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EU Enlargement t+2

Posted 1 May 2006 - The Hague (NL):

It's been 2 years since Poland joined the European Union. Even though the Poles recently elected an EU-averse government, a lot of improvements have been realised since 1 May 2004. Online news-paper Warsaw Voice tracks the changes brought about by Poland's accession.

(© Warsaw - PL, September 2004)
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Posted 2 May 2006 - The Hague (NL):

2 May is not just a datum, it's also a small city and Black Sea beach resort in Romania. Look it up in brochures and you'll find lovely beaches. Go there and you'll see a lot of industrial activity and mammoth tankers of various kinds. But seriously, it's not such a bad place to go once you crossed all of Europe without having seen a sea for over two months.

(© 2 Mai - RO, August 2002)
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Posted 4 May 2006 - The Hague (NL):

For the last 61 years, the fourth day of May is 'Remembrance of the Dead', followed by Liberation Day on May 5 (which is only a public holiday once every 5 years..). At 8 o'clock, two minutes of silence are observed.

The photo below is a memorial at former concentration camp Dachau. Looking at the displayed text, reality would be more close to 'over and over again', rather than 'never again'.

(© Dachau - DE, April 2001)
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Posted 5 May 2006 - The Hague (NL):

Liberation Day - but no Public holiday unfortunately.. Photo below is from the 'Zwartboek' film set which I secretly attended last year. The film itself is due to be released by September of this year.

(© The Hague - NL, September 2004)
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Posted 7 May 2006 - Paris (FR):

Le petit Parisien:

(© Paris - FR, 6 May 2006)
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Posted 9 May 2006 - The Hague (NL):

Another exciting night at FC Hollyhock which ended in a 8-6 (or 7-5 or 10-8 or 9-7) victory of FC Colourful against PlainShirt United.

(© The Hague, 8 May 2006, photo by Maaike)
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Posted 10 May 2006 - The Hague (NL):

In order to try and keep my photography activities on track, I intend to organise modest exhibitions every now and then. I have already been telling about an upcoming one and since I am actualy working on it right now, it's time to tell some more about it.

I have selected 28 photos in series of three. Altogether these photos aim to show that people usually spend a lot of time doing things that seem to make sense - but don't, and little time doing things that seem useless - but in fact are much more essential than everything that seems so much more important. Still following?

Since the exhibition will be at the headquarters of a company - as opposed to publicly visitable - I will use all of next week to post the photo threesomes and write some more about each of the photos involved. Here's the photo that makes up half of the title page, and stands for the exploration, freedom, relaxness and curiosity that relates to train travelling.

(© Lebork - PL, June 2002)
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Posted 11 May 2006 - The Hague (NL):

All Paris photos below have been taken using a Canon Prima 135. That's the analogue compact photo camera my parents offered me when I finished secundary school. As you can see, it still works alright.

(© Paris - FR, May 2006)
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Posted 11 May 2006 - The Hague (NL):

When I asked this French guy whether I could take a photo of him, he replied that he was not a star.. Well, at least in this photo he is.

(© Normandy - FR, May 2006)
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Posted 12 May 2006 - The Hague (NL):

Stress is annoying, counterproductive and highly contagious. Still, it seems like stress is all around and many people get stressier by the day. Here's my personal anti-stress plan for the rest of the month:

- 10pm is bedtime, anything negative needs to be solved before then;
- Sufficiently good is more than enough;
- There'll be another day tomorrow, and if not: why worry today;
- No eating without breathing;
- I set the agenda, it doesn't set me;
- Being tired is not a reason to complain, it's a reason to go to bed;
- All Have to's are changed to Want to's, then ranked by importance;
- Any use of the word just is avoided;
- Everything will eventually sort itself out, by itself.

And if the weather allows, some visits to the nearby beach will also help reduce stress. It's actually all pretty simple..

(© The Hague - NL, 10 May 2006)
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Posted 13 May 2006 - The Hague (NL):

A new trip will soon be added to the agenda. This time it's England on the list. I will go to Bristol for a meeting on 13 June. On the way there, I will visit my brother who recently moved to Colchester. The way back leads along London, where Footsweep will play their first international gig!

And I'm back online at home which makes updating the PhotoLog a lot easier.

(© London - UK, December 2004)
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Posted 17 May 2006 - The Hague (NL):

Romania and Bulgaria are not on track for joining the European Union in January 2007. Main issues include corruption and organised crime. Corruption flourishes in both countries and at almost every layer of society: public transportation, healthcare, politics - everything is kept together by corruption. Organised crime is exported to Western Europe and includes pickpocketing, car theft, trafficking in persons, drugs and weapons.

Worst of all is that many people perceive corruption as 'freedom of gift' and organised crime as 'applying justice to the poor'.: a destructive cycle that is hard to escape.

(© Bucharest - RO, September 2004)
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Posted 17 May 2006 - The Hague (NL):

Spain is taking measures to stimulate foreign language skills among its youngest citizens. One thing I always find difficult to understand is why films and TV programs keep being dubbed in Spain, France, Italy, Britain, Germany and many counties alike. With Poland in top-position: they generally have one voice only for a complete TV program. This voice emotionlessly translates all conversations and it's surprising that people can stand watching that. What's the problem of providing subtitles? 1) it's cheaper than dubbing, 2) it increases exposure to foreign languages, 3) it stimulates literacy among kids, 4) it keeps the original program and its context unharmed.

(© The Hague - NL, 16 May 2006)
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Posted 18 May 2006 - The Hague (NL):

In order to promote my new exhibition Hollen of Stilstaan, I'm organising a small explanation tour on Tuesday around lunch hour. Let me know if you want to join.

(© All photos)
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Posted 19 May 2006 - The Hague (NL):

I generally tend to like countries where the language people speak is nice. I like Poland and the sound of Polish, France and French, and especially Sweden and Swedish. It's like singing and it sounds very happy. Swedish does not have any cases for nouns and it hardly conjugates verbs. On top op that, they have a variety of cool words like 'tidtabel' (time table), 'pappaledig' (time off work for fathers), 'jordgubbe' (strawberry but litterally meaning small earth man). Also they have very close definitions for family relations. A grandmother from mother's side would be called 'mormor' which litterally means mother's mother. Farmor is father's mother: the other grandmother. And barnbarn is grandchild, also very logical.

Beside the linguistic interest, Sweden is also a very stable country. They co-operate with nature rather then gradually destroying it, they are technically very advanced and they generally take a neutral position in military crises. Sweden is a bit less exciting than France when it comes to 'joie de vivre' but they do have a well-organised country.

If you're in any way interested to know more about Sweden or its language, take a look at Sweden's main newspaper or listen to NRJ Radio (click: Lyssna live).

(© Stockholm - SE, January 2004)
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Posted 20 May 2006 - The Hague (NL):

During my relocation away from King Square Villa, I came across some Photo CD's which I had not included in my usual negative albums. Which made that I hadn't looked at those photos for quite a while, especially those from the summer of 2003. This photo is from one of the Irish Aran Islands and makes me think of a specific quote from "Le petit prince". It refers to the moment the golden-haired little Prince becomes friends with the fox:

Le blé, qui est doré, me fera souvenir de toi. Et j'aimerai le bruit du vent dans le blé.

'The grain, which is also golden, will remind me of you. And I will enjoy the sound of wind going through the wheat'

(© Aran Islands - IE, July 2003)
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Posted 22 May 2006 - The Hague (NL):

Few things annoy me as much as faulty process automation. "You can collect your new bank card at the post office. Please be aware of the opening hours of your subsidiary" -> mentioning which one-and-only branch needs to be visited for this purpose, but NOT mentioning what these opening hours are. Or voice recognition systems with hearing problems, or incorrect automatic debiting from your bank account by energy/internet/water/telco suppliers. And the impossibility of banks doing what they're supposed to do, which is manage money instead of selling holidays, insurances and holiday insurances (although that's maybe not related to process automation - it's still very annoying..).

Also ranking very high on the list: traffic lights. It's not without reason that in spoken language they are usually referred to as stopping lights, because that's what they are in essence. Even when there's no-one around, they'll keep you waiting until it's your turn. Who is writing the process for these terrible machines? Annoyed once more by having to wait at traffic lights for ages when driving towards tennis yesterday morning, I decided to look up who invented this crappy instrument. (We will find this who did it, we'll smoke them out of their holes, we'll get them running and we'll bring them to justice) Mysteriously, there's a whole list of inventors and patent holders, scattered all over the place and hardly locateable. Smart-asses. Here's another link instead - a website that describes the etymology of the traffic light phenomenon.

(© Washington DC - USA, May 2005)
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Posted 23 May 2006 - The Hague (NL):

Thanks to my former colleague Bjorn, PhotoLogiX is today's 'Site of the Day' at the homepage of internet provider @Home!

(© @ Home)
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Posted 24 May 2006 - The Hague (NL):

Travelling to Berlin by train will never be the same.. International trains used to halt at Berlin Zoologischer Garten (from and to West and North) or Berlin Ostbahnhof (from and to South and East). Both former terminal stations have been reconnected in the early 90s and will be replaced by one central station later this week. Former metro station Lehrter Bahnhof, directly above the former German wall and Spree river, has been upgraded to become Europe's biggest train station. The construction is completed just in time for the upcoming world cup, in spite of some harsh drawbacks along the way..

(© Berlin - DE, December 2004)
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Posted 26 March 2006 - The Hague (NL):

Free PhotoLogiX photos in poster size are on the way!

Keep an eye on your favourite photos AND on the PhotoLog during the coming days to know more! Go to the main website to view more photos, or browse through the PhotoLog archives on the righthand side ->>

(© Bucharest - RO, October 2004)
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Posted 27 May 2006 - The Hague (NL):

The ultimate proof that people mostly see what they think they see, is about to become reality! It's actually a miracle people haven't discovered this before.. How to make objects invisible... Read this article [link removed] to know more.

(© Paris - FR, May 2003)
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Posted 29 May 2006 - The Hague (NL):

Last Saturday in the rainy and windy polders of the Flevoland province:

(© Kampen - NL, 27 May 2006)
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Posted 31 May 2006 - The Hague (NL):

Dutch football player Rafaël van der Vaart and his wife Sylvie Meis named their newborn son "Damián", which apparently means 'idiot' in German. A nice reason to look up some other words and names that make bad translations in other languages:

Dick Bruna (NL: Author of Miffy) - Dick (UK: dick) + Bruna (SE: asshole)
proost (NL: cheers) - prost (RO: stupid)
con (UK: drawback) - con (FR: dick)
Bert (NL: boy's name) - Bert (DE: idiot)
P.D. (US: police department) - Pédé (FR: gay)
God (UK) - god (FR: dildo)
queue (UK: line) - queue (FR: dick)

And of course my all time favourite:
curva (ES: curve) - kurva (PL: whore)

If you as a PhotoLog reader have any interesting additions to this list, please let me know!

(© Curva ŕ Poitiers - FR, May 2002)
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