Topic: Europe

Berlin-Neukölln is changing

Berlin-Neukölln: From problem child to clubbable prodigy?

12.12.2018

It is presumed to be the most colourful, multinational and omnicultural of Berlin’s districts: Neukölln, whose reputation – up to the recent past – could be considered controversial at best. Predominantly low-income (German) residents alongside a high rate of immigrants touching the 40 per cent mark have been benefiting from affordable rents and trying to make ends meet remote from posh Berlin areas. Different beliefs; traditions; habits; tongues; skins or dress codes hailing from alien ethnic backgrounds not seldom ignited the precarious potential for social conflicts. Better-off Berliners and visitors to the city alike preferred to stay at a safe distance for a reason. Yet, by avoiding the confrontation with an often bleak reality, they simultaneously missed out on glamour of a quality only thriving in microcosms such as Neukölln. Read article

Reading time: about 3 minutes
Flight simulator at Frankfurt Airport. A flight simulator excuses laymen's shortcomings

Flight or plight? Thank God it’s just a simulator!

2.12.2018

The dream of flying is perhaps nearly as old as mankind itself. We do not know for how many casualties innumerable trial-and-error experiments are responsible. The myth of Daedalus, the sly old Greek and his boisterous son Icarus, became the stuff for serious text-book entries. With a merciless sun gradually sizzling away Icarus’s wings of wax, the poor devil plummeted right into the sea – having been robbed of life-saving aerodynamics. In reality, crash tests with astonishingly inventive contraptions operated by bright, adventurous minds formed a never-ending chain of often fatal accidents over the course of time. Thanks to the courage and relentless efforts of these pioneers, aircraft have become a fast, comfortable and comparatively safe means of transport. Read article

Reading time: about 2 minutes
Aurora Borealis in Iceland

Iceland: Sleeping in a bubble

19.11.2018

When mystical veils of polar lights are wafting across northern skies in unknown shades of green, observers from near and far are eager to come and watch the stunning spectacle. A great many people have the Aurora Borealis on their bucket list of things to do at least once in a lifetime. Witnessing the awesome natural miracle when in Iceland can happen in the most comfortable of ways: by dreamily lying on one’s back underneath the transparent skin of an unconventional „hotel“ room in the shape of a bubble. Glamping under a canopy of stars means freedom and shelter at the same time.

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Reading time: about 2 minutes
Historic vehicles on display in Glasgow.

Down by the Riverside: Glasgow’s Museum of Transport and Travel

10.10.2018

Whenever a building has been designed by Iraqi-born star architect Zaha Hadid, it is destined to become an award-winning landmark that attracts maximum attention. The Riverside Museum, Scotland’s Museum of Transport and Travel set on the north bank of the River Clyde in Glasgow, profits from a combined power: the magnetism exerted by a contemporary architectural shell of attested refinement and the veteran exhibits restored to enchant present and future crowds. The Riverside accommodates more than 3,000 objects that profoundly document the city’s transportation-linked past – maritime and otherwise.

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Reading time: about 2 minutes
Longevity in Blue Zones

Longevity: The Blue Zones Methusalem Enigma

2.10.2018

The quality of longevity is being discussed in controversial ways. Whereas the set goal for the ones optimistic of their (ever-)lasting physical and mental stamina is reaching an age of biblical extent, others would rather see themselves passing away at the height of their beauty, wit and grit – just in time, so to say. For them, the outlook on being left wilting helplessly in a forlorn nursery home or as an undead vegetable plugged to the wonders of life-prolonging contraptions, is utterly unbearable. Not to hope for heavenly conditions on earth seems the more realistic approach as well as being aware that, commonly, just-in-time rarely happens.

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Reading time: about 3 minutes