How much weighs a dream?

English, Phil O' Soph

Approximate reading time: 30 minutes

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Setting goals in life is always an ambitious project. I never seriously fought to set new goals, but on the other hand I never shied away from it. After all, I successfully mastered two courses of study and at least learned to speak three foreign languages ​​fluently. Of course, this is quite impressive and at least something to make me say, that I reached my intrapersonal targets.

But I never fulfilled these goals with a feeling of a proud achievement because I couldn’t build up any emotional level to them. Neither before reaching the goal and nor afterwards. During reaching a goal, I also perceived it as a means to an end.

  • Drivers license? Not needed to know how to navigate a car. Annoying social obligation for individual mobility. But I did my license anyhow for car and motorbike.
  • High school diploma? Was funny and joyful, but served at the end only for more qualifications.
  • Apprenticeship? Well, if I have to. Not a bad idea, but not a good or quaint one either.
  • Bachelor title? Cost a lot of time to receive at the end only a colorful certificate and nice ceremony.
  • Master title? Still a realistic goal to skim a bit of my own potential. Literally to do something off the cuff.

I have rarely been fed up or satisfied and have only quickly check marked the goal that has always been reached or sometimes even surpassed. The epigraph was always to hurry on and never rest on own success.

I even wanted to continue after my Master’s with a Doctor degree. But my former university in Spain artificially artificially extended the certification of my master’s degree in an unprecedented act of administrative chaos and professional inability. Hence, after three elapsed registration periods for a possible doctoral program at another university, I finally lost the desire to waste even more patience or time because of some dorks. Funny to mention at this point that I am still waiting for the official title after 2.5 years. Incredible!

Goals only exist to be accomplished. Nothing more. I was much more interested in intangible and immaterial dreams and abstract ideas. Having a dream in life is wonderful. You can color it imaginatively for yourself, always navigate onto it and enjoy it quietly and secretly without being affected by others.


Dudú Blue Lagoon - Stray dog
A dreaming dog at a lagoon

Nobody can take away your dreams. But goals can be. It only needs one arbitrary and unprofessional decision maker or some administrational obstacles to cross your plans. These external factors can jeopardize your idea to accomplish the goal. Perhaps this was the reason why I could always build up a higher emotional level to dreams than goals. Because what is nicer than following my individual and perspective imagination of life?

Certainly not pursuing a goal and sharing a lecture hall with 100 fellow students, only to end up holding the same documentary wipe in my hands. This is more of a collective goal developed by society to create a certain claim against others. I prefer to stay with my individual dreams in me in my own hemisphere.

Of course, there are also people who advocate the exactly opposite perspective and dismiss dreams as lies. There’s nothing wrong or right about that. But if they don’t judge me, I won’t do the same.

I have often wondered how much a dream weighs. In contrast to a goal, a dream leaves a mental fingerprint and thus has a weight somewhere. The dream has to be stamped and located in a distant place in the brain and this naturally carries weight with it. A goal, on the other hand, is only achieved or not. But it has no mental burden comparable to a dream.


A baby sleeps and has sweet dreams
A baby having very active dreams

There are two dreams that I have followed and lived. One was fulfilled and the other was not. Am I physically heavier than before because of the dream came true?

Next page: A dream that luckily didn’t come true

Wie viel wiegt ein in Erfüllung gegangener Traum?

German, Phil O' Soph

Ungefähre Lesezeit: 30 Minuten

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Ziele im Leben zu setzen ist immer ein ambitioniertes Vorhaben. Ich habe mich nie ernsthaft um die Setzung neuer Ziele gerissen, aber auf der anderen Seite auch nie darum gescheut. Schließlich habe ich immerhin zwei Studiengänge erfolgreich mit Bravour gemeistert und immerhin drei Fremdsprachen fließend sprechen gelernt. Das kann sich natürlich durchaus sehen lassen und repräsentiert meiner Meinung nach das Erreichen von intrapersonellen Zielen.

Mich haben aber diese Ziele niemals mit Stolz erfüllt, weil ich keine Emotionalität dazu aufbauen konnte. Weder vor dem Erreichen des Ziels und danach schon gar nicht. Auch auf dem Wege dazu sah ich das Ziel eher als Mittel zum Zweck.

  • Führerschein? Braucht man nicht, um ein Auto lenken zu können. Lästige gesellschaftliche Pflicht zur individuellen Mobilität. Trotzdem für Auto und Motorrad gemacht.
  • Schulabschlüsse? War lustig und amüsant, aber diente nur der weiteren Qualifikation.
  • Ausbildung? Na gut, wenn es unbedingt sein muss. Keine schlechte Idee, aber auch kein ausgefallener Geistesblitz.
  • Bachelor? Kostete viel Zeit, brachte am Ende aber nur ein buntes Zertifikat und eine schöne Zeremonie.
  • Master? Ein bisschen was geht noch, kein unrealistisches Ziel. Nochmal die berühmte Schippe drauflegen und aus dem Ärmel schütteln.

Selten war ich satt oder gar zufrieden gestellt und habe das stets erreichte oder manchmal gar überflügelte Ziel schleunigst abgehakt. Hastig weiter machen wollen und nie auf einem Erfolg ausruhen war die Devise.

Ich wollte nach dem Mastertitel sogar noch einen Doktor dranhängen. Allerdings hat meine damalige Universität in Spanien in einem beispiellosen Akt an administrativem Chaos und professionellem Unvermögen die Zertifizierung meines Mastertitels derart künstlich in die Länge gezogen, dass mir nach drei verstrichenen Anmeldungsfristen für ein Doktorstudiengang irgendwann die Lust auf noch weitere Geduld, bzw. Zeitverschwendung vergangen ist. Lustig zu erwähnen an dieser Stelle, dass ich auch 2,5 Jahren nach erfolgreichem Abschluss noch immer auf den offiziellen Titel warte. Sachen gibt’s!

Ziele sind also nur da, um erreicht zu werden. Mehr aber nicht. Viel eher war ich an den immateriellen und nicht greifbaren Träumen und abstrakten Vorstellungsweisen interessiert. Einen Traum im Leben zu haben, ist etwas Wundervolles. Du kannst ihn für Dich persönlich imaginär ausmalen, Dich stets daran orientieren und ihn still und heimlich genießen.


Dudú Blue Lagoon - Stray dog
Ein träumender Hund am Ufer einer Lagune

Träume kann Dir keiner nehmen. Ziele hingegen schon. Da muss nur irgendein Querulant von inkompetentem, bzw. willkürlichem Entscheidungsträger im Weg sein oder eine administrative Hürde und bürokratische Schikane aufgebaut werden. Schon ist das gesteckte Ziel wegen dieser externen Einflussfaktoren in Gefahr, erreicht werden zu können. Vielleicht war es dieser Grund, weshalb ich stets eine höhere Emotionalität zu Träumen als zu Zielen aufbauen konnte. Denn was ist schöner als meiner individuellen und perspektivischen Vorstellung zu folgen?

Mit Sicherheit keinem Ziel hinterherzuhecheln und sich mit 100 Kommilitonen einen Vorlesungssaal zu teilen, nur um am Ende den gleichen dokumentarischen Wisch in den Händen zu halten. Das ist eher ein kollektives und von der Gesellschaft entwickeltes Ziel um ein gewisses Anspruchsdenken zu entwickeln und indoktrinieren. Da bleibe ich lieber bei meinen individuellen Träumen vor meinem geistigen Auge.

Es gibt natürlich auch Menschen, die die exakt andere Sichtweise verfechten und Träume als Schäume abtun. Ist weder verkehrt, noch korrekt. Aber: “Jeder Jeck ist anders” wie der besoffene Kölner an Karneval grölt.

Ich habe mich oft gefragt, wie viel ein Traum wiegt. Im Gegensatz zu einem Ziel hinterlässt ein Traum irgendwo einen mentalen Fingerabdruck und damit Gewicht. Der Traum muss irgendwo im Gehirn abgestempelt und lokalisiert werden und das trägt natürlich naturgegeben Gewicht mit sich. Ein Ziel hingegen wird lediglich erfüllt oder auch nicht. Aber es besitzt keine vergleichbare mentale Last wie ein Traum.


A baby sleeps and has sweet dreams
Ein Baby träumt während seiner sehr aktiven Nachtruhe

Es gibt zwei Träume, die ich verfolgt und gelebt habe. Anhand diesen beiden Beispielen möchte ich dezidiert versinnbildlichen, was den Traum ihn mir ausgelöst und was er in mir bewirkt hat. Der eine Traum hat sich erfüllt und der andere nicht. Bin ich durch den in Erfüllung gegangenen Traum nun physikalisch schwerer geworden als vorher?

Nächste Seite: Ein Traum, der sich glücklicherweise nicht erfüllt hat

Cuanto pesa un sueño?

Español, Phil O' Soph

Tiempo de lectura aproximado: 30 minutos

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Fijar metas en la vida es siempre un proyecto ambicioso. Nunca luché seriamente para establecer nuevas metas, pero por otro lado, nunca lo evité. Después de todo, obtuve  con éxito dos diplomas de estudios y  aprendí a hablar al menos tres idiomas extranjeros con fluidez. Por supuesto, esto es bastante impresionante y al menos algo para decirme a mi mismo que alcancé mis objetivos individuales.

Sin embargo nunca sentí orgullo por haber alcanzado estos objetivos porque no pude construir ningún nivel emocional con respecto a ellos . Ni antes de llegar a la meta ni después. El proceso de alcanzar un objetivo, también lo percibí como un medio para un fin.

  •                      Â¿Licencia de conducir? No es necesario saber cómo conducir un automóvil. Es solo una fastidiosa obligación social para poder transportarse individualmente. De todos modos la obtuve  para auto y moto.
  •                      Â¿Diploma de escuela secundaria? Fue divertido y alegre, pero sirvió al final sólo de requisito para poder continuar otros estudios .
  •                      Â¿Aprendizaje? Bueno, si tengo que hacerlo. No es una mala idea, pero tampoco es buena o pintoresca.
  •                      Â¿Título de bachillerato? Cuesta mucho tiempo por recibir al final solo un certificado colorido y una bonita ceremonia.
  •                      Â¿Título de Master? Sigue siendo un objetivo realista para aprovechar un poco mi propio potencial. Literalmente para hacer algo fuera del alcance.

Raramente me harto o estoy satisfecho y solo he marcado rápidamente el objetivo que siempre se ha alcanzado o, a veces, incluso superado. El epígrafe siempre fue apurarse y nunca descansar en el propio éxito.

Incluso quería continuar después de mi maestría con un doctorado Pero mi antigua universidad en España extendió artificialmente el proceso de la certificación de mi maestría en un acto de caos administrativo e incapacidad profesional inolvidable en mi vida. Por lo tanto, después de tres períodos transcurridos de registro para un posible programa de doctorado en otra universidad, finalmente perdí el deseo de perder aún más paciencia o tiempo debido a algunos burros. Es curioso mencionar en este punto que todavía estoy esperando el título oficial después de 2.5 años. Â¡Increíble!

Las metas sólo existen para ser alcanzadas. Nada más. Estaba mucho más interesado en sueños intangibles e inmateriales e ideas abstractas. Tener un sueño en la vida es maravilloso. Puedes colorearlo imaginativamente para ti mismo, siempre conducirte hacia él y disfrútalo en silencio y en secreto sin que otros te afecten.


Dudú Blue Lagoon - Stray dog
Un perro soñando en una laguna

Nadie puede quitarte tus sueños. Pero los objetivos pueden hacerlo. Sólo necesitas un arbitrario y poco profesional tomador de decisiones o algunos obstáculos administrativos para cambiar tus planes. Estos factores externos pueden poner en peligro tu idea para lograr el objetivo. Quizás esta fue la razón por la que siempre pude construir un nivel emocional más alto para los sueños que para los objetivos. Porque, ¿qué es más agradable que seguir mi imaginación  y perspectiva individual de la vida?

Ciertamente, no perseguir una meta y compartir una sala de conferencias con 100 compañeros, solo para terminar sosteniendo la misma limpieza documental en mis manos. Este es más un objetivo colectivo desarrollado por la sociedad para crear un cierto reclamo contra los otros. Prefiero quedarme con mis sueños individuales en mí, en mi propio hemisferio.

Por supuesto, también hay personas que defienden la perspectiva exactamente opuesta y descartan los sueños como mentiras. No hay nada correcto o incorrecto al respecto  o correcto en eso. Pero si ellos no me juzgan, yo no haré lo mismo.

A menudo me he preguntado cuánto pesa un sueño. En contraste con un objetivo, un sueño deja una huella mental y, por lo tanto, tiene un peso en alguna parte. El sueño tiene que ser estampado y ubicado en un lugar distante del cerebro y esto, naturalmente, conlleva peso. Un objetivo, por otro lado, solo se logra o no. Pero no tiene una carga mental comparable a un sueño.


A baby sleeps and has sweet dreams
Un bebé sueña activamente mientras esta durmiendo

Hay dos sueños que he seguido y vivido. Uno se cumplió y el otro no. Â¿Soy físicamente más pesado que antes porque el sueño se hizo realidad?

Página siguiente: Un sueño que afortunadamente no se hizo realidad

Be equilibrated and balanced at the ‘Middle of the world’

Journal

Approximate reading time: 7 minutes

Harmony. Zen. Balance. Peace. Don’t we all strive for that? There is one single place in the world, where you can have guaranteed equilibration. To go there, you need to visit Quito in Ecuador, the highest capital of the world. If you don’t have an own car, it’s a real odyssey to arrive their with public transport. I needed three different busses and two hours to get to the middle of the world.

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Quito itself is in between the Andean mountains and therefor stretched horizontally. Approximately 22 kilometers away from the city center is the equator situated. The urban area is due to the narrow valley not wider than two to three kilometers and extends longitudinally in north-south direction more than 30 kilometers out. So actually the middle of the world is not in Quito itself, but close to it

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Before the trip I heard several people speaking about the middle of the world. It’s one of the most visited tourism destinations of Ecuador. People told me about the real and the fake middle of the world and recommended to me to visit ‘Museo Intiñan’ instead of the renown monument itself. So after two hours of an exhausting bus ride I walked a bit to access the museum. Finally I can tell, that it was really worth it to travel that much.

How are museums usually from the eyes of a visitor? You have to be silent when you walk around, are not allowed to touch anything and pay quite some money to be allowed to enter. But this museum is something special, it’s comparably keen and there are several interactive things to do for a visitor, that it doesn’t get boring there. You will have a very motivated tour guide that explains even the most complicated physics of the odd features of Ecuador in an easy manner so that a fool like me will understand it as well. And yes, you can even learn something for real to be able to brag with your knowledge to others. For instance that your weight in Ecuador is one kg less than in other countries of the world:

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“In Ecuador your weight is less than in your country of origin, because it is the most width part of the earth and we are far away from the centre/core of the earth. Therefore the gravity strength is less.”

Great for everyone who wants to boost his/her diet plans! Apart from that there were several other interesting things to see:

 

 

 

 

 

 

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One of the most interesting moments was to see the equator itself. The feeling of being at the middle of the world is also psychologic a good one and gives a boost of motivation and confidence. The psychologic advantages are carried on physical disadvantages. If you are exactly on the equator line you will not be able to shift from one foot to another with closed eyes because your sense of balance is interfered because of the missing attractive force of the poles. Another malus is that you can’t resist if someone pushes you away from your stand. You simply can’t stand still because of the missing attractive force and will be slightly pushed away. But for taking a rest at the middle of the world it’s quite suitable.

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Another highlight was for me to balance an egg on the head of a nail – Nowhere else in the world is something like that possible. It took me several attempts and a lot of patience to accomplish that mission. And everyone who knows me good will confirm, that patience is not my specialty event.

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But after ten minutes and with the power of the Ecuadorian football jersey it finally worked out for me:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Have you ever thought, that even a water current is dependable of the attractive force of the poles? Check out the following three videos and you know what I mean:

 

 

 

 

 

So depending on where exactly you are in the world, the water flows down either clockwise, vertically plummeting or counter-clockwise. How shocking is that? And I always thought, that the Simpsons episode with Barts phone call prank with an Australian boy was just shenanigans. But lesson learned!

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What you can see on my finger tip is the fake middle of the world. The monument itself was built from the Ecuadorian government, when they found out, that the museum was attracting many tourists and visitors. Their first idea was: “We want to profit from that as well”. And so they declared the term ‘middle of the world’ as a public possession and built their own attraction 200 meters away. Apart from that, they forbid the museum to have this term as well in their name. The museum changed therefor its name to ‘Museo Intiñan’ and every visitor needs to pay 5 Dollar to access the monument. And the monument is not even on the latitude zero.

My advice: Don’t miss the museum ‘Museo Intiñan’ (Inti = Sun. ñan = path). You can still go after that to the monument and if you have five dollar spare you should invest them. But the museum itself should be of your major interest and attention.

 

Yummy Ceviche: Chilean, Ecuadorian or Peruvian style?

Foooooood

Approximate reading time: 7 minutes

The South American cuisine has many things to offer for hungry stomachs: Lomo Saltado, Empanadas, Vori Vori, Mbeyú, Chrurrasco, etc. Some would say, that vegetarians could have a difficult time to find a for their conviction a suitable dish. And that might be true: Especially BBQ’s are popular for South American families at the weekends. And BBQ’s contain most of the time? Yes, exactly: Meat. But one South American dish might be a worthwhile alternative to try.

All hardcore vegetarians or vegans miss of course many opportunities for good dishes. Speaking of myself I can’t even imagine to not eat meat or fish. This scenario never popped into my head, not even when one of my ex-girlfriends tried to make the whole vegetarian style tempting to me. There is no way, that I will ever try to avoid meat. Unfortunately there is too many good food that includes meat or fish. And I don’t want to miss that.

If someone would ask me the question: “If you have to stop eating either meat or fish, what would you chose?”I would probably not be able to give a profound or well argued answer. Simply both would be sad to avoid eating. Probably I would chose fish, because it’s more difficult to acquire and therefor more expensive. Meat on the other hand is easier to produce for a costumer and better available.

The most tasty South American fish-dish is Ceviche. It has also regionally different names like Cebiche or Seviche. But these names look very wrong in my eyes so forget about the alternative spellings. Ceviche comes originally from Peru, but has emerged in different American countries, like Ecuador, Chile and Mexico. All of these countries have adapted the Peruvian idea of preparing raw fish with there own tastes and styles.
And Peru loves Ceviche! The Peruvian government declared 10 years ago June 28 the ‘Day of Ceviche’, a yearly commemoration day to honor their traditional dish. Since 2005 it is even a national cultural heritage. According to a resolution of the Ministry of Production, which was published in their official gazette, the decision aims to

“promote and disseminate the Peruvian seviche, both nationally and internationally, as a national prestigious dish, stimulating its culinary consumption.”

Although they wrote Ceviche with an S, it reads like a love letter to their own food. I had the luck to try so far the Peruvian, Chilean and Ecuadorian version of Ceviche. The Mexican one I didn’t try so far. But I would like to share and compare the other three ones I tried.

Chilean Ceviche

First I must say, that I only tried one single time Ceviche from Chile. In 2014 I was for a couple of days in Santiago and tried a local dish of Ceviche. Spoiled after spending some months in Lima and eating the original version, the Ceviche from Chile was more than disappointing and not worth the money. Besides the very sour taste, the garlic and chili was marinated as well. It also contained mint, which really didn’t belong there. I didn’t take any photo of the plate, but here you can see a video about other food travelers who compared Peruvian with Chilean ceviche:

Not my favorite, I wouldn’t order it again.

Ecuadorian Ceviche

A complete different style is the Ecuadorian Ceviche. You have more options to choose your main component you would it like to prepared with. Generally spoken, Ceviche Ecuadorian style is more expensive than the other in the two other countries, but this is due to the higher living costs in Ecuador. And it comes as well with a complete different style of preparing, check the following picture:

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Different than the Peruvian one. It has it’s color and taste because of the addition of tomato.

What we see here is almost a soup. although the fish is already dead, it swims inside of tomato sauce. Same reason for its taste is the different color. The idea with tomato is interesting, but changed the taste of the whole dish completely. Both examples here did not taste like lemon or a comparable sour flavor. The left one ($11.50) was with prawn and fish, the right one ($9.00) with a mix of various tastes. Not one both pictures visible are popcorn, Corn (fried corn) and Chifles (fried banana chips), what is typical side dish for Ecuador.

Peruvian Ceviche

The original! The icon! The legend! Peruvian Ceviche comes with a sour taste and several side components. Slices of raw fish are marinated in freshly squeezed key lime or bitter orange juice. Nicely prepared and stacked over one another with eatable seaweed on top. Next to that it was prepared with sliced red onions, chili peppers, salt and pepper.

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Next to the actual ceviche, the whole plate came with two sweet potatoes, fried yuca and corn. The second best after the unmistakable taste is the price: I only paid 31.00 Soles ($9.50). More than fair for a bunch of good food.

All in all the podium should look as followed:

podest

5 reasons to live in Quito and 5 reasons to leave Quito

ecuador, English, Journal, Languages

Approximate reading time: 12 minutes

Quito! Capital of Ecuador! And at the same time the highest capital in the world! But how can that be with ‘only’ 2,850 m in altitude? I was very shocked, when I read this a few months ago, because I was always on the assumption, that Bolivia has the highest capital in the world. Then I was happy because my assumption was semi-correct: La Paz is on 3,640 m of altitude. Then I was shocked again because La Paz is the seat of the Bolivian government, but it’s not the official capital of Bolivia. Sucre is the constitutional capital of Bolivia and retains judicial power. And with only 2,810 m in altitude, it’s not the highest capital of the world. And Quito is very proud of 40 m more, because size matters!
Quito is as well the capital of the world, which is located closest to the equator. Apart from that, Quito has several wonderful nicknames:

– Luz de América (Light of America)
– Carita de Dios (God’s Face)
– Ciudad de los Cielos (City of the heavens)

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