Category: Global News
There is a particular day in the year that is considered here in the UK as the saddest time of the year. That day has been aptly called the Blue Monday.
After careful studies and consideration, it was reckoned that the third Monday of January is Blue Monday.
Factors used to determine this particular day were the following:
- The weather, it is dank, cold and dark.
- The euphoria of Christmas and New Year are definitely over. Only memory left was extra weight in your belly and hips and cheeks.
- Time for all the credit card bills to come in and the ability to pay the bills or incur debts.
- Natural motivational level after the holiday season.
This year Blue Monday falls on 15 January.
Duterte @ Manila Hotel
I was so annoyed when we finally got to our hotel. We were staying at the Manila Hotel.
Almost halfway the long drive of Manila Hotel, our uber was stopped. Apparently it can no longer go past that point as the President, Rodrigo Duterte, was currently at the hotel attending the 2017 ASEAN (Association of South East Asian Nation) conference.
It was a muggy night and rather dark everywhere. So I complained that it was unfair to hold a meeting in an expensive hotel and putting customers out who paid good money. I suggested, why not hold major conference in CCP or PICC or even Folk Arts Theatre?!!!
I have to say the hotel security guards as well as the presidential guards were all politeness and apologies.
We walked all the way to H20 hotel and then to Manila Hotel by foot in the dark!!!
Along the way, we noticed a helicopter, which was heavily guarded.
So again, I went mental about too much expense when Malacanan Palace, the official residence of the First Family of the Philippines, was just around the corner.
Peter very sagely reminded me of the horrendous traffic in Roxas Boulevard. The President would have been seating in traffic for too much time that he probably doesn’t have from his busy schedule.
Ooopps, Peter was so right.
A chopper is the best presidential tool to overcome ‘tanginang’ traffic!!! 🙂
UK General Election 2017
Go out and vote!
Toute nation a le gouvernement qu’elle merite.
Every country has the government it deserves.
– Joseph de Maistre 1753-1821 (French writer & Diplomat)
Thought of the Day
The current Government is now in total chaos. Though they are still the biggest party and won the most votes, they failed to get the majority of 326 seats. This meant a Hung Parliament.
A Hung Parliament is when no single party can get enough MPs to form a majority.
Tory (Conservative Party) now need to form a coalition with another party (which is a repeat of 2010 election and proved disaster).
What now Theresa May? And what now for Brexit?!!!
Forest Bathing @ Hampstead Heath
Forest bathing has become an accepted form of relaxation and stress management in Japan. It was started in the mid-80s.
But what is forest bathing?
It involves going into a woody land or forest, a green space, and hike leisurely; relax and breathe in all the freshness and negative ions, the so-called air-borned vitamins’, given off by the surrounding trees and plants.
Let all the stress of the day melt in the comparative embraces of the forest.
In London, there is a woodland called Hampstead Heath, a 320 hectares of open, green space perfect for forest bathing, among other things. It is a place for a great family bonding. There are numbers of ponds, there is even a ‘secret garden’ which is architecturally excellent. It also covers a natural swimming pool for ladies and also for men, there are the Parliament Hill, the Kenwood House, Highgate pond, etc.
Be astounded at how great Hampstead Heath is, when it is just 6 kilometres away from the very busy bustling city centre of London, the Trafalgar Square.
It is a place for biodiversity: human meets natures and wildlife in a capsule of forested heath.
So Londoners, now the weather outside is no longer frightful, put on your walking shoes and have a forest bath!
Palm Sunday 2017
Today is Palm Sunday, the start of the Holy Week, where the crisis of the cross is imminent.
Let us take this Holy Week as a time to ruminate the lives we lead.
To start with, here is a wonderful food for thought:
Darkness cannot drive out darkness: only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate: only love can do that.
~ Martin Luther King Jr
Happy Mothering Sunday 2017
Happy Chinese New Year 2017 – Fire Rooster Year
Rooster, photo by PH Morton
To everyone, let us wish you a Happy Chinese New Year.
Kung Hei Fat Choi
2017 is the year of the Fire Rooster.
The fire rooster symbolises fidelity and punctuality. I can understand the latter one as rooster will cock-o-doodle-do at the crack of dawn serving as an alarm clock to early risers especially farmers and field workers.
We used to keep roosters and chicken in our farm in Marag. As peacocks, they are really stunning lookers compared to the hens.
Who are the roosters?
They are those born in 1933, 1945, 1957, 1969, 1981, 1993, 2005, 2015, 2029 (Year of the Rooster comes every 12 years)
Have a piri-piri chicken. We hope this New Year is full of trips to KFC, Jollibee and McDo and have a lovely chickenjoy! 🙂 🙂 😉
Happy New Year!
A New Era in American Politics
Here in London, we stayed up to 4am watching the excellent BBC US Presidential election results coverage. We saw the incoming results from what has been such a diverse and as many found, a divisive U.S. campaign, which has now ushered in a new era for American politics and governance.
Normally those from other nations may not bother to stay up to the wee small hours to watch such. However the the two candidates involved and the known baggage they brought with them to the campaign, did make this election race a fascinating spectacle for many around the globe.
Hilary Clinton the favourite, an experienced party apparatchik, who seems to have been around since her husband Bill was President over 15 years ago was the Democrats candidate. Her role as the powerful Secretary of State under President Obama, was regarded by many as a stepping stone to the White House but in the end this counted as nought.
Donald Trump, a billionaire businessman who had never held any political office and had failed badly in a Presidential bid in 2004, was the rank outsider.
He imposed his formidable personality on the election race, sweeping aside fellow Republican candidates and in effect bulldozing his way to be the only rival to Mrs Clinton and the Democratic Party.
The televised debates between Clinton & Trump were at times acrimonious with enough mud slung to make a decent sized football field!
They made compulsive viewing, more so than any other previous presidential debates.
History was being made.
Mrs Clinton had policies planned that she put to the people. Mr Trump was rather vague on the same. He however made some big bold promises to fix the big issues, not heard of before by the people.
Mr Trump’s antics and comments during the campaign will become the stuff of legend.
Any other candidate who acted his way, would have been bundled away, never to be seen again!
It was understandable that Mrs Clinton and the Democrats, initially thought that with the at times bellicose Mr Trump as her rival, election to the Presidency would be straightforward.
It became clear that Mr Trump in his rousing election speeches and promises during the debates, tapped into the visceral anti establishment mood felt by the majority of US citizens.
These disaffected citizens turned out en masse to vote for someone whom they see as a ‘new broom’ to sweep away over 15 years of distrust in the political system, the stagnation of the economy, jobs and the continued involvement in foreign conflicts.
Mr Trump had no political baggage and to use a cowboy analogy ‘shoots from the hip’.
In computer parlance ‘WYSIWYG’ (What-You-See-Is-What-You-Get). This was so refreshing to many voters, fed up with dissembling anodyne politicians.
His various peccadilloes and outrageous statements did not matter to his voters.
As with the quote attributed to Oliver Cromwell nearly 400 years ago, we get Trump ‘warts and all’, nothing is hidden.
Noting the similar feeling between many British and US people, Mr Trump mentioned the momentous UK exit vote from the EU and said he would do a ‘Brexit’ 1000 times over if elected. He did!
Yesterday we went out in droves to vote despite the inclement weather,