February 05, 2016

Some things are simply meant to be

The other day my husband and I were shopping in a Tesco hypermarket in Pilsen. Inside the building, there were presented several large boards promoting books to be published, each side of the boards was devoted to a single book. There was always a paragraph or two presenting the book and its author but what especially attracted my attention were images of the book's covers along with their drafts and other versions, it's something one rarely has the opportunity to see. Who could resist having a look behind the scene?

Several of the promoted books were written by Franz Kafka, a writer coming from a Jewish family who was writing in German and lived in Prague at the turn of 19th and 20th century. He's famous nowadays but his life must have been really troubled. It is interesting that much of his work was published after his death despite his wishes for it to be destroyed.


I hadn't read any of his books before and the boards in the shopping centre made me think about buying one, preferably "The Castle". I was speaking about the boards and about Kafka with my husband, who found them interesting as well, and so it happened that a few weeks ago he came home and presented me with… "The Castle". 

Nevertheless, before I was able to grab the book and start reading it, my husband told me that Kafka had just been mentioned in the autobiography he was reading. The author of the autobiography remarked that he regretted he didn't start reading Kafka from his world-famous and most appreciated story "The Metamorphosis" for better understanding of his work. 

Now what? Which Kafka's book should I read first? The one I was looking forward to or the one that sounded horrible but was recommended by someone who had some experience with Kafka's work?

January 24, 2016

Beauty of the ordinary

On Friday we had what might be the coldest morning this winter with its -20°C, which equals -4°F. Actually, it would be the coldest morning in the 15 years we've been living in this village. I was a bit afraid that my car wouldn't start because I was supposed to get to work and to get my children to school so it was a relief to hear the car making up its mind and waking into operation. The gear box was stiff and was moving with slow deliberation but we were on our way and that mattered.


January 06, 2016

Guidance and inspiration in one word a year


Several years ago I read for the first time about the idea of choosing a word for the following year, a word that is supposed to be an inspiration and guide rather than any kind of resolution. The word can represent something personal to be focused on throughout the particular year, something one wants to learn, develop or improve in, or it can represent a desired change in one's life, a direction to be followed, a dream to be fulfilled... So many possibilities...

December 31, 2015

PF 2016

Here we are again, at the end of another year. Nobody knows what the next year holds for them and how they'll be able to embrace that. It's time to wish one another strength, health and happiness and it's high time to send New Year cards to our friends, families and business partners. Someone celebrates the last day of the year as a milestone, others refuse to see anything special in it, but the truth is that the date changes and we need to get used to that new number... 


I've posted New Year cards in this blog since 2011 and just a few weeks ago I was made aware by my American friend of the fact that not everybody understands what the "PF" in my cards means. That took me by surprise and I realized that I took for granted something that was not true. How often it happens, right? So this time I want to add an explanation for those of you who are not familiar with this abbreviation.

December 29, 2015

Quotes and sayings

Here and there I mention a saying or someone's quote in my post and I thought it could be interesting to gathered all of them in one place. I find them inspiring, that's why I used them in the first place, and they are sort of buried in the old posts now where no one may ever read them. I decided to create a new page here on the blog where I would list all those quotes and sayings. I've finished it today and you can find a new page titled "Quotes and sayings" in the bar under the header. If I mention another quote or saying in my future posts, I will add them to the top of the list. 

Now, please make yourself comfortable and follow the link Quotes and sayings or the page button in the bar above to find out what's in the list. The list is not long and I'm not going to create any huge collection but I'm sure there will be more gradually, especially as I returned to writing my reflections and sharing them here. You're welcome to come repeatedly to the page and share your thoughts and ideas.


Wishing you to enjoy the last days and moments of the year!

December 22, 2015

Gratitude

Amid these Christmas preparations I wanted to tell you that the other day, when I was coming home from work and was driving through a wood near our village, it struck me how much my life has changed recently. Partly from the outside and more importantly from the inside, but it’s all intertwined and interlinked, isn't it?


I wanted to add that there were times in my life a few years ago when crashing my car head-on into a tree seemed like a good solution to all the bad feelings and thoughts I had. I never tried, just let the idea in and out, but the depressive thought was there. On that particular day that I mentioned above, this idea suddenly came back to me but it felt oh so different. Like something I read in a book once and remember it but can’t identify myself with. That made me feel so grateful for all the good and beautiful that I have in my life and don’t appreciate properly, the feeling was quite surprising and overwhelming. And I know I could have even more of the good and beautiful if only I was willing to accept things I can’t change and moved on.

November 23, 2015

Snowy

When I woke up on Sunday morning, the light felt different. I was wondering what was going on but as soon as I got up, I knew the answer. Everything behind the windows was covered with snow and its fresh white colour dominated surroundings of our house. Our garden, neighbours' garden, our yard... I loved the occasional colourful contrast like in the following photo. Our neighbours across the road are building a new house and its unfinished condition looked wonderful against the snow.


As soon as I saw it, I grabbed my camera, opened our kitchen window and took a few photos. I took some also from our dormer window in another direction and later I was so glad I did because a few hours later the scenery changed as some snow melted. You can see the change in the following photos.

November 18, 2015

Thoughts on learning strategies


When you are learning something new, what's your strategy? Do you mainly gather pieces of information, go through them quickly and then keep them in your laptop or (note)books for future reference or do you try and use them until you master them?

November 01, 2015

Autumnal photo walk and its surprises

With its changing colours and soft light, autumn is such a special season and so many photographers speak about how eager they are not to miss out on taking some autumnal photos. That made me realize that I wouldn't want to miss out on taking them either and asked my dear husband to go on a photo walk with me. I even had an idea in my mind where I'd like to go as a few months ago I noticed that in a near town a new educational trail "Living memories of Lužany landscape" was opened and it seemed a good destination for a Sunday morning walk.


The trail is nine kilometres long and with my photo activities it took us about three hours to get from the start to the finish. We didn't like the whole trail but there are some nice places along it and certainly some photo opportunities. I took quite a few documentary captures but today I would like to share rather the atmosphere of the walk than the statues and buildings we saw.

October 20, 2015

Back up your data

Do you make a backup of any work you do on your computer?
Do you back up your data in such a way that you can't easily lose them?
Or do you just postpone and avoid that thinking it can wait until you have time for it?

Back up, Back Up, BACK UP!


Undoubtedly you've heard that priceless piece of advice many times and I would love to know how seriously you take it. I heard several stories of people I knew who were let down by their computer and lost all their data because they made no backup. No at all. And a while ago my colleague told me that she lost her old photographs because she had them backed up but first her computer crashed and then her external disk with the backup failed and nothing was left…