03
Jul
15

Karlovy Vary’s 50th

What a fabulous day…the heat is putting a siege to Europe but fresh wind swirls along Karlovy Vary’s Teplà’s valley. From the balcony of our hotel we just looked at the red carpet opening ceremony of the 50th KV Film Festival. The small city today is in full swing, full of “festivaliers” with their orange lanyard and passes, the majority of them young.

Needless to say, quite a different red carpet experience compared to our usual Berlinale icy experience!

 

31
May
15

Migration, jobs and Europe

Die-Offensive_01The warmer season sees the flow of immigrants and refugees increasing especially on the northern side of the Mediterranean, but this is true also for the east-facing borders of Italy.

However, the Italian radio today focused on two other aspects of migration, within Europe. On the one hand, Germany like Italy has a demographic problem. Natality apparently is now even lower than Japan’s, as alluded on this morning press review.

On the other hand, Germany will need to counter-act its demographic problem not only by attracting immigration from non-EU countries as described in a recent Bertelsmann Foundation study, but also within the EU and from Italy, as commented on Pagina 3. The country keeps on upgrading its online information portals targeted at individuals who want to live – and work – in Germany.

This leaves Italy as a country with demographic problems today, which will become even tougher tomorrow. Very interesting the contribution from one family originally from Umbria, saying that although the Black Forest city they moved to is “more silent, and initially with a sensation of void” they will never go back to Umbria. Or the Italian IT free lance consultant, who left Italy because the only option for survivial would have been tax dodging and he did not want to make ends meet in such a way.

Lastly, Osservatorio degli Italiani a Berlino shows detailed statistics on one of today’s immigration magnets for the younger population.

Of course in the context of a United Europe how to balance employment, demographics and services within local communities shoud be considered just as another layer of an existing regional issue. But in a EU where GDPs, pensions and jobs are still topics which have a national relevance – pensions and deficits especially – this imbalance becomes another disruptive factor on which politicians seem behind the curve.

In conclusion, Europeans are more Europeans than the countries and fiscal and legal environment they come from, and are voting – and working & paying taxes – with their feet.

25
May
15

in search of…..2

P1150600We are still elaborating on our future holiday…last week during a business trip I collected another hint for our quest…Grand Hotels…winding staircases….P1150587

pastel hues…and trimmings reminding of uniforms…P1150588

…high teas…P1150590

…and melanchonic bars…

P1150603…spas for daydreaming….P1150601…all this in 45 minuts of free time before heading to the airport. What would Europe be without its Grand Hotels, real estate equivalents of elephants, witnessing the gyrations of history?

25
May
15

Kamp is also sans soucis

P1150670Italian style gardens, always a pleasure for us…they remind us of Toscana, Brenta, Frascati…Villa Medici…

P1150648But also Sans Souci in Berlin.

P1150653 Here pear trees climb up the terraces and are facing South and kissed by the sun…P1150654 a giant pergola is entirely covered in wisteria…

P1150679

Definitely, not only Kaisers but also Abbots were fond of horticoltural displays of power…

P1150669

Kamp Lintorf is on the European Road of Cistercians Abbeys…another vision for Europe…which links Italy, Spain, France, Germany and more…

P1150681

25
May
15

Biergarten idyll/2

P1150557Another biergartent, another city….another evening at the end of a nice sunny day full of discoveries: the Kuhviertel in Muenster….

25
May
15

Biergarten idyll/1

P1150802Spring in Germany…very long evenings…golden light…nice biergartens with chestnut trees, flowers and inspiring views…

25
May
15

Simmetry in Kleve

P1150763Closer and closer to the Dutch border, not far from Nijmegen, we reach Kleve and its Amphiteatrum, with its 1700 landscape art…I wonder if there is a relation between the novel La princesse de Clèves and Kleve?P1150762

View from the obelisc…do you have a senese of dèjà vu? ah Europe I adore you…Bourg-la-Reine, Versailles, Caserta, Augustusburg…all showcasing the incredible landscape art of 1700…

P1150798




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