Category: Culture Vulture

Christmas Countdown Day 6: Funny Bones

It is quintessential Filipino to first fine the humour in tragedy or adversity. Whether it a political debacle or natural disaster, or even personal loss, the Filipino family will strive to find a way to continue to laugh together. For those who are not familiar with this peculiar trait, or who are married into it

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Christmas Countdown Day 9: The Right Tools

One of the aspects of living in Germany that I had to come to terms with very early on was this overwhelming DIY culture. This is the land of precision tools and exact measurements, and where carpenters, plumbers and painters can become certified masters in their own craft. The value placed on tools, trade and

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Christmas Countdown Day 12: Faith & Perseverance

December 12 is the feast day of Our Lady of Guadalupe. For Catholics living in North, Central and South America, the legend of the Mexican Virgin Mary who appeared to Juan Diego has been part of everyone´s faith since 1531. I certainly grew up with it, and my parents adopted a special devotion to Nuestra

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Commuter Adventures: All Black Mornings

Maybe it is because I grew up in colourful countries and and lived most of my life among cultures where colour plays a major role in daily life, but what makes winter in Europe incredibly depressingis the fact that most people choose to wear dark blue, dark grey or black jackets and overcoats. For the

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Santa's Pole Dance

If Santa were allowed to have some fun on Christmas and were let loose around the German Christmas markets for some mulled wine (Glühwein), he would indeed end up doing the pole dance on one of Berlin’s numerous old-fashioned street lamps, especially if he visited all 80 Christmas markets in the city! Christmas in Germany

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Second Sunday of Advent Musings

Every day is ChristmasWhen you have the kind of mind,That stores up all the goodnessAnd the sweetness it can find.When you don’t need an occasion,To spread a bit of cheer,But just keep on a-giving,Of yourself throughout the year. Every day is Christmas,With a gaily wrapped surprise,When you’ve learnedTo see the friendship,In someone else’s eyes.When you

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Rising From The Rubble

The other day I wrote briefly about rising from the rubble, rebuilding my life, my self, and parts of my soul. One of the most powerful poems of Dr. Maya Angelou has been a guiding light throughout this process, and it is not the first time I share it here. Nevertheless, I sometimes need to

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Nikolaus 2019*

This is a recurring blog entry of mine that I tweak every year. Have you been naughty or nice this year? Did you earn a gold coin or a lump of coal? The German-speaking parts of Europe all celebrate the feast of Saint Nicholas today and instead of coal or gold in the shoes left outside, children

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One For The Dogs

Translation: Rhetorical question: IF I go ahead and transfer the contents of the open tin of cat food into a tupperware and place it it in the fridge, and IF I forget to label it, and IF my husband makes himself a sandwich with it because he believed it to be pate… and IF he

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A Childhood Branch

My shoulder is absolutely killing me today after a Sunday of hauling Christmas decorations up from the basement and decorating the apartment. I had to grin in amusement when I ran into my neighbour who was doing the exact same thing, and we agreed that this was our fitness hour. She had it worse than

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