Thursday, 29 May 2008

Scanning the scene in Poland tonite!

An important chapter in my life! Metallica concert!!! YEAH!!! Since I was just a teenager I've been waiting for this moment. That 28th of May will never be forgotten! Nothing would stop me from having a good time! My first challenge was to find tickets. Tickets had been sold out very quickly and I really didn't expect that. I had to buy it on Allegro (some kind of auction website - like
eBay) for three times the original price and to watch it from the sector number 40, very far from the stage. When I arrived at the venue I noticed how bad I was allocated!! Ofcourse I wouldn't accept that!! I had to go through the securities guards somehow and sneak into the main sector, in front of the stage. That's what true fans would do! YEAH!

When the composition "the ugly and the bad" by Enio Morricone started to play, announcing the opening of the concert I started to wonder what would be the first song? Enter Sandman? Blackened? So What? - For my surprise, they opened with Creeping Death, which belongs to my favourite album. "Ride the lightning". I have to admit I was lucky because they played almost all of my favourites except for "Fade to Black". But that's fine. Not gonna cry for that one. :P

James Hetfield has an uncomparable carisma with the fans, always saying "Thank you, Poland" and interacting with the audience. In this following footage he teases the poles before playing the classic "Seek and Destroy":

More photos:

Sunday, 25 May 2008

Oslo fun

The thirst of an avid traveller is never quenched. After conquering the east side I might start conquer the lands of Asgard! Norway is my very first contact with the nordic countries.

I have to admit that Oslo was a surprise for me. I expected a very gelid atmosphere, but the city is very rushed. Lots of young people trying to enjoying the warmth of a sunny day with +15 Celsius. The tradition is to buy some sort of disposable barbecue gear to bake some sausages in the park, relaxing and talking. Even though this disposable BBQ gear seems very practical and futurist, it produces a lot of garbage and though they are against the new trends for sustainability. :)

One issue that is always part of the conversation in Scandinavian countries is the costs of living. Prices are absurdly high. Even for locals. Cigarettes are so expensive that it's hard to see somebody smoking. Alcohol is also very expensive. Whenever students get together to drink, everyone brings his/her own alcohol! After logical series of thoughts I came up with a conclusion about the absence of poverty in Norway - All the poor died because they couldn't afford food! That's obvious!! :)

Feel this cultural shock:

1 single-use pass for Metro/Tram/Bus (valid for 1 hour) - 2,90 EUR
1 banana - 1 EUR
1 half-liter beer in a pub - 7 EUR
1 BurgerKing meal - 12 EUR

Another thing that impressed me in Oslo was the amount of immigrants. 22% of the population are foreigners. Everybody is able to speak fluent English, most of the signs are also shown in english. Easy city, easy transportation, easy communication.

Spots I visited during my short stay were: Palace of the king, Main square, Harbor, Reptile Zoo, National Museum (in which I saw the famous painting of Edvard Munch, The Scream)

I also went to the new and futurist opera house (four months old) with modern architecture, one public park with a lot of sculptures(I took nice photos), and at last I visited the top of Radisson SAS hotel, which is the highest building in Oslo:

One special moment I had during this trip was in a club. The DJ played the song entitled "CHINATOWN" by the Irish band "Thin Lizzy". I thought that band had been forgotten long time ago since the vocalist Lynott died by an overdose in 1986. But they still rock! :)

For full photo album click here

Sunday, 18 May 2008

Heavy times

I have some good time once in a while!

Part of my new European lifestyle also concerns enjoying the craziest metal festivals. This time, a dream is comming true. In Poland I'll have the opportunity to see the two most successful and top-selling metal bands of all time.

Iron Maiden's concert will be an important chapter of my life (of course Metallica's concert will be too), but I started to be a heavy metal boy when I listened to Iron Maiden for the first time at the age of twelve! I still remember my first cassette: "Real Live One", which I bought randomly just because I liked the cover picture. Funny when I think how randomly fate can diverge. If it wasn't for that day, I would be listening to some crapy music now, maybe I wouldn't be a metal banger at all.

After that cassette, I bought the album "Fear of the dark", "No prayer for the dying" and so on...

Now, I just can't wait to hear Dickinson's voice shouting: "SCREAM FOR ME POLAND!!!" - Specially because it's the "Somewhere back in time" tour, and they are going to play old stuff from the 80's. No "X-Factor" or "Virtual XI" shit. :P

My first cassette:

Metallica came later for me. I remember when I saw a videoclip on MTV of a song entitled: "Hero of the day". The year was 1997. That song became the first song I've ever learned to play on guitar, even before I have my own guitar (1999) I used to borrow it from some friends to learn to play that one. As I started to listen to previously-released songs by Metallica, I enjoyed it more and more, now I got all the albums, even some relics such as "The 5,98 EP Garage Days" which was being sold for a short period of time during the 80's, and became a collectors piece. Metallica had motivated me to have my own Metallica cover band in the year 2000. Unfortunately we performed live only once.

I had a big frustration once, when I attempted to go to their concert in 1999, in Sao Paulo, BRA - I was only seventeen years old, and my parents didn't allow me to go. Second big frustration came few years later when they have announced a south-american tour in 2003. I had bought tickets, booked flight and hotel and then they cancelled the tour.

Now it seems that, finally, THE day is comming. :)

Thursday, 8 May 2008

Brazilian bash in Wrocław

Think about the biggest Brazilian meeting ever made in Wrocław. Six people! (Uff! Very true!) There are not so many Brazilians around. In total we've heard about eight Brazilians at the moment living in Wrocław, but only six were available to join. We had a very special Brazilian feijoada with traditionals cheese-breads - Sponsored by lovely Angolan friend Angela who sent the black beans and the cheese-bread powder from Great Britain to me.

There was also "Polish-Caipirinha" - Which consists on a normal Wyborowa vodka (polish) but prepared as a Brazilian caipirinha (limes, crushed ice rocks). It's also possible to see a bottle of Zlaty Bazant which is a Slovak beer. Bringing the Slovak temper to our party. :P

People who joined:

Ana (Blondy) from Rio de Janeiro
Izabela (Brunette) from Curitiba
Nano (Carrying the flag) from Salvador
Luis (Red t-shirt) from Rio de Janeiro
Edmilson (Blue t-shirt) from Recife
Paulo (Dark-brown t-shirt) from Pantanal Forest

Photos: (click to enlarge)

I'm already looking forward for the next feijoada! :P

Tuesday, 6 May 2008

Weekend in Budapest

Budapest was one of the capital cities from eastern Europe that was on my list of places to visit. After 8 months living in Poland, I finally got some free time to travel and I ended up there, and veeery well accompanied. ;)

Impressions I had at first sight were really good. Very outrageous palace in the hills reins the view and sovereign Danube river quietly flows. Cities such as Prague, Krakow and Budapest are no longer "good kept secrets" - the tourism boom has already taken them all. Budapest's city center is crowded. I've seen more McDonald's, BurgerKing's, KFC's and Subway's in Budapest centre than in Manhattan. Very true! But even though American branches came very fast, people only speak Hungarian language, which is totally different from any other language. Even at McDonalds, staff working in the cashier are only able to speak "big" or "small", and numbers from 1 to 10... - "One bigmac, Cola big?". Be prepared for that. :P

City is veeery expensive. Prices are more or less similar to prices in the western europe. Example: 3,30 Euros for a half-liter beer in a pub, 1,30 EURO for a single-way metro ticket. That makes me love Slovakia and Poland more and more. :P

Summarising my experience: Budapest is really nice city, really worth seeing. Do go there! :)

Some photos from the city (click to enlarge):

I also visited some special indoor zoo - mostly for fishes and reptiles, they call it "Tropicarium" it's inside the shopping center "Campona". Really cool!

Some photos from the Tropicarium (click to enlarge):

Click here to see the full photo album