Year: 2015

Kolkata, What does it mean to be from kolkata?

Someone once told me that he did not understand what kept India united as a nation. There was some lack of patriotic identity in a country this size with a multitude of dialects, religions and social classes. So what” glues” India together as a nation? I think that in order to answer this question would have to spend at least a few good months in India, traveling from the Himalayas to the Andaman Nicobar Islands – This country is huge. I talked to some friends who live here, or that are working in Europe and want to come back here – because home is where your family lives. I tried to understand the identity of Kolkatá: “- We love food. Not only to eat but to talk about food, thoroughly describing each flavour and texture.” – “We love to talk, “Adda” about worldly affairs, or on topics of current political, science, religion, food (it had been said, but I reinforce it).” – “We love to travel and to experience other cultures as well as to …

(Português) A viagem a Calcutá. Insónia.

  Hoje não consigo dormir. É uma daquelas noites em que o calor, a humidade, a roupa colada ao corpo e o barulho do ar condicionado se tornam intoleráveis. Depois há as imagens que me varrem os pensamentos… O olhar vazio daquela menina no orfanato, a criança descalça cujas pernas arqueadas gritavam subnutrição, o cão que me lambeu a mão e tinha um corte profundo na sobrancelha, a vaca que caminhava perdida por entre os carros, os macaquinho bébé agarrado à sua mãe acorrentada e o barulho que não quer sair dos meus ouvidos do trânsito nesta terra. Calcutá é para os fortes, os que perante o desespero não desistem, (hoje após 20 minutos a tentar apanhar um taxi, apeteceu-me desistir e voltar para casa) para os que batem o pé e regateiam, para os que empurram com mais força para entrar no metro, para os que mesmo suando em bica conseguem fazer o seu trabalho com um sorriso. São milhões, 35 milhões? Nem sei ao certo. São muitos, não há ruas vazias, nem espaços …

Kolkata, today.

Today, I will not paint a pretty picture of Calcutta. This is not a dream holiday nor a dream. I’ve never been so aware of the impact that the colour of our skin can have in society, as here. On the one hand, everyone here wants fair skin. We put self-tanning creams, they put creams to make the skin whiter. The darker the skin of a person the lesser the status. Even in ads that come in the newspaper on Sunday, it is notorious. “28 y old Woman, fair-skinned, Scorpion sign, Brahman, is looking for a, Dr. or Eng., sign sagitarius, brahman to get married”. There are pages of these ads, for him and her. A different version of dating.com. After the skin colour, the horoscope sign is the most important feature, followed by caste. Caste defines the origin and the destination. There are four castes, from the priests / teachers to the servants / attendants who must maintain family traditions marrying people from the same caste. I spoke to people who got married in …

This is my country, PORTUGAL!

Lately, I’ve been doing a lot of research about Portugal. I’m falling in love, all over again, with our country, so small, but so impressive, not only for its history but also by its amazing scenery. From north to south, beaches, mountains, gorgeous islands and fairy tale castles. After seeing these images I feel like grabbing my family and discovering more about our wonderful country. I didn’t ask to be Portuguese, i just got lucky…Enjoy the pictures. Follow From Madeira to Mars ‘s board Portugal on Pinterest.

Barcelona com Crianças , 5 locais a visitar.

Nas férias da Páscoa, fomos a Barcelona. Durante 2 noites e 2 dias percorremos a pé o Passeig de Gràcia, andamos de avião, autocarro “descapotável com auscultadores” de metro, de funicular e de taxi amarelo…foram muitos os transportes, cada um com o seu encanto. Confesso que, muitas vezes, o colo e as cavalitas foram o melhor remédio para uns pezinhos mal habituados a andar, mas a aventura, a alegria e as recordações que nasceram naquelas cabecinhas, ficarão com eles e comigo para sempre. Aqui ficam, os nossos 5 locais a visitar em Barcelona com crianças: ( se quiserem adicionar mais alguns à lista , por favor, fiquem à vontade) 1. Gaudi, contem-lhes a história da Sagrada Família… Que há uma igreja em Barcelona que está por acabar. Que há cerca de 100 anos que está a ser construída, começada por Antoni Gaudi, um dos arquitetos mais famosos do Mundo, um génio que construía casas “muito loucas” com paredes onduladas e formas estranhas e que dedicou grande parte da sua vida a esta igreja, acabando por gastar todo o …

Delicious food you can buy in Madeiran supermarkets

It may sound weird, but one of the things I like to visit when I go on holiday is the local Supermarket. Madeira Cake is just one of the products you can buy on the Supermarket. In this post I share my recipe for Madeira Cake and tell you about other of my favourite Madeiran goods. It always fascinates me the differences between lifestyles. Not only the prices of food but also the variety. I remembered when I lived in Paris it was all about the cheese and wine, or in London where I saw the first Shushi meals takeaway and all the Cadbury’s delicious chocolates. So, I’ve decided to look for which Madeiran goods you can find in a Supermarket. Some Madeiran products are easily identified by a sticker with Madeira brand. Here are a few: 1. Lupins Have you heard about these yelow beans before? We eat them anywhere, everywhere, especially with beer. 2. Bread “Bolo do Caco” Unless you are on a gluten-free diet, this bread is a must try in Madeira. …

Zion – 12 postcards in Ponta do Sol

I have discovered a wonderland in Ponta do Sol, Madeira, last week. It is called Zion Project. Zion by definition:  is synonymous of “promised land” or get to the place you’ve always wanted. It is also the land of freedom that Bob Marley speaks in his songs. It’s a dream come true, and it was this dream that Filipa and Laura dreamed … Born in Ponta do Sol, they lived and grew up by the beach. Fate decided they would  study architecture and medicine abroad, but once they returned to Madeira, they started looking for their dream of having a bar on the beach. That was how they discovered Praia dos Anjos (Angel’s Beach). The sunset, the surrounding nature, the sea, it was perfect and still is. It has been three years that the Zion Project opened in Angel’s Beach  (the name could not be more appropriate). When I asked Filipa what is the best this bar has to offer, she answered me without hesitation: – “The people. The greatest joy of Zion is to see the happiness of others who come here. …

drinks in madeira

Drinks in Madeira: Top 10 drinks to try

Drinks in Madeira are mostly famous due to the world known Madeira Wine, but there are others… Names like “Poncha”, an alcoholic typical beverage, “Coral” beer, “Laranjada” fizzy drink and even “Garoto” coffee will enrich your vocabulary and your taste of Madeira Island. Madeira Wine This is a fortified wine made in Madeira. It is produced in a variety of styles from dry to         medium dry, to sweet wines. It can be consumed with dessert or on their own as an aperitif. As a curiosity, the Declaration of Independence of USA was signed in the 4th July of 1776 and the Madeira wine was the toasting beverage of choice. We’re very proud of our wine and you can visit some of the most popular cellars in Funchal such as D’Oliveiras or Blandy’s Lodge. “Poncha” Sugar cane production was the engine of the Island’s economy back to the 15th century when the island became a major supplier of sugar, which became known as “white gold”. Therefore, Poncha is a traditional alcoholic drink …

Free Travel Guide To Rome

Free Travel Guide to Rome I visited Rome for the first time this week. I am writing to you from my hotel hall. It’s hot, but the buildings are old, thick walls, so fresh. The sun comes through the window, streets are an invitation to long walks. Rome, the eternal city? Cliché or truth? I came to Rome with many preconceived ideas, the comments of friends who said Rome was either beautiful, romantic, charming or sometimes tiring, a city of crowds and where there are endless queues to see the monuments. Then there were the movies, the humour of Woody Allen’s “To Rome with Love” and Dolce Vita, one city in black and white, so stylish… Monuments; Rome is a monument, a big one, every corner and alley, there is always a little story to live and to tell. Rome has about 2500 years of history and developed slowly. Rome is not to be seen in a day or in a week, because there is always something more to see. Maybe that’s why the legend arose in tossing a coin in the Trevi Fountain; everyone wants to come back one day to Rome. …