Sunday, January 31, 2010

No absence in the presence

Early in the morning in a state between sleep and awake.
Turning over to put the arms around the Queen of Dreams to hold her close and share the warmth and love.
As has happened for most mornings over the last two months.

But instead of the person who has an incredible beauty of heart, there was a void.
An emptiness.
Arms stretching and hands searching to find nothing.
Absence in the present.

This made the state proceed into being fully awake to realize the Queen of Dreams is an ocean away.
The lack of her in the embracing arms translated into pain.
Not a physical pain, but a feeling in the heart that hurts and bites and carves and chisels and erodes and drills and bangs and booms and bombards and explodes.

Early in the afternoon after lunch having a nap outside in the sunshine.
In a state between sleep and awake suddenly the incredible and scaring thought came to mind not to know where the napping was taking place.
A panic overwhelmed.
Was this a hotel room in the USA or maybe somewhere in Europe?
Was this the bedroom of the Queen of Dreams?
The apartment in Amsterdam?
Where was this?
This feeling of not knowing where it all was had an enormous impact.
It felt like having left earth and drifting hopelessly in space somewhere.
Away from anything known until now.
Being absent in the present.

This made the state proceed into being fully awake to realize that this was Mexico, Baja California, Punta Boca del Salado, the Gonzales family, the Fuso Szulc next to the Sea of Cortez, 109 West and 23 North.
It was then realized what traveling during two months does to a human being.
It unroots.
Cuts of connections to one specific place and the people that live there.
To create a particular void in the unconsciousness.

In the end though, it doesn't matter where one is.
In someone's arms or in a particular place.
As long as life is approached from the heart with love.
Then there is no absence.
But only total presence anywhere anyhow.

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Custom customs

It is not far from Los Angeles in the USA to San Jose del Cabo in Mexico.
Just a 70 minutes flight.
But it is going from one society into a completely different one.

That starts arriving at the airport and meeting the immigration officers.
In an open space with no security.
Immigration officers in bright shirts and no weapons.
Men and women that are friendly.
Who do not ask impertinent questions.
And give permission to stay in Mexico for 180 days when a tourist.

And then the visitor meets the "Aduana": the custom officers.
Where a questionnaire has to be delivered informing what one is carrying and bringing into Mexico.

Whether one's luggage is searched by the custom officers is decided by chance.
Each visitor needs to push a button.
That makes a light shine red or green.
If green, Mexico is open to receive the visitor.
If red, Mexico is open also but not after a custom officer has inspected the luggage.

In this case, the lady in front pushed the button and it was red.
So a feeling was born that it would be easy to enter Mexico.
How could the light turn red twice in a row?
The button was pushed and it was not green.

On a large table the luggage was placed and everything was taken out of the suitcases.
The alert custom officers found two Apple laptop computers, a Nikon D300 camera with two lenses and a flash, a Canon G10 camera, an Iomega 1TB hard drive, a Chaney remote control fridge thermometer and a large box containing a Davis Vantage VUE weather centre.
A visitor is not supposed to travel into Mexico and fill in the custom form that nothing is there to declare while carrying what looks like supplying an electronic shop.

The loyal and effective custom officer called the supervisor to show what he had found.
Who took information from the Davis Vantage VUE weather centre box to go and check on the internet what was its value.
To return and inform that the maximum value of what one can bring into Mexico, $ 300, was largely exceeded.
And that because on the custom form nothing was declared all the stuff exhibited on the table, the two Apple laptop computers, the Nikon D300 camera with two lenses and a flash, the beloved Canon G10 camera, the Iomega 1TB hard drive for friend Alonso, the Chaney remote control fridge thermometer and the large box containing the Davis Vantage VUE weather centre would be all confiscated.
Not only on the forehead, but also in the armpits and in the crotch, sweat could be felt starting to stream.
Indeed, quite a disastrous situation.
To loose all that stuff would not only be a very serious financial blow but would also disable working fatally.
No more computers suddenly and all the information they contained and no more cameras would stop functioning as an artist photographer totally.

What to say to the supervisor of the Mexican customs?
To offer apologies?
Or a bribe?

He was looked into the eyes with love and a demonstration of not having had bad intentions bringing all that equipment into Mexico.
The supervisor then decided to let the visitor go.
With a warning only.
All the stuff could be returned into the suitcases and the promise had to be made to declare any goods when visiting a next time.

What a way to enter a country and feel welcome.


Friday, January 29, 2010

The end of bohemianism

The trip from Los Angeles to San Jose del Cabo, Mexico in an old MD-80 airplane of American Airlines.

At the self check in at Los Angeles International Airport, the screen of the computer eventually says to go and see a real person.
And no wonder.
A person with a passport from the Netherlands and a Mexican residence-ship traveling all over the world.
This is so out of the ordinary that an automated system is unable to handle and process the passenger.

The friendly American Airlines man checking in the passenger had to ask some questions.
Instructed to do so by the Homeland Security of the USA.
While the traveller was going to Mexico, he asked if there was a return ticket to go back to Europe.
And when was there a return to the USA?
Initially there was a feeling of opposition.
Why to answer questions about future travel plans when one will be in another country than the USA?
But lessons have been learned.
Better to stay docile and answer truthfully.
In the end, the USA considers itself at war and anybody is a potential enemy.
Opposition and rebelling would only lead to trouble.

This situation made an interview come back to mind that was heard on National Public Radio while driving in the morning to Los Angeles International Airport.
It was with Patti Smith, the rock singer, poet and writer.
Who had been involved with photographer Robert Mapplethorpe before he discovered he was gay.
One of the callers was an artist himself.
And he had a good way of putting it.
He said that besides being an artist, he also had to be an entrepreneur.
But that being an entrepreneur, just to make money to live, was consuming so much of his time that he hardly managed to be an artist.
He asked Patti Smith why in her days, the 70's in New York, it all was so much more easy.
And he asked what she recommended that a contemporary artist should do.

She replied that in her days of glory an apartment in New York would cost her $ 75 a month.
And that there were plenty of good jobs available like working in a library or bookshop.
Ms. Smith explained they also hardly had money but managed nevertheless to survive and be creative in New York in the 70's.
And admitted those days were over.
That New York has become too expensive and that there is no work that would suit an artist.
She recommended artists to go to cities where life was cheaper, like Detroit.

This is how life has become.
If you are somehow out of the ordinary, like an artist, society becomes suspicious.
And in fact doesn't want anybody to be different anymore.
Bohemianism has been excluded as a position people can practice in society.
It is not tolerated anymore.
You are not supposed to just travel anywhere.
And live in a big city on a shoestring.

It has become hard to live a romantic life.
And to be free.


Thursday, January 28, 2010

Just being.

An experience that glues on the current situation of living.
A friend asked to be of help.
His sister had died and her house needed to be cleaned out.

A house in a gated community for retired persons.
Filled with things accumulated during many years.
Things that served a purpose or had an emotional value and suddenly lost all reason for being there anymore.

It was rather chaotic inside that house.
As efforts were made to empty it.
And everything that was seen, the kitchen, the sofa, the bed, all the things, reminded of the person who once used it and now was dead.

A tsunami of sadness and grief thundered on every person daring to go into that house.
To realize how futile life in fact is.
Every person building a fortress around existence consisting of objects that eventually are not more than destined to be trash.

Standing in that house of death, feeling it and smelling it, a memory from one of Osho's lectures came to mind.
That to be overwhelmed is equal to drifting out of your centre.
And that no matter what, one must always remain balanced and centered.

Hence, being in that house with the tremendous strong presence of the person that was not anywhere anymore, the exercise was performed to not be absorbed by sadness.
To not be lured into depression.
To not be shot to the dark side of the moon.

The best that can be achieved exercising centeredness in such a situation is a form of neutral presence.
Being there without feeling sadness, but also without feeling happiness.
Just being.


Wednesday, January 27, 2010

in melancholy and out

For two months life was not only in Europe but also together with the Queen of Dreams.
Sharing life in all its details.
An experience of the highest privilege.

But now there is an ocean in between.
The Queen of Dreams has to remain in Europe for some time before to continue the happy life.

This is why these days are filled with melancholy and sweet memories.
And strong feelings of missing the deep togetherness.

To suddenly not to be in each other arms is more than painful.
It is cruel.

How to continue this situation of painful separation is unknown.
Maybe it will be a story of simply suffering for the time it takes to reunite.
But it is very damaging and taking away the happiness of life.

Therefore it is considered to return soon to Europe to be with the Queen of Dreams again.
A plan only a man crazy of melancholy and totally involved with a lady and completely consumed by love will consider.

But the Queen of Dreams has another approach.
She tells him:

"I hope you are not dominated by feelings of sadness and that you are able to experience love as a source of inspiration and positive energy."

And is this attitude not much better?


Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Advantage and disadvantage

Public transportation in California, USA is such that one needs to rent a car to get around.
For example, to go from Los Angeles to a town like Temecula, that is located in between Los Angeles and San Diego, only the private Greyhound buses are the option as a form of public transportation.
But they go that infrequently that to think to go by bus to Temecula from Los Angeles is unrealistic.
To this comes that hardly any trains are available in most regions of California, USA.

Renting a car is easy and not expensive.
Within a few minutes a good deal can be made through websites like Orbitz.
Where one can compare prices easily and book the best deal.

The rental car company called "Advantage" offered a Ford Focus for $ 13.97 a day with all miles free.
The best price of all rental car companies on the internet and therefore they got the business.

But once in the office of "Advantage" near Los Angeles International Airport there was a strange surprise.
The Ford Focus was there indeed.
And the price was $ 13.97 also.
But the person working at the "Advantage"-office near Los Angeles International Airport
informed that the Ford Focus was equipped with Sirius Satellite Radio.
And that this would cost $ 5 a day extra.
Obviously the answer was that no Sirius Satellite Radio was needed.
The Ford Focus also had a regular radio with FM and AM, so why spent $ 5 a day for something that was not of any use?
An amount that increased the daily rate for renting the car with 35 %.
While it is known that a subscription to Sirius Satellite Radio is costing only $ 15 a month.

But the person working at the "Advantage"-office near Los Angeles International Airport
explained that there was no option but to take the car and pay the 35 % extra.
In spite of the agreement as was made through Orbitz.

Obviously this is a sneaky way of "Advantage" to make extra money.
If they rent the car for 30 days a month, they make $ 150 minus $ 15 is $ 135 extra.
Denying any preference of the customer.

The person working at the "Advantage"-office near Los Angeles International Airport
said that he could do nothing about it.
That the "Advantage" Customer Service needed to be called to complain.
And that sometimes they would deduct the costs of the Sirius Satellite Radio from the customer's invoice charged to the credit card.

So why not call the Customer Relations of "Advantage" rent a car?
A toll free number.

The effort was made during half an hour.
And the caller was getting nowhere.
Because a real person is only available to talk to at "Advantage" rent a car in case one wants to make a reservation.
But for all other matters a computerized voice explains other choices of connections that all end up saying that the customer has to call the office where the car was rented.
While the people at the office where the car was rented suggest to call the Customer Relations.
In that way a full circle is made: the customer simply can't complain.

It is not about the money of course in this story.
But it is about how a company is doing business.
How customers are squeezed out of their money indecently.
Not much money, but enough to remain with a bad feeling and the promise never to rent a car anymore from "Advantage".


Monday, January 25, 2010

To travel to the USA

Traveling to the USA has become a little different since a few months.
Any non-American who wants to go to the USA as a tourist needs to go first to a website of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.
Called "ESTA", that stands for Electronic System for Travel Authorization.
On the "ESTA"-website a procedure needs to be followed to obtain permission for a US-visit.
This procedure is answering a series of questions.
Not only name and address, but also phone number and e-mail address.
And information must be supplied where one will go in the USA.
Name and address of US-friends.
There are other questions as well.
About having diseases and a possible criminal history.

Once this questionnaire is filled in, it can be sent and an answer whether one obtains permission to visit the USA is returned within a few minutes.

This procedure was performed not long ago.
And the answer had been that permission was granted to visit the USA.
As a precaution for possible complications at borders and airports, the permission given on the website was printed out.

Yesterday, at the airport of Amsterdam, the Netherlands, the journey to Los Angeles in the USA was started.
Checking in was with British Airways.
Their computers connect to the computer and database of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.
To check whether the passenger was granted "ESTA"-permission of entry into the USA.
The response was negative.
And therefore British Airways was not allowing the traveller to get on the plane to fly to Los Angeles, USA.

A peculiar situation.
There was a "ESTA"-document saying that permission was recently granted.
But the current on line response from "ESTA" was contrary.

A nervous situation arose.
If permission from the US-authorities was not obtained, British Airways could not accept the passenger and the ticket would become worthless.

The solution was to go to an Internet café somewhere at the airport of Schiphol, Amsterdam, the Netherlands.
And visit again the website of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.
And do the whole "ESTA"-procedure of requesting permission to enter the USA again.
In the hope it all would work out before the gates for the flight would close.

It was an extremely nervous situation.
But eventually "ESTA"-permission was obtained on line.
A quick return to the check-in desk of British Airways where they tried again.
This time it worked but then issuing the boarding card was halted by the computer of U.S. Department of Homeland Security.
The British Airways employees had to try five times before it worked.

In the end, the flight was caught in its last minutes of boarding and Los Angeles was reached.


Saturday, January 23, 2010


By car from the house in Amsterdam city center in Holland to Schiphol international airport.
With British Airways a flight to Heathrow, London, UK.
Another plane from London, Heathrow to Los Angeles, USA.
From Los Angeles international airport with a rental car to the town of Temecula in California, USA.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Die in peace

One of the most awful activities imaginable had to be performed recently.
Dealing with the heritage.

As with every human being, death will knock on the door somewhere in the future.
And in the case of an artist photographer, there is an archive.
Consisting of negatives, prints and digital files.
This legacy possibly continues to play a role in the world of art.
The images may continue to be published and exhibited.
The prints will continue to sell to collectors and museums.
All this needs to be managed and supervised in the spirit of the artist photographer.

In most cases it is the family of the artist-photographer who become responsible for the heritage.
But this is not always effective.
Sometimes, family has no interest whatsoever to get involved to protect and manage negatives, prints, digital files and the revenues.
And they are disconnected from defending the spirit of the deceased artist photographer.

In those cases other ways have to be found to safeguard the heritage.
In a way that it is professionally stored.
That it is effectively farmed.
And that the continuing income from sales, prints and copyrights and the possible capital is spent in the way the dead artist photographer desires.

Most common is to create a foundation.
With a board and statutes.
But that is a rather complicated matter.

Fortunately there is a bank, called the Insinger de Beaufort Bank.
To which is related a foundation called "Ars Donandi".
Qualified persons can have a fund with "Ars Donandi" as the foundation.
The money goes into the fund and the foundation not only invests the capital but also
donates based on the wishes of the fund holder.

In this way one can have total control over what happens with the heritage.
It is safeguarded, through the investment it can grow and the revenues can be donated to one's own wishes.

So one can die in peace of mind.




Thursday, January 21, 2010

Antwerp anywhere

A new visit to the city of Antwerp, Belgium.
The publisher of the photo book "Sequences: the ultimate selection" is based in that town.
And we find there the photo gallery "Baudelaire" where currently original sequences are on display.

Each time a visit to the city of Antwerp, Belgium, is a highlight.
It is such a beautiful town.

And it is relaxed and not hectic at all.
With most friendly people.
There are many very nice restaurants and places to have a drink where quality and style are unique.

Antwerp is a very easy to reach now.
As it is fully connected to the high speed European railway system.
Most comfortable trains that go at 300 km per hour (186 mph).
From Amsterdam to Antwerp is only one hour and twelve minutes.
Paris is less than one hour and thirty minutes from Antwerp.

Therefore, it is not a bad idea of the publisher of the photo book "Sequences: the ultimate selection" to live and work in Antwerp, Belgium.
The city is centrally located in Europe and housing, office space and living is cheaper compared with Paris and Amsterdam.

Nevertheless, there is no consideration to settle in Antwerp, Belgium in spite of all its advantages.
In fact, there is no consideration to settle anywhere.
Living while traveling permanently is still experienced as the optimal way.
The most inspiring and exciting.
Life as one big Antwerp anywhere.


Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Male and female pictures

Last night a dinner in a Moroccan restaurant with good friend, psychologist and acclaimed conceptual trend guru Susanne Piët.

She has published over a dozen books and her most recent one is called "The Emocode".
About designing branded personalities and bringing them to life.

It was a fascinating conversation while eating the exotic food and drinking mint tea.
One of the things Susanne Piët claimed was that she could see from a picture whether it was made by a female photographer or by a male photographer.
Because, in her opinion, women are seeing things very different from men.
More precisely, women see things around them more in a balance and harmony.
While men see things more in terms of competition and values of good and bad or strong and weak.

What to reply to these kinds of rather bald statements?
Statements that might be true.
That might be humbug.

Therefore it was proposed to Susanne Piët to do a test.
To put in a room on tables a set of different pictures.
Unknown pictures.
That have not been published yet.
And to decide which picture is made by a man and which picture is made by a woman.
To later check how correct the assessment is.

In this way, almost scientifically, it can be determined whether Susanne Piët's statement is true, a little bit true or not true at all.
If on average, several persons, men and women, will guess over 75 % correct for the picture to have been made by a man or by a man, we should be convinced that one can see the gender of the photographer.
But if it is less than 50 %, Susanne Piët's claim is not serious.

Now it is just a matter of setting up the experiment.
Stuff for another posting.

"The Emocode" by Susanne Piët
ISBN 90 430 1233 5


Monday, January 18, 2010

A good film in bed

One of the exquisite pleasures of being with someone in love, harmony and peace is to watch together in bed a good film.
Curled up and caressing while the plot of the film unfolds.

This privileged experience gets even more excellence when the film is more than just a good movie.
Like the one of last night:
"Das Leben der Anderen" made by Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck.

It is a story that plays in Autumn 1984 in the time East Germany was called the DDR.
The German Democratic Republic.
A country that only existed thanks to the Soviets and was ruled with an iron fist by Honnecker and his bandits who were responsible for making their country a totalitarian state.
Where there was not much freedom and a secret service, called the Stasi, that was controlling everybody.
People lived constantly in paranoia and were unable to protest the miserable circumstances they had to live in.

In this dramatic context the film "Das Leben der Anderen" tells the story of a well-known author of books and theater plays who revolts against the rulers that are celebrating him as a great and political correct writer.
The illegal activities of the author are discovered by a Stasi agent who monitors each moment of the life of the author and his girlfriend.
But this Stasi agent meets his morality.
He has his political opinions that are in solidarity with the socialist regime he works for.
But in the process, he develops sympathy and other human feelings for the couple he is monitoring and trying to frame.
Eventually, he protects them and contributes to the rescue of them and to the fall of the DDR.

The film "Das Leben der Anderen" is a fantastic film.
Very well made.
Great actors.
Fabulous story.
Strong emotions.
No wonder it won numerous awards.
Including an Oscar as best foreign film.
Quite an achievement because the film "Das Leben der Anderen" was the debut of the director Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck.

Nevertheless, it must be realized that this movie reaches a rather small audience.
Compared to most Hollywood movies.
In order to grasp the essential of this movie, one must have some geographical and historical knowledge.
Educated Europeans therefore have access to the film and are able to clearly understand the story but one may wonder how deep this film can go with educated people in the USA, Japan, China and other countries uninformed and disinterested in recent European history.
Most likely is that they will never see this film as it will not show in a movie theatre near where they live.
Nor that they would be interested in a film about the German Democratic Republic about which they hardly know anything.
Hence, we have a situation that we have a marvelous and great film and that most people worldwide only see Hollywood garbage.

Sunday, January 17, 2010


It was during the day that a friend was seen wearing a T-shirt with glittering lettering.
But because she also wore a sweater, no clear view was possible of what exactly was written there.

Fortunately, at night the friend was met again.
And the question could be asked what exactly was there as a message on her breast.

The intuition that it should be some remarkable proved to be correct.
The friend took off the sweater, and in plain view of all the other friends present, as well as her own husband, everybody could read the text.
It was a text that could be read correctly when standing in front of mirror.
Or could be read by people able to decipher it.

It said:

Masturbate, I'm lovin' it

The friend explained that this was a message that was fitting completely to her.
And she said that when she saw the T-shirt she absolutely felt she should have it.
Yes, she said openly and honestly to all present including her husband: I love to masturbate.

But then, who doesn't?


Saturday, January 16, 2010

A photo book for free!

It has been some time since the last pictures were made for the photo project "The most beautiful people in the world".
It was in Mumbai, India in april 2008.
That concluded visits to ten different countries worldwide.

All the images and texts were published on a website.
Over twelve magazines worldwide published the photo project "The most beautiful people in the world" while several exhibitions were organized.

However, the main objective was to publish a photo book.
Not an exclusive photo book that would only reach a selected group of photography lovers and connoisseurs.
The idea was to publish a popular version of the book that could reach the mass audience.

For several years the photo book publisher Delpire Editions from Paris, France was committed to design and publish the photo book of the photo project "The most beautiful people in the world".
But for reasons not very clear, this commitment was annulled and a new search for a book publisher had to be initiated.

We are now in the first month of the year 2010 and still there is no photo book of the photo project "The most beautiful people in the world".
While a publisher has been found.

But these days, with the economic recession, publishing a photo book has become a complicated matter.
It is still possible but it is not a party anymore.
There are so many unpleasant and frustrating aspects to the enterprise that one should think twice and than even another time before to go that way.

These thoughts have been on the mind for some time.
Remembering that performing and completing the photo project "The most beautiful people in the world" was a most extraordinary experience.
A fabulous unification and harmonizing with people that became friends worldwide.
A photo project that had a fantastic energy and positivity.
Where things went as by itself and always in the right direction.

But once the photo project "The most beautiful people in the world" was completed concerning visiting the countries and production of the photo book started, this special energy evaporated.
Most things became complicated.
Taking time.
Resulting in stagnation and becoming like a heavy truck losing more and more speed and coming to a standstill sank in deep mud.

The challenge is of course to try to keep this positive energy once so present in the photo project "The most beautiful people in the world".
In spite of the recession, the complicated book publishers and the bad market.

This now has been found.
A completely new business model has been developed for publishing photo books.
The approach is that the photo book of the photo project "The most beautiful people in the world" will be available for free!
Soon it will be announced on the website of the photo project and people worldwide can order their copy.
Of course, shipping and handling will have to be paid, but the photo book is absolutely free!
Isn't that something?


Friday, January 15, 2010

Love loves life

The permanent pilgrim has landed in a beautiful apartment filled with love and caring of a friend in Amsterdam, the Netherlands.
But the heart is filled, for much time now, with a foundation of acceptance of a complete union with the Queen of Dreams.
Of a togetherness that goes above any nightmares two people together sometimes also experience.
Once the nightmare is incapacitated, it can occur without doing damage.
It happens, it is intense but when the light of day announces a new daybreak the love in the eyes and the loving and caring expressed and experienced in endless embracing allows immediate access to more time in harmony and heaven.


Wednesday, January 13, 2010

The day in words of deeds

Hotel Polonia, Cracow, Poland.
Bus from Cracow to airport Katowice, Poland.
Wizzair flight from Katowice to Eindhoven, the Netherlands.
Bus from Eindhoven airport to railway station Eindhoven, the Netherlands.
Train from Eindhoven to Nijmegen, the Netherlands.
Train from Nijmegen to Utrecht, the Netherlands.
Walk to palace of the Queen of Dreams.

Safe in love

It has become a question to ask each time a couple that is together for a longer time is met.
The question is:

"Obviously you love each other.
But do you also sometimes dislike each other?"

And each time the couple answer positively.
They say: "Yes, we love each other but we also dislike each other sometimes".

The peculiar thing is that the fact they also dislike is not such a big deal.

Last night the question was asked if disliking, besides loving, is not resulting in a breakdown of the relationship.
That disliking is of such a devastating influence, that the love is totally wiped out.

And surprisingly, the interviewees all explained that to dislike within a loving relationship is not destructive.
Because of the presence of the love.
It is like the disliking can exist between two persons and can be experienced.
Can be felt but without dumping or projecting it on the other.
If the disliking is simply felt and not cultivated, the disliking will do no damage.
Because when the disliking is over, the love is there to embrace the two lovers.

Once this knowledge is deeply understood, one needs not to be afraid of feelings opposite to love towards a partner.
One can feel relaxed in a relationship and experience all kinds of feelings.
And feel safe whatever the feeling is.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Fog in the future

If ever, the near future is completely uncertain.
No path can be seen, as far as can be watched in the future, in the melee that give glimmers of the possible events.
This could happen.
That could happen.
Anything could happen.

Of course, isn't this always the case?
Never are we sure what will happen in the future.
But once a life has become stable and is in a certain rhythm, unexpected events are surprises and out of the ordinary.

Lives can become unstable due to circumstances.
For example, on Thursday is a flight to catch from Katowice in Poland to Eindhoven in the Netherlands.
But it is snowing and not a little bit.
Disrupting flights, trains and cars.
Therefore it is uncertain if the journey can be made on Thursday.

And then?
More circumstances surround to fog the future.
Making it unknown what will happen.
Circumstances of much more importance and far reaching impact than a plane being cancelled.
That may fly later.

There is only one strategy to remain stable and not to be disrupted by uncertainty.
And that is to stay in the moment.
To be optimal in the here and now and let the things come as they wish to enter the reality of life.
Therefore the choir sings:
"Welcome, welcome, whatever wants to come".

Monday, January 11, 2010

Love balls

Fresh snow has fallen in Cracow, Poland.
And because this is a phenomenon not experienced for many years due for staying always the winters in Mexico, the snowflakes descending are observed with amazement, bliss and joy.
The trees and the houses and the world are covered with a white glistering layer of magic.
Therefore, nothing more enjoyable as to walk in the park and to feel amazed by this Arctic paradise.

Babies warmly packed are on sledges being pulled to learn what a pleasure snow is.
And boys slide down slopes on plastic seats feeling ready to challenge life and testing courage.

But then a couple was spotted.
The girl would collect snow, make a ball and pretend she intended to throw it at her boyfriend.
But she couldn't.
She loved him too much.
And then the boy would collect some handful of snows and mold a ball.
To throw at his girlfriend.
But also he, he couldn't do it.
Love stopping a snowball from exploding in white dust on a head or a shoulder of a beloved one.

It was a beautiful scene to observe and of course right away the Queen of Dreams was coming to mind as someone who is also where never snowballs hit.
Who is deep in the heart where is no cold and no winter.

Then in Cracow, Poland a dog was taken his master for a walk in the park in the snow.
A black Labrador on the white surface leaving yellow spots.
Whether it is water or snow, a Labrador is happy to roam anywhere.
Charley, this Labrador, spotted though another male dog of his size.
And immediately got into his mode of applying aggression to defend non-existing territory.
Charley barking, testing the strength of his collar attaching him with the one that feeds him.
A dog defends his territory and can't even supply himself with food.
What is this dog nonsense in the park about then?
Just threatening, like the couple was doing with their snowballs.
But dogs, contrary to the amorous man and woman, do this with little love for each other.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Six million ghosts in one room

In Cracow, Poland used to live a large Jewish community.
In an area called Kazimierz they were together and enjoying their culture and tradition.
But then the Nazis came in 1940.
And took most of the Jewish people away from Cracow to massacre them.

But the Jewish area of Cracow remains in spite of the bestial behavior of German military people and their assistants.
And this Jewish neighborhood is now part of the tourist attraction that Cracow has become.

At a pretty square called Szeroka is the Klezmer House.
A large house in which a restaurant.
Where every night at 8.00 h a concert of Klezmer music is performed.

Klezmer is a musical tradition which parallels Hasidic and Ashkenazic Judaism.
Around the 15th century, a tradition of secular (non-liturgical) Jewish music was developed by musicians called klezmorim or kleyzmurim.
They draw on devotional traditions extending back into Biblical times, and their musical legacy of klezmer continues to evolve today.
The repertoire is largely dance songs for weddings and other celebrations.
Due to the Ashkenazi lineage of this music, the lyrics, terminology and song titles are typically in Yiddish.
Originally, klezmer (plural klezmorim) referred to musical instruments, and was later extended to refer to musicians themselves.
It was not until the mid-to-late 20th Century that the word was used to identify it as a musical genre.
Early 20th Century recordings and writings most often refer to the style as "Yiddish" music, although it is also sometimes called Freilech music. Compared to most other European folk music styles, very little is known about the history of klezmer music, and much of what is said about it must be seen as conjecture.
Klezmer is easily identifiable by its characteristic expressive melodies, reminiscent of the human voice, complete with laughing and weeping.
This is not a coincidence; the style is meant to imitate khazone and paraliturgical singing.
Several techniques are used to accomplish this.
There are krekths, sobs and dreydlekh which are a form of musical ornament similar to a turn or trill.

Much of the traditional klezmer repertoire was written by professional klezmer musicians in the style of their region or tradition, and a lot of co-territorial music such as non-Jewish folksongs, Ottoman music, Romanian music, Ukrainian music as well as the musics of other minorities living in the same areas as Jews in Southeastern Europe such as Tatars and especially Romanies/Gypsies.
Historically, young klezmorim learned songs from their family and their elders in bands.
However, there were several breaks in history where this transmission broke down, including mass emigration but especially the Holocaust which destroyed most of Jewish life and culture in Europe.
Undoubtedly, a lot has been lost of whatever repertoire they played in different regions, especially wedding repertoire, since Jewish weddings would last several days, but technology of the time could only record a few minutes at a time.
As well, some recordings may have been made from one area which did not at all represent the klezmer repertoire from other parts of the region.
In the 21st century, klezmer is typically learned from fake books and transcriptions of old recordings, although the music was traditionally transmitted and learned by ear.

In Cracow in the Klezmer House at Szeroka Square the music is performed by three older persons.
A bass, a violin and a piano.

And the one hour concert with a 15 minutes intermission is a repertoire the musicians play a few times a week.
So, it is more than a routine for them: they can play the songs even with their eyes closed.
But nevertheless, there were moments when a sad song was played, that in spite of the routine the musicians were gripped by emotions.
And were playing from their heart.
This took place in a large, old room with antique furniture and paintings on the wall showing the Jewish people when they were still having a happy life in Cracow before 1940.
There were two other couples eating food: six people to listen to the concert.

The atmosphere was sad.
Very sad.
Not only because of the 19th century depressing interior.

Not only because of the elder musician playing music from a glorious past.
But because it was impossible to be in that room with that interior and that music without feeling the absence of the six million men, women and children that had their lives ended so unjustly and cruelly.
It was therefore a room full of too many ghosts.
A heavy, heavy load on the heart that could not be sweetened by the beautiful Klezmer music.

Saturday, January 9, 2010

movie madness

Snowing and cold in Cracow, Poland.
An opportunity to see another movie in the theatre.
Before existence is again in the Baja California simplicity of sunrises and sunsets with no distractions from being pushed out of the centre of life.

It was a movie called "The Daybreakers" made by Michael and Peter Spierig in 2009.
Recently released in Poland.
The film shows the acting skills of Ethan Hawke, Willem Dafoe and Claudia Karvan.
The totally ridiculous story is that in the year 2019, only 9 years from now, an unknown plague has transformed the world's population into vampires.
One would think that this concept would be rejected by any financier of movies because of lack of originality.
But not in this case.
The story line continues that while the human population nears extinction, vampires must capture and farm every remaining human.
Or find a blood substitute before time runs out.

Why is it that sitting in the movie theatre and seeing this movie the thinking only produces one thought:
"why am I watching this nonsense bullshit?"
While once the movie was over, many Poles left the theatre as if they had been tremendously entertained.
They seem to have enjoyed the most cruel scenes possible.
A father dehumanizing a daughter.
A man seeing his brother being devoured by vampires.
His body being ripped apart.
Blood being sprayed on walls and faces and bodies in many scenes.
Many humans being massacred in a way that even is not occurring in Iraq or Afghanistan.

A more experienced person living in the nowadays reality may ask what all the fuss about this film on this blog is really about.
If someone visits these days a movie theatre, people on screen are often violently killed.
And a contemporary person is not being misbalanced by seeing these kinds of cruelties.

But is it that normal, really?
Is a person who has a fine developed system of balanced awareness, pure amazement and delicate sensibility able to enjoy to watch bloodshed and extreme cruelty and violent murders?
Without getting disgusted and appalled?
No, not likely.

How has it come that far?
That the mass audience obviously these days are entertained by extreme presentations of the negative sides of humanity.

That makes going to the movie theatre to see a film a weird experience.
Sitting among fellow human beings who are enjoying the cruelty while the personal experience is one of disgust and appall.
It feels like not being on the right planet anymore.
Of being in a film more extreme than "The Daybreakers".

Friday, January 8, 2010

Thursday, January 7, 2010

What is YOUR answer???

The evenings are quiet for the Queen of Dreams and her devotee.
Beautiful vegetarian food is prepared and a glass or two of Hoya de Cadenas, their reserva tempranillo from Spain, consumed when dining by candlelight in the beautiful apartment at Wolnica Square in Cracow, Poland.

It is not that more details will be revealed about this romantic scene.
But this will be about the conversation between the two that attention should be given to on this blog because most interesting subjects pass their horizon during their evenings together in Poland.

The other night it was about the theory that people say that one should be able to love oneself before one could truly love someone else.
If that is true, the major question is, how does one learn to love one self?
Are there methods or exercises to achieve this activity?
Can one learn to love oneself?
And how then to avoid egotism and narcism?
Not a simple subject and hard to find final answers.

Last night the topic was completely different.
The question was this:
if one would walk into the desert and would like to leave something behind that another person hundreds of years away would find, what would one do?
What to leave behind that not only survives time but will also have a meaning for a person that lives centuries later?
Suggestions that came up were to put stones in a circle.
Or in a square.
Or to make with stones the yin-yang symbol.
Or maybe build a huge pyramid.
No final answer was found but the whole idea was most thrilling.

And this leads to the fervent and loyal blog reader him- or herself.
What would you leave behind in the desert to be found hundreds of years later for people then to understand your message?
What would you build?
And what would be your message?
Send your project proposal as a comment to be published here so we all get enriched and enlightened.


Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Cracow catastrophes continue

Yesterday, fervent and loyal blog readers were having a look at the buildings of Cracow.
How some architects had been allowed by the city officials to build monstrosities.
But we must keep in mind that overall, Cracow is a most beautiful town where most buildings are very well preserved.

This does not exclude that other nonsense in this city is happening.
That somehow money forces its way into this society to make more money.
And now that destroying old buildings to construct calamities is hardly possible anymore, another way to confront the people with materialism and promoting consumerism has been found.

The entrepreneurs came with the clever idea to put large banners in front of buildings.
And the city administrators allowed this.
This phenomenon cannot only be seen in Cracow: in many cities worldwide this horrible way of making publicity is applied.

Good examples are the Hilton Hotel and the Polish TV office building in Cracow, Poland.
These two large buildings are located on the side of the river everybody sees when in the city.

In order to attract tourists to spend the night in the hotel and to promote some new TV series, gigantic banners have been placed against the side of the buildings.
In this way the whole facade of the building is obscured.
The architecture it represents has been eliminated.
The building designed by an architect is not a building anymore but it has been downgraded to a large publicity panel.

We may wonder why the responsible authorities believed this was a good and acceptable idea.
That the landscape to be seen from the city is not showing buildings and design and architecture anymore, but gigantic advertisements instead.

However, this anomalic situation is a peanut compared to what has been allowed on the Main Square of Cracow.
The very centre of this beautiful city where is a large square surrounded by century old buildings, churches and chapels.
With old cobblestones and calèches pulled by click clacking horses.
A square full of century long history and medieval atmosphere: probably one of the most beautiful town squares in Europe, period.

The authorities of Cracow have also allowed here even for banners to be put in front of the buildings.
Only to make publicity for again a TV-series or the food of the restaurant or for the exhibition in the building.
And as a compromise, on the banner they have imitated the windows that are hidden behind.

In Paris, France real estate owners would decide to renovate strategically located buildings.
A large scaffold would be put in front of the building and a large banner attached to it with an advertisement to promote for example a perfume or a car.
Often the money that was paid for the advertisement would finance the whole renovation.
And there have been cases that the renovation was willingly delayed because the advertisement was paid by month and bringing in substantial money.

In Cracow there is no renovation going on behind the banners.
It is just a way to promote capitalist consumerism.
The money a banner brings in to promote a restaurant is more important than keeping the beauty of the Main Square of Cracow.
Shame on the Cracow authorities to allow this.


Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Cracow catastrophes

The architecture in the city of Cracow is old.
Centuries old.
Now in winter, with the snow falling, the city becomes more pretty than ever.
Beautiful scenes can be seen that show timeless romanticism.

The beauty of Cracow comes mainly from its architecture.
There are beautiful buildings, palaces, churches and other edifices that are centuries old and they make the city so spectacular.

Now, an innocent person would think that the authorities responsible for the city of Cracow would take extreme care to preserve the beauty of their town.
That they will stop any crazy contemporary architect who ignores the style of the centuries old buildings.
Stop architects who believe they need to impose their own ego on the town by designing extravagant buildings conflicting totally with the existing architecture.

Of course an architect has the liberty to design what he or she wants.
To have own professional opinions.
But the authorities responsible for the city must always take into consideration what is the common good.
Defend the interest of the people who have been building the town for centuries.
Protect the heritage from damage by personal excessiveness.

Therefore, when one visits an old town, one can see the power of the authorities.
Or the weakness.
When the existing architecture has not been respected, one understands the architects and real estate developers have found a way to get what they wanted.
That they were more powerful than the rulers.
Pushed the protectors aside.

In Cracow, Poland, unfortunately some examples can be seen how the authorities responsible for preserving the city have not been strong enough.

One of the most blatant examples can be seen in the city's skyline when seen from the south.
The river Vistula streams there and at its north bank are the century old castle of the Polish kings and connecting to the palace a line of many old buildings.
Forming an aesthetically harmonious unity.

However, many old buildings have been destroyed to be able to build a Sheraton Hotel.
A monstrous building that doesn't fit at all in the city skyline and that by itself will never win a price for modern architecture.
It is not original and it is not beautiful.
In fact, it is an ugly stain on the city skyline.

One really wonders how ever city officials have seen the plans and the drawings of this Sheraton Hotel to believe this was perfect for Cracow to authorize the destruction of the old buildings and the construction of the architectural monstrosity .

But the most extreme example of failed protection by the authorities of Cracow's heritage can be found in Zwierzyniecka Street where the bank ING is housed in a most extreme demonstration of failed supervision by the local authorities.
To an old existing edifice a new modern glass structure has been glued making a disgusting contrast.
How on earth could have someone ever believed this was a good idea?


Monday, January 4, 2010

Death in white

It is mid winter now in Cracow, Poland and the beautiful city is covered by snow.
Making it even more pretty.
Almost fairy tale like when one sees for example the Cracow castle.

However, one aspect of winter in Poland is that weekly people die because of the cold.
A kind of involuntary suicide because it is due to excessive use of alcohol.

The thing is that vodka, a very strong liquor, is widely consumed in Poland.
And for many the approach is to drink so much that drunkenness is reached.
A tolerated phenomenon in Polish society.

And this is the start for the persons to die in the streets of the villages and towns of Poland.
Drunk they leave the house or the bar while the snow on the pavement is slippery.
They fall down and think in their drunkenness they have arrived at a spot where it is not so bad to have a nap.
Laying in the snow on the pavement deep in drunkenness and sleep, the body gets under cooled and soon death has struck.
Another life unnecessarily ended.

In Cracow this situation can be seen frequently.
Another man on the pavement dying.

Once a man was between a high wall and parked cars.
Stretched out on the snow of the pavement.
It was night and dark and it was a scaring sight.
What to do?
The street was crossed to be able to continue the walk.
In a different sentiment realizing a man was there laying drunk probably dying if no help would come.
More people passed and ignored the situation.
Not knowing what to do and feeling visitors in a strange country seeing the Polish not interfering or assisting themselves.

Once a man was totally unconscious more or less sitting in an unnatural pose on the steps of a house.
Completely knocked out by overusing alcohol.
Ready to die also.
He was surrounded by two policemen who were radioing for an ambulance.

Once a man was sitting against a wall in the snow obviously not on this world anymore carried away by too much alcohol.
A well dressed couple passed by and were touched by the man.
They knew he would die if nothing was done.
They called the man but he was too deep in his stupor.
Then the well dressed man put himself in front of the drunk and started to clap in his hands.
To wake him up.
To bring him back.
To life and survival.
But the drunken man didn't respond.
Too far gone to respond to these kinds of rescue efforts.
The well dressed couple gave up and continued their walk.

Press agency IRNA reports on December 21, 2009:

Dozens freeze to death in Poland over weekend
At least 42 people froze to death in Poland over the weekend as temperatures plunged to as low as minus 20 degrees Celsius in parts of the country, police said in Warsaw on Monday.
The victims were reportedly mainly homeless and drunk people between the age of 30 and 50.

Police urged Poles to alert them, if they saw either homeless or drunk persons lying outdoors.

Meanwhile, police was searching for empty houses, garden-sheds and city parks to re-locate the homeless to shelters.

At least, 71 people froze to death in Poland since the beginning of this month.


For a more detailed story about people freezing to death in Poland, check:


Sunday, January 3, 2010

Shit now and then.

Snowing in Cracow, Poland and only eighth hours a day with light.
And cold too.

An excellent opportunity to go to the movie theatre; an activity that is rarely undertaken.
More so because "Avatar" was playing, the new 3D movie written and directed by James Cameron.

The entrance fee was 28 Polish Zloties, about € 7 or $ 10.
And this included to borrow 3D glasses necessary to see the three-dimensional effects.

There are several things to say about "Avatar" that has cost millions and millions of Dollars to make and comes out of Hollywood, USA.

By itself, the 3D effects have not improved in an important way.
Technically, what the spectator sees is about the same quality of effect as years ago.
And in spite of all the technical sophistication achieved over time, the image is not bright and is not very sharp.
All the colors are a little darkish and dull.
And it looks the camera had a cheap lens.
The quality of the image is far from what one can see of a 2D movie shot on 70 mm film.
Where colors are bright and the image is super sharp.

What is really annoying with "Avatar" though is that because it was made in 3D, much of what is shown is to actually demonstrate the 3D effect.
There are plenty of scenes that have not much to do with the story but that have been put in to have the audience an optimal 3D experience.
Like water spraying towards the camera.
Or tentacles of a monster reaching towards the lens.
Or endless scenes how birds fly around rocks.
This choice of scenes by Cameron is not helping the film very much.
To the contrary, one feels not watching a more or less serious movie but feels like visiting an attraction park.

However, the most appalling issue with "Avatar" is this whole Hollywood approach of the story.
It is once more and like always, the bad guy against the good guy.
And the good guy wins of course and has as a bonus the love of his life: a beautiful female.
This infantile story told too often takes any surprise out of seeing "Avatar".
It is all completely predictable and therefore boring.

It is no surprise, this film coming out of Hollywood, USA, that "Avatar" is loaded to an extreme level with the most horrific violence one can imagine.
Countless are the persons and creatures that are violently killed.
It seems that the makers believe that the audience feels entertained seeing strong violence in large quantities and that this cannot lack in a popular movie.
But this approach downgrades the film even more to a lower level of quality.

Meanwhile, the story of "Avatar" reflects faultlessly the policy of the USA government.
One could even say that James Cameron made an anti-American movie: seriously criticizing how the politicians of his country operate worldwide.
The story is that in the year 2045 on another planet where already creatures live that resemble humans, a precious metal is found that is needed on Earth.
A large group of Earthlings start to explore and mine this metal.
However, for mining the indigenous locals are in the way.
So what is the solution?
Just bomb them out of their homes and destroy their lives and everything they have.
This policy started at the beginning of the USA when the indigenous locals, the Indians, where massacred and dispossessed of their lands.
And as of then, where oil was found or any other valuable material, with force and violence the interests of the USA were guaranteed often at the cost of many lives of indigenous locals.
Time and again this has happened and James Cameron foresees that even in 2045 this policy of the USA will not have changed.
However, in his film he presents a new twist to the thing.
It is not the conquerors, the imperialists, the materialists; in other words, the Americans who win at the end of the movie.
The indigenous people come together and with the help of the different monsters, who suddenly know the difference when to attack and kill a local or a Gringo, they manage to defeat the occupying forces.
Thousands of Americans surrender after their sophisticated helicopters have been brought down by guys equipped with bow and arrow flying by sitting on large birds.
Of course, James Cameron's vision of how conflicts between aggressive and technically sophisticated states and indigenous people equipped only with a primitive knife living close to nature may end with defeat for the aggressor is a totally false and unrealistic illusion.
Cameron's vision offers the audience a perspective that is giving hope.
But it is a completely false and unrealistic hope.
Another way to please and make the audience feel good for the material gains of the movie.

Two last remarks about the film "Avatar".

Although the film plays in the year 2045, the mining operation on the far away planet is executed by Americans only.
Also the army and air force are Americans only.
If that will be the situation in 2045, we wish the world good luck because they will need it.

Second remark is about the language used in "Avatar".
In the year 2045, according to James Cameron, people still use words like "shit" and "goddammit".


Saturday, January 2, 2010

Sushi in Japoland

Seasoned travelers know how important it is to eat well.
And that this can be a complicated aspect of traveling.
Because there is dependence of public restaurants.
And the truth is, most restaurants serve food of low quality that is not good for the health.

Hence, the permanent traveler is constantly challenged to find good food somewhere.

The ones that have experience know what is usually a safe bet.
A Japanese restaurant.
That can be found these days in most cities worldwide.

Japanese food is probably the most healthy food available.
It is low on cholesterol, fat, oil and chemicals.
And then, it is easy to digest and most of all, it is very delicious.

Of course, one must watch out which Japanese restaurant to honor the clientship.
Because in cities like Paris, many Japanese restaurants are run by non-Japanese cooks and management.
Therefore, the food might be sub-standard.

The permanent pilgrim and the Queen of Dreams are now spending time in Cracow, Poland.
And are living in an apartment with a kitchen.
So that the healthy food that is preferred can be prepared and eaten in the harmony and peace of the own home.
But once in a while there is something to celebrate that asks for a dinner in a beautiful restaurant.

And for this in Cracow an excellent Japanese restaurant has been discovered.
It is called the Edo Sushi Bar and is on Bozego Ciala Street number 3.

There are more Japanese restaurants in Cracow, Poland but this one is the favorite.
They have tables with chairs but also a true Japanese room where the customers sit on the floor around low tables.

Of course the food one can choose to eat is pure Japanese cuisine.
But the point is: is it fresh?
Because too often one can taste the raw fish and realize it has been frozen, defrosted and therefore it lost its characteristic taste.

In the Edo Sushi Bar the food is absolutely fresh and full of glorious taste.

There are two more things to say about the Edo Sushi Bar, who as a matter of fact don't know about this publication.

One is that they play music of Kitaro.
Maybe there are people out there who love the music of Kitaro.
But the permanent pilgrim hates the nervous and whining sounds he produces from his synthesizer.

The other thing is that one of the waitresses in the Edo Sushi Bar looks exactly like a Japanese woman.
Dressed in a kimono she serves the food with grace, care and devotion that deeply impresses.
But make no mistake: she is a student of architecture from Mongolia.


Edo Sushi Bar
Ul. Bozego Ciala 3
Krakow, Poland

Friday, January 1, 2010

Gay 2010

In Cracow, Poland, the last evening of the year is big business.
People like to celebrate the new year in a bar or restaurant.
To eat.
To drink.
To dance.
To celebrate.

Most restaurants and bars in Cracow, Poland, ask a high entrance fee.
But for this money food, drinks and music is offered.

This approach to the last night of the year is very successful.
Many restaurants and bars have to be reserved long time in advance.
On the night itself, they are packed full with celebrating people .

An innocent visitor to Cracow who thinks to find a nice bar with music or a restaurant with good food and starts looking early in the evening of the last night of the year will be disappointed.
Nothing will be found.
Everywhere it is booked full.

But the permanent pilgrim and the Queen of Dreams had connections!
A friend in Cracow, Poland, has a vegetarian restaurant and although it was also booked full and entrance was only by invitation, the brave visitors were most welcome.

For 200 Zloty's (€ 50 / $ 70) per person there was all you can eat vegetarian food, drinking as much as one could take, 80's music and a small dance floor.

Once seated at a table and seeing more people arrive, it was noticed that they were women only.
And once this phenomenon was studied more carefully, it was understood that the trustworthy travelers had accidentally and coincidentally landed in a new year party for lesbians only.

More often it is stated on this blog that the adventures reported here seem extraordinary.
In some cases even rather unbelievable.
Or at least exaggerated.
What kind of story is it for example to read that protagonists are visiting Cracow in Poland and end up at a new year party for lesbians only?
That they were surrounded by kissing women who danced erotically together and were embracing warmly all the time?

The fact is that it is the truth.
How unbelievable as it may seem.

Somehow life is twisting and turning and entering fields of experience that are rather surreal.
To the benefit of the readers of this blog for sure but the permanent pilgrim sometimes wonders what is exactly the reason so often things need to happen in extraordinary ways.
There is a theory available as an explanation and this one has to do with how one positions oneself in life.
If one maneuvers oneself into special situations or situations that have the potential to become special, extraordinary things may happen.

It was a special and good experience to be at the new year party together with the lesbian friends.
Never did they give the feeling there were intruders.

While in Poland homophobia is raging.
Leaving the new year party on a wall this graffiti was observed: