Chrysanthemums in the Sky

Aren’t fireworks wonderful? but the real beauty of them is the share them with special people, and why not share them with that special someone.


a poem in the shape ABAB, I give you:

Chrysanthemums in the Sky

by Adriana

 

Eyes wide open as a curious child

wishing to stay open after each spark.

The shapes in the sky have my heart beguiled

like luminous chrysanthemums in the dark.

 

Of these sparkling flowers I have seen a hundred,

or perhaps millions, and they are always fantastic.

This time, something was different and I wondered

“Are the lights the ones making me so enthusiastic?”

 

Then I felt your sight not to the illuminated sky but on me,

and I knew that my happiness was because of you that night.

Quietly, we stared at each other, feeling in love as one can be,

but we could not stop on blinking after each of the fireworks light.

 


 

Thank you for reading!

My dear follower,  I hope that my poem you enjoyed

Weather it filled your heart with sorrow or perhaps joy.

My only desire is that my hands of poems never rest

So, I dare you to put my talent to the test.

To one single rule you have, though to abide

Challenge me with a single word for me to comply!!! 

 

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Poem – Cotton Candy for the Soul

The world is rushing, the world is stress, and it makes us lose the joy of the simple things. But it is those simple things that make our souls stronger and healthier. There is nothing more refreshing like taking a walk in the afternoon while only thinking of the beautiful colors of the flowers, or the song of the birds. The hectic world makes us grow too dull and we let ourselves be beaten forgetting that our souls need laugher, music, and sweeties.


The poem topic was proposed by

The Salty Avocado


A poem in the shape of: aBB AAb

I give you

Cotton Candy for the Soul

By Adriana

 

You are not so grey,

but the life around you is monochrome

And every passing day is dull monotone.

 

But the sun shines in each colourful ray,

And the flowers bloom without dismay

How pretty the’ve grown.

 

You are not so silent

But the voices around you are resentful

And of kindness they are often forgetful,

 

But the sounds of nature are so vibrant

And the birds sing in melodic alignment.

Listen and be grateful.

 

You are not so sour

But your soul need some sweet caramel

And some cotton candy from the festival.

 

Let’s go to the fair and forget the hour

Enjoying the sun even if the rain showers

Take a break amenable.

 

Listen the laughter

Couples in love and joyous children playing,

Parents smiling, even though they are paying,

 

I see you grinning, it is not so bad a disaster.

even your eyes will be smiling a little after,

Forgetting the crying.

 

Should we skate,

Ferries wheel or an exciting roller coaster ride?

Don’t worry or be scared, I am here by your side.

 

Adventuring eyes have always been your trait,

It is worrying when instead they are full of hate,

And look like you’ve cried.

 

No, you are not so gray

But your soul needs laughter, colors and melody

And don’t forget about sweet pleasant remedy.

 

Caramel popcorn, ice cream or sweeties buffet,

Maybe cotton candy while walking along the quay,

What a great amenity!

 


Thank you for reading!

 

My dear follower,  I hope that my poem you enjoyed

Weather it filled your heart with sorrow or perhaps joy.

My only desire is that my hands of poems never rest

So, I dare you to put my talent to the test.

To one single rule you have, though to abide

Challenge me with a single word for me to comply!!! 

 

 

Quetzal splendour, magnificent and tender.

Our Independence Day is on September 15th. What best way to honour our 196 years of freedom than writing about one of our most iconic symbols, our national bird, and currency, the Quetzal.

There are more than a few types of quetzals found from southern USA to Central America. But our national bird is the magnificent Resplendent Quetzal (Pharomachrus Mocinno).

Just look at him, isn’t he beautiful?

I wish these pictures were mine, I would be honored to one day make a photography of this unique creature. Unfortunately, it is very hard to find them in the wild, mostly because it is an endangered specie. WAIT! It is not endangered anymore, I just made a quick search and it is a relief to find out the reserves and the efforts to rescue it have paid off and take the Quetzal off the endangers species list.

However it is important to remark that it is impossible to find Quetzals in cages. This is a bird that needs to be free and if it is caged, it dies. This is one of the reasons it is our symbol of freedom.

Features

It is medium size bird, around 40 cm tall. You may even think it is small, but wait until you see the tail, it is around 65 cm. It is because of the long tail that it is also known as the “serpent bird”and the protagonist of several Guatemalan narratives. After all, it a majestic creature.

The females are brownish color and the males are green with red chest, and they do not sing. This is important, but let me tell you more about it in the next section.

Stories

This is a story about the quetzal and our national hero, but more important it is a story about freedom.

When the Spanish conquerors came to America, they had several devises, gadgets, animals and objects that did not exist here. Many natives groups thought they were gods and did everything the Spanish asked for, for example, exchanging their gold for mirrors, and then later, when the time come, the Spanish burn alive their leaders.

There were other groups that were not so easily deceived and decided to oppose and defend their people from the conquest. This was the case of the K’iche people, whose prince was Tecum Uman.

When they confronted the Spanish, Pedro Alvarado appeared in the battled field mounted on a horse. There were no horses in the Americas, so when Tecum Uman fiercely attacked him, he killed the horse first, thinking that the horse and the man were the same beast. When the prince realized his mistake, it was too late and the conqueror thrust his speak into his heart. The death of the prince filled the land with sorrow and the Quetzal, that was his Nahual (like spirit animal) came down to mourn his death. It landed on the hero’s chest and thus tainted his chest feathers with the princes’ blood.

From that day, all male quetzals wear red chest and they have forever silent their song. These are the other reasons why the Quetzal is out symbol of freedom.

Some thoughts

We have bird that cannot be captured, tamed or caged. A bird that reminds us of the shed blood of our people fighting for freedom. And yet it is a bird who has been endangered, at the verge of disappearing because of selfish hunters, who care only about prize or a trophy. That is what happens with people, how can we flourish and progress if we are under the chains of slavery? By chains I mean injustice, fear, corruption, poverty, inequality, insecurity, etc.

This is a land of beauty and wonders, but we have hunters, who put us down, who rob us, who take advantage of us and leave us bleeding. Hunters that are disguise themselves with promises and trick people to be loyal to them, but then burn us alive, what difference is there with the Spanish conquerors? Some of us chose to ignore the hunters and exchange their gold for mirrors, and some of us resist. Either our position we bleed, and we taint our land red because with the spears of those who are in power and abuse of it.

We are the Quetzal people, we are meant to be free. We haven an apparent freedom of 196 years, and we could be prosperous, but our cage is guarded by those who have excluded themselves from the rest of us and make selfish decisions, thrusting spears in our hearts. We are the quetzals, we do not need to sing, because we will remember our red history, but we need to spread our wings and fly. We are the quetzals who need to keep our heads up, strive for a better future and fight for real independence, one in which we will be truly free.

Welcome Flowers – Aug 24 #Photography

It may seam like a church but it is not,

it is an angel who seams to be lost in thought,

and these flowers that were placed in a glass pot.

Mom bought them for me to celebrate my return,

in the distance it’s been her primary concern,

but now I am here to address her yearn.

 

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Guatemalan Tamale, to enjoy and be jolly

A delicious delicacy from my country that I am dying to introduce to you.

You can a dish called “Tamale” (rhymes with “Bali”) in almost all countries in Latin America. But it is more traditional in the area of Mesoamerica, that is Mexico to Costa Rica. However, each country has its own speciality and they are all different in their own way.

Over all, it is masa made from maize, filled with mysterious ingredients and wrapped and steamed in a special leaf.

If you have been in a Chinese-speaking country, like Taiwan, you can think about it as a ZongZi (粽子) or Rice Dumplings. You know! the one eaten mostly for the dragon boat festival. If you are not so sure about this festival, maybe you want to check out my post about the Dragon Boat in Tainan.

Zongzi to the left, Tamale to the right

The main difference between the Zongzi and Tamale, besides the obvious shape is that the ZongZi is made from rice and not masa.

Masa Made from Maize

Masa is the Spanish word for dough, but if I straightly write “dough”, you might think that Tamales are made of wheat flour. The dough for tamales is made from corn, but not the yellow corn, it is made from the white one. We usually use the word “corn” to refer to the yellow one and the “maize” to the white one.

This was a simple explanation, but let me give you some interesting details. The flour made form the white corn is called “Nixtamal”. This word is in “Nahuatl”, a local language, and it is formed from the words Nextli, meaning “ashes” and Tamalli which means “uncooked corn dough”.

Mysterious Ingredients

I say “mysterious”, because it depends on the ingredients to determine the kind of tamale.

The traditional Guatemala Tamale only has recado (thick tomato sauce) with chicken or pork meat….. maybe olives, but actually adding any other ingredient would stop it from being really traditional. However, in other countries they do add other vegetables and they are also delicious.

Traditional Guatemala Tamale

You can eat a tamale at anytime, but on Saturday evenings tamale-selling-places  get a red lantern out to indicate they have tamales for sale. Another traditional time to have this delicious food is for Christmas. However, because of the amount of time it takes to make them, we do not usually make them at home, which means that at the beginning of December we go crazy making our tamales order with the person who, to our opinion, makes the tastier tamales of all. Tamales make the perfect combination for our traditional Christmas day. And this year will be the first time in 9 years, that I will have tamales for Christmas again, I am so excited for this.

The Special Leaf

The mixed dough and the ingredients are wrapped in banana leaf and steamed until ready. But do not worry, you do not have to eat the leaf, this would be hard to do, and I guess not very tasty. However, tamales are traditionally presented still with their leaf, and it has to be nicely tucked in.

Variations

In Guatemala there is a large variety of tamales, the difference mostly depends on the ingredients and size.

Small

Tamales blancos (White tamales): Made only with the dough and wrapped in corn leaf.

Tamalitos de Chipilin (Small tamales of Chipilin): Also wrapped in corn leaf, but the dough is mixed with chipilin. This is a leaf that grows mostly in Guatemala and Honduras. These are one of my favorite types of tamales and I love to eat them with with cheese.

Tamalitos de Elote (corn tamales): The dough of these ones is made from the yellow corn, and they are a little sweet.

Medium

Chuchitos (no translation): They have a bell shape and they are made only with the dough and thick tomato sauce. I love to have these as an afternoon snack.

Big ones

Tamal Negro (Black Tamale): They are sweet. Some sugar is added to the dough and instead of vegetables, purnes and raisins are used. But even though they are sweet, they are still made with chicken.

Paches (no translation): These are the sames as tamales, but instead of the corn dough, potatoe is used.


Wow… writing so much about tamales made me hungry, but thank you for reading and I hope you enjoyed my article.

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Cabernet Sauvignon – Luis Felipe Edwards

Cabernet Sauvignon – Chile – 2015

I have realised that this wine is widely served in airplanes to and from Latin America and in many hotels near the airports. I do not find it to be specially good, but it is rather satisfying. However it wasn’t as dry as I had expected it to be for a Cabernet Sauvignon, it felt more like a Shiraz.

Fruitiness: 3.1 / 5

Sourness: 3.4 / 5 

Tannin: 3.8 / 5

Style : light

Body: 4/10

Legs:  many and thin

[Note: Fruitiness, sourness and tannin, are a red wine characteristics, they do not define the quality of a wine]

Overall SunShower rating is:

3.7 /5

Rating levels:

4.7 – 5.0 The finest of all!
4.0 – 4.6 Oh this is good!
3.1 – 3.9 This ok! Pleasant. But don’t be demanding.
2.3 – 3.0 Ok, this is weird.
1.0 – 2.2 Don’t try this, I already sacrificed myself for you.
0.0 – 0.9 Cannot believe there is something this disgusting.

Click this link to read more about the Wine Ranks and Specs


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An Amalgam of Guatemala’s Prodigy Orchestra and USA’s Rock

After a long time away from my country I was finally able to go to the wonderful national theater and witness a beautiful combination between Guatemala’s Symphonic Orchestra and USA’s Gun ‘n’ Roses.

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I am not a particular fan of the band, I barely knew 2-3 songs, yet I had an unforgettable time because the symphonic orchestra was no ordinary orchestra, it was the junior’s. The first violin was a talented 13-year-old, who played beautifully through the entirety of the show.

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And there is more… As a special guest there was Yahaira Tubac. If you are wondering who that is, she is the prodigy pianist who is only 7 years old and already surprising with pleasant delight the Guatemalan public.

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Here is a picture of her receiving flowers, next to her, there is the talented young violinist.

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Besides promoting the talent of these wonderful young artist, the reason for the presentation to feature them is because it was promoting using music as a way to keep children away from violence. This is a noble cause since the sad number in Latin America are that for every 5 murders 1 takes the life of a child. Sad but true! It is important to create awareness!

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The sound of the classical instruments sounded beautifully, but it wouldn’t have been Gun ‘n’ Roses without the rock band.

They aren’t actually a band, per se, but they are outstanding artist in their field who were called upon for this assembly. Their talents combined transmitted their love for music, passion and made the audience cheer and cheer. They were going to finish after 1.5 hours of playing, but the crow kept asking for and more. They finished up with the well-known “Sweet Child O’ mine”.

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I am proud of the Guatemalan talent. I am eager to hear and see more. So if you are in Guatemala, do not miss the opportunity to witness an unforgettable mixture of national artist playing classical instruments and USA’s 80′ Rock.

I wasn’t able to assist to previous presentations, but they have also covered music from Queen and the Beatles. I am sure that was also majestic.

I found out about this presentation though social media, but if you want to find out more about the local events check out this national theater web page, at the monthly agenda section:

http://mcd.gob.gt/tag/teatro-nacional/?lang=en

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Tiny Yellow Flowers – Aug 22 #Photography

Like pieces of gold on the road

so vivid, and calm in still mode,

With your beauty my pace slowed,

for a picture that I now upload!

POP PIE a great place to try!

Not to be confused with Popeye, the spinach eating guy in the cartoon!


 

In a mood for a light meal?

Well, Tainan has many beautiful hidden places to eat, and this has to be one of the most hidden ones. But make sure not to miss it, since it has great pies and a magical atmosphere.

Here is the location:

The place is cosy and well decorated, check it out!

Ok, so it is time to order!

You are usually required to order a set, it includes a soup and a well dressed salad. Check out the nice detail of giving you a wooden spoon!

The soup I got is pumpkin and the pie I order is mushroom and chicken.  It was a great combination and they were both of great taste. I absolutely recommend this place to change the daily routine of the traditional lunch boxes in Taiwan.

The coffee I ordered is a Vienna cafe, it was good, but nothing extra-ordinary. But overall I liked it!

They also offer green tea. Just as the coffee it was good, not nothing too memorable.

So conclusion, the drinks are just ok, but the pies are delicious, it is a place worth giving a try.

SunShower rating:

4.5/5


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Flight Hues – Aug 17, 17 #Photography

This is the place I took from El Salvador to Guatemala, it was the last necessary plane to get home after 8 years of living in Taiwan. Yes! I have come back a few times, but this time was the last time, and that is why it is so meaningful.

A trip so long as the one made from Taiwan to Guatemala has to be honoured with a nice picture.

For this I give blue skies and a flat landscape!!!

It’s time for a change, there’s no excuse,

this new life has for long my heart seduce.

Eagerness and excitement are on the loose,

yet my eyes are watery at the memory of last views

All these emotions I call them flight hues!

 


Thank you for reading!

All comments either on the photography or on the poems are welcome !!!

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let it rain

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