diane – She had travelled the world and finally settled in Australia. She’s a lovely photographer who clicks in and around her place.


Congrats to my dear fellow bloggers. Now comes your part to be done.

1. Accept the award; post it on your blog together with the name of the person who has granted the award and his or her blog link.

2. Pass the award to as many or as few other blogs that you have newly discovered. Remember to contact the bloggers to let them know they have been chosen for this award.


End of a chapter...

End of a chapter...

Jeg klarer tydeligvis ikke å holde meg i ro en plass i mer en ett års tid. Jeg tror denne leiligheten var mitt ellevte hjem, i løpet av 10 år... Det er endel flytting! Jeg har bodd i nord-norge, midt-norge, østlandet, downunder i Australia, sørkysten av Portugal, og flytter jeg TILBAKE til Australia!
Jeg er vel veldig eventyrlysten og jeg elsker å reise og oppleve! Og det er ikke mye som kan stoppe meg....:)

Denne gangen går turen til Melbourne - har aldri vært der før jeg gleder meg mye!
Jeg skal studere master i multimedia design - det blir gøy!
Adjø Norge....

I obviously can't stay at one place for more than a year or so. I think this flat was my 11th home, in 10 years... That's a lot of moving! I've been living up north in Norway, in the middle of Norway, south east of Norway, down under in Australia, south coast in Portugal and now I'm moving BACK to Australia!
I guess I'm very adventurous and I love to travel and experience! And not much can stop me.... :)

This time I'm going to Melbourne - never been there before so I'm very excited! I will be doing a master degree in multimedia design - really looking forward to it!
Byebye Norway....

Golkonda Fort - Mohd Quli Tomb (Hyderabad - Andhra Pradesh)

Golkonda Fort - Mohd Quli Tomb (Hyderabad - Andhra Pradesh)

This is a flash back. Long time back, when I was in my 12th std. 

It was our school trip to Hyderabad. And one of the most important structure or monument here is the Golconda Fort.

Golconda, as the name says in Telugu, is Sheperd’s Hill. For the idol, found by a shepherd, this hill has this name. This fort was built in the 16th century by the Qutub Shahi Rulers.

This place was known for its diamond rich mines in earlier times. The famous Kohinoor diamond was mined here at the Nagina Bagh.

Even the hugest modern day building with several hundred floors and facilities, would stand dumb against this. There are numerous specialties here. Pretty more than any present day comfortable building, but still a lot eco friendly and cost effective too.

Acoustics effects are great in this fort. I can give few examples now. One is that a clap at the Fateh Darwaza, an entrance, right below the central floral design on the ceiling would resonate perfectly at a point on the fort wall at 300 feet height atop the fort. See the pic, it’s those two points. This was a perfect idea to convey a message from the base to the fort within seconds, without wasting time or energy. If you got the point, this is the mother of the invention of the present day Cell phone…!!!

The second is in the acoustics room in here in the fort, the sounds made at one corner of the room are perfectly audible in the diagonally opposite corner. So, what’s new in this? Anywhere, this is possible. Ok, let me explain it more clearly. Even if you make a small sound, a whisper, even a flutter of a fabric, made facing the dead corner, would be perfectly audible in the wall in the absolutely diagonal corner. This helped them to share secrets even if the room is highly crowded, without anyone’s least suspicion. Now that is… simple, the mother of invention of a Wireless…!!!

The third example for sound engineering is, in another acoustics room here, the slightest disturbance causes vibrations all over the room. A whisper or even a scratch on the head...!!!

Is it only acoustics, that is great here? No…  There is a room in here that is called the AC Room. Well, new names for layman understanding. Whatever... This room has 2 chairs of stones, one for the king and another for the king. All the air that reaches these chairs, are so cool, after taking all the twists and turns and becomes cool from even if its scorching heat outside.

The lavatory facility here is in par with any star hotel of today. There are provisions to transport hot water and cold water in 2 pipes separately, to the bathroom. Not just bathroom, but to many other rooms. This fort being at a height of 120 m from the ground, imagine water being carried to this height in two different temperatures.

The toilets here are just like the modern day Indian lavatory, with foot rests too. The pit is 30 feet deep. Our guide actually lighted a match stick and dropped it in to shop us the depth of it. Still, it was quite strange at the back out the mind which said, “You are awe inspired by the place where the nawabs shit”. Ahem… Forget it…

Apart from the technical marvel, there are other things of interest too, apart from the usual symbols of any fort – cannons, cannon balls, spears etc. etc. etc.

The 7 feet long rifle, at the armor hall display, is a piece of functional art.

In the period of the Qutub Shahi Dynasty, the soldiers were selected with great care. Their eligibility – 7 feet tall and ability to lift the 145 kg cubical rock here with a single hand. Well, we did try, 7/8 of us with both the hands. No… The rock did not even nudge a mm. Sobs!

Then is the St.Ramdoss Jail. St. Ramdoss was arrested here in this fort for religious reasons, coz he didn’t take the permission to construct a certain temple. Still, even being in this fort, he continued his prayers and hymns and not only that. He also started sculpting figurines on the wall with a stone.

Again, religious tolerance was skyhigh. Inspite of the several decades of Sultanate reign, the Jagadamba temple within the fort is left untouched, and it stands till date for us to take her blessings.

There were 3 routs to reach the top of the fort earlier they say, one of which is unused now. All these routes have rest houses for the palanquin bearers. Also, while employing them, the front bearers are shorter than the back bearers so as to keep the palanquin horizontal.

From right atop the fort, the twin cities of Hyderabad and Secunderabad are a visual treat.

Just at 2 km from the Golconda Fort are the tombs of the Qutub Shahi Rulers. There are 7 tombs in all from Mohd. Quli followed by his heirs.

A specialty here is that from the tomb of Mohd. Quli, all the other tombs could be seen.

Well, then coming soon with the other places of interest in Pearl City.




Golconda Fort

From Hyderabad – 11 km

Nearest Bus Stop – Golconda Bus Stop

Routes – Via afzalgunj and Karvan or via Mallepally and Saftarjung


Mohd. Quli Tomb

From Golconda Fort – 2 km

Dedicated to my dearest, nearest, sweetest School pals and teachers... 

New York day 2: Empire State Building

New York day 2: Empire State Building



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Notable features include the listing of search suggestions in real time as queries are entered, plus a list of related searches.

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At the moment the related searches pertaining to 'Holidays IN Italy' are:

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