Photo exhibition

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Photo exhibition – Fotoausstellung_Franziska Eggimann

When: 24 and 25 May 2014, 11am-6pm

Where: Heubühne, Gstell 4, 4919 Reisiswil

  • The “Heubühne” is where the farmers use to store the hay, right now it’s empty at my grandma’s place and therefore offers an ideal space for an exhibition.
  • Combine the visit of the exhibition with an excursion in an interesting region you may have not discovered yet >> http://www.myoberaargau.ch

I would be very happy to see you!

 

Right into spring – Spiez, Bernese Oberland

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After exactly seven months, I arrived healthy and with my heart full of a new and unique experience back to Spiez.

After an “india-style” cab drive to Naples central station (taking over from the right, the left, crossing streets with red-light and entering one-way streets… 😉 , I boarded the train on the very last second which then took me the last couple of kilometres back to Switzerland. Can’t believe that a wonderful journey is ending. Amazing, incredible! I can only be grateful for this most wonderful experience full of joy, happiness, discoveries, shared smiles, intercultural insights and personal growth. All worked out so well, many dreams were turned into reality. It’s thanks to human beings, wonderful people everywhere along my way who opened their hearts, doors and arms – such examples! Therefore, a very very special…

…THANK YOU – DANKESCHÖN – SPASIBO – BAYARLALAA – XIEXIE – DHANYAVAD – NAN-NI – TERIMA KASIH – SHUKRAN – GRAZIE – MERCI – GRACIAS – SALAMAT…

…TO ADRIANO, AKHIL, ALEXEJ, ANA, ANNE, ANITA, BARBARA, BETTINA, BHAVI, BIJU, CAPITAN OLIVER, CAROLINE, CHRISTINE, DAO, DAVID, DEEPAK, DIETER, DIOMEL, DOLMAA, DR. ANIL, DURZII, ELENA, EMELIO, FARID, FAZLEY, FLORIAN, FRANK, GILBERT, GUACI, GULZAR, GEORGE, HANS, HEIKE, HORST, HULGOO, JEAN, JEFF, JESSIE, JOHN, JOKO, JOSE, JUDE, KARTHIK, KEERTHI & FAMILY, KEVIN, KIRAN & FAMILY, KLAUS, LINDA, MAGGIE, MALGOSIA, MARKUS, MASCON, MATTHIAS, MATHILDA, MAYADEVI, MEENA, MICHAEL, MONISH, MUDHA, NASEEM, NATHALIE, NICOLAS, NORALY, NOMER, NOVEL, PATRICK, PETR, PHILIPPE, PRADEEP & FAMILY, PURWEE, QAES, RAM & FAMILY, RAKESH, RANDY, RENE, RITODGATA, SAMSON, SEVERIN, SOFIE, SOFIANE, SOM & FATHER, SONAM, SONJA, SUNIL, SURAYA, SUSHETAS, SURBHI, SUJIT & FAMILY, STEPHEN, STEVEN, VIKTORIA, WILSON AND…

…TO ALL THE PEOPLE I FORGOT TO LIST OR WHOSE NAMES I NEVER KNEW BUT STILL SHARED A SMILE OR A MOMENT AND TO ALL THOSE WHO FOLLOWED ME BE IT FROM HOME THROUGH THE BLOG OR WITH THEIR THOUGHTS.

A big project comes to an end. An end is a new beginning – the journey of life continues!

I keep you updated 😉 Here some statistics of my travel distances:

Total 45’786 km (around the world’s equator is 40’075km)

  • 21’252 KM OVERLAND (16’733km by train; 2’527km by bus; 1’992 by car/minibus)
  • 11’518 KM ON THE WATER (Singapore to Naples)
  • 13’016 KM IN THE AIR (Berlin-Moscow; Chennai-SINgapore; SIN-HongKong-SIN; SIN-Bali-SIN)

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Ganesha – lord of new beginnings

From Singapore to Naples on a cargo vessel

Eighteen days on the sea, from Asia back to Europe. A unique experience. We’ve gone through the straits of malacca, the andaman sea, the indian ocean, the arabian sea, the gulf of aden, the suez channel and the mediterraean sea. All went very smoothly, no big storms, no big waves. So it allowed me to see about 15 sunsets and 10 sunrises; I’ve seen all shades of blue of the waters; I’ve seen dolphins (sooo beautiful!!!), whales (so wonderful!!!), a turtle (majestic!!!), flying fishes (always made me smile).
There were three wonderful passengers who shared the trip with me and 23 lovely crew members (mainly from the Philippines and a few team leaders and the captain from Germany, plus one Polish team leader). We shared wonderful and interesting moments, most of the crew members also gave me great insights into their day-to-day and what it means to be a seaman; “seaman’s life is like a journey, full of excitement and danger” and “honestly, I like the job but I miss my family”.  It is obviously a big sacrifice when it comes to the social life when working 6 months on a ship before getting back home for a few weeks vacation before the next trip comes up again. But apart from being a dream, the job allows them to contribute to the wellbeing of their families back home and for the future of their children, an important motivation factor to many.
Another enriching and unforgettable experience on my journey. A big THANK YOU to my fellow travellers Horst, Hans and Barbara as well as to the crew of the Hanjin Lisbon!

Bali – Indonesia’s island of the gods

After visiting friends in Singapore and Hong Kong, and exploring the big cities, it was time to meet friends in a more quite and “nature-made” place. Bali – the island of the gods was my next destination.

What makes Bali so special? Design, architecture and arts – a combination of natural materials, beautiful colours and pure lines. Estetics that simply make you feel good. Then there was again an omnipresent spirituality – daily offerings to the gods which meant beautiful flowers along a path or in front of a door or in any of the temples. The natural light was special too and made rice paddies shine in different shades of green and coloured evening heavens in various shades of red. Food was delicious and healthy – lots of vegetables, tropical fruits, tofu, tempe (made from soja), sprouts and rice.

And then there was this beautiful and quiet home of my friends, like a retreat, a space to relax and recharge and exchange experiences and ideas. The gods of the island meant it well with me. Thank you!

It’s the people we meet and with whom we share that make a place really special. Therefore, my next post will be dedicated to them.

Singapore and Hong Kong

Diving into a different world, the world of big cities. Millions of people sharing a smallest piece of land, nestling high up in the towers. Like birds. Viewing the bay or the hill side. In order to avoid getting lost in the busy streets. Streets that during the day are taken by cars, buses and cabs and peatons. In the night, some of them become the nest of those who did not find their place in one of the towers. For whatever reason, for whatever lifestory.

No lifestory resembles another. Finding diversity, diversity in peoples’ experiences. While discovering similarities, similarities in that we all have to overcome difficulties and deal with changing circumstances and to find opportunities in the challenges of life. Bruce Lee, for example, even after 40 years since his death, still an inspiration for many given his charisma as kung fu hero, cultural icon and spiritual leader. He was able to look at life as an art, or in his own words “I am actualizing myself daily to be an artist of life.” How about if we are these artists, artists of our own lives, if we see it as such an opportunity to express ourselves creatively in whatever we do? Then we could probably all subscribe Bruce Lee’s words “To hell with circumstances; I create opportunities.”

I like the idea of being the artist of my life. It is so colourful.

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Last impressions from India before departure

Grasping the moment, grasping the here and now…words can do but pictures can do better, sometimes 😉  Therefore, I have tried to be sharp with my eye and quick with my hand on the camera to share some impressions that continue very present in my mind although they lasted only a few seconds in real.

Elephants – one on the main road when I was travelling in a taxi, on the same road an elephant on a truck and some days later the elephant in the small road nicely decorated for a religious celebration.

Tee plantations and rice fields – many green shades, difficult to capture on a picture but wonderfully to see with your own eyes.

People and dresses – it’s always a festival for the eyes, women in those wonderful and most colorful sarees.

Sunset – most of the days I have the chance to see sunset and often also sunrise – beautiful moments – who I share with many others who come to this place called Kochi just to enjoy this moment of peace.

Sunday early morning – people are playing, playing football or cricket.

Smiling faces – wherever I go here in Kerala, people and children smile at me and say “hi mam” or “hi madam” and curiously ask “what’s your name?” and “your country?”

Just some impressions, many others have become part of my experience and soon of my memories of three months in India – incredible – India! Nanni – Sukriya – Thank you India!!!

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Reflections from the “Blue mountains”

A recent email from a friend of mine inspired me to share this reflections with you, my dearest readers. He asked whether I was telling all that was to tell in the blog, whether I have no complaints, no issues with the stomach and if I am not missing the Alps or other things from Switzerland. Very fair questions. I’ll try to respond honestly.

What I am writing in this blog is like a snapshot, like a picture taken with a camera. It shows an extract but cannot reflect the full picture. Whenever possible I try to use the space for positive things in life as I believe that this is what makes life so beautiful – finding the positive and wonderful side of all things even if in the first moment they may not appear nice. Sure, I also keep my critical eye with me and observe, observe, observe and try not to judge but to understand. India, I have to say, is really a special case, this whole experience is very difficult to reflect in words – I have only written very few times into my diary because I just couldn’t find the right words. I made attempts to writing just to find out that there were no words, only the experience. Lots of things touch and move me inside, everyday.

Like today, for example. I was walking down the road after a phone call with someone I had met some weeks ago. Something during the call made me feel a bit sad, you may know this feeling when you have a little disappointment, a little flame of hope that comes to cease. Suddenly, around the corner a woman gave me her hand and her most wonderful smile that you can imagine, her face was shining, so full of love, and she presented herself to me and told me how happy she was to meeting me. Just like that. And she wouldn’t stop smiling, shining, while we continued the small talk. It was magic! The same happened two weeks ago, it was a child, a young boy, who offered me his most beautiful and biggest smile with happiness shining through his big brown eyes and gave me a little stone he had found, like a talisman, in a similar moment, when I just was a little down. These are the little angels. They make me forget immediately every sorrow and bring back the big smile on my face, full of gratitude and love. It is so wonderful! I am grateful!

What about complaints? Not really. I don’t like so much to complain as I feel it doesn’t really help. Ok, maybe sometimes, we need to get it out of ourselves, that’s fine, I think. But in general, since everything is different here, I just have to accept it and can only try to understand, adapt and live with it. There are also many things that we can learn from the people in India, things that I sometimes miss in Switzerland, like the colorful dressing that create great pleasures for our eyes, the spontaneous smile between people when walking down a street and the natural curiosity for other people (just imagine, smiling and chatting people in a tram, a train or a bus in Switzerland…wouldn’t it be wonderful?)

Food? My stomach is also very happy, he loves Indian food, it’s really extremely tasty, natural and always fresh. A lot of vegetables, tropical fruits and fresh spices.  I also found a strong connection between the digestion of events and the digestion of food. So whenever there was a day where I struggled to accept the situation, my stomach would also struggle. Therefore, I may have chosen the way described above to deal with issues. Just going with the flow. Accepting what comes, not creating any aversions or resistance.

What am I missing? Currently, I am again in the mountains…so yes, it always feels a little bit as “my territory” and from time to time I have the need to see and touch rocks and mountains and oversee the hills and lower lands. Then, family and close friends. Who can make up for them? There is no real replacement and I often think about them and so I have them always with me. But as they are in my heart, I do not really have to miss them, I know that I will be extremely happy to see and hug them again when I am back and appreciate every moment I have with them. Sometimes I also think about the concept of family and look at it in a broader way and if so, I also feel that I am very lucky to meet so wonderful people all along my journey who make me feel very close and connected to them, too. A little bit the world feels like “one big family” 😉

So no pictures today…or at least no snapshots, rather a few indepth insights. Hopefully inspiring 😉

With love from India

Franziska

Multiculturality in Kochi – Kerala

  

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Intensive intercultural encounters already started in the train from Bangalore to Ernakulam. It was a very nice evening in our compartment. Sharing the journey with a Spanish woman, a French man, a Swiss couple and two Indian men. We were chatting, playing the violin, listening to our co-travellers songs from his phone, teaching English to the French and I was translating wherever it helped for the understanding and conversation. Very happy, I arrived to the next city where I took the ferry together with two others to go to Kochi or Fort Cochin. It was a beautiful ride over the waters in the while the day was waking up and the sun was rising.

 

I found a very nice little apartment with a small balcony and coconut-palm-view. The perfect place to stay for a little bit longer. It has been ten days since I am here and it has been wonderful. So much to discover – history (the Portuguese, the Dutch and the British left their footprint) – religions (mosques, catholic churches, hindu temples, a sinagogue and a jain temple can be found within only a few streets away from each other) – food (from very spicy south indian dishes, to sweet ones as a combination of coconut and rice powder, creole-like food which reminds me of some places in South America and more European-style salads and vegetables and cakes) – and the day-to-day of the people (feels like a little village).

 

After many months of travelling and moving on, this feels like a perfect place to continue discovering the rich Indian culture while remaining at the same place; hanging out in nice cafes, chatting with locals, watching sunset at the beach with hundreds of Indians, reading, writing, teaching English, practicing yoga and meditation, cycling around in my own secondhand-bicycle. I am happy. Be happy 🙂