November 9 - 15 | 2015

CASTAWAY
Do you often feel lonely? Think again. 

The American dream(er)

The American dream(er)

Last week the internet relapsed on a story from one year ago - the story of José-Salvador Alvarenga, the 36-year old Salvadoran who spent 438 days in the Pacific ocean, after he went out fishing. I read an article in The Guardian, written by a journalist who spent some time with him. 

What really struck me about his story is the limits of the human body and mind. I was talking with my mother about this and she said "we only use under 10% of our capability". José-Salvador lived on a boat, in the open ocean, for more than a year. He taught himself how to catch fish with bare hands, drank his piss to stay hydrated, took regular walks on the /tiny/ boat and worked on his mind, knowing that to stay sane meant to stay alive. How many of you give up on a daily basis? "I can't do this, I can't do that...". He survived, he was patient and one day... he saw a shore.

Now that he's back the government takes care of him and the press doesn't leave him alone. I wonder if he sometimes reminisces on the calmness of the open sea and his boat. 

 

STRAIGHT OUTTA COMPTON
The origins - The players - The biopic

I finally sat down and watched the movie I've been so excited to see ever since they announced it! And it was as good as I expected it to be. 

You see, I'm a pretty big hip-hop fan ever since I was 11 years old and my father gave me the album of Dr.Dre - 2001. That was my first real encounter where I actually engaged with this genre. I played the CD so many times that it got completely scratched on the back. I knew (and still do) every song by heart and my daily mission was to learn to pronounce Eminem's super fast verses. 

However, I have never really read Dr.Dre's story in detail. I knew about N.W.A but nothing in detail. Therefore my excitement to actually see the movie based on how their group came about. How some young kids from the very poor neighbourhood of Compton revolutionised hip-hop and how they influenced a worldwide generation. 

N.W.A : all band members. Source: Wikipedia

N.W.A : all band members. Source: Wikipedia

Besides the "started from the bottom now we here" and "get money - fuck bitches" plot, the storyline is very interesting as the more the group became popular and gathered fans, the more the police tried to suppress them (N.W.A - Fuck the police). The more the police tried to suppress them, the stronger their support grew. The rise of hip-hop culture in the 80s and 90s was truly about fighting injustice and promoting social change as evert oldschool fan likes to point out. The music is different today, but so is the social environment. Well, kind of, as we still hear stories of cops murdering someone just because he was African-American. 

Great movie and great soundtrack!  

 

TWO DAYS IN THE MOUNTAINS
I needed that to stay sane

"Neena in the mountains", by N.Faye

"Neena in the mountains", by N.Faye

On Saturday we left very early to go to the Seven Rila Lakes and climb up to the 2,500 metres. 

The last time I went climbing was when I was 11 years old, so I was super excited. I have been very stressed lately, busy with work and school and I got to the point I couldn't stand city noise anymore. Just walking down the street got painful. So I decided to join a group of friends who are regular climbers.

First off, I wanted to have a good and proper outfit, but most importantly, a sexy one. Yes, you read that right. I had to be sexy for the mountain. We all have to be sexy for everything. My friends laughed at me hard when I googled "How to look sexy in the mountain". I bought all-black equipment, which turned out was wrong as you always have to wear colourful clothes and be noticeable in case of smog and snow. 

We got to the lift from the town below the lakes and travelled 20 minutes through immense landscape. We had warm lentils soup at the cabin and set off. The first 40 minutes of climbing were hard, even though I work out almost every day. I had trouble adjusting my breathing - to breathe through the nose instead of the mouth. After that I got into motion and began enjoying. The view at the top, after 2,5 hours, was totally worth it!

Going down took more time as we didn't use the lift. We finished off the night with food and pool with warm mineral water. 

I really aired my mind with this experience. I got troubles off my mind. I became calmer and happier. Clearly this feeling will last for a week, so I want to make it part of my life. I vow to spend time in nature at least once a month.