A Nostalgic Throwback to my Earlier Cake Decorating Days

A year ago from now has been quite an exceptional season during which I had the honour to make and create novelty cakes for many persons dear to me whose feedback was priceless! ¬†I’m regularly being reminded about those pieces so it’s kind of hard to literally erase my past days as a cake decorator from my mind, they having played such an important and significant part in my life.

Some good memories, which I’d like to randomly share with you. ¬†I really cannot show them all but almost all of the cakes I’ve done in the past could be seen in the active slideshow on the main Page of my blog, starting from the ones from when I was a complete novice to the most perfected! ¬†I was completely self-taught so, at the end, it was a great satisfaction for me … a great means with which I could express my creativity and artistic side whilst earning that little something! ¬†Please do feel free to acquire some ideas! ūüôā

Accepting nature’s invitation to go outdoors when this month of February is so forgiving!

Grabbing the opportunity that this month of February is temporarily giving us by providing such an unexpectedly beautiful weather, and overcoming the urge of staying comfy indoors at that moment in your weekend when you’d wish nothing else but rest and take it easy, is definitely the best decision to take, even if the day doesn’t manifest itself as being a good one from the very start! ¬†Forget all the usual preparations regarding food, etc … just chuck water, both hot and cold in case you would like to have some tea or coffee afterwards :), together with some sealed goodies and the ever-oh-so-most important first-aid kit in your backpack, drag your loved ones with you (or be dragged!) and off you go!

I just wish to share with you a normal day spent amidst the already awakening nature whilst still waiting for spring to come. ¬†With temperatures at 18¬įC (64.4¬įF), and only the crisp north wind to dither perfection, the circumstances just can’t have you saying no to do some trekking! ¬†We don’t have a lot of greenery in the central area of our island¬†but when you drive just for a brief period of time in order to reach any edge that touches the Mediterranean sea what you’ll see below is what you’ll find! ūüôā ¬†Just close your eyes and inhale … poetry without words and pure air thrusting itself right into¬†your nostrils, enough to blow away any burdening thought! ¬†Come with me through these unedited pictures, which purposely reflect the true colours of the day, to one of the loveliest and highest parts of the Maltese city of Mellieha …

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Maltese garrigue and thyme bushes
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St. Agatha’s Tower

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Peeping into a crevice with my heart in my mouth ¬†…
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A cuppa tea with a traditional honey ring and everyone’s happy! ¬†No recipe here this time, cause I bought these yummy honey rings ready made, but I’ll gladly find and send the recipe to anyone that might be interested!
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Nothing better than sipping beer at the beach facing the sea!

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So, yesterday started on a sad note … the day before the one I commemorate my dear Dad’s second birthday from his absence and a day on which my body-energy battery was marking near flat … but it turned out to be quite a pleasant¬†one, after all!

Only one thing … as we were driving back home, apathy returning as I was thinking about the long week that I had to face, we passed right ahead of a fatal accident, which unfortunately, left a motorcyclist dead straight on impact. ¬†At that moment, apart from feeling guilty about my grumpiness towards the insignificant, I couldn’t but help feeling blessed to have a home and the usual problems to return to … yesterday was a day that wanted me to feel alive!

A Second Tribute to all the Hard-working Souls behind Maltese Carnival Floats

Months of manual and meticulous toil … works and masterpieces of art! ¬†A big THANK YOU to all those involved! ¬†The weather forecast wasn’t looking that good at first but, thankfully, it came around! ¬†I couldn’t help sharing these other pictures!

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When the saying “If you can’t beat them join them” isn’t always the right decision to take!

Before I write this kind of a newly learnt lesson from¬†a rant, I must honestly admit that I’m that kind of person who doesn’t entirely agree with this saying … or else, I better say that my nature doesn’t let me follow its lead! ¬†I like to stick with my principles and, if not literally thrown with my back against the wall, I’d rather do the contrary!

So, I’m one of those mothers who still have a kid to drive to school. ¬†Many a time I find myself in the same situation, and have the same issue, which the bold¬†Jenny Ingram from Seattle has made world-widely public after¬†having had enough of poor etiquette in school drop-off¬†zones.

In my sincere opinion, our school has one of the best drop-off zone settings in the country. ¬†The school is situated in a very heavy trafficked area so, apart from the need of having the road in front of the school closed for a stipulated period of time, with¬†a policeman always vigilant, there was also¬†definitely¬†the need of creating¬†such a zone, most especially because of the limited parking places available around the area too. ¬†The problem is always the same, though … there’s no respect from a number of parents who are totally entitled to use this facility but who either don’t know what ethics mean or else just aren’t aware of the real meaning of a drop-off zone. ¬†You should drive into it, moving to as far as a point you could reach¬†to let other cars drive in behind you, stop your car just to give enough time for¬†your kid to get out of the car and enter the school premises (which is safe in our case, as kids just have to cross a very small garden through a straight route and enter the gate) and drive along to the exit with other cars trailing behind, one after the other.

But, what do many people do? ¬†They stop their car at the very mouth of the lane, hence not giving the chance to other vehicles¬†to enter the zone, and even take their whole time to calmly get out of the car themselves, open doors, keep packing things up in their kids’ school-bag (as the car is definitely more comfortable to manoeuvre things in instead of preparing them from home!!!) and also lead their children themselves to the door! ¬†And, an idiot like me starts swearing to myself,¬†cause … remember … I’d have a kid in my car, using all the vocabulary in my knowledge, and would have to make some kind of a stunt to reverse or turn the car without bumping into another one, since the road ahead would be closed! ¬†Oh yes … by the way … my child would have to get out of the car in an unsafe part of the road to enter the school in time. ¬†Aaaarrrgggghhh!

Not that I’m an exemplary person but when my kids weren’t old enough to handle things like such alone, I simply used to park at a suitable parking place, even a bit far away if it were necessary, and walked them to the school myself when I didn’t have to use the school’s transport! … just saying!! :p

Oh! ¬†And it doesn’t end here! ¬†If you’d really be so fortunate to find the space open to enter you’d most probably end up waiting some more minutes alone in your car at midway because there’d be someone else who does the same act in the middle or at the far end part of the zone, hence blocking anyone who’d wish to drive to work in time after their kids would have already entered safely the premises ages before!

Trying to cut this as short as possible, I’m now going to try to come to the point regarding what I wished to primarily¬†convey as¬†related to the saying in my title!

So, lately I had¬†made a hero out of a person who I coincidentally find¬†driving just in front of me many a time! ¬†He would have always had to do some kind of a stunt like mine because of the problem, park his car somewhere temporarily, where it wouldn’t have been of any kind of obstruction, and get out of it to admonish the people whose car would be blocking the area … even if it meant to wait for them until they’d¬†return back to it! ¬†Well … in some kind of a way he was¬†doing me a big favour … that of relieving part or all of my own frustration knowing I’m that kind of person who would think twice before acting like¬†he did!

But, what happened? ¬†Things are¬†good at times, and rules are sometimes obeyed, but some behaviours never change! ¬†I totally resigned myself to the idea of having the space always available at my right disposal, so I start driving from home and in the meantime prepare myself to take any other route in case I’d smell¬†a blockage from afar.

This made-up hero of mine seems like he doesn’t think things out the same as I do, though! ¬†One fine day, not long ago, I was the one who had my car doing acrobatics because I found HIM blocking the entrance of the zone! ¬†He unfortunately decided to follow the saying and he chose to join the wrongdoers! ¬†Maybe out of despise … maybe out of stubbornness … all that I know is that now he’s making things difficult for people who follow the rules like me! ¬†Nothing new!

Everyone tries to follow the concept¬†of the survival of the fittest in life but who do you think is the survivor¬†here!? ¬†Of course, one might easily come to the hurried conclusion that it’s not the ones like me! ¬†Well, as I asked in the title of this piece, is it always convenient to join others if you can’t beat them? ¬†This time round, it wasn’t such a good idea for this now ex-hero of mine¬†to consider! ¬†Usually, taking care of obstructions in this drop-off zone doesn’t enter into the jurisdiction of the policeman in charge of the closed road, in front of¬†whom I remove my hat for his dedicated work and patience, but the first time I caught this chap I’m talking about¬†copying whom he’d been¬†reproving¬†for such a long time he ended up creating a whole, confusional¬†jam himself, so much so that the policeman couldn’t but notice and be urged to leave his post for this person to be fined!

Morale of this story … think twice before joining the masses!

Anyone remembers Gatchaman aka Battle of the Planets?

Well … whilst I’m rummaging through my old pieces of poetry and writing,¬†I’ve come across the poem you’ll find below, which I’ve written in English some long time ago and which instantly catapulted me directly to my yearned¬†childhood and adolescence! ¬†I have to admit that I have grown up watching this animated series, together with my brother,¬†and this piece of writing isn’t having a hard time rekindling the fan in me!

Having had¬†the lucky availability of¬†Italian television channels in our channel list, at that prehistoric time of communication, I also had the fortunate opportunity to watch all the three series of Gatchaman, over and over again! ¬†Yes … there were three series … Gatchaman, Gatchaman II and Gatchaman Fighter, cause whilst doing some research I’ve come to the understanding that these, especially the last two series, did not reach many¬†countries but¬†were better known as the adapted version Battle of the Planets instead! ¬†It’s hard for me to explain, so here’s an excerpt from Wikipedia,¬†which should definitely¬†make¬†things better comprehensible than my trying to do so!

Science Ninja Team Gatchaman (ÁßĎŚ≠¶ŚŅćŤÄÖťöä„ā¨„ÉÉ„ÉĀ„É£„Éě„É≥Kagaku Ninjatai Gatchaman?) is a five-member superhero team composed of the main characters of several anime created by Tatsuo Yoshida, originally produced in Japan by Tatsunoko Productions and later adapted into several English-language versions. The team is also known as Gatchaman.

The original series, produced in 1972, was eponymously entitled Kagaku Ninja Tai Gatchaman and is best known in the English-speaking world as the adaptation entitled Battle of the Planets (1978).[2] The series had additional English adaptations with G-Force: Guardians of Space (1986) and ADV Films‘ uncut 2005 release. Tatsunoko also uses the official translation Science Commando Gatchaman in related products and media.

The original Kagaku Ninja Tai Gatchaman series was followed by an animated film and two sequel series, Gatchaman II (1978) andGatchaman Fighter (1979). During the 1990s, episodes from both series were dubbed into English by Saban as Eagle Riders. In 1994, the original series was remade as a condensed original video animation series.[3]

A second feature-film version of Gatchaman was in production by Imagi Animation Studios, directed by Ben Gluck for a 2012 release, but was canceled as a result of the studio’s financial problems. A live-action film was developed by Nikkatsu Studios and released in 2013.

Oh gosh! ¬†I’m blushing now! … in front of you and the only idea that my kids could see this article and poem! ¬†I would be doomed in case of the latter happening! ūüôā

Not wishing to stretch this any further, here’s this poem I’ve written when I still dreamed of some hint regarding the unfulfilled¬†romance between my two favourite characters of the series, the Eagle and the Swan, and when I still was not happy with the fact that the third and last series had been ended with a huge, tantalising¬†cliffhanger! ¬†Hence my morose thoughts towards a possible short sequel of mine! ¬†I apologise to¬†those who cannot relate to any of the characters, to any¬†part of the plot or to the original series whatsoever, as even names were changed in the adaptation! ¬†I really wish that this brilliant work of animation, considering the period in time during which it has been produced, could have reached more people. ¬†Psst … there are sets of DVDs available, though!

First Kiss

 

Amidst acres of snow, in a no man’s land,

a firebird’s chanting just one last song,

and not far away four wounded ninjas stand,

the Owl bearing the Eagle all way long.

 

Their commander’s life was coming to an end,

and all of them knew there was something wrong;

Ryu put him down and the Swan took Ken’s hand

knowing, by now, that she had to be strong.

 

As Ken’s eyes opened, their blue now so hollow,

Jun fought against tears to yield a forged bliss;

so did the Condor, the Owl and the Swallow.

 

‚ÄúI love you, Jun ‚Ķ I always did!‚ÄĚ Ken did tell,

and Jun put her lips on his … their first kiss …

her last, the Swan promised, as his hand fell.

 

©Marie G.

Any comments would be more than welcome, as I’m curious about how many can relate to this childhood memory!