A very Frosty walk

The fast few days were cold over here in Bavaria and it´s in the forecast for us to have the first snow this weekend.The air is freezing cold, especially in the early mornings . As you can see from the photos, we had a bit of Frost.Good thing I already took my plants inside which are sensitive to frost.The garden is ugly,only my Mums and the `winterhart Silberdraht ( Calocephalus Drownii) and Olender stays unbothered by the cold. I don´t have the energy anymore to rake the fallen leaves once again. Let them turn into soil this time.

Yesterday I took my morning run and brave the cold, minus 5!I took a couple of short breaks and look around. Most trees are now leafless, withering.Standing in the middle of the forest where I usually run feels eerie, the silence is really something. The surroundings are bleak and grey.There´s nothing much really to admire these days.In a few weeks, I know that this place will all be covered in white, and yes…colder.

I used my iPhone to take these photos and I´m glad they turned out well.

Beauty in the cold
Another frosted leaves
Dead but not forgotten
Touch me not..

There´s an ongoing rendezvous over Corona-Lockdown over here in Germany, (again!). Cases of infections are rising again and public mobility for unvaccinated people is being monitored and controlled strictly. Impflicht (Vaccination Law) is now imposed and yes, everyday, there´s something new so I don´t really know what will happen tomorrow or next month. Christmas markets are cancelled but life goes on…

Good thing the Frost somehow cheered me up.

How are you guys doing ?

Until then, Tschüss.

After the Rain pt.2

Here´s another sequel to my wanderings in my neighbourhood even when it´s pouring some rains.Running with slight rain is also one wonderful experience I have done from last week and yes, I am convinced that it can be done.Just like running when snowing! I love the nature itself and the mood after the showers captured in camera is quite different.

In my archives I saw some photos I took last Spring, just when the Clematis is in bloom, how lovely they looked, so fresh and pretty in pink.They can totally can make it to my Flower of the Day.Only the Mums in my garden are blooming this Autumn so actually not much flowering plants to see.

Pink Clematis after the Rains
FOTD ; Clematis after the Rain
Carpet of fallen leaves

This post is inspired by the wonderful Cee, for her FOTD; Flower of the Day Challenge and Terri´s Sunday Stills Challenge : Leaves have fallen from the Trees.

All photos are mine and taken by me.Appreciate the mention if ever you wanna use them.

Until then, Tschüss!

Glow of the Dawn and OrangeAutumn skies

I took a morning walk and feeling excited and cold, I know it´s just gonna be a great day. I don´t know, my body clock is just set on waking up early, I can´t stay in bed longer than 6 o´clock! There´s something about watching the breaking of Dawn that hooked me. The stillness of the empty streets, the bright street lights, the blinks and changing colors of the traffic signs, the soft wind, and of course, the changing colors of the skies.

The fact that I´m standing alone in the street really makes me feel so small and on the bright side, unbothered. Well at least I have the best views…

My neighbourhood is surprisingly quiet around this time.I love the autumn feels in my neighbourhood. Only few cyclists busied themselves in the streets, probably going on some early errands. It´s Autumn break so schools are closed, furthermore, the children are probably still snoring in their beds. I recognized the same old man, walking his dog, actually two dogs, with lights attached on their necks. I find it funny though.When I run, I often bump into him because he also frequented the paths along the river.

Then there´s this lady, walking with sticks. She´s really sporty and fit, I love her attitude because she´s also an early-riser. She probably doesn´t need to go to work anymore and just enjoy her time.

It only takes a few minutes to admire this beauty and it´s gone. If you´re slow then it will be gone in seconds, and skies turned once again into gray.I am glad I took a snap of it, engraving it in my memory and added to my archives. I wished I could watched pricely sunrises like this, if I have the luxury of time and not bothered by daily routines and chores. Still reflecting on this, I stumbled upon the photo calandar that my friend had gave me.it has a nice verse on it about autumn, sorry it´s written in German but I´ll try to translate. I find it really meaningful and would like to share with you.

" Das Leben ist für mich wie die Jahreszeiten.
Der Frühling ist unsere Kindheit.
Der Sommer kommt, wenn wir beginnen,
nach unseren Traümen zu greifen.
Der Herbst steht für diese besondere Zeit,
wenn wir ein wenig kürzer treten, innehalten,
entspannen und unser bischeriges Leben überdenken."
- Die Weisheit deines Herzens

It´s a perfect time to take a minute and pause. It doesn´t need to be long, as long as it´s meaningful.It says life is like the seasons. Spring is our childhood. When summer comes when we start to reach our dreams.Autumn stands when we start to take a slower pace in life, relax, and reflect on our bizaare life. It all comes out from the wisdom of our heart.

After my moment of reflection, I hopped again on my bike and cycled over the bridge where I had a glimpse of the colorful autumn foliage reflected on Danube river. What a morning.Now I hurried to go to bakery to get some fresh bread , knowing that the reality of life awaits for me.

How was your morning so far?

Ever wondered why Orange color is so distracting? or why I find peace in hikingin the Mountains?

Until then,Tschüss!

Life in Germany :Süßes oder Saures?

The mighty Pumpkin

Living in Germany for more than 5 years introduced me to the Pumpkin. Yes, this giant, round veggie, orange, sometimes, bloody orange, sometimes yellow and spotted, comes also in crazy shapes is the star of Autumn here.It is the main highlight in October, especially in Halloween.Without it, Süßes oder Saures is not complete!

German words “Süßes oder Saures? ” became like a new culture for us. It means ” Sweet or Sour? “ , a little tricky though cuz normally, I grew up with the concept of Halloween where dressing up, and wearing costumes makes it enough to have a spooky feel. But here in Germany, it is something else.Since I have a kid, we have learned to embrace this special tradition that my fellow neighbours here in Bavaria are doing.Children dressed themselves in their costumes, with make up or masked-on, carrying a basket and knocking on doors, asking for candies or sweets., but then, they also loved the sour ones!

Many Kindergartens host a Halloween Party for kids during this time, just before the Herbstferien (Autumn break) begins. Specially Halloween spooky baked goodies are prepared for the feast, and some with games and everything.

With us here in Bavaria, it is very common and most children loved doing it. If your child is not doing it then he/she might be left out.My daughter´s first costume when we moved here was a Pumpkin.I think every baby looks adorable with a pumkin costume!

Der Kürbis, or the Pumpkin is a masculine in Gender in German grammar

But then, October won´t end without the sight of the Pumpkin. Picking up your Pumpkin is one of the exciting thing to do as a family. It´s size, shape and built is really important. We have tried getting it directly from a farm, supermarket, or a Vegetable Shop ( Gemüse Hof) where they also have different varieties!And then the fun begins…

We love eating “Kürbis” as well. I baked Pumpkin pies, and made pots of Kurbis suppe (Pumpkin soup) and shared to our neighbours. It is such a warm food during the grey, gloomy autumn days here.

I remember carving our first Pumpkin with a normal knife. After looking up in Internet for few inspirations, I finally got a hold of it. Around our neighborhood, every porch, balcony, and entrance hall is decorated with a pumpkin or two.Our city is quite international and I am glad that we are living in such an open neighbouhood. I have read that in some parts of Germany, people are not so open about giving sweets to children ( especially now, probably because of the Pandemic!) and opening their doors to strangers. Some even chose to close their windows and lights for not to be disturbed!

Our Jack o-Lantern

Last night, we finally displayed our Pumpkin in the front porch with it´s lights and everything. We are happy for the result, my daughter loves it and carried it with delight! My daughter had a Halloween party with 5 other kids from our neighbours where all of them dressed up , ate a Halloween feast, and then made rounds in the streets asking for sweets or sour candies…we even offer to give cucumber pickles to prank them!

After the Pandemic, and long Corona restrictions, people over here are striving to live a normal life once again. Last night, I have seen so many families with their little children doing this and all smiles as they knocked on doors! Children are screaming with delights and not bothered by the cold, walking with torches and just singinging happily!

Here´s a part of the song text that they sing while knocking on people´s doors..

Wir sind die Gespenster,und klopfen an die Fenster.Wir klingeln an der Türen, dass all Angst verspüren!Habt ihr etwas zum knabbern? Dann woll´n wir weiter flattern! ”

This Post is inspired by Jude´s Life in Colour : Orange

Do you celebrate Halloween? How was it?

Until then, Tschüss!

LAPC : One Photo, Two Ways

Here´s my entry for this week´s Lens- Artist Challenge, One Photo, Two Ways where our dear clever and artistic Tina of Travels and Trifles asks us to share and interpret this theme ,a photograph ( or subject) in two ways.

“We’d like you to think about the various ways you create your images. Show us the same subject captured using multiple, different approaches.”

Well I thought about this theme, photo in two ways? Hmm, I simplified my thought and just narrowed it down to angles, perspectives and scope. I am not a professional photographer, and I am not really into technical details while taking photos. On normal days, I just love using my iphone to take snaps and my gallery is actually filled with photos of my daughter and our daily Wandertags and outings. I normally used my decent Canon camera on travels and when I really wanted to do good photos.Like sieze it and capture it, anytime!

But then I realized, I also took many nice photos using my Iphone so definitely it´s not just the gadget. A lot more. Anyway, we see beauty based on our perceptions so for me, sometimes I prefer trusting photos, and not words…but photos can also be photoshopped, or edited..so basically, anything is possible.

So enough of my babbling, Here´s an example how I see my subjects with two different interpretations.

St. Bartholomä in Berchtesgaden, Bavaria

I´ve seen hundreds of photos of this beautiful chapel in internet while I was researching for our trip to Berchtesgaden.Most of them are taken with the angle where it settled with the whole landscape surrounded with Königsee, the Watzmann mountains and the harbor. But I realized why not take an “up close” shot where the two cupolas are actually kissing each other and looked like sausages bundled to each other.

Oh Yes, my architecture views are sometimes twisted.

But then, here´s another perspective of the church, the one that I actually envisioned in my mind. In this shot, the whole view shows the 3 onion like cupolas, very imminent, plus the tower behind it and I was actually pleased with the result.I tooked this shot while I was still in the boat and approaching the harbor. Here, the geometric forms are much emphasized while the other photo shows the ” strength” of the boulder-like structure of the chapel.In here also, the fine details of the mountains, the lake and the lush surroundings complement the aesthetic composition of the photo, and not therefore completely blending with the subject.

St. Bartholomä in Schönau, Berchtesgaden, Bavaria

“Photography helps people to see ” – Berenice Abbott

Another example to show my photo in two ways is actually just using some common sense. As a viewer, I tend to quickly notice the “grand”, “big” or “flashy” side of the subjects. We are born to be easily attracted to these objects where our senses immediately detected. Just like in this photo, I clicked my camera because I love the view of these Virginia creepers creeeping to the walls of Botanical Institute in Münich .I just noticed the greens because it´s so immense and having the look of nature.I guess this photo helped me to see more than the climbers itself and also took notice of the stonework, the facade and the detail of the stone work in the Iris Garden.

That´s why I am actually glad that I took another shot, but this time focusing my level shot on the stone work. I still noticed the green nature surrounding it but my attention was shifted to the expression of the stone work. I guess the saying above is true, taking pictures really helped me to see more..to search more, and to perceive more.

Iris garden in the Botanical garden in Münich, Germany

“The two most engaging powers of a photograph are to make new things familiar and familiar things new.”
– William Thackeray

Iris Garden in Botanischer garten -Nymphenburg in Münich, Germany

“Wherever there is light, one can photograph.”
– Alfred Stieglitz

And lastly, my favourite element to play while taking photos is how Light ( natural light) makes different versions of my photos. Light here is so vital that I have taken lots of photos with the Yellow Raspöl Fields but I always get different versions.But I love all of them.

Here´s one taken with two different phases. Same fields, different angle, same skies, a little bit of time lapse and switching the direction.

Which one do you like?

Light here played an important factor to create the “drama” effect, or something like ” Oh it looks like rain!” but still, the fields are beaming with beauty. The landscape is very catchy… On the other photo below, light was reduced, and the silhoutte of the trees creates a borderline of different tones and mood.

Is it dusk, or dawn?

“You can look at a picture for a week and never think of it again. You can also look at a picture for a second and think of it all your life.”
– Joan Miro

In the end, when I looked at these last two photos of Yellow fields, I am actually reminded of the many times I have seen them and different weather of my time of visit. I was reminded the first time I saw it, for the very first time in Spring, and when I am deeply in need of inspiration. I have seen it actually in many different ways.

What do you think of these photos? Did I ever make sense in here (Lol!)

Thank you so much Tina for the inspiration and for the chance of little photo reflection.Its a pleasure to take part in this fun-engaging Challenge.

if you have more time to kill, please do check her amazing photography, lovely stories and bright lessons through her wanderings.

Until then, stay safe everyone, Tschüss!

Tender Beginnings and picturesque Pink

Kirschblüten or Cherry Blossoms

Today is ” Ostermontag” or the second day of Easter here in Germany.Yes, same as Christmas, Germans have two days to celebrate Easter .One day is enough so we have an extra day of holiday. Well, it´s really a very difficult Easter this year because it doesn´t have the freedom from Corona yet.But then, it´s all okay, at least it´s Spring!

It´s lovely, smells heavenly and feels so romantic!

If there were no cherry blossoms in this world
How much more tranquil our hearts would be in spring.- Ariwara no Narihira (825-880)

A Selfie under the Cherry Blossom tree is a must!

The whole world is celebrating Easter and so are we. After a peaceful gathering at home, where we had Easter breakfast followed by the egg hunt for the little girl, we head outdoors to get some fresh air and enjoy some beautiful cherry blossoms. It´s timely, since I observed that around first days of April, cherry blossom trees around our neighborhood and in the parks are due for blooming.The branches are ripe enough to cast it´s yearly spell.

In Japanese, they called them “Sakura” .They doesn´t last long, normally they are gone within a week. Today was totally windy so most petals are being blown away by the wind.I´ve read that even the petals of Cherry Blossoms are edible. Famous brands like Bath & Body works & Rituals have their famous and top seller sets with Cherry Blossoms as one of the ingredient. I tried them so I know that it smelled heavenly! I am wondering how would it taste on cookies, rice balls and Mochi…now this makes me dream of it!

No wonder they symbolize Renewal, but also the fleeting nature of life.

It´s a joy to see them, and you can´t help to feel “romantic” when you see them.People are happy and smiling under the cherry blossoms. People gather around it, smelling it´s sweet fragrance and looking up to the skies.Nature seemed to be doing it´s wonder once again.I watched a couple under the tree making lots of photos and I guess they just simply wanted to enjoy this magical moment same as I did.In Japan, people loved to do picnics and hang lanterns at night.This tradition called “Hanami ” which means Flower viewing.

One old couple are taking countless photos under the cherry blossoms and watching them makes my heart warm. A picturesque pink photo together with your loveones is definitely a must once you see these pink blossoms. Whether it´s your child, spouse or partner, Cherry Blossoms is a love flower. I think we´ve made it as a yearly tradition to make photos under the Sakura blooms. I have a collection of my daughter on its branches , climbing and smiling.It´s a treasured memory, a lovely keepsake.

Despite the Pandemic, we always opt and turned to nature´s beauty, gasping for hope and endurance. It provides us strength and healing.

I guess some cherry trees are suited for ornamental purposes only. In some parts of Germany, they are really a huge tourist magnet.Although the sight of these pink blossoms are fleeting, it´s really worth it.

Bees surround the fluffy flowers and hovering around it, and never letting them go.The soft sun gives it´s more radiance, like wanting to show it off.The branches are wide, and provide a gentle shade to people who sits under it.It´s a momentarily comfort, a swift escape, a fleeting gift.In April the weather can be so finicky and thesepink blossoms doesn´t like rain. Today was cold and windy and I could already see that some blooms are wilted.

In the cherry blossom´s shade, there´s no such thing as a stranger.- Kobayashi Issa

More snapshots of our Pink World these days …

Our cheery blossoms here are nothing compared to Japan and US and other countries.But then I am grateful that we were able to see it´s beauty once a year even for a few days.It is definitely a tender beginnings for us as we see another year and battling the scares of Corona.

Do you have a favourite Spring flower?

This post is inspired by HeyJude´s Life in Colour series :Pink

Life in Colour :Green Obsessions

When I was younger, I am addicted to bags and shoes.I needed different bag for each day and I wanted to wear pretty shoes.I often wear heels at work and I really don´t mind them on my feet.When I got pregnant and had a child, I opt for comfy ones, something that I can run with it and my bags turned into backbacks full of my daughter´s things.

I prefer also large Tote bags and sling bags, since they are so practical , wearable while cycling and when we are always on the run.

But something had changed. I got hooked into plants. Green plants mostly.

I got obsessed with green.Lots of green living plants inside our home.Through time I got to know different kinds of plants.First I saw them online, there are lots of trendy plants in Instagram and I frequently visited garden shops.I think my environment now influence me a lot since a lot of people here, not only expats like me love the urban jungle phenomenon.

It started with one pot, then comes another, then comes another, then the rest is history.Most of these plants are a year younger than my daughter now, so basically, these plant babies ” grew” up with us.We got older, they blossomed, pruned, and had babies as well.

I love being with them and though it´s a lot of work to take care each of them, it makes me happy.I also killed lots of them.I overwatered, I pruned too much, and learned from doing trial and error.I ma overjoyed when I see new leaves, or new sprouts.When my purple Oxalis Triangularis bloomed, I was jumping because they are so pretty. She had so many babies and I already gave away to my friends some of it.Some of my all time favourites are the Monstera Deliciousa, Adansonii, Mother in law tongue or snakeplant, ZZ plant, Fiddle Leaf fig tree, Rubber plant, African Milk tree, Arrowhead, Weeping fig, and Pilea Peperomoiodes.

Now that it´s Spring, my plants are happy to get more sunlight, extra dose of fertilizer and new soil. Some of them got moved into a bigger pot. It´s the planting season so they are really gearing for a new growth spurt.During the pandemic, I noticed that most of my friends, here and abroad have opt to do gardening and getting into plants.I felht good, and I know its really great especially when you have something that you are passionate about.

Besides, growing your own veggies and herbs are really cool. Nothing beats it when you personally grow it.This Spring, I planted carrots, radishes, herbs, paprika and tomatoes. I can´t wait to see them grow and hopefully, land on our plates.

I think living with plants requires a special dedication. It requires patience and hardwork. Maybe people loved only to design their homes with plants, but that also requires attention since plants are living things. You can´t ignore them once you put them in the corner.For me, each plant becomes a treasure.I bought them when they are so small ( I only buy baby plants ) and watching them thrive and grow gives me such happiness.

I frequently visits the library and borrow books about different plants and how to take care of them. Some plants really need special care from the other and that makes sense since every plant has its own personality. I mastered the watering schedule and pruning times, and I become addicted as well of propagating them. I have a big Pothos now and they mostly came from cuttings.

I think aside from painting, I would love to continue taking care of my plants until I can do it.

They are beautiful, cleaning the air we breathe, and they make our tiny home so liveable so I cannot ask for more.

I guess, this is the kind of obsession that I wanna keep.What about yours?

This post is totally inspired by the exciting Life in Colour Challenge hosted by Hey Jude which coincidentally themed with “GREEN” colours.Definitely, for me, green obsession is a kind of life, a lifestyle where green plants are the stars.

Anyway, tomorrow is maundy Thursday, and here in Germany, we called it “der Gründonnerstag” .Traditionally this means that we need to prepare and eat something that is “green”. Spinach, kale, green beans,lettuce and alike are normal favourites!

Soon it will be Easter, Until then, Tschüss!

Not to Scale (NTS) Expat life

Dominating the skyline in Kuwait, the Al Hamra Towers

What do people usually means when they say “Not to Scale“?

Looking back in my college days where we are asked to draw a floor plan, elevations and everything, this term is very common and eventually it becomes a normal terminology. Triangular Scale is a very important tool that I have often used, and through the years, I have learned that in reality, not all things can be presented with the exact proportions. Everything depends on how you make your own perspective.

Just like we gain and lose weight as we grow old…

Idealism has a fair play through the years.I asked myself before where could be a perfect place that expats finally call it a “home”?

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The view of the Skyline of Kuwait from the Liberation Tower , here despite the dusty weather, everything seemed quite a normal day.

To scale means allowing us to understand the relationship between a drawing or an illustration and a presentation or a scale model—against the Reality. If you are able to draw accurately as per scale and you can immediately shift from one scale to another, like from 1:100 to 1:50 then you can do very well in doing architectural drawings and spatial design.Looking at scale models help us to have a perspective of what would it look like once it built, a bird´s eye view, a glimpse of the vision into reality.

I can very well use the principle of Scale in my life as an Expat.

After we leave our homelands, we , too have a perspective in minds. We all carry a luggage of dreams, hopes and expectations.

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Beautiful well-preserved Gable Houses in Amsterdam, The Netherlands

I know from a fact that from an Expat eyes, everything is different from the tourist’s view and from the locals itself. A Tour Package always highlights the best, the most sought-after destinations and attractions, the off the beaten path are reserved for adventurous ones.As tourists, we want to see the icing of the cake.

What´s in? where´s the famous places? where are the top attractions?

The quaint beauty of an old Fortress ,Kaprun Castle where in 1645, the Salzburg Musketeers once occupied

A place is only a setback of your expectations, dreams and aspirations. Everyone has their own reason why they decided to move to a new place—either for work, better life, education, to bridge a relationship, or to just simply fulfill a wanderlust—the longing for a change.But in reality, the moment we started to see things in a different way, our perspective of the new place is changing.Probably this is the stage where we start to integrate, accept and ” do as the locals do“.

Pre Covid-19 Virus Era, where touring historical places like the Reichstag in Berlin can be a good place to entertain your 4 year old daughter and listen to audio guide telling about the charms of this City.

I grew up not knowing what is “Recycling ” or upcycling is.But since I came here, I started to obey and do what is norm and not just to avoid the angry stares of my neighbours if they ever saw me putting plastic in the Restmull, the black container.I started to dispose the Green, white and brown glasses in the Glass Containers as well and yes, I got acquianted with the “Yellow Sack” as well. In my bag is always an extra shopping bag, even in my bicycle and in the car, there is always a place for shopping bags.

Why, because here in Germany, you bring your own bags and pack your own grocery. I even observed the Rühezeit, the silent Sunday where we don´t mow the lawn in the garden and no loud music.I remember our times in Kuwait where the shopping cart is alwys full of plastic bags. There is no recycling there, people totally just throw garbage everywhere.Littering is quite a norm.They are really a big fan of using plastic bags there for grocery shopping.I think you collect up to 20 pieces of shopping bags for every grocery!

Now that I remember it, I felt odd.

Fast forward,5 years after, I began to look at Germany, especially Bavaria, in a “Not to scale”terms.Do I really belong here ? or this place does even exceed my expecation?

Cycling in my new neighborhood offers a new freedom to explore places

If you have your own terms of measurement about the quality of life that you want, or your preferred surroundings, then it is better not to put borders. If you expect too much and then ended up into a mountain of dissapointment, then you just feel worse.

“Why are people here are so unfriendly and “cold”?

“Why the weather keeps on changing every four hours?”

“Why Winter here in Germany is too long”?

” Why learning German is necessary to survive here?”

” Why customer service here sucks or totally non-existent?”

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Because in reality, things can be crooked, out of proportion, partially twisted, and though it looks to be perfect, it will have uneven features. I call this “Reality bites in the life of an Expat.”

As an onlooker, with naked eyes, I always ponder on the views that I see. I think it´s normal.For 5 years that I am walking the streets here in Bavaria, I still am not that fully integrated yet…or maybe I am, but sometimes, I feel like I am feeling at home.A combination of these rollercoaster feelings.

I hate it here during the long winter months but I really love it here during Spring and Summer. I loved how good the roads are and how communting can be so easy and flexible, and yes, that everything adheres to punctuality. I loved that I can even worked from home during this Pandemic times ,do part time jobs and have a job security. I appreciate that women even can take longer maternity leaves to care for their babies and come back to their jobs.

I loved the fact that my child is growing up in a kid-friendly environment and we are surrounded with playgrounds and nature.Its even amazing that traveling becomes easy, and I don´t need to worry about cash when I get sick because of the good Health Insurance System here. I even got new vaccinations ( all for free!) since I came here.

Speaking of Not to scale scenarios, here in Bavaria, the tallest building ( a Tower or a Turm) actually that I have ever been to is the Olympic Tower in Munich and the Pfeifturm here in Ingolstadt, which is btw a former watchpost. The tallest building here in Bavaria is actually the Commerzbank Tower in Frankfurt, reaching up to 259m.Actually, Frankfurt is the only city with lots of Skycrapers.Here in Germany, they try to preserved the German cultural heritage therefore the historical, Medieval and Renaissance skyline still dominates most of the old towns up to this day. It´s actually its unique charm.

There´s nothing compared walking into lovely, German old Town´s unique streets lined up with well-deserved architecture and rich history.

Exploring my own little town where not seeing “Skyscrapers” is actually also nice.The Architecture and landscape is so nice and very picturesque.
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The view deck from the interiors of the luxurious Al Hamra Towers in Kuwait

This is an absolute contrast to the former views that I have while living in Kuwait. Kuwait is a small city but it has skyscrapers and modern buildings. Quite a few are worthy to mention actually, just like my favorite-the Al Hamra Tower, the tallest building in Kuwait.It´s even named as one of the best inventions in 2011 by Times Magazine.After we left I´ve heard that there are more sleek buildings and modern architecture built.We´ve got used to the norm that modernity and functional aesthetics comes with beautiful modern buildings.

Speaking of malls, I haven´t seen quite comes close to the Avenues in Kuwait.It´s really a shopping mall with beautiful architecture.This mall itself is an attraction there.While here in Germany, shopping is like taking a leisure stroll in the inner city lined with authentic, unique shops.I haven´t really had that “mall feeling” even from our local Ingolstadt Village where “branded” marks have their boutiques and it´s already considered high end .I am not a shopaholic and into top end brands.I am more of the functional shopper–getting what I need and love to ogle some pretty nice things.Nowadays, a trip to the Greenhouse, Botanical gartdens and anything with plant shop is my thing.

But then I guess, “not to scale ” in Expat life also means that you perceive things depending on your taste.When you have seen beauty and therefore your standards have been set, then others can either comes to second or outweigh your preferences.

I prefer sightseeing in the beautiful streets where there are unique , wood-timbered houses looks like a fairy tale land.

But, looking through Kuwait from above made me realize that scale is really not important. Some things might quite look a bit odd, or lacking in proportion, but then, it embodies the urban presentation of the area.

Why would the local ladies dressed up to kill , heavily make-up on, nails are done and perfumed when they are covered in Abaya with only the eyes being shown , in stilettos and doing grocery shopping?”

Or why would most of the drivers love to speed up their cars, with children in front without seatbelt and with loud banging music?

Recently we came across a car and it´s driving a bit faster than allowed, with loud Arabic music in the background and then suddenly, I realized that I already made an assumption .They are absolutely Arabic ( doesn´t matter if they came from Saudi Arabia, Lebanon or UAE; or even Kuwait) but when I´ve heard the word “Yalla , then I am sure I haven´t been wrong.

Was my mind programmed? or were my ears gotten used to these local behaviors?

I am sure I would probably recognized in a crowd that they are German,or coming from Bavaria if they say ” Servus, Grüs Gott! ” as well!

What do you loved the most in your city?

Wishing you all Happy Sunday and Stay safe.Tschüss.

Soaking up in Natural Light

Watching the sun rises in a glorious morning.I couldn´t freeze this moment but then at least I took a snap of it and put in my memory bank.

“Natural Light uses the sun as the natural light source..”

The theme for this week´s LAPC is natural light.I love this theme since I am fond of watching sunrises and sunsets.It´s one of my favourite subject to photograph.Photo above is my very first encounter watching a naked sunrise before my eyes, up close and personal.I managed to get up at 4am and did some hike to Kiltepan Peak then watch the skies turns into dancing palletes of different colors.This is truly special for me.I remember this time I haven´t had a good camera, only my old Sony phone I think.But then, I can´t trade this experience for other thing.

A gentle Tropical sunrise and the clouds slowly descending from the mountain peaks to the valley.(Kiltepan Peak)

Sunset in Arabian Gulf, Kuwait

Oh we had a such abundance of natural light from the sun in Kuwait.I´ve been wearing sunglasses everytime I get out since I can´t help but to squint since rays is too strong for my eyes.

There´s not much nature to photograph there since it has a dry, arid desert climate but then I love watching the sunsets & sunrise there.Because of its soaring hot temperatures, enjoying the sun is not as favorable as here in Europe or in Asia. We have dark curtains and windows are often closed because of dust. Thank God I was living 5 minutes away from the beach and yes, I do miss the views of the beach from our bedroom. We have abundant scorching sun even past after 7pm, together with humidity and heat as high as 49 degrees in summer. During sandstorms, the skies are totally grey, dark and sickening.

Endless Horizons in the Arabian Gulf

Here are some of my favorite spots where I spend countless times walking and watch the skies turns into orange, and pink to purple.So many golden precious hours….my favourites were taken from the Marina, and the endless seafront along the 5th Ring Road in Salmiya.

In the broad daylight, natural light brings bright colors from Kuwait´s unique marine and aquatic architecture.The displays of Dhows and marine life becomes so alive and the culture itself is so enticing. Mind you, it seldom rains in Kuwait, I think only 2 times in a year and it´s like a light drizzle compared here in Germany. Kuwait´s skies is often cloudless, clear and blue .

Lovely sunrise in the Arabian Gulf

A magical sunset in Bavaria, southern Germany
There´s a quaint light at the end of the path

The first time I saw this rippling orange purple skies during Fall here in Germany.It was quick but it was definitely worth the wait! I took this photo just outside our bedroom window.Amazing!

Just watching this pink skies in my neighborhood

Soft bright light turns an ordinary view from the Danube River into like marble slate finish.

The dancing Date Palm trees in Kuwait creates a wonderful backdrop for a purple blue skies.

I think light portrays a vital part in this cascading greens in Munich, Germany.Natural light gives nature more power to affect us and makes us better storytellers.

The rugged hills in Mittenwald on a crisp, bright morning and during dawn it looks like flaming mountains.

Below photos are taken from my neigborhood where I spent countless running and walking.Ordinary places becomes special and go through into a metamorphosis depending on the season and weather.

The Glacisbrücke in the warm tones and cold light during a quiet Autumn morning.
I think without natural Light, these Red Poppies won´t shine bright as it is. ( Take me Back to Summer )

This view is the reason why I never stop exploring and wandering.Afterall, the light is there to guide my steps…

Lens-Artists Photo Challenge #138 : Natural Light

Until then, Tschüss!

German word of the day :Frühlingsfreude

The first signal of Spring –Crocuses

Here´s another interesting German word : Frühlingsfreude (n) which means Spring Joy.

Frühlingsfreude is actually a combined words of Frühling ( Spring) and Freude( Joy) . Anything that brings gladness in hearts during Spring .As always, nature comes first but it can also means a simple act of kindness, hearing all day long the chirping of birds, or even running on an early morning with fog.

Over the past few days these are what gives me Frühlingsfreude;

I smiled when I finally saw these tiny yellow buds, and purple Crocuses! They definitely brings me a feeling of new beginnings.It´s still so cold outside and mostly minus temps, good thing the sun shines graciously.

The amazing smell all over the house filled with the scent of freshly home baked Èmpanadas` and Frühlingsrolle or Lumpia for a light Dinner.

Frühlingrollen or Lumpia tastes better when shared with friends.

Taking long walks while soaking up under the sun.

I don´t know why but there are plenty of swans and ducks over here.Everypond, lake and river it is impossible not to notice a duck.So yes, seeing them at this time is always refreshing.The other day, we sat by the river and ducks came to us immediately, waiting for some bread pieces…!

I had also few trips to Garden shops ( since they finally reopened!!!) to get some soil , pebbles , fertilizers and seeds.This Spring I wanted to start a new Hochbeet ( or elevated garden) to plant some veggies and herbs).Its still minus temps at night so I am waiting until the last frost then I could proceed with garden work.

What had made you smile lately?

Until then, Tschüss!