Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Madrid to Barcelona

We left Madrid today for Barcelona. Madrid is really nice, love the architecture and the people there. But it miss a lake, sea or simple a river. Madrid is only land.

The one hour flight from Madrid to Barcelona was with Iberia, a carrier which I never used before and will not use ever in the future; you have to pay for a glass of water! Hola!!

Barcelona looks nice. Tomorrow we will do a full Bus-Hop and Stop trip from 9 in the morning until 8 in the evening. So many things to see! And Friday back to Istanbul instead of Saturday: we shortened our trip for two reasons: 1) again the volcano in Iceland is active and the situation in Greece can spread over Europe. Let us be safe back on Friday, instead of taking the risk of getting grounded in Barcelona for a while…

Day of Freedom

Today Holland celebrates Liberation Day as a reminder of the ending of World War II 65 years ago. After a crazy Memorial Day yesterday, at which during the two minute silence at the National Monument at the Dam in Amsterdam, some idiot created mass panic in the crowd by yelling out loud and causing mayhem. Result: innocent people getting injured. A disrespectful and brainless action...

Anyway, Liberation Day.

This is a moment for all of you to take a minute to think about the freedom you live in, and imagine what it's like to live in an environment of war or similar (Palestine, Tibet). Stop one minute with nagging about the power of the media (I'll spend at least one minute of not nagging).

Tomorrow we live on with our lives, in more or less freedom.

I'd like to end with a quote of singer Michael Franti:"We can bomb the world to pieces, but we can't bomb it into peace."

Spanish youth hit hardest in the crisis

The unemployment rate in Spain surpassed 20 percent last week. The country's young are hardest hit in the economic crisis sweeping through the southern European nation.

By Merijn de Waal in Barcelona

Almost every workday, Beatriz Mera heads to her bank's branch office in the centre of Barcelona. She sidles up to the counter with a folder bulging with documents under her arm. "Then I demand an explanation, I whine and I complain until they send me away," Mera said, sitting in a bar around the corner from the bank. "I have few options left other than being a pain in the behind."

Mera (30) grabbed her folder and spread out the documents and forms it contained in front of her. They showed how she and her partner took on massive debt during the economic boom. Apart from two mortgages, they also took out an 'insurance policy' that turned out to be a risky financial product. This is the reason she is now waging war against her bank. "For 18 months now we have to pay instalments of 2,000 euros a month," Mera lamented. "We simply don't have the money, and we won't have it for years to come."

More herreeee

Day Opening - May 5

Just Love