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It’s always hard to say goodbye

It was just a year ago that we were in the same situation.Having to leave all the people that we got to care about in Czech Republic and starting from scratch back home. Even harder I might say since our project lasted one year and  we got really close to our colleagues. This is what I love and hate about these volunteering projects. You get the chance to meet wonderful people but you have to be aware that at one point you’ll have to say goodbye and in some cases never meet them again. I still remember our group hug in front of Pan Razkas house, with our car filled with souveniers and second hand cute clothes, all the Bunkr team crying at our party a few nights before… Tonight we were on the other side of the story. Our volunteers for which we offered to be mentors and help them during their project in Cluj are leaving. Moxi’s volunteers, Marco and Adrian already left and we tried to be all funny and smiling in the train station while Adrian was heading to Bucharest, and we thank the other train travelers who joined us in the waving and funky dancing process:) After that we went for a last quick panoramic view of Cluj at night near Belvedere and then for me and Moxi started a long walk home. In two hours Sophie will be heading to the airport and then tomorrow at noon Johanne will say goodbye. I remember around 5 months ago when I knew I will be a mentor for 2 of them, asking about their names, their background, hoping that they will like Cluj, Romania, their project,me:)… They turned out to be very enthusiastic, very mature for their age (Sophie, I still feel old compared to you:)) but at the same time very willing to try new things and to learn all sort of crafts (Johanne deserves an award for all the kniting she did). Girls, I’m really happy I had the chance to meet you and I hope we will see each other soon(in two hours most probably:)

You can read more about the volunteers from Centrul de Voluntariat Cluj-Napoca who organized the National Volunteering Week during their EVS project “123 Days” on their own blog: and find out more about their activities or see interesting pictures with their projects on Centrul de Voluntariat Cluj Napoca’s Facebook page.

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Machine Gun Preacher

Last night Moxi picked another great movie to watch. “Machine Gun Preacher” tells the real story of an ex drug addicted person, Sam Childers, who with the help of his wife and daughter discovers God and decides to change his life. Sam hears about the problems Sudan is confronted with and he wants to help the children from that area. Until this point I really liked the movie and the way Sam was trying to make a difference. From here on, he gets involved in the vicious circle of killing people in order ho save people and he even ends up killing children from the rebels side. I understood the good cause..but you cannot ask for peace while you shoot the others. At first he was building and orpahange and a church, he was the favourite play partner for the children..and then he wants to do more and more and he ends up being violent and lonely…focusing on things that are too big for his capacity. The movie made me think about how little we are in contrast with the problems these people need a solution to. And it made me realize it’s best to act on a local level. We cannot be saviours of all the people in need this planet has. But if we help a few children to gain a better future, it’s the best thing in the world.At the end I was also left with a bitter sweet taste. In the last minutes the show photos and footage of the real White preacher..Sam Childers. He’s a classic motor bike rider who one day decided to play God. And he ended with the question : If your child would be kidnapped..and I told you I could bring it back to you..would you care how I did it? On a personal level we would all say..No. But this is just the vicious circle I was talking about. In order to save the children he considered on the good side..he ends up killing “the bad ones”. All this “God action” was happening while his own daugheter was left behind in the States and raised without her father. The lessons were good…but I think it’s dangerous when people do bad things in the mane of justice…their own concept of justice.

The real Sam Childers

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Good people are still out there:)

Oh boy this was a long day. .. I came home from my meeting with the EVS volunteers at 17.45. Why do I know the exact hour you ask? Because in front of the elevator was Moxi, rushing to his car and asking me how much money I have in cash. Why? Oh we have to rewind the events a bit. When we moved in this apartment, I saw that we had no bills for electricity. I went at the office of Electrica and asked how much do I have to pay. They said the owners are paying the bills (they live in another city) and we have nothing to worry about. I repeatedly asked the owners to move the bill payments again in Cluj so that I can take care of it but they assured me they have no problems in paying it. Until today…when they called at 17.40 and told us they forgot to do it and we had to pay the bill for electricity…or else on Monday they would cut it off. I remembered it costs a few hundred Ron’s to reinstall the electricity and we ran like crazy to get to the main office before they closed…at 18.00. The only problem was that the bill was for 170 Ron..and we had 70 We had cards but we were not sure if we could pay with them and the ATM’s were not in our area of driving. So…trusting the kind hearts of the Romanians, but reluctant that anyone would believe my story..I went into the first clothing shop I found and begged for 100 Ron. As I was talking really fast explaining to the sales lady that I need 100 Ron and I would pay her back in half an hour, that they would cut my electricity..that I would leave her my ID and my phone as a guarantee I realised that if I would be in her shoes it would be hard for me to believe this story:)) Fortunately..she was far more understanding and she lend me the money. We had 10 more minutes left to get to the office and all the cars and buses that could get in our way..did:) Finally we arrived there, I ran inside while Moxi was parking the car…and realised the bill was 10 lei more that what we had in cash. The good news is that we could pay also with the credit card so all my begging and freaking out was useless. The bad news is that the lady working at the Electrica office is as sweet as a lemon.But I;m happy that I discovered nice people who are willing to help a stranger in need. Thank you anonymous lady from the clothes store!!! You are my hero of the day:)

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Maya Angelou

She’s 83. And she’s not slowing down. She still writes books, poems, music…and she’s full of energy. I was simply amazed by her presence when I saw an interview with her. She and her brother were sent after their parents divorce to live with their grandparents. They were only around 6 and 8 years old and they were sent alone on a bus without adult supervision and just with nametags stiched to their clothes. She was raped at age seven by her mother’s boyfriend and suffered severe emotional shock and refuse to speak for six years.

When the United Nations were founded in 1945 in San Francisco, she was 17. She heard that people working there as translators were paid 150 dollars per week. But she was an uneducated, black, pregnant girl who was discriminated and denied even entry in that building. That was a turning point in her life. She learned five languages(French, Spanish, Italian, Arabic and the West African language Fanti) and became a successful poet, memoirist, novelist, educator, dramatist, producer, actress, historian, filmmaker, and civil rights activist. She toured around Europe with a production of opera she wrote, worked in Cairo as a translator, activated in Ghana, collaborated with Martin Luther King. 50 years after the moment she was standing crying in front of their headquarters in San Francisco, the UN asked her to write a poem about the world and read it in front of the heads of states that were gathering at San Francisco.

She’s Maya Angelou…and her story is amazing and full of inspiration.

”…talent is like electricity. We don’t understand electricity. We use it.”

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My book jar:)

I think for everyone who knows me just a little bit comes as no shock the fact that I like books. Since my mom thought me how to read..yes..not my mom thought me how to read, write and calculate stuff (because in my class you had to already know this kinda stuff before the old lady actually bothered to teach it to you). As I was saying..I always enjoyed reading. In fact, my dad was so fed up with buying me books (for they were honestly only a few pages)..he decided to convince the librarian to get me a library card. Oh, but the library was in the other side of the city and I had to walk for about 40 min( I was still a I could do it in 20 min..and they moved it closer:). So I was going to the library 2 or 3 times a week and the lady there kept asking me to make a resume of the books just so she would be convinced I was actually reading them.

I realize this post seems like I’m bragging but hey…women usually brag about the shoes they buy, the new make-up they just tried and it looks fabulous..I don’t really have the chance or desire of becoming one of those women so let me talk about my books and stop judging:). So around high-school I started saving money for this complete operas of Shakespeare book..which I saw here in Cluj. And on my second visit here I bought it. I had no idea it was written in this old English and it even has a dictionary at the end(just so you see how hard it is to understand something from it). I bought it and I have to admit I’m still struggling to read it(it’s basically Chinese that sounds like English). But actually it was before I even started high-school that my madness was affecting my budget. I remember one year I had around 200 Ron(which was a lot in those days), and I spent it all on two books I really wanted. One of my teachers had to come with me when I confessed it to my dad because I was scared to tell him how much I spent on books. I my twenties, non-smoker, coca-cola drinker, nonalcoholic..a bookaholic. And since I realize that buying all the books in the world is not going to help me..I don’t have the space for them..I decided to make a plan. I made a list with the books I really really want..of course I’m adding titles in my head as we speak..and I created a special fund for them.And a special jar for that special fund.’s a “book jar” were I will add a fix sum each week, plus every time I think about buying junk food or cola, or some cute t-shirt and I resist the temptation…I add a part of the money to the jar. I’m not gonna wander around starving and with dirty clothes:)..but I am gonna think twice if I rather eat French fries or buy the first book on my list. Until now (it’s only my first week)..the book wins:).

I only had Christmas wrapping paper and it will feel like Christmas every time I buy a book from my jar:)

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I was reading something about Winston Churchill these days. Don’t worry…this post is not ment to be a history lesson. I just remember something that draw my attention. It is still a disputed thing whether Churchill had a stutter or a fear to speak in public at the beginning of his career. Maybe that’s why his speeches were short… but meaningful. In 1936 he was invited to speak at the Cambridge University and thousands of people, students and teachers were waiting for his speech. It was one of the shortest he held: “Succes comes when you are going from failure to failure without losing your enthusiasm. Don’t lose your enthusiasm. Ever!”…and then he left.

If you had to choose just a phrase to motivate and inspire others…what would that be?

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Famous Photos

Well sometimes it’s good when the website you’re working has problems. You have time to browse around the internet and find interesting things. I found a website with many great famous photos (HERE)  and decided to show you a few. They are presented randomly because it’s impossible to make a top from this shocking moments.

1). Stanley Forman shot the picture of a young woman, Diana Bryant, and a very young girl, Tiare Jones when they fell helplessly from their apartment while trying to escape a fire. Diana Bryant was pronounced dead at the scene. The young girl lived. The picture won a Pulitzer Award and paved the way for Boston and other states to mandate tougher fire safety codes.

2). Tank Man, or the Unknown Rebel, is the nickname of an anonymous man who stood in front of a column of Chinese Type 59 tanks the morning after the Chinese military forcibly removed protestors from in and around Beijing’s Tiananmen Square on June 5, 1989.

3). This is an afghan girl picture shot by National Geographic photographer Steve McCurry. Sharbat Gula was one of the students in an informal school within the refugee camp. She was approximately 12 years old at the time. She made it on the cover of National Geographic next year, and her identity was discovered in 1992.

4). Picture of segregated water fountains in North Carolina taken by Elliott Erwitt in 1950.

5). The photo is the “Pulitzer Prize” winning photo taken in 1994 during the Sudan Famine. The picture depicts stricken child crawling towards an United Nations food camp, located a kilometer away. The vulture is waiting for the child to die so that it can eat him. This picture shocked the whole world. No one knows what happened to the child, including the photographer Kevin Carter who left the place as soon as the photograph was taken. Three months later he committed suicide due to depression.

6). June 11, 1963, Thich Quang Duc, a Buddhist monk from Vietnam, burned himself to death at a busy intersection in downtown Saigon to bring attention to the repressive policies of the Catholic Diem regime that controlled the South Vietnamese government at the time. Buddhist monks asked the regime to lift its ban on flying the traditional Buddhist flag, to grant Buddhism the same rights as Catholicism, to stop detaining Buddhists and to give Buddhist monks and nuns the right to practice and spread their religion. While burning Thich Quang Duc never moved a muscle.

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Failed Experiment

I wanted for days to make this starter. Good thing I did not decided to make it when we had guests:)). When the lady on her blog posted the recipe and the pictures…I honestly believed in my clumsy mind I could do it also. So…it was supposed to look like a can find the recipe here

For me..the hard part(baking the structure) was quite easy..and the easy part…it was messy. I realised now I used the wrong kind of cheese for the outside(too liquid)..but I have no excuse. My house turned somewhere around the middle of my project into a very squicky-old-Rabla kind car. I don;t think I will try the recipe’s too much cheese even for my taste…and let’s face skills of spreading cheese and making it look like a house are not fully developed yet.

This is what it should have looked like:

And this is my little failed experiment:))))  Oh God..I’m gonna go try and make it a bit prettier:)))

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La piel que habito

Ok..another great movie pick by Moxi. “La piel que habito” is one of the most mind-blowing, twisted movies I have ever watched. Keep in mind I’m very picky about the movies, I get bored really fast and usually fall asleep. This being said, I can recommend you to go see it. I will not tell you anything about the plot, maybe it’s better not even to watch the trailer. This way you will be fully surprised. We just saw a poster with Antonio Banderas, the title was intriguing and we decided to go. And by “we” I mean Moxi. I wanted to go to another movie but it was finished by today. Oh well, I don’t regret it. After struggling to find change to pay for the parking we send an SMS to Orange and we got 2 tickets for the price of one at cinema Arta. We had no idea the movie was directed by Pedro Almodovar but as soon as we saw it’s name, I was sure there will be murders and dead bodies but no police involved:)(Spanish people in Pedro’s movies just have their own way of dealing with death:). Now I was reading some reviews and the opinions are totally opposite…some say it’s a bad movie, some it’s great…I recommend you watch it without reading or seeing anything about it..and just prepare your mind for all they twisted scenarios. Enjoy!

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I just had an idea half an hour ago and started working on it. Almost a year ago we were discovering plankig(youtube it) and we considered it to be an utterly stupid sport(it;s not even a sport..more like an  activity..but people died trying to do we thought it was stupid) Anyways…Moxi started to do it especially because we visited so many nice places and he wanted to have some funny memories. I tried to gather them all..hope in 2012 he will have more:) In some of them he’s so high you can barely see him, or the tractor seat is soo wet he can’t climb it:)Until then, I hope he’s grateful because I put a lot of effort into making a clip(he knows how lame I am with editing videos and stuff). Happy New Year Moxi..and great places to plank on:))

Until then, enjoy this:)

Because Youtube muted my video had a Gnarls Barkley song:) and I had no right to use it…so here it is..

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The Final Countdown:)

I was bragging the other days to Moxi that I already had time to think about my resolutions, wishes and plans for next year. Well, that’s true..but now I can’t seem to find the time to write them down. I really feel the New Year knocking on my door and I’m still cleaning, cooking, working, shopping…and still fighting with my stupid flu. So I decided to take some time to write this post and after that I will write also my resolutions(not here:). For me this year was the year of changes…like the last one:)) I lived half of it in Romania and half in Czech Republic, it was really hard to come back home and re-adapt…all my friends are gone in different corners of the world(found new ones but I still miss them:*). I had to go back to school and start fresh with new colleagues and new subjects, find a place to live…oh well. I can say it was a full year, with many experiences, new people, new places:). And I am happy that I will start my new year with many interesting books to read and many new notebooks to write in, thanks to Moxi and Ermiona. Thank you for feeding my obsessions:))

For next year I wish mostly to take my exams:P, read at least 50 books, visit some nice places in Romania and see my friends from Czech Republic who will hopefully come to visit:). And build some games but I will tell you about this plan another day.

This is a photo of my beautiful presents:**

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Japanese dinner

Oh, today I had tooo many calories. I made a  pizza at home and planned to eat it after Moxi came from work. While the pizza was in the oven, he called to tell me he made reservations to a Japanese restaurant to go out with a friend and have sushi. I was very excited because I wanted for a long time to try sushi, but I was a bit scared in case I did not like it. We had a similar experience with Chinese food…weird insects, seafood and frog legs…huge bill and hunger when we arrived home. Well…thank God this time it was different. Just in case we would not like the food, or they would have served us itsy-bitsy-tiny portions..we ate a big slice of pizza home. We arrived at the restaurant around 8 pm and stared at the menu for about 10 minutes until we decided..we ordered a complete dinner menu for about 35-40 Ron each. A bit pricy for my taste…but considering I’m not gonna eat sushi and salmon every was worth it. We had some small apetisers with a bit of shrimp (not a fan), broccoli and raw salmon pieces. It was my first try to eat with their weird sticks. I managed…but it was too hard to focus:))) so I switched to the fork. Then came the soup..which looked like a tea with mushrooms and carrots…it was simply delicious…I told you at the beginning I was sure they will serve us small portions:). No chance…we still had to eat 3 big pieces of sushi, a salad, rice and salmon teriyaki with soy sauce. An the arrangements of the dish were soo nice. It was impossible to eat everything and we were  full at the end of the evening. I never thought Japanese food could be so yummy:)

I did not take pics at the dinner but I found this cute one on the internet:)

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Books, books, books

The last few days were very busy from a reader’s point of view. I finally read Sanctus by Simon Toyne. I wanted so much to read it and could not wait for it to appear in libraries. As I already said, Moxi bought it online for me and I read it the same day. I enjoyed the plot, the characters and all the action until the last chapters…the big secret or Sacrament is a bit too fantasy for me. Even though the author says he was inspired by Umberto Eco and not Dan Brown…trust me..there is no comparison between Eco and these new kids. All in all I’m glad I had a chance to read it, it’s the kind of  book you don’t let go until you finished it.

With all this fuss about the new Twilight I decided to try read al least one of the books. I don’t like it when people judge you if you read Coelho or Grisham. I don’t like to have opinions as long as I have not read the books or in this case seen the movie. I tried once to watch the first one but to me it was quite boring. So…after all these years with all the Twilight madness I downloaded all 4 books and started reading them. Until a few months ago I was not a big fan of the fantasy books..I think after reading Stephen King I started to enjoy it more. So…being armed with a taste for new ideas of how society could look like I started reading Twilight. Honestly…the first book was ok ( I watched the movie the second I finished imagination had better characters chosen..but that’s just a subjective the movie was still borrring)..I finished the second book a few nights ago but I have my doubts I will finish the 3rd….I understand vampires were/are a big trend…but everyone writing books about vampires is a bit overwhelming for me…I’ll turn to the classics for a while:).

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The Dolphin Tale

Initially, when I clicked through it, I believed it was a movie for kids, something like “I became friends with a dolphin and we lived happily ever after”. Oh, I was in for a treat. We started watching this movie last Sunday night, around 12.30. We were sure we will fall asleep fast…but the story of Winter caught our attention. First of all, the movie is based on a true story. Winter lives at the Clearwater Marine Aquarium and you can watch her live and learn more about her story here. She was rescued from a beach where she was found wrapped tightly in a crab trap line and she started a long program of rehabilitation. The movie presents Winter’s struggle to survive, along with Sawyer’s story(the boy who rescued her). Sawyer was very shy and antisocial before he met Winter. Because Winter refused cooperation with anyone else but Sawyer, he had to skip school to come and help with her recovery. One of the wounds she had at her tail was serious, so they had to amputate her tail. It is impossible for a dolphin to swim  without its tail, thus it would die. But Winter developed a new ability to swim and survived. Still, she was using her spinal cord in a wrong way and they needed to build a prosthesis for her tail. After many struggles, Winter becomes a role model for people with disabilities who come to visit her from all over the world. The movie follows other stories and characters on the side, but Winter is the hero. It’s a great movie to watch with your family, friends, or even alone when you feel powerless. Winter may have lost her tail, but she’ll capture your heart.

This is Winter:)

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Happy Birthday Sisa!!!

Well…people from Romania have not met Sisa yet…we are still waiting for her wonderful red hair and gorgeous eyes to come visit:). Sisa was our boss( wow that sounds serious) while we lived in Czech Republic with the European Voluntary Service. While we were in a meeting or at work, she would be very serious and involved in the projects she was running. People tend to say she’s a bit too organized and a control freak…now you know why I love her..she’s like my twin sister at this part. Sisa likes to model and she had some important photoshoots but I don’t have her permission to share the results with you:).

Sisa, my dear…you became a great friend for us and we miss our “pink team” shopping days, our EVS meetings and the parties we had. You just have to know on my last interview I had to write about a former colleague and to describe that person…and I chose you…you were the first person who I could think about because you have so many qualities and you helped us whenever we needed. I love the fact that we still talk every week and I hope to see you as soon as possible..please find a safe train and come visit..or please some rich guy that is reading Sisa a new car for her birthday so she can come see us..

Love you Sisi..have a wonderful birthday:)

See how beautiful she is?

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El Camino de Santiago

The first time I ever heard about “El Camino” was a few years ago. I was in a library and I discovered a book written by a Romanian girl who had walked the camino. I was fascinated by her story and started searching more information about it. I discovered many people took this journey each year for different reasons, not necessarily religious.  The Camino of Santiago traditionally starts in St Jean Pied de Port and finishes in Santiago de Compostela (it is in that church that the apostle St James is buried). However you can start anywhere and even continue past Santiago to the sea at Finisterre. Finisterre was thought to be the end of the world in medieval times. The Camino has 800 km, from France to Spain. It is spread throughout small villages where people can stop for food and accommodation in “albergues”. Some people walk only a part , some use bicycles, but most of the walk the entire camino and receive a special passport. This road takes between 30 and 60 days depending on your speed and motivation, and the pilgrims who have this passport receive a stamp “compostela” at each stop. When you arrive in Santiago and show this passport you receive a diploma for your journey and free accommodation for the night.

A few days ago I watched the movie “The Way” (Moxi recommended it…thank you, thank you:), written and directed by Emilio Estevez(Martin Sheen’s son..Charlie Sheen’s brother..there you remembered:) At first I was reluctant because I don’t really like movies where all the family is involved…and what do you know..Martin played the father, Emilio the son..but after reading about the idea behind it I understood the motivation. Martin Sheen actually walked the camino to honor the memory of his own father. He took this journey with his grandson (Emilio’s son..who was also in charge of the business ’till the end:P). The grandson, Taylor Estevez met his wife to be on the camino:) and after they returned home he decided to make a movie about this journey. The movie was shot with a small crew on the actual road from France to Galicia. The story is very touching: Tom is a doctor from the States who’s son dies in a storm while walking the camino in the French Piyrenees. Tom decides to walk the camino for his son and spread his ashes at every important stop. Don’t worry about this spoiler alert, the movie deserves to be watched because is has a deeper message in the story.

I don’t know when and why but I will walk the camino. It’s on my bucket list since I first heard about it. Wish me “Buen Camino”!  traileru’

Biserica din Santiago

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John of God (Joao de Deus)

I found this great book yesterday. It draw my attention in the morning..and I could not help to buy it when I went to school. It’s about the life and miracles of Joao de Deus (John of God), a healer from Brazil. I was a bit skeptical at the beginning, but after reading more than half of the book, and discovering filmed proofs on youtube, I was amazed.

John was born in a very poor family in Brazil and had to work since he was six. He never had the chance to go to school, thus he does not have the proper skills for the surgeries he performs. He is a business man, owning farms and two mines which he runs with the help of some associates and friends. He needs to have a big income because of the great charity work he does, feeding thousands of people daily and healing also.

John discovered his powers when he was 16. He fainted(or at least he thought the did), and when he woke up, there were a lot of people around him, telling him how he had healed them. Since then, John is posessed daily by around 35 entities. Some of them are doctors or saints. When he is incorporated by doctors, he performs difficult surgeries, some of them visible, some of them only visible when and MRI is taken. John built a big house where he has an operation room, a museum (where all the objects unnecessary after the healing are left: glasses, canes, wheel chairs), rooms for all the visitors and patients and a big garden for meditation.

There where many examples of miracles in the book, but two of them were truly impressive. John always had trouble with the autorities because he is not a professional surgeon and he did not have authorization for the methods he used. He was taken to the police section one night and he said to the police chief to bring his daughter there because she was very sick. Indeed, the girl had some problems with her heart. John took a knife and just kept it on top of the girl’s heart, while the entity in him worked in an invisible way. A few hours later, the girl was taken to the hospital and they made her a radiography. The doctors were shocked to see traces of heart surgery on her heart, even though there were no visible signs on the exterior. In a few days, she completely recovered.

The most amazing case for me was dr. Roger Queiroz. He was a friend of John, but was very reluctant to his practices and refused to be treated by him. He suffered a heart attack and after surgery in a modern hospital he died. Hour of death: 10.00 a.m. His wife knew the personnel at the hospital and convinced them to leave him in the intensive care room for a little longer, even though he was dead. She called John and told him what happened. the entity from John’s body told her to go sit with her husband and wait until 3 p.m .It was a shocking news all over Brazil when at 3 p.m, dr. Roger woke up and was perfectly healthy.

I know it’s hard to believe but here’s the filmed proof:

“For those who believe, words are not necessary. For those who don’t, words are not possible.” (Ignatio de Loyola- one of the entities from John’s body).

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Midnight in Paris

 Finally a movie where Owen Wilson is not some silly, funny wanna be moron. His character is an American writer who travels to Paris with his fiance and is working on his novel. He believes he was born in the wrong time, he would rather live in Paris, in the 1920’s. His wish comes true every night after the church bells announce 12 o’clock and he is taken into this magical scenario where he gets to spend time with Hemingway, Gertrude Stein, Picasso, Dali, Matisse, Fitzgerald and many other artist he admires. Woddy Allen did a great job directing this movie, Cole Porter’s song in the background are amazing…and of course I loved Adrien Brody interpreting Dali. One of my favourite movies!!!

It got me thinking who would I wanna meet in these circumstances? For sure Dali and Cole Porter…and I would add Anais Nin and Eugene O’Neill to the gang. What about you? What artist would you like to meet from the past?

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Eat,pray,love…the book:)

I remember trying to watch the movie a few months ago…maybe Julia Roberts is not my favorite actress, maybe it was not the time(and I fell asleep), maybe it was ment to be that I read the book first..because I can’t imagine how you could really capture all these details in a movie.

The book is actually a non-fiction, a memoir of Elizabeth Gilbert who decides to travel for one year in three different places in order to find her balance after a pretty ugly divorce. I am not planning to ruin the joy of reading this book for you so I just plan to write here a few things or quotes that I would like to remember and share.

First of all the structure of the book is really interesting: it has 108 chapters and a short introduction called “the 109 bead”. In India, for hundreds of years, people use a special kind of strings with beads for prayer (it is also used now in the  Catholic or Orthodox Church, but with fewer beads). So, these beads are called “japa mala” and they are 108. It is said that 108 is the perfect number. It is a perfect multiple of 3, it is composed from three numbers, and the sum of these numbers is 9, which is also a multiple of 3. And 3 as we know is a special number, representing the perfect equilibrium. The 109 bead comes out of the circle, like a pendant, and when you reach it you have to stop praying and thank your masters and teachers.

Another nice story is about the danger that some rituals can have in out life, or in the religion that we practice. In India there was a great saint who always prayed in the ashram with his pupils. And this man had a cat. Because the cat was a little bit noisy, he decided to keep it outside tied to a tree, so it would not disturb the prayer time. It became a habit: he tied the cat, they would start to pray. Until one day, when the cat died..and the pupils where frightened…how could they meditate without the cat? How could they find God without the ritual they started without even noticing?

“People tend to think happiness is just like luck, it comes to you and wraps you like a nice breeze, if it’s ment to be. Just that happiness does not work like that. Happiness is the consequence of your own effort. You fight for it, you work for it, you go until the end of the world for it. And when you reach it, you don’t have to become lazy, you have to fight to maintain it to be always in it’s presence, to float above it.”

I also found a quite funny story, but with a lot of moral if you think about it. Elizabeth grew up in a farm and they had a lot of chicken. Each time they would eat one, or it died for some reason, her father would go and buy another one. He would never put the chicken with the old ones during the day. The old ones would never accept it. So he would put it in the barn during the night, after all the others were asleep. So in the morning, the chickens would think : “If we never saw her come in, it means she was always one of us”…hate to tell you this but it exactly how bad things or habits settle in our life and we have no idea:)

So, these were just some small things I wanted to tell you about. Now I’m more interested to see the movie, I’m guessing as usual I will be disappointed but I’m going to give it one more try. Just because the book was fabulous.

Remember, the book is better than the movie. Always. I dare you to prove me wrong:)