Sunday 25 December 2011

Not in the Mood to Celebrate a Merry Christmas

Photo: Mandulog by Dingus Gustilo
Photo: Mandulog by Dingus Gustilo To remember this Christmas season of 2011, I am posting some photos I downloaded from postings I saw in FB. I'm trying to find the source of the other photos posted by friends. What could one still say while watching the photos? How could I say Merry Christmas this time?

Sunday 11 December 2011

Hanging Love Padlocks in Hohenzollern Bridge

When I saw some years ago these padlocks hanging in the steel nets of Hohenzollern Bridge in Cologne, I thought they were padlocks for the bikes. Once we held a conference for Babaylan Europe, our hotel and conference site was across the bridge coming from the main station and this gave me many chances to see the steel nets of padlocks again and observe at a close range the romantic ritual of kissing, hugging, hanging the padlocks and throwing the keys to the river. Of course, with much camera clicking as you can imagine. Nope, not for their bikes but for their love as I learned later. This is the famous Hohenzollern Bridge where lovers come, bringing their padlocks, kiss and swear love to each other, hang the padlocks and throw the keys to Rhein (river Rhine) below. If you have extra time when visiting the Dom City, go near the bridge and enjoy the view of the river and the old city. True friendship could also be symbolically sealed with padlocks before you indulge in not so much romantic activities like drinking famous Kölsch and eating German sausages and pork knuckles. And when lovers spats break out later for whatever reason, remember your relationship has been sealed in this lovelock and the key is never to be found again.

Tuesday 6 December 2011

SCD or Santa Claus Day in Germany

Santa Claus, Sinterklaus or Sankt Niklaus is coming to town.

Sunday 4 December 2011

2nd Sunday of Advent

Apfelstrudel to go
Weihnachtsmarkt near Cologne Cathedral
More rounds of Glühwein. In English translation, it is called mulled wein or wein which has been heated with spices and sugar. Better take some aspirins before you indulge in drinking mugs of the season's drink.
Marlys and Michael showing me mugs of hot chocolate with rhum known in Muenster as Lumumba. We decided to call it Mandela for the Kölner version of this comforting drink. Second Sunday of Advent for this year but the weather is not fitting to the season. It's grey, stormy and raining, not a great day to venture to the Christmas market to smell roasted almonds and drink hot chocolate with rhum. The start of the week was beautiful though giving me chance to visit another Christmas market in the center of the city, near the famous Kölner Dom and meet a visiting couple of bloggers who taught me what Lumumba is. Now, let me see if I could do my own concoction while staying domestic this second Sunday of Advent.

Sunday 27 November 2011

First Sunday of Advent 2011

The First Sunday of Advent or the weekend of: The first Christmas decoration to think will it be just an intant buy of holly wreaths red or green candles violets and silver will it be a plastic Christmas tree the one forgotten in the cellar Made in China Christmas cards (who are the loyal friends who still think of sending classical paper greetings?) I opted for my traditional mix of edibles, fruits and nuts mixed with found purple stuffs in my search for the ceramic angels neatly protected in a box ready for display for cozy winter nights; The first visit to the traditional Weihnachtsmarkt The first weekend of stress preparing pasalubongs of chocolates for someone visiting the "Maderland" The first weekend of Advent of the season of love and giving.

Sunday 13 November 2011

11.11.11 The Season Begins

Alaaaaaaaaaaaaaaf! It's November 11 at 11:00 and the season for merrymaking has officially started. It's Carnival season in this region. If you're new to the city, don't be surprised that everyone is coming to work in crazy costumes for the day. Old city would be full to the last street, and the main station would be converted to a huge dancing hall. This season of dancing, drinking and orchestrated jokes telling will last until Ash Wednesday next year culminating on the so-called Rosenmontag or Rose Monday. So either you join the fun, get crazily dressed or leave the city and be a so-called Carnival refugee and spend your holiday somewhere starting the weekend of Weiberfastnacht(Thursday)until Tuesday before Ash Wednesday. Beer will flow, romance will fill the air and some loud Germans become even louder during this season. Alaaaaaaaaf!

Sunday 6 November 2011

Two Birthday Celebrations

                       Happy Birthday 
                   Dear Mamang Mina

                        Happy Birthday 
                         Dear Erma G.

Wednesday 2 November 2011

UST Singers

University of Santo Tomas Performing in Lindenholzhausen
on Sunday,  6. November, 2011 at 19.30
Konzertsaal des Dorfgemeinschaftshauses Lindenholzhausen

Mit dem Abschlusskonzert des Harmonie-Festivals präsentiert der Chor einen letzten Höhepunkt im Festivaljahr: Am Sonntag, 6. November, geben die "University of Santo Tomas Singers" aus Manila unter der musikalischen Leitung von Professor Fidel G. Galalang jr. um 19.30 Uhr ein Konzert im Dorfgemeinschaftshaus Lindenholzhausen. Der Chor von den Philippinen ist eines der weltbesten gemischten Chorensembles und gewann allein im Jahr 2010 auf seiner Europa-Tournee 23 Preise bei internationalen Chorwettbewerben. Der Chor war bereits zweifacher Preisträger des Harmonie-Festivals und zweimaliger Gewinner des Wettbewerbs "Choir of the World" des internationalen Chorfestivals in Llangollen (Wales). Die "Harmonie" als Gastgeber wird sich bei dem Konzert unter anderem mit Werken von Robert Sund und Franz Schubert präsentieren.

Eintrittskarten gibt es im Vorverkauf im Dorfgemeinschaftshaus Lindenholzhausen, in der Wendelinusapotheke Lindenholzhausen, in der Nassauischen Sparkasse Lindenholzhausen und in der Kreissparkasse Lindenholzhausen. Kartenvorbestellungen per E-Mail unter oder Telefon:  (0 64 31) 7 32 68.nnp (nnp)


Please consult other site for detailed info about UST and the performance:

Sunday 30 October 2011

All-out-Justice in Mindanao?

Displaced Muslim Women in Zamboanga
(Photo Source:
Philippine Daily Inquirer)

Every Day

War is no longer declared,
but rather continued. The outrageous
has become the everyday. The hero
is absent from the battle. The weak
are moved into the firing zone.
The uniform of the day is patience,
the order of merit is the wretched star
of hope over the heart.

It is awarded
when nothirng more happens,
when the bombardement is silenced,
when the enermy has become invisible
and the shadow of eternal weapons
covers the sky.

It is awarded
for deserting the flag,
for bravery before a friend,
for the betrayal of shameful secrets,
and the disregard
of every command. 

Ingeborg Bachmann
(translated from the German by Peter Filkins)


Sunday 16 October 2011

Berlin, Berlin in Photos

A long weekend in autumnal October in Berlin meeting the new
Philippine Ambassador to Germany, Madam Ambassador Maria Cleofe
R. Natividad and dialogue with Filipino Organizations in
Germany regarding qualification careers for unemployed migrants
aged 25+ with German language skills equivalent to B1; meeting
the new chaplain of the Filipino Catholic Community in Berlin,
Fr. Simon Boiser, SVD; watching the performance of the University
of Santo Tomas Singers for three consecutive days; getting to
know other members of UPAA-Germany and the best part of the
long weekend was discovering restaurants. Weather was not
really friendly but our mood was summery and enthusiastic for
next visit.