Friday, August 26, 2011

138 Peaceful Spanish Steps Regarding France In Italy.

Hello my Internet Friends,
This is mostly about friendly stairs.

"34andahalf!" Big Gunnar announced.

Big Gunnar announcing 34 and a half.
"I do not think you can claim half a step?" I said to him. "Shows how little you know." He answered, and then: "All is allowed in war and peace, even if it should not be in war, but this is all regarding peace, so you are of course wrong. 35andahalf!" I sort of agreed with him, and I knew he would continue explaining nevertheless. "Ciao Signore! Questo sicuramente è un buon esercizio?" Big Gunnar said to the young man who passed him. The young man of course understood nothing since he was an American, but when this was sorted out he totally agreed that it was good exercise.

Big Gunnar: 35 and a half.
(I realized that probably all the steps from now on would be claimed at each half step, and was looking forward to how he would do the last one.)

"You know" Big Gunnar said to me. "These steps were to honor the peace treaty between France and Spain. They made 138 steps between the church Trinità dei Monti, under french influence by the Bourbons on the top, and down to the Spanish embassy, or rather to the Holy See by the Palazzo Monaldeschi below."
"I race you to the top old man!" and " I am at least half way there!" He said to me.

Big Gunnar being at least half way to the top.
Big Gunnar is among much else built for speed, at least when it comes to stairs according to himself, so he of course won, and then waited majestically for me at the top, almost without pointing out the fact that he had won so easy.

Big Gunnar majestically at the top of the Spanish Steps.
"It is important to have the correct pose when standing at places of great importance." It is one of Big Gunnars rules of guidance. "How many steps was there?" I asked him. "I stopped counting when you where so far behind you could no longer hear me." He answered. "Anyway, look at that view. Now we should head down again and go have an Italian siesta and rest our feet at the apartment." But before we came down he suddenly stopped again and said: Look at this! How great is this? And everybody just steps on it, it is probably just the water drainage, but it is a work of art."

Big Gunnar finding works of art.
 "You should always look down when visiting Rome." He then sort of pronounced.

We decided after having looked both high and low for a while to go down again, and see the Steps from below, before we went back to the veranda at the apartment to rest our feet a while.

The look from below.
What can one say, sometimes a picture says it all. A somehow strange but beautiful tribute to peace.

Walk the steps wherever you find them, and for as long as you have the possibility, they do not need to be a gift from Spain to France or vice versa in Italy to have a meaning. They can just be good exercise.

Best of today to you all, and have a really nice weekend wherever you are!

Thursday, August 25, 2011

A Vertigo View On Beauty In Rome.

Hello Internet Friends,

"Have you seen all the small chimneys on top of all the buildings, made in shape of small houses?" Big Gunnar asked me. I just knew I was about to step into one of his wisdom traps. Big Gunnar is an expert on this, he asks a simple question about a simple topic, and then he lectures you when you give the wrong answer. Since I knew this I just kept my mouth shut and gave a half nod and shake of the head at the same time. (Old people sometimes do this, and we normally get away with it as just a small movement error.)


One of Big Gunnars small house chimneys.

Same chimney, but just greatly zoomed picture. (This was taken before we had the chocolate ice cream incident with the camera and could no longer preform zooming.)
"It is really high up is it not? Almost at vertigo height." Big Gunnar said to me. I of course agreed on this, but pointed out that after all that is where a chimney is supposed to be, on top of the building, and by saying this I of course stepped into his trap and he could explain what they really are to me. By the way vertigo really means dizziness not fear of heights, but I still take the liberty to call it vertigo here because some people, among them Big Gunnar, sometimes feels a small dizziness when up on heights. Vertigo is of course also a very famous big screen movie directed by famous Alfred Hitchcock, the movie is from year 1958 based on a story from 1954, same year as Tarzan "Cannibal Attack" with Johnny Weissmuller, I do not think Johnny Weissmuller ever played in a movie by Alfred Hitchcock, but if he had I am sure it would have been great.

Alfred Hitchcock.
The gentleman sure had a very distinct profile.

Johnny Weissmuller, the only true and believable Tarzan.
Johnny Weissmuller of course also had a very great profile.

"They are not chimneys they way you think of chimneys." Big Gunnar explained to me. "That is a common error in the perceptions of them. They are for ventilation, and they are one amazing invention for houses situated in warm countries. Just look at this one, how amazingly beautiful it looks! Almost as a small castle on top of the building, fit for a king of birds, or someone very small not suffering of vertigo."

Big Gunnar looking at the amazing ventilation castle.

We could still zoom, and this is a zoomed picture of it. (This was all before the chocolate ice cream incident.)
"Incredible!" Big Gunnar exclaimed. "Must be nice to learn something new at your age." He also said. I of course totally agreed with this.

They really look amazing.
Some of them can of course also be used as regular chimneys. (I just did not bother to argue this with Big Gunnar, because when looking at things of great beauty and art one does not need to argue, they are what they are no matter what they actually do.)

Keep your head up when in Rome.

"Enough about things high in the air.It almost gives me vertigo light just talking about them, and my neck gets kind of stiff by looking at them, we should go and have a stroll in the Spanish Steps, vamos!" Big Gunnar said to me, and of we went again.


Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Attenzione Romana Rock E Grande Gunnar.

Ciao Internet persone,

Big Gunnar always draws some attention to himself, especially from the women, and this day was no different, and one woman really was staring at him as she passed him by. We were visiting the building "to every god", or by the more known name Pantheon.


We were drinking coffee before we were going inside, when Big Gunnar saw the sphere shaped rocks in front of the building and decided he would see if they were sphere shaped or maybe really more of an oblate shape, same as the earth, it was then that he received some attention.

Big Gunnar getting some normal attention from a passing woman.
"La mia cara donna, non sono mai avete visto una roccia molto grande prima?" Big Gunnar asked her. This roughly translates into: "My dear woman, have you never seen a really big rock before?" (Big Gunnar of course speaks many languages partially fluently.)

He continued to impress and baffle the young lady with his reenactment of the stone scene from the famous movie Raiders of the lost ark with famous movie big screen star Harrison Ford.

Big Gunnar reenactment of famous scene from famous movie.
"Dai razziatori film dellàrca perduta! Dadadada-dada-dada!" He shouted almost Tarzan style and elegantly ran towards the entrance of Pantheon. (Again roughly translated this means: from the raiders of the lost ark dadadada-dada-dada.)

Famous movie actor Harrison Ford as Indiana Jones in famous movie Raiders of the lost ark.
It almost seems as the same scene, but it really is not. Famous actor Harrison Ford is Big Gunnars favorite actor among the young ones, he of course would have preferred Tarzan or rather Johnny Weissmuller in the role as Indiana Jones, " But Harrison Ford will do, he has after all a very good and strong last name, same as the automobile." Big Gunnar always says.

Johnny Weissmuller as Tarzan.
"Anyone who can play Tarzan that believable can play anything better than almost anyone." says Big Gunnar.

A Ford automobile.
This of course is the very nice T Ford, but its creator Henry Ford was not related to famous actor Harrison Ford as far as my knowledge goes. It still is a really nice car, and the actor Harrison Ford is a good actor.

Anyway, Big Gunnar took the lead, towards and into the Pantheon we went.

Big Gunnar elegantly towards Pantheon.

Big Gunnar inside the Pantheon.
This was a very nice Italian gentleman Big Gunnar discussed the ceiling of Pantheon with. "Signore dobbiamo sempre guardare quando nel corretto roma?" Big Gunnar politely said. The gentleman of course understood nothing because he was an American, but when this was clarified they both agreed that "one always should look up when in Rome", and the American was a very nice gentleman even if he was not an Italian gentleman.

The ceiling of Pantheon.
Both Big Gunnar and the American gentleman are correct, in Rome one should always look up, there is so much incredible architecture everywhere you look.

If you ever visit Rome, visit the Pantheon, the building really can not be described the way it deserves only by my words. It has been rebuilt several times, and it somehow feels all its layers of old, and you can feel its history by touching the walls and columns. So put your hand on it and respectfully feel all it has witnessed.


Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Big Gunnar Goes Epic, It Was Odyssey Time For Us.

Hello Internet People!

I have not forgotten anybody, or this place, it was just one of those things happening that interrupted my writing here. To get old does not mean you stop doing things, and this all started with Big Gunnar and me visiting Bygdøy and "Norsk Folkemuseum". There was a small bus travel from our retirement home that was arranged, so we could visit, among others, the Norwegian famous Stav church there.

Big Gunnar visiting the famous Norwegian Stav church from Gol at "Norsk Folkemuseum.
The church is very old, it has elements dating as far back as from year 1157, and is well worth a visit if you have the possibility and time, time you probably will have since it really is not going anywhere, and it has been around for almost 854 years. Of course this does not mean that you have the time, only that the church probably has the time, and will be there when you yourself find the time to visit it.

But then it all happened. Big Gunnar suddenly seemed very thoughtful and sat down on a nearby bench.

Big Gunnar being very thoughtful and sitting down on a nearby bench.

"When was the last time we had an epic journey?"
Big Gunnar asked me.
"It sure is nice enough to travel to Bygdøy and see old churches, but we still have a lot of go-time left in us, so I think it is time for at least one last epic odyssey..."

Vatican City.
"We are in luck, the line to get in is not that big." Big Gunnar said.

Big Gunnar in a lucky short line for Vatican City.

"It is go time." Big Gunnar said and continued inside the Vatican. 

"Wow, it really is quite big." Big Gunnar said, and kept on walking. "The Romans sort of constructed things in sizes I can appreciate. Think about all we can learn here, and all the places we will visit on our great journey!" He said.

Which of course was true. 
We came, we saw, we learned, a lot, and I will try to share everything with you here.

Hope you all are doing fine, remember life is a journey, an epic one, it continues as long as you yourself chooses, where ever you are.

Friday, August 5, 2011

Pas The Budding , Cheetas Swinging Blues And Art & Hair Healing.

Hello Internet Thinkers!
On a Friday.

This happened on Tuesday.

During dinner we had a small hearing error, Big Gunnar claims it was because Rolf Rolls spoke too low, but the rest of us knows it really was Big Gunnars hearing, he does not have the biggest ears. Anyway, Rolf Rolls asked Big Gunnar if he could "pas the pudding", which of course Big Gunnar heard as "can you pas the Budding", and I must agree with Big Gunnar, when he then of course said no. He was not being impolite, this would be almost impossible to do. "No" said Big Gunnar, "that is almost impossible for me to do, ask me something else."

Edwin Beard Budding.
There really was only drawings related to Mr. Budding that I found, here he obviously demonstrates his invention, a good demonstration is always appreciated, even if I have problems understanding what else they would have thought his invention could be used for. It would nevertheless have been difficult to pas Budding around during dinner, and also it really would have made no sense. A normal pudding on the contrary is of course more correct in a dinner setting.

A quite normal pudding.
This actually is a Christmas pudding, I do not mean to be indecent, but I am sort of happy they have the red berry decoration on top, or else it would maybe not have looked very delicious.

Anyway, Big Gunnar was sort of a little bluesy after things had been sorted out, a bit the same as Cheeta after they stopped making Tarzan with his friend Johnny Weissmuller.

Cheeta and Johnny Weissmuller.
You can see how happy Cheeta were on this picture, Johnny Weissmuller is probably telling a story of a big swing from a three he once took, or something similar interesting. But Cheeta that was used to swinging now got the blues, he started drinking and smoking.

Cheeta having blues.
Even if one wears a hat it does not mean one is happy, it just helps a little. Cheeta also made the news with some of his bad habits.

Cheeta in the news.
As you see he played the piano, and it was probably remembering all the good time with, among others, Johnny Weissmuller, that made Cheeta once again focus on positive things in life.

Cheeta probably remembering good times, and Johnny Weissmuller, the only true believable Tarzan figure.
You can see that even if probably starting to remember the good times, he still seems a bit sad, almost as if even his hairs, chimpanzees have a lot of hair, also are a bit depressed, maybe hair are influenced by chimpanzees mood.

So Cheeta started to paint, and even making money on his paintings, maybe because customers suddenly could understand why the paintings also looked as they did. (I sometimes do not understand paintings, what they are, but maybe it is easier when you know that they are expressions of a chimpanzee.)

Cheeta painting and being happy again.
It probably was good memories, Johnny Weissmuller and art that saved Cheetas good spirit.

Cheeta high spirited once again.
Being as happy and hairy as ever, with healthy fruits, Cheeta of course had no name connected with its hair, while Edwin Beard Budding had the name beard in the middle, he has no beard on any of the drawings I have seen of him, maybe he thought it would not be very clever to have a lot of facial growth when one is in the lawn mower business? It might just also be that he did not think of it, that he just did not fancy facial hair, because if he would have thought about it he might have also changed his middle name to Nobeard, or something.

A beard.

To have facial hair then probably just depends on taste, Big Gunnar is considering a mustache, but for the moment he takes a lot of effort in being properly shaved always, so I just complimented his shaving and suggested he learned how to play the piano or something, and then he was happy again. He also of course passed the pudding to Rolf Rolls.

Have a little pudding, or grow some facial hair, but maybe not combine the both without training, because you do not want pudding in your beard, even if it probably is way better than having Budding there.

Or maybe more seriously, play some piano, or make a drawing if feeling a little blue.
Have a Friday the way you prefer,

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

A Little Bit Of Buddings Device, It Is The Nr 1 Choice, But Wacky Weeds Wins And Then A Little Shouting.

Hello Modern Internet People,

Something more happened last weekend when I visited my house together with Big Gunnar, we were doing some normal gardening. I have let my garden grow freely this summer, or my daughter has let the garden grow freely, and it has been looking really beautiful, but now it was time for at least mowing the lawn. Big Gunnar claims that a decent plan is always needed for any operation, no matter how common and normal the task we are about to begin is, so he decided that first we needed to check the grass, and then decide who would operate which gardening tools.

Big Gunnar inspects the grass.
I am not really sure what he inspected, but I guess it must be the length and thickness and such.

Afterwards he wanted to choose what gardening instrument he would operate, he said that guests always has first choice, and I really felt I could not argue with him regarding this.

Big Gunnar considering the use of lawn mower versus the use of the wheel barrow and rake.
I tried a couple of times to tell him that this in fact was the wheel barrow and my rollator, but when about to make decisions Big Gunnar is very focused, and "one must follow the gut, not just the facts", at least that is what he answered, (I think maybe he just was a little embarrassed when he answered for having spent almost half an hour deciding between my rollator and wheel barrow).

Big Gunnar nevertheless decided that the lawn mower was his choice. "The lawn mower is a much more modern invention than the wheel barrow" he proclaimed. "The lawn mower was invented in 1827 by Edwin Beard Budding, while the wheel barrow is rumored to be from China around 100 AD, or maybe even from ancient Greece 406/407 B.C." Big Gunnar knows a lot about a lot, and then also about Budding.

Buddings lawn mower.
I do not think this one was Buddings first lawn mower, but it is at least very similar to this.

A Chinaman and an old wheel barrow.
I am not sure how old this wheel barrow or the Chinese gentleman are, but Big Gunnar is correct when he says that the wheel barrow is the oldest invention.

Big Gunnar very confidently went to work with the lawn mower, but also very soon hit what he later would refer to as "the wacky weeds", he actually tried to shout at the lawn mower before he started calling the grass names. "It worked with Johnny Weissmuller." He explained to me.

Johnny Weissmuller.
(This is maybe after he shouted, because he looks very healthy.)

I said: You mean Tarzan? "No, Tarzan was not in the hospital bed, it was Johnny Weissmuller, but he shouted as Tarzan." Big Gunnar answered. "So I was Johnny Weissmuller being Tarzan, ergo, mostly Johnny Weissmuller." I tried to say that to compare Johnny Weissmuller with a modern model of Buddings inventions, or an old model of his inventions for that sake, really was not sensible, and that nobody shouted at Johnny Weissmuller, he did the shouting himself. "It was nevertheless worth a try." Big Gunnar answered. "Or else we would never had known if you were wrong." I really could not argue with that either.

Big Gunnar shouting at the lawn mower after it had run into the wacky weeds and stopped.
Of course it did not help to shout at the lawn mower, it just would not co operate and start again.

We decided it was hammock time instead with maybe a small conversation about Christoforo Colombo, and that the lawn mower maybe just was tired and also needed to re-charge its batteries, it should have a solar panel for such, but this did of course not exist in Buddings time, but could have been added later, or maybe if the Incas had invented the lawn mower it would have had solar panel, they were great inventors, if Budding had any relatives from Peru I do not know.

Look out for wacky weeds, they can sort of be everywhere,
and have a really nice Tuesday!

Monday, August 1, 2011

Johnny Weissmuller And A Monkey, A Swinging Colombo And Then A Really Loud Recovery.

This is my blog, and it is Monday, Hello!

First I thought it would be nice with Johnny Weissmuller and a monkey, this as a proper introduction, because the last time I wrote here it was about both, but without any monkey, and the monkey, which is a chimpanzee is a part of Tarzan, and then again Johnny Weissmuller, the only true believable Tarzan figure.

Johnny Weissmuller and a monkey.
Then the monkey, which is a chimp, also has a name, Cheeta, in 2008 it turned 76 years old and was the oldest living known chimpanzee, it lived in happy retirement in California, how it is today I do unfortunately not know, how old it really got, or if it still is alive.

Cheeta on its 76 birthday.
Cheeta of course also was a big fan of its co-star Johnny Weissmuller, which is on the picture together with other co-star Maureen O`Sullivan. Cheeta probably remembers swinging in threes together with Johnny Weissmuller.

Cheeta swinging from the threes together with Johnny Weissmuller.
In the picture are also Jane and Boy, Tarzan was probably very occupied with swinging from threes so he did not have too much time to spend thinking about a name for his son, and without any neighbors close by they maybe did not need anything more complicated, at least not unless they received more children and more of them were boys, but then maybe he would just call them all "boys" instead. Nevertheless, Johnny Weissmuller was really good at swinging in the threes.

Johnny Weissmuller swinging from a three.
You can really see that he was a great actor and athlete the way he was swinging. Big Gunnar always says that when in a hammock, he thinks of Tarzan and the way he swung, because a hammock is also a great way of swinging.

Big Gunnar in a hammock.
Here he has fallen asleep in the hammock, but he probably thought about how great Johnny Weismuller swung before he gently rocked to sleep. Big Gunnar is great at swinging from both threes and hammocks, but if one is not as good as Big Gunnar at swinging from the threes, just a hammock then can also be fine to swing in. The hammocks are also older than Tarzan, they were introduced to Europe in the 1490`s by the very famous explorer and hammock entrepreneur Christoforo Colombo, (also named Christopher Columbus).

Christoforo Colombo famous explorer and hammock entrepreneur.
He is said to have found the natives using them in the West Indies on one of his confusing travels ( Christoforo Colombo was not the best navigator even if he was a skilled entrepreneur) in the year 1492, this of course says nothing about how old then the hammocks really are, just that they are older than Tarzan (1912), and therefor have been swinging longer. I think he does not seem very happy in this painting, maybe it is from before he started in the hammock business, because you really can not be in a bad mood after you have been swinging in a hammock.

But then again maybe he is sick, you can get sick even if you have been swinging. Johnny Weissmuller got sick in his old days, and ended up at a hospital where things did not look to good, but then he probably remembered one more thing he used to do besides the swinging, he used to shout really loud.

Johnny Weissmuller shouting really loud.
So he shouted really loud and long in his hospital bed, and afterwards he got much better and could continue his life. At least this is how the story goes, and I sort of like the story this way. Also you can once again almost feel how loud he was shouting, great actor, I must agree with Big Gunnar on that.

I really must remember to have my own hammock painted red, but maybe Mondays are nice for swinging in a hammock, or if that does not make things better, one can shout a little? Of course with decency and respect for any listeners.
Have a nice Monday,