Engineering series 9: Palace of the Parliament in Bucharest

Introduction

In the early nineties we had a family from Romania as neighbors, very nice people of German descent who had recently emigrated to Southern Germany to settle in the periphery of Munich where I was growing up.

At that time I was old enough to grasp (at least vaguely) the importance of the historic events that had occurred in the then called Eastern Bloc (Ostblock) a few years ago.

One after another communist one-party state collapsed as a consequence of the upheavals initiated by a discontent general …

Kaunas: Sightseeing, nightlife, and an old friendship

Lithuania, January 2020

Introduction

A while ago I stumbled across a survey that highlighted younger people’s lack of close friends these days, if you gauge this number against one or two generations ago.

I don’t know how compelling such kind of statistics generally are and how thoroughly the creators had gathered their figures (though I also have the perception that close friends are rather a rarity today), but if they are, I am fortunate to say that I don’t belong to a group without any friends at all.

This is …

Back in Slovakia (part 4): Banská Bystrica, Veľká Fatra, Žilina, Malá Fatra

Slovakia, December 2019

Introduction

My Christmas vacation was a welcome opportunity to spend a couple of days in Slovakia to visit my friends in Bratislava.

But I also wanted to make a few short hiking tours in the Fatra mountains in Central Slovakia, provided that the weather conditions would allow this.

Banská Bystrica

I stayed in Banská Bystrica, a medium-sized city with around 80.000 inhabitants, throughout the whole Christmas holidays.

The most important city of Central Slovakia has a noteworthy history of copper-, silver- and gold-mining. German mining …

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