Aperitivo by the river..

Aperitivo by the Arno river now.. I love this time of the year at Florence!

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Listening to : this mess we’re in!

Cavafy, poet of the city

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Ο Κωνσταντίνος Καβάφης γεννήθηκε και πέθανε σαν σήμερα (29.04.1863-29.04.1933). Έζησε το μεγαλύτερο μέρος της ζωής του στην Αλεξάνδρεια, όπου το σπίτι του έχει μετατραπεί σε μουσείο με ενδιαφέροντα εκθέματα όπως χειρόγραφα, πορτρέτα κλπ., αλλά έμεινε και σε άλλες πόλεις (Λίβερπουλ, Κωνσταντινούπολη). Ο ίδιος είχε κατατάξει τα ποιήματά του σε τρεις κατηγορίες: τα ιστορικά, τα φιλοσοφικά και τα ηδονικά ή αισθησιακά. Οι ιστορίες που αφηγείται στα ποιήματά του λαμβάνουν χώρα σε πόλεις της ανατολικής Μεσογείου, ιδιαίτερα στην Αλεξάνδρεια. (πηγή: wikipedia)

Βρήκα ενδιαφέρον αυτό το βίντεο γιατί εστιάζει σε μια ιδιότητα του Κωνσταντίνου Καβάφη που δεν την είχα σκεφτεί ως τώρα, αυτή του “ποιητή της πόλης”.

 

Η πόλις

Είπες· «Θα πάγω σ’ άλλη γη, θα πάγω σ’ άλλη θάλασσα.
Μια πόλις άλλη θα βρεθεί καλλίτερη από αυτή.
Κάθε προσπάθεια μου μια καταδίκη είναι γραφτή·
κ’ είν’ η καρδιά μου — σαν νεκρός — θαμένη.
Ο νους μου ως πότε μες στον μαρασμόν αυτόν θα μένει.
Όπου το μάτι μου γυρίσω, όπου κι αν δω
ερείπια μαύρα της ζωής μου βλέπω εδώ,
που τόσα χρόνια πέρασα και ρήμαξα και χάλασα.»

Καινούριους τόπους δεν θα βρεις, δεν θάβρεις άλλες θάλασσες.
Η πόλις θα σε ακολουθεί. Στους δρόμους θα γυρνάς
τους ίδιους. Και στες γειτονιές τες ίδιες θα γερνάς·
και μες στα ίδια σπίτια αυτά θ’ ασπρίζεις.
Πάντα στην πόλι αυτή θα φθάνεις. Για τα αλλού — μη ελπίζεις—
δεν έχει πλοίο για σε, δεν έχει οδό.
Έτσι που τη ζωή σου ρήμαξες εδώ
στην κώχη τούτη την μικρή, σ’ όλην την γη την χάλασες.

Αρχείο Κωνσταντίνου Καβάφη

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Constantine P. Cavafy was born on April 29, 1863 and died on April 29, 1933. He was a Greek poet who lived in Alexandria and worked as a journalist and civil servant. He published 154 poems; dozens more remained incomplete or in sketch form. Cavafy lived most of his life in Alexandria but he also lived  in Liverpool and Constantinople (Istanbul). Cavafy’s Alexandria apartment has since been converted into a museum. The museum holds several of Cavafy’s sketches and original manuscripts as well as containing several pictures and portraits of and by Cavafy. (by wikipedia)

Most of the stories that are described in Cavafy’s poems take place in many cities around the Mediterannean Sea, especially in Alexandria. The video posted above seemed quite interesting to me because it focuses on a different aspect of the poet; this of the “poet of the city”.

The City

You said: “I’ll go to another country, go to another shore,
find another city better than this one.
Whatever I try to do is fated to turn out wrong
and my heart lies buried as though it were something dead.
How long can I let my mind moulder in this place?
Wherever I turn, wherever I happen to look,
I see the black ruins of my life, here,
where I’ve spent so many years, wasted them, destroyed them totally.”
 
You won’t find a new country, won’t find another shore.
This city will always pursue you. You will walk
the same streets, grow old in the same neighborhoods,
will turn gray in these same houses.
You will always end up in this city. Don’t hope for things elsewhere:
there is no ship for you, there is no road.
As you’ve wasted your life here, in this small corner,
you’ve destroyed it everywhere else in the world.

Cavafy Archive

Suspended Coffees

Suspended Coffees, is a great way to make the world a little better. It is a tradition, originated from Naples in Italy and by saying ‘suspended’ we simply mean that people can purchase for coffees in advance that are provided to those who cannot afford buying one. Customers, for example, can purchase two coffees, one for themselves and another one to be held as ‘suspended’ and people who are in need are welcome to come in the participating coffee shops and ask if there are any Suspended Coffees.

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This initiative is to help poor and homeless or just those who deal with hardships and brighten their day.I have to say that I’m so glad, that there are still people who care about others, who invent these little ‘tricks’ in order to ‘warm’ some others’ hearts. These actions of care and affection show us that there is hope in the world and even though governments might have abandoned their tries on helping the poor and the homeless, Suspended Coffees is a pure sign of integrating them again into society to come and drink or eat decently.

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Of course this is feasible not only with beverages but also with sandwiches, meals or whatever you are willing to pay for. The participant coffee shops carry the logotype (below) so as to let people know that they are supporting this concept. Many countries all over Europe, America and Asia join day by day the project of Suspended Coffees, so what if the time has come for Greece to join it, too? Would you support it?

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Everyone can be informed by their official page on facebook: https://www.facebook.com/SuspendedCoffeess and those who are interested in participating as vendors can e-mail them at suspendedcoffee@yahoo.ie

‘ There is no exercise better for the heart than reaching down and lifting people up’ -John Holmes

SPREAD HOPE ALL OVER THE WORLD!

Tuscany part 1: Monteriggioni..

I think it’s about time we discover Tuscany!

First stop the tiny but unique Monteriggioni, definitely one of my favorite destinations. Despite its size it attracts me much more than other villages of Tuscany. Perhaps this is because you don’t have much choice other than to relax and sit in it’s one and only square Piazza Roma and enjoy fine wine accompanied by a tasty tagliere (tuscan salami and cheese). Yesterday for the first time we left the car 1.5 km far and walked in the countryside. Then we went for lunch at Bar dell’Orso, a small trattoria with excelent italian atmosphere, amazing sandwiches and original tuscan recipes! And after that a coffee at Piazza Roma of course and more countryside. I love spring!

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Some information :

Monteriggioni is one of the most classical and best known Italian walled town. Since the Middle Age its fame was so big that also the great poet Dante Alighieri makes sign to his ‘round enclosure‘ in the Divine Comedy (Hell, chant XXXI vv. 40-41). The town walls, nearly intact, cover a length of 570 meters and are alternated by 14 towers and two gates. The Senese Gate is at the base of a square tower while the Florence Gate is opened in the curtain and defended from one of the towers of the fortified perimeter.

The town was built by the Senesis in the years 1213-1219 on a hilltop overlooking of the Cassia Road. Its ideal position allowed to control the Elsa and the Staggia Valleys in direction in Florence, the historic enemy of Siena, that at that time was rapidly expanding its territory.

The hill where Monteriggioni rises is natural, even if it could seem a great ‘motte‘ (from the name of the classical Norman castles ‘Motte-and-Bailey’ built on artificial hills and gifted of enclosure), and the circular, almost perfectly, layout of the walls was obtained simply following the sketch of the ground’s curves of level. In the planning was tried of to limit the weak points for excellence, the gates, entrusting the only connections with the outside only to a  east to west crossing road. To Monteriggioni the military building work appears physically distinguished by the inhabited area confined to its inside but well separated from the walls from a ‘territory of respect‘, although in the ancient times the inhabited area has been more intense than today and consequently with a more narrow band of separation. The hamlet that we can admire our daysis essentially authentic, being ever been object of building and tourist speculations. The only changes to its aspect happened in the first years of the 16th century when, trying to conform the fortifications to the development of the new fire weapons, were lowered the towers andaccumulated earth at the base of the walls with the purpose to get a bastionated effect. (Source)

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Have a nice weekend eveyone!

photos © chrysoula papagianni

The Antikythera Mechanism

«Το Ναυάγιο των Αντικυθήρων»

Το Πλοίο_οι Θησαυροί_ο Μηχανισμός

Antikythera mechanism

Πηγή: http://www.guardian.co.uk/

Από τον Απρίλιο του 2012 φιλοξενείται στο Εθνικό Αρχαιολογικό Μουσείο η έκθεση για το Μηχανισμό των Αντικυθήρων, η οποία θα διαρκέσει (κατόπιν νέας παράτασης) μέχρι τις 31.08.2013.

«Ο μηχανισμός των Αντικυθήρων (γνωστός και ως αστρολάβος των Αντικυθήρων ή υπολογιστής των Αντικυθήρων) είναι ένα αρχαίο μηχάνημα που θεωρείται μηχανικός υπολογιστής και όργανο αστρονομικών παρατηρήσεων. Ανακαλύφθηκε σε ναυάγιο ανοικτά του νησιού Αντικύθηρα μεταξύ των Κυθήρων και της Κρήτης. Με βάση τη μορφή των ελληνικών επιγραφών που φέρει χρονολογείται μεταξύ του 150 π.Χ. και του 100 π.Χ., αρκετά πριν από την ημερομηνία του ναυαγίου, το οποίο ενδέχεται να συνέβη ανἀμεσα στο 87 π.Χ. και 63 π.Χ.. Θα μπορούσε να ήταν κατασκευασμένο μέχρι μισόν αιώνα πριν το ναυάγιο. Το ναυάγιο ανακαλύφθηκε το 1900 σε βάθος περίπου 40 με 64 μέτρων και πολλοί θησαυροί, αγάλματα και άλλα αντικείμενα, ανασύρθηκαν από σφουγγαράδες.από τη Σύμη» (πηγή: wikipedia.org)

«Είναι ο αρχαιότερος, πολυσύνθετος αστρονομικός φορητός υπολογιστής, με τον οποίον προσδιορίζονταν οι θέσεις του Ήλιου, της Σελήνης και, πιθανότατα, των πέντε γνωστών κατά την αρχαιότητα πλανητών του Ερμή, της Αφροδίτης, του Άρη, του Δία και του Κρόνου. Επίσης, χρησιμοποιούνταν για την πρόβλεψη των εκλείψεων του Ήλιου και της Σελήνης, για την τήρηση ενός πολυετούς ημερολογίου με μεγάλη ακρίβεια, καθώς και για τον προσδιορισμό του χρόνου τέλεσης των Πανελλήνιων Αγώνων που πραγματοποιούνταν στην Ολυμπία, στους Δελφούς, στη Νεμέα, στην Ισθμία και στη Δωδώνη.» (πηγή: ιστοσελίδα Εθνικού Αρχαιολογικού Μουσείου)

Αν βρεθείτε στην Αθήνα μέχρι τέλος Αυγούστου αξίζει τον κόπο να κάνετε μια βόλτα μέχρι το Μουσείο στην Πατησίων για μια ξενάγηση σε αυτό το τόσο ξεχωριστό αρχαιολογικό εύρημα. 😉

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The Antikythera mechanism is an ancient analog computerdesigned to calculate astronomical positions. It was recovered in 1900–1901 from the Antikythera wreck. The  mechanism is kept at the National Archaeological Museum of Athens and is currently displayed at the temporary exhibition about the Antikythera Shipwreck.

The Antikythera Mechanism is the earliest preserved portable astronomical calculator. It displayed the positions of the Sun, the Moon and most probably the five planets known in antiquity, Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter and Saturn. It was used to predict solar and lunar eclipses, it kept an accurate calendar of many years, and displayed the date of Pan-Hellenic games that took place at Nemea, at Isthmia, at Delphi, at Dodona and at Olympia. (http://www.namuseum.gr)

If you happen to visit Athens by the end of August 2013, do not forget to visit the National Archaeological Museum of Athens and have yourselves guided to this extraordinary ancient machine.

The video posted above presents information about the Antikythera Mechanism.

Golden hour..

Panoramic view of Florence from Piazzale Michelangelo now..

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My International Hairdresser..

Today at International Studio after a reeeaaaaallyyyy long time.. If you’re in Florence and you need a haircut, or simply want to feel special then this is your place! All of the staff is amazing, but my favorite is Nikos of course! Once you go Nikos you never go back!!

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Sushi time..

Sushi lunch today with Antonia and Chiara!

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Crêpes..

Hi everyone!
I’m home studying with N and Elena and I just made some crepes.. The recipe is simple and always delicious! My favorite combination is Nutella with banana!

Ingredients

  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 cup flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons butter

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Cloudy breakfast..

Goodmorning people!

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