Trento, Italy

My flight was delayed coming out of Bratislava so had to spend another night there and was rescheduled for the next day on a Ryanair Flight to Milan Bergamo. That flight was delayed by two hours because of a bomb scare in Bratislava airport, so I actually came into Milan Bergamo at 11:50pm. Then I had to bus over to Milan’s central train station to find a way to get to Trento, caught a train in the the nick of time that switches in Verona (with a 3 hour stopover) then arrives in Trento at 6:30am. The only trouble was, the train station in Verano is not heated, so me and Rebert did the old Hobo thing and tried to live through the misery of 3 hours of freezing temperatures.
But the hostel was reached, the city is an alpine canyontown with peaks like Italian Half-Domes on every side, and it’s a sweltering 3 below freezing.
This makes me wonder what it’s going to be like using my ten trips on my Eurail pass that’s valid for two months. Perhaps I’ll get used to the bundled up hobo thing in the lobbies of train stations around Europe. We’ll see

Cold like Slovackian Icees

I decided not to overload my server hard drives again and just throw my pictures up on Flickr. You can find the grand total here, or you can look below for some glimpses. This sure beats flipping through my thousands of random shots, right?
My captions are above my pictures. Remember this. For this one, how about…
‘The Pirate outside that one fruit market in Bratislava’
The Royal Buda complex of luxor
Begging and Tourists on the Charles Bridge in Prague
Prague’s Castle Cathedral
A mean Greek face in Vienna’s Kunst Historich
A slice of Vienna’s Skyline
Unreal Stain Glass Colors in Vienna’s Central Cathedral
Vienna Sticker Art
The Most Photogenic Point of Bratislava Town Center
A badass Hungarian tribal chief in Budapest’s square. Notice the antlers on the horse.
The National Museum on the hill overlooking the Danube in Budapest
Train from Budapest to Bratislava… A striking pillar of red as the sun set.

New Funny Spam

My latest spam email that I quickly tagged as ‘hilarious_spam’ reads as such: (bold is mine)

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EDWARDS: But what have we seen? Relentless negative attacks against John. So in the weeks ahead, we know what’s coming, don’t we?.
Have you practiced jumping yet?.
John was enjoying sleeping near the tree..
Early last month I was still missing sleeping..
I was missing jumping..
Have you practiced jumping yet?.
Jackie is missing jogging by the sea at present..
That flight attendant is not missing playing below the bridge at this exact moment..Then came THE PARENT. (Now, you need to know, I love the parents of the children I teach.) This parent arrived on the scene with her son who had Down?s Syndrome. She wanted a piece of software with REAL photos, one on each screen with the word in text and the word spoken aloud. I looked at her and thought to myself, ?B-O-R-I-N-G. The child will NEVER respond to that.?.Brian was a boy with Down’s Syndrome. He was taking several medications. Brian came from a nurturing family and extended family who provided him with every opportunity. His mother was a teacher and wanted what was best for him. He exhibited no language and was considerably behind his other friends with Down?s Syndrome. We set up a noun program at school. At first he seemed disinterested. He looked at the pictures and sucked his thumb. The more we encouraged him to engage the keyboard, the more he sucked his thumb. We then paired him with a child who was very interested in the noun program. Suddenly the two were fighting over who was next to pick a picture. He worked several times a week at the computer. At his 3-year IEP, the team shook their heads. They didn’t understand. Despite the track record of many students with Down?s Syndrome, Brian’s language was his best skill. I smiled and his mother winked at me..
11. Ninety six bottles of beer, three a’s, three b’s, one c, two d’s, thirty three e’s, seven f’s, one g, ten h’s, nine i’s, four l’s, sixteen n’s, ten o’s, thirteen r’s, twenty three s’s, twenty three t’s, four u’s, four v’s, five w’s, three x’s, and five y’s on the wall..
Don’t you practice cooking nicely?.
You are always missing reading..
The science teachers practiced fighting..

Augustine Peel

Prague, Czech Republic

I am in Prague. Tyn Church, Prague, Czech Republic
And now here’s some goodies about the Defenestrations of Prague from Wikipedia.

First Defenestration of Prague

The First Defenestration of Prague involved the killing of seven members of the hostile city council by a crowd of radical Czech Hussites on July 30, 1419. The prolonged Hussite Wars broke out shortly afterward, lasting until 1436.
A contemporary woodcut of the defenestration in 1618.
A contemporary woodcut of the defenestration in 1618.

Second Defenestration of Prague

The Second Defenestration of Prague was an event central to the initiation of the Thirty Years’ War in 1618.

Some members of the Bohemian aristocracy were effectively in revolt following the 1617 election of Ferdinand (Duke of Styria and a Catholic) as the King of Bohemia. In 1617, Roman Catholic officials ordered the cessation of construction of some Protestant chapels on land which the Catholic clergy claimed belonged to them. Protestants, who claimed that it was royal, not Catholic Church, land, and thus available for their own use, interpreted this as a violation of the right of freedom of religious expression as granted in the Letter of Majesty issued by Emperor Rudolf II in 1609. They feared that the fiercely Catholic Ferdinand would revoke the Protestant rights altogether once he came to the throne.

At Prague Castle on May 23, 1618, an assembly of Protestants (led by Count Thurn) tried two Imperial governors, Wilhelm Graf Slavata (1572 – 1652) and Jaroslav Borzita Graf von Martinicz (1582 – 1649), for violating the Letter of Majesty, found them guilty, and threw them, together with their scribe Philip Fabricius, out of the high castle windows, They fell some 15 m (50 ft), and they landed on a large pile of manure. They all survived.

Roman Catholic Imperial officials claimed that they survived due to the mercy of benevolent angels assisting the righteousness of the Catholic cause. Protestant pamphleteers asserted that their survival had more to do with the horse manure in which they landed.

Further “defenestrations”

More events of defenestration have occurred in Prague during its history, but they are not usually called defenestrations of Prague.

A defenestration (chronologically the second defenestration of Prague) happened on September 24, 1483, when a violent overthrow of the municipial governments of the Old and New Towns ended with throwing the Old-Town portreeve and the bodies of seven killed aldermen out of the windows of the respective townhalls.

Sometimes, the name the third defenestration of Prague is used, although it has no standard meaning. For example, it has been used to describe the death of Jan Masaryk, who has been found dead under the bathroom window of the building of the Czechoslovakian Ministry of Foreign Affairs on March 10, 1948. The circumstances of his death are still not completely clear, but it is believed he was murdered.

Bratislava, Slovakia

I am right here, where they talk like this:

?ërizte a cs?°sz?°ri ?©kszereket, amelyeket minden ?©vben egyszer ki?°ll??tottak a v?°s?°rt?©ren

It’s unspeakably beautiful as the snow has been coming down for the past few days. I never thought I would find myself in Slovakia but I’m glad I made it this far East. If my Eurail pass permits, I may make it to Turkey, but we’ll have to see.
I wrote buckets more about this place but all with the old fashioned pen. I’ll have to find an internet terminal to upload a picture the pages soon. Happy kwanza/Hannukah/xmas to all!
Vienna tomorrow, Prague on the 24th, then down to Italy to stay in Milan, Trento, then Venice for New Years!

Goodbye Amsterdam.

So that was a fun time in Amsterdam, but now it’s off to bigger and better things.
Budapest 13-17th, Bratislava 18-20th, Vienna 21st-23rd, Prague 24th-27th, Flying into Milan on the 28th, and then crashing somewhere in the expanse of Italy. until…. the 4th of January, flying from Venice to Brussels then starting my Eurail pass to get down to the South of Spain for exclusive entrance to Morocco.
I hope these words make sense as my English has taken several steps backward from hearing all this goobley doobley dutch toddler speak lately.

I will write about Amsterdam soon because it was so hilarious and different from anything I’ve ever dreamed.

Hello ex-Soviets, my name is Daniel.

Grundtvigs Højskole – The Danish Kampenplas

Easy Times at the Grundtvigs Højskole

Inside the Green house Grundtivgs H??jskole
The interior hovers around 10
above freezing
H??jskole folk´s school
The Ceramics and Glass Studio
Low Mid-Day Sun
The Low Mid-Day Sun
Folks School
The Folks of the Skole
Explore the Danish Design Museum
or See ALL newpix

For the past four days I’ve been staying in a Danish paradise. I’ve had just over a dozen different living situations on this trip but these last few days at a ‘Folk’s School’ have been miles beyond any previously conceived notions of decadent living. Massive thrice-daily platters of saucy salmon, ranks of corned beef, and fresh loaves of bread the size of cats–all to the tune of the gorble dwop of Danish youngin’s.

This sizable commmune means to me much more than just free lodging, free food, great company, music movies and internet, a hopping off point for Hiller??d and Copenhagen, and a loft to sleep in; this place is like an engineered northern outpost prepared for my enjoyment. For the Danish who live there, it’s essentially a place for them to hang out with other 18-20 year olds for a short time after they have finished their Danish high school equivalent education. Most don’t stay for more than 3 months as it is primarily a short break–a short stay just prior to entrance to a University. For the Americans reading this, consider it this way: You’ve graduated high school. Instead of taking a summer class at your local community college before shipping off to yonder Ivory Tower, you decide to enroll in one of those Folk’s Schools where you’ll be surrounded by your best friends for a whirlwind journey through post adolescent adventures in responsibility.

There are approximately 30 Danes here, but I was lucky enough to gain entrance to this glory town as the guest of a certain illustrious expatriate named Dan Dickson. Because the Kopenhavn-based school that Dan and six other American students attend through their Junior Year Abroad programs ran out of housing, they were given a place in the folk’s school, known in Danish as H??jskole. Even though they have a long commute to their school, I believe they are among the luckiest people in the world.

Before I knew too much about this place it seemed a lot like a summer camp. Walking around the grounds and the building complex, I was surprised to find a full photo lab, a ceramics and glass workshop, a decked out computer room (where I am now), a tv room, party room, gym, and music performance equipment for evening time fun. After hearing more about this place, I’ve found that these amenities are for the continued education of the Danes who are enrolled here. Each student who stays here takes an assortment of classes and participates in activities to add points to their educational record in Denmark. This allows them to begin their University education at a certain point.

From these pictures down the right side you can get a feel for the place. Also check out the Copenhagen folders here for an insane amount of pictures. On Thursday, my first night, we had a Danish John Mayer type come and sing. He had a strange way of sticking his tongue out when he really got into his tunes that would make us kinda scared. Friday night we had a Jazz Band tear up the dining room. Saturday night was the yearly reunion party complete with Alumni visitors, the board of directors, and a Prince Cover band. Last night was the equivalent Christmas Celebration for the Folk’s School. Roast Beef, Potatoes, Rice Pudding with Jelly Sauce, and fresh Mountain Water with sparkling diamonds. I feel that I need to capitalize the names of foods because they were so extraordinary.

After that meal the already loud gym filled with Danes and noisy Americans soon erupted into song…. The first video is song book fun in Danish (something the American kids were struggling with) But the next video is a rendition of ‘California Dreaming’ by two Yanks, a Polack, and a legit Dane. Try to see which is which! But You’ll have to click for Continue reading “Grundtvigs Højskole – The Danish Kampenplas”