Monday, July 31, 2006

A weekend shouldn't "end" part 2

as per previous post..

A weekend shouldn't "end" part 1

A short but much needed weekend getaway!

Not much to say as images speak louder than words!

I’m now back in the capital but not for too long as I’m planning to return to that exact location to spend my complete vacation later in August. Can’t wait!

Blood on the concert hall?

Yet another little entertaining break in Athens.

Before yesterday, I’ve had the opportunity to attend another great concert. Held in the open theatre on Lycabettus hill, the event was in honor of the Hellenic association of volunteer blood donors. The artist of the night: Despina Vandi. A Greek pop singer who I admit, had previously underestimated. A truly powerful performance from Despina, who threw together a 3 hour show (non stop), singing both her Greek and international hits. And all this, for an important cause which was also sided with several mobile units located outside the theatre, on standby for anyone who wished to contribute in donating blood on that same evening. (combine that with the heat of the evening, with the crowded theatre and the fatigue of the uphill walk all the way to the top of Lycabettus and I assure you, you’re in for a ride)

Thursday, July 27, 2006

Back or not?

I’ve been encountering some unusual net problems these last couple of days. I’ve checked with my ISP and I’ve also checked my pc for any malicious software but everything was clean.. Don’t know what’s going on but I’m hoping everything’s fixed now and that I’ll be able to continue my posting. I guess I'm back for the time being.

For the moment, here are a few interesting links i've come across.
Some have even some documentaries for download.

Wednesday, July 26, 2006

"Do you believe they put a man on the moon"

Consider this just a little break from the madness that's going on in the middle east. A friend of mine came up with the idea of this beautiful artwork so I thought I'd share it here. I've only had the chance to engrave my name on the beach so far, but never thought I'd see it on the surface of the moon. :) I guess I got my own little spot now. Perhaps things would be much better up there anyway.

oh and in case u have no clue of what I'm talking about, look closer on the moon's surface :)

Monday, July 24, 2006

Noam Chomsky reveals

Here are some interesting statements/facts from Noam Chomsky on the current situation in the middle east. So much for the free press. Spread the word.

Sunday, July 23, 2006

Lebanon Israeli Crisis

This is by far the best blog that I've read regarding the current crisis in the middle east.
Please read and follow but most importantly spread the word to end the ignorence.

Lebanon Israeli Crisis

Friday, July 21, 2006

Danced with Shakira

What a night and what a show! I’m still recuperating from last night’s concert.

After an adventurous journey getting there we finally got to OAKA stadium, only a few minutes after the opening of the gates. To my surprise, the arena was already getting crowded as early as 4 hours prior to the concert. Luckily, we were able to find a good spot very close to the stage with the only inconvenient being that we were held captive by the raging fans that showed no mercy whatsoever and were capable of even walking on us just to get closer. Preserving our territory also meant being deprived of water or other refreshments, therefore a total dehydration until the end of the concert.

The first opening act was singer debutant Ralia Christidou (a Fame Story contestant and runner up) who did a nice job warming up the crowd with her new songs, considering that this must have been her first big venue appearance. Ralia was followed by C-Real, another respectable Greek band, who added a very pleasant prelude to the main act with both their English and Greek songs. Their beautiful female lead singer proved that her powerful voice can really come across just as well live on stage as it does in the studio. All in all, an excellent stage appearance for C-Real.

It was now time for the main act. Many technicians on stage making the final stage setup and testing spotlights.. until finally the lights dim, the crowd cheers like crazy and the band takes the stage.

An electrifying crowd was literally shaking the Olympic stadium.

Music starts and at last.. Shakira on stage.

Simply dressed, as in something she’d wear to go jogging with, she waves at the crowd and starts her singing. The show began with her first songs which were Spanish ballads of the early 90’s (Yes she has a few albums out there for quite some time now). Mid time and after having introduced her band members one by one in the all classical way, she starts with her up-tempo hits. The crowd is now dancing along and so are we whether we like it or not 

No change of outfits so far, Shakira is still in her jogging trousers and her working out top t-shirt. A short interlude now, with fragments of the singer jazz-ballet dancing on videowalls and here she is, back on stage, with her first costume change. Shakira has now been transformed into a bellydancer, probably showing her half mid-eastern roots. Nothing to say about her synchronized moves or the way she splits her spine (if she actually has one) while she performs Ojos Asi. The woman does some amazing moves in every dance routine. In “wherever, whenever” she leaves the stage and doesn’t go “wherever” but surprisingly appears right in front of us. She is dancing in the crowd and yes only 1 meter away from us. I imagined there must have been a reason for that corridor right next to us but never guessed she would actually come there. Needless to mention how were crushed against the corridor by the ravaging fans that wanted to get a glimpse of the exotic singer. They were uncontrollable but who blames them. They were there for her and she was right there for them. Luckily it only lasted a few moments before she took to the stage again (see video). Shakira ended her show with what I’d call her most representative song ever because in my opinion, her “hips are speaking the truth”.

Shakira’s show has now ended with colorful paper fireworks flooding the arena. I’m glad this concert went by a “less is more” concept rather than being drowned with special effects. No extra dancers, no fires on stage, no extravagant costumes, nothing that could capture our attention more than our focusing on the singer and her music. More videos and pictures will be posted soon (hopefully better quality)

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Danced in Translation

What a crazy week this has been and the arrivals keep on coming while more have been scheduled for August.
I’m starting to feel like an international airport or some sort of gateway 
But no complaints, it’s all good and I’m having a really good time with my friends. It’s interesting to see people from different countries and languages crossing any language barrier and actually achieving to communicate flawlessly with eachother. In fact, this was made possible with the use of what I call: an international “pot pourri” language, which is a mixture of several languages with English being the key player. All it takes is a little effort (and a lot of will) and the result is fascinating.
There were times of course where sign language or better said “body language” came in handy as some words were quite difficult to translate on their own.
An excellent example of such a challenging word would be the castanets, cymbals, castaƱuelas, castagnettes or klaketes. Just a little bit of flamenco and the translation is instantly given!

Thursday, July 13, 2006

July the month of arrivals

There must be something about July and people traveling simultaneously that I’m not quite aware of.
To my knowledge, it was August the first and most important month of vacation but allow me to think differently for 2006.
More specifically, I’ve got people arriving from just about anywhere around the globe and that means people from North America, Central Europe, Western Europe, Northern Europe, Australia and even northern Greece.
And when I say “arriving”, I only mean they’re visiting Athens, not necessarily staying over at my place.
And although I’m always fond of having people and friends (and family) around, it’s sometimes quite difficult to keep up and try to be with everyone simultaneously.
Nevertheless, it’s still worth the run and always a pleasure being around close ones. I only hope that I can give most of my time possible to all of them, so I won’t leave anyone disappointed.
With August being just around the corner (which will probably be just as busy) it should make this summer one of the most interesting ones yet.
My lack of posting was mostly due to this reason but I’ll try to catch a few moments in front of my pc and get to blog a little more from now on