Italy and a little bit of France

It’s been more than seven months already and I finally found some time to blog about our Italy and France honeymoon trip in May, 2013.

We wanted to see many things, but didn’t want to spend the entire holiday in a car, so we tried to leave some time to chill. This resulted in the following plan:

Rome and Vatican → San Marino → Bologna → Florence → Cinque Terre  – Riomaggiore → Monaco / Menton → Nice.

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Thoughts, pictures, music

Some thoughts I took notes on during last months. Some pictures I took during last years. Some good music.

 

 

“When you run after your thoughts, you are like a dog chasing a stick: every time a stick is thrown, you run after it. Instead, be like a lion who, rather than chasing after the stick, turns to face the thrower. One only throws a stick at a lion once.”
– Milarepa

 

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“You all laugh at me because I’m different, I laugh at you because you’re all the same.”
– Mikhail Bulgakov

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Vienna, Austria

Schengen visa is still valid. It means we’re going for the next trip to Europe. First Copenhagen and Malmo in March, then Stockholm in September, and now Vienna in October.

Actually, I wanted to go to Vienna for years already. Some even think that it is one the best cities in the world, included in all three ratings: The Economist, Mercer, and Monocle. I am not so sure about quality of life as this is not a kind of thing that can be understood during a two day trip, but it is certainly a nice place to walk around and enjoy some good coffee in.

 

This time, there will be very little text, but some wonderful music and kind of mediocre pictures.

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Stockholm, Sweden

Morning coffee at home. Train to airport. Boarding. Print-outs about Stockholm. Over there by lunch time.

After Copenhagen and Malmö in March I continued discovering Scandinavia and decided to visit Stockholm. Same format, “weekend + a day” trips.

As one might expect Sweden is very comfortable in multiple respects. There are free Wi-Fi and sometimes audio-guides in museums. In toilets you can sometimes find plastic glasses, so you could try some high quality tap water.

The usual attempt to see how average people live outside of city center was made indirectly. We took a bus from the airport to Marsta and caught a train there to Stockholm. Another immersion in everyday life happened in subway at rush hour, at about 9 AM. I should say that this experience disproved “empty trains” stereotype”. In fact, it was quite crowded. But politeness, as well as perfectly air conditioned and amazingly quit trains made it quite tolerable.

When talking about Sweden, people first think of IKEA, high taxes, social equality, low crime rates, and long life expectancy. All these things have their place, of course. But Stockholm is also a city of awesome sunsets. Of course, pictures are helpless way of transmitting the atmosphere. But it’s better than nothing.

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Copenhagen, Denmark and Malmö, Sweden

I visited Copenhagen, Denmark and Malmö, Sweden in March, 2012 and want to share some pictures and impressions. From the happiest and the second happiest countries in the world.

Copenhagen, Denmark

It is funny that when I checked the most popular Google query with “Copenhagen” word was “where is Copenhagen” and the most popular query with word “Malmö” was “where is Malmö”. I am sure that you, unlike those guys, have no doubts about the actual location of Copenhagen. So, I will skip the introductory part about Denmark and Scandinavia. Most likely, you can even find Malmö on a map in under 10 seconds. But nevertheless I will tell you that it is only half an hour away from Copenhagen. So, if you have some time left, you might consider taking Copenhagen to Malmo train.

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Singapore

After 10 days of relaxation in Thailand and quick run through Kuala Lumpur we finally arrived to the country I wanted to visit for many years. Singapore.

Travelers’ reviews of Singapore vary from “the whole city is just one huge shopping mall” to “a place where you can meet all the cultures of Southeast Asia better than in the countries of origin themselves”. As always, truth lies somewhere in the middle and depends on your initial attitude as well as a chosen route. I personally enjoyed Singapore a lot.

 

Marina bay, Singapore

I’m not going to tell you a long story of what unique place Singapore is and how highly developed it is compared to the surrounding countries.

Instead, let’s better look at the pictures which I will briefly comment.

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Guide to Ao Nang Krabi in Thailand. Bonus: breath-taking pictures!

A month already passed since our trip to Southeast Asia. Winter sights and grey colors that we see everyday on our way to work don’t look unfamiliar anymore. Pictures from the trip, on the other hand, seem to originate from a completely different world. World that we were able to escape to for a while but that fades away now. I guess, blogging is just another method to get back in those days, awaken the memories and store them in a more reliable form. I invite you to join my reminiscence and travel with me to 3 countries of Southeast Asia. What I promise from my side is (hopefully) beautiful pictures, (probably) useful advice and (supposedly) witty comments.

Incredible Ao Nang beach

Well, we had an ambitious plan: 10 days in Ao Nang – Krabi (Thailand) → 2 days in Kuala Lumpur (Malaysia) → 3 days in Singapore (Singapore ;)) → 2 days in Bangkok (Thailand) → back to Moscow. Total of 5 flights (2 of which were connection flights) & one bus + transit to/from airports + subway. Not without a pride I can say that we carried out the plan on time in full. Continue reading

Wisdom in few words: best motivational quotes

Throughout last couple of years I’ve been collecting my personal favorite quotations from various inspirational people in my Evernote. As a result I got quite a long list of sayings which I personally consider to be one of the smartest, wittiest, daring and positive at the same time.

Best smart, motivational, inspirational witty quotes/quotationsMoscow, 2008.

So, I thought why not to share them with you? Assuming I have a lot in common with my readers, you might enjoy them too. If you don’t then you might just skip the post and excuse me for wasting your time. Otherwise, here is the collection:

  • “First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win.” ~ Mahatma Gandhi
  • “Life isn’t about finding yourself. Life is about creating yourself.” ~ George Bernard Shaw
  • “There are basically two types of people. People who accomplish things, and people who claim to have accomplished things. The first group is less crowded.” ~ Mark Twain
  • “The greater danger for most of us lies not in setting our aim too high and falling short; but in setting our aim too low, and achieving our mark.” ~ Michelangelo Buonarroti
  • “Money is like gasoline during a road trip. You don’t want to run out of gas on your trip, but you’re not doing a tour of gas stations. You have to pay attention to money, but it shouldn’t be about the money.” ~ Tim O’Reilly
  • “Doing what you like is freedom. Liking what you do is happiness.” ~ Frank Tyger

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