Archive for January, 2012


Colombian beach life

If you didn’t know that Colombia has the reputation it has, you wouldn’t even be able to imagine it here, on the breezy Caribbean coast. And if you don’t know what reputation I’m talking about, disregard and carry on!

In these tropical and balmy days it is easy to forget that anyhow.

It is also easy to forget – among these tanned, creased faces – that it’s January, and a harsh winter, elsewhere.

What can I say, some like it hot..

The charm of un(der)developed countries is that the rules can be bent easily, and in your favour. I put those speculations (which I speculate myself) to test. This time, with inter-urban transit.

It’s easy to flag a ride anywhere along their general route as they all run frequently and collect passengers on the way. They only cost 1200-1500 COP (= 0.60-0.85 USD). Correct change is appreciated, although no one will tap their foot agitatedly while you scrap for monedas. No one appears to be in a hurry here.

On these rides you will encounter the allure of laidback coastal life: exchange of greetings when someone new hops on board, daily gossip, snacks being passed around, and best of all: singing out loud, in unison, buoyant, and uninhibited.

I do it even without knowing the words (but there’s usually ‘mi amor’ or ‘mi corazon’ somewhere in there – listen for it). Continue reading

The streets in centro storico in Cartagena are named only in segments – after every intersection the streets carry a different name. At first it was terribly confusing, making it hard to find a certain address unless I was actually in its immediate vicinity (so then, what’s the point?)

Despite that, it’s easily traversable as it is quite small.

It is easy to catch a sight of craggy craft vendors, roaring dance parades, street performances, who are normally not opposed to having their picture taken.

The music is known to spill out on the streets, and it’s not uncommon to see barefoot performers running to the next show.

Continue reading

cocoon

on this adventure I’m shedding layers as I go deeper.. clothing, luggage, skin (like a snake), the dullness of urban life, doubts, conformities, preconceived notions.. underneath which is raw, fresh me

photo source = unknown

Very interesting concept here. Does it minimize one’s carbon footprint? I’m not sure.. if a trip has many stop-overs, then short distances are better off traversed by ground transportation.

Written by Andrew Evans, bits and pieces from the September 2010 issue of National Geographic Traveler

Ten weeks, 14 countries, and 10,000 miles – a bus trip from Washington DC to Earth’s frozen continent. Travel writer Andrew Evans decided he was going to Antarctica, but wanted to get there without spending a boatload of money. So he came to us with a proposal: He’d take the bus—a guaranteed adventure—and post entries to our Intelligent Travel blog en route.

I craved the haphazard polar voyages of men before the era of airplanes and travel brochures. Those early travelers seemed so sincere as they set off for the bottom of the world with their optimism, simple dogsleds, and year’s supply of stationery.

I traced an imaginary path on a map from Washington, D.C. down to the seventh continent. Where there’s a road there’s a way, I figured, and much of the distance to Antarctica was paved with roads. All I had to do was head south some 10,000 miles until the road ended in Tierra del Fuego.

From there it was less than a knuckle’s width of mapped sea to Antarctica. The catch was to figure out an affordable way to travel. My research revealed there were public buses in every country I’d pass through to the frozen continent. If I made no reservations and had no daily itinerary, bus travel would approximate the journeys of early explorers. For the spots of water I’d cross—the Strait of Magellan and the Drake Passage—it looked like I’d have to forsake bus for boat.

Continue reading

time

..time is such an ambiguous concept.

Why measure it in precise increments when, in fact, it is never so punctilious.

I can be lost in a lasting warp during one night (of reality) or I can blink and months will pass.

For me, time is happening all at once.

Concurrently.

..in 2012

..I meant ‘think’

I caught IBM’s temporary installation THINK this fall at the Lincoln Centre, an inspirational and thought-provoking exhibit featuring real-time data, algorithm and analysis. The aim was to immerse the viewers into an operation with instantaneous references and their evaluation, thus helping us realize how deep the human quest can be (ought to be) to make the world more livable, safer, more efficient, and more sustainable.

With today’s technology, it is possible to visualize, interpret, map and understand the dynamics of information crucial for action toward a join common goal of progressive and sustainable present and future.

With ‘Think’ the company, celebrating its centennial, explores how the world works and how to make it work better. It tackles essential issues that all megacities face – traffic, urban spatiality, air index quality, renewable energies – displaying them in real time and visually linking them to innovative proposals and concepts.

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One of the messages was that we must keep moving sensibly into the future.

Good one for the upcoming year, don’t you THINK?

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