Charge of the Light Brigade

Tennyson wrote this patriotic poem under a pseudonym, based on news reports he’d read about great casualties in the Battle of Balaclava (1854) in the Crimean War.

Lord Raglan, overall commander of the British forces, had his commands mis-communicated. He had not wanted a suicidal frontal attack.

War is Hell. Don’t go to war.

Opposing Russian forces slaughtered the attackers with Lord Cardigan out in front. He somehow survived the battle.

… All in the valley of Death
   Rode the six hundred.
“Forward, the Light Brigade!
Charge for the guns!” he said.
Into the valley of Death
   Rode the six hundred.
   … Theirs not to reason why,
   Theirs but to do and die.
   Into the valley of Death
   Rode the six hundred.

Charge of the Light Brigade by ALFRED, LORD TENNYSON

Click PLAY or watch it on YouTube.


working online while traveling

I met Leon Nikoosimaitak at a hostel in Casablanca. He’s a Motion Graphic Designer / Illustrator.

In London he might spend 4000€ / month. In Casablanca it’s a tiny fraction of that.

He works online. Takes breaks to go surfing every day.

Click PLAY or watch samples of his work on Vimeo.

Earlier in the trip I met Anika from Houston. She spent 3 weeks hiking the Appalachian Trail this year … while sneaking off trail once in a while to work online.

underrated Casablanca

Marrakesh is packed with tourists from around the world.

The streets are filled with touts and conmen trying to separate them from their money. A Canadian I met had his phone stolen from a cargo pants pocket in the street, even though it was worthless to the pickpocket. It was locked.

Very few visitors go to Casablanca except on business. I don’t know why. It’s a very interesting city with no touts anywhere.

Click PLAY or watch it on YouTube.

The highlight is massive Hassan II Mosque built out over the ocean. It’s one of the 5 largest in the world. (capacity 105,000 worshippers with room for at least another 100,000 outside)

I’ve loved visiting huge Mosques since Istanbul 1994.

In Morocco non-Muslims are not allowed inside, actually. But Hassan II is one of the two that does allow it. I joined an English language tour.


exploring Oslo, Norway

For 2018 Lonely Planet named Oslo one of the ten best cities in the world to visit in 2018, citing the Norwegian capital’s “innovative architecture and unmissable museums alongside cool bars, bistros and cafés”.

Welcome to Oslo

I wandered much of the city within walking distance of the Opera House.

Young people are not visiting much as there are few hostels. And those few area crappy.

It’s quirky. I like sculpture and there’s some kind of weird sculpture — mostly nude — at every turn.

Have you heard about The Kelpies in Scotland?

Not as HUGE as I had expected. 😀

Actually, those are the little horse models that tour the world.

The Kelpies are 30-metre-high horse-head sculptures … (300 tonnes each)

… a monument to horse powered heritage across Scotland.

The sculptures were opened to the public in October 2013 …

During the first year following the opening, nearly one million people visited the sculptures.

Lessons learned:

Christ of Saint John of the Cross

At the Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum in Glasgow.

I like it.

Christ of Saint John of the Cross is a painting by Salvador Dalí made in 1951. It depicts Jesus Christ on the cross in a darkened sky floating over a body of water complete with a boat and fishermen. …

This painting has continued to generate controversy. …

In May 2013, in BBC Radio 4‘s Great Lives, British poet John Cooper Clarke described this image as being utterly different from any other image of the crucifixion, as the angle of view conveys the hanging pain of this method of execution, whilst hiding the ordinarily clichéd facial expressions normally seen in such depictions.


weird Reykjavík

As I wandered around Iceland one thing after another struck me as weird. Unusual. Bizarre.

For example, this place I stumbled upon by accident.

This experiment in recycled architecture is the home of Hrafn Gunnlaugsson, a 66-year-old film director whose acclaimed work played an important role in the creation of this exhibition. …

Man Builds Palace of Recycled Things in an Icelandic Junkyard