Oktoberfest

by Jasmine Jacobs, Germany

 

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Oktoberfest is the world largest and most popular folk festival in the world. A folk festival celebrates traditional folk crafts and folk music. It is located in Munich, in Germany. Every year over 6 million people from all over the world come to Munich to be a part of it.

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One of the most popular traditions is the first draft from a freshly tapped cask of beer. This tradition signals the start of Oktoberfest.

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On one day you can see the splendid carriages of the Munich breweries. Every spectacular carriage is different and unique.

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It’s a 16-18 days folk festival. If you are over 18 years old you should visit the big tents. There you can listen to German folk music, drink the traditional beer and eat the traditional food. Warning: The beer is really expensive, it costs approximately $12.

There are 14 big and 15 small tents. In all these tents there is space for over 100,000  people. Every year all tents are completely full.

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To wear traditional German clothes is a fun part for all visitors. Women where a ‘Dirndl’, which is like a dress, and men wear leather trousers.

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This folk festival is not only a fun event for adults. In the outdoor area there is a huge range of fun activities for young people so it’s not necessary to visit a tent. You can have a lot of fun just being outside.

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Wanderlust – the Need of Travel

Stella Pioli, Italy

I love to travel. Don’t you love that feeling when your first waking thought is, “Oh, yeah…I’m going somewhere today!”?. My parents and grandparents always told me to explore the world, because if we were meant to stay in one place, we’d have roots instead of feet.

 

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A word that we always hear more often is “Wanderlust”. For those who don’t know what it is, it means a strong desire for or impulse to travel and explore the world. It may reflect an intense urge for self-development by experiencing the unknown, getting to know unfamiliar cultures, ways of life and behaviors, or may be driven by the desire to escape. For them, it’s not only travel, but a challenge; they explore places where they are likely to be pushed out of their comfort zones or encouraged to take risks.

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Not everybody is meant to travel. There are some people who never feel the urge to leave the house. Staying in the city they came from, hanging out with the people they have known since they were kids, sitting on the same the couch, and staying in the 360 degrees that immediately surrounds them: they’re happy with that. A lot of people in this world don’t see the point of travelling, and most say it’s a waste of time, money, or it’s scary to travel to places that are far away.

“The world is a book and those who do not travel read only one page” – Saint Augustine

Then there are the rest of us: the people who can’t sit still and always keep their passports on them – just in case. In fact, if we did not love to travel and explore a new culture we would have never taken this trip to Santa Barbara. It doesn’t matter if you stay for 4 weeks or 9 months, you had the impulse to travel, you were bitten by the travel bug. We are still finding and preparing ourselves for school and career. The skills and experience we gain from traveling abroad gives us life-long personal benefits as well as a leg up in the professional world.

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But have you ever wondered why some people need to travel more than others? For those people, it becomes one of life’s essential needs, as important as food and shelter.

Well, a study shows that such behavior traits with a gene variant known as DRD4-7R, which is thought to be present in around 20 % of the population. Some have even nicknamed it as the “wanderlust gene”. DRD4 is a dopamine receptor that helps control the levels of dopamine in our brains. The 7R allele is associated with increased risk-taking, curiosity and various psychiatric disorders including ADHD, alcoholism and drug dependency.

 

The Earth is filled with infinite experiences, wonders and once-in-a-lifetime opportunities. Imagine, camping out underneath the aurora borealis in the Canadian tundra or hiking through the Sacred Valley of Machu Picchu. I believe that a lot of education is experienced in a classroom or through a textbook, but it isn’t nearly as fulfilling or effective as traveling the world.

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We are inspired to live better, to be happier and to give back to those in need. Our lives are defined by experiences. The greater the number of experiences, the better the definition of life becomes.

“You only live once, but if you do it right, once is enough” – Mae West.

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7 German Foods You Have To Try

By Kira Maria Wasserthal, Germany

My name is Kira. I’m from Germany. I have lived there since I was born for 19 years. I’m really into German food because it’s so delicious and multifunctional. So I think everyone should know something about our really good food.

  1. Pretzel

In Ge1rman you don’t say “Pretzel” you say “Bretzel” with a long “e”.

A Pretzel is a type of baked bread product made from dough most commonly shaped into a twisted knot. It also has salt on it. Salt is an important part of the Pretzel because with salt it tastes way better than without.

      2.Käsespätzle

Käsespätzle is my favori2te food here in Germany. Käsespätzle are a kind of soft egg noodle scalloped with cheese. You also put fried onions on it. This tastes so good!

For really good flavor you have to make the noodles by hand. It’s really easy.

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3. Sauerkraut

“Sauerkraut is finely cut cabbage that has been fermented by various lactic acid bacteria. It has a long shelf life and a distinctive sour flavor, both of which result from the lactic acid that forms when the bacteria ferment the sugars in the cabbage.” This is the definition of Sauerkr6.aut from Wikipedia.

But I have to say that Sauerkraut isn’t really good food for everybody. To be honest I don’t really like it because I just don’t like the taste of it. But some people really love it. So you have to choose for yourself!

      4. Weisswurst

Weisswurst is typical Bavarian food. In the part of Germany where I live (Hessen), it’s not as common to eat Weisswurst like it is in Bavaria. But when I go to Munich (it’s the capital of Bavaria) I always e7.at it because it’s soo good!

I would say Weisswurst is similar to the normal Bratwurst (sausage in English) because the form is the nearly the same, but it looks different. In the image below you can see how a sausage looks if you have never seen one before:

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Weisswuerste are usually eaten as a mid-morning snack. They are made fresh every morning. It has a really mild taste. That’s why it’s also really popular for children.

5.Fleischkäse

The next one is “Fleischkäse”. You can also say “Leberkäse”. It consists of corned beef, pork and bacon a9.nd is made by grinding the ingredients very finely and then baking it as a loaf in a bread pan until it has a crunchy brown crust. You can also eat it with bread. I always eat it like this at school. It’s way better!

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    6. Schnitzel

Schnitzel is also a really typical food in Germany. Even though it’s originally from Austria (Wiener Schnitzel) it’s still popular in Germany. In every part of Germany!

German people often eat this with fries or with mashed potatoes. Some people ea11t Schnitzel without any dip. Some eat it with ketchup. It depends on your taste.

You can also eat your Schnitzel with different kind of sauces like cream sauce (then it’s called Rahmschnitzel) or mushroom sauce (then it’s called Jaegerschnitzel) and so on.  There are many different options.

      7. Schweinshaxe

A “Schweinshaxe” is a roasted ham hock. “The ham hock is the end of the pig’s leg, just above the 12ankle and below the meaty ham portion”.

It is especially popular in Bavaria! In my part of Germany it’s called “Eisbein”.
You can eat Schweinshaxe with “Knödel” or Sauerkraut.
Here you can see Knödel:

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Fairtrade Products

By Esperanza Ortiz, Chile

FAIRTRADE PRODUCTS

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Fairtrade is an organization, whose products are made by companies who care about the right of industry workers and also about the product itself.

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Fairtrade products are made by workers with reasonable hours of work, as well as  kind and  good treatment of all the people who work there. These products are made in an pleasant environment by employers who aren’t exploited and are willing to work.

Moreover, fairtrade products are produced by small businesses, which suffer from economic problems, mostly because they are marginalised by conventional trading systems and big companies. The organization “Fairtrade International”  lends them money in order that the small business owners can sell and work for themselves. When one of the  businesses starts making money, it has the obligation of paying the money  back to The Fairtrade organization.

For that reason and because of the resonable salaries, Fairtrade products are more expensive. Paying more for Fairtrade products is totally worth it because you are saving yourself, your world, and industry workers. Besides it’s good for you and your health because the origin of the product you are buying is really important.
Nowadays there is a new thought which says that products can absorb energies. For example, if you buy something you are going to eat and it is made or harvested with machines or by tired, upset or mad people you are ingesting their bad energy.

For that reason, I’m sure that Fairtrade products are better than regular products for the buyer. Spending more money by buying Fairtrade products is not a waste. Also it’s a good cause for the world. The only way to end poverty in our world is by allowing poor people to earn money. If we continue supporting big companies, we are aiding  only a few businessman in our world who sell and earn tons of money while almost half of the population are poor consumers. That’s why by buying Fairtrade products we are helping tiny businesses and by doing that we are ending poverty.

Furthermore, Fairtrade products are good and necessary because they are making a difference. They respect workers and treat them nicely, which is something every single company should do. You never know, maybe someday you will have to become an industry worker, or  your kids. It is not fair that people who don’t have the opportunity of choosing where they want to work are forced to spend their lives working too hard and not been well paid. This is simply inhuman.  We have to support Fairtrade products so we help to grow the world’s economy and the health of buyers and producers.

 

Santa Barbara Moments

Michaela Kopecna, Czech Republic

For someone who wasn’t born in Santa Barbara some things can be completely new and strange. Every country has its own customs or traditions. Some of them could be normal, but some of them could seem little bit weird.

I am a girl from a small city in Europe and I have never traveled across the ocean before. So the words like “jet lag” or “culture shock” were, for me, completely new. I never understood the meaning of them because in Europe we all go to sleep at same time. That means that we have different traditions, but close and similar to each other.time

What time is it?

When you land at the airport your first thing you must check is the time, because in Europe it is 12PM. What time is the right one? That’s the question. Here in Santa Barbara it’s 12AM, so should I go to sleep? No! And that is what jet lag is.

How to use the toilets?

It could be strange, but the toilets are also different. And for someone from Europe it’s a shock. Are there really gaps when you close the doors? So everybody can see me through the gaps, right?hands

Are people here my friends now?

This could happened that you are standing at a bus stop and some stranger starts to talk with you. Just in Santa Barbara. The people here are so kind and helpful. They just talk with you and at the end of the conversation you are friends. How easy. That’s why I feel so welcome in this country.

How to say hi?

Hear Spanish in Santa Barbara is really common. All the names of the streets are in Spanish and also in some public buildings you can hear this language. That is because Santa Barbara used to be a Spanish colony. However, for every day use, just learn how to say hi in Spanish. That will be enough. So “hola” and “gracias senora”!freez

I’m freezing!

Sometimes you can feel cold here because of the air-conditioning or cold weather. Don’t underestimate it and take a  warm sweater into your classes. Even if Santa Barbara has the ocean it isn’t warm all the time. Suprisingly.

Goal!

You can say you are citizen when you help tourists get to the beach. You won! Santa Barbara is not so hard to orient oneself. So after a short time you will feel here like you are at home. Culture shock is gone and jet lag is your very old friend.

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Today’s China

Chuwen Wang, China

 

China has been in the high speed development stage after entering the twenty-first century, but still there are a lot of foreigners who have the impression of China from twenty years ago or even longer. So I want to show something about today’s China.

Life in China today

Getting by without a wallet in China: Mobile innovation brings new experience.

Now people usually leave home without cash or credit card in China. They can do everything with their cellphone, such as eating and buying things. When you want to buy something, you just need to scan a QR code via your smartphone or the store scans your code to let you pay, and transferring money in this way can also be used between friends(but the money between friends doesn’t need to be scanned with a code. You can transfer money directly to friends in the app).

China’s bike share.

In order to give people more convenience, bike sharing provides a lot of help for Chinese people. You just need to scan a QR code on a bike via your smartphone. Then you can use the bike, and you can park your bike anywhere (don’t forget to lock the bike). Meanwhile we have many workers to check and repair bikes every day. If you find any bike is broken, you can tell the bike’s company via your phone when you are using it.

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High speed trains.

High speed trains, which travel at speeds of 250-350 km/h. Almost every city has these kinds of trains and there are also general trains for people to choose. So people have more choice to go places.

Chinese cities.

Most foreigners only know Beijing and Shanghai, but in my opinion, other Chinese cities also have different sceneries. Let me introduce some cities for you.

Chongqing, which is famous for spicy food. Even though their food is spicy, it’s really delicious. I advise that, if you go to China, you should go to see this city, especially the entire city at night, which view you will enjoy much better than you thought.

Xi’an, which is my hometown and this city used to be one of China’s ancient capitals. There’s one main attraction that many people know about–Xi’an is the city with TERRACOTTA WARRIORS. In addition, there is also a plenty of delicious food.

As we all know, China is a developing country, which also has a lot of problems we need to solve, but all of us in China believe that our country is improving and we just need time. If your impression is that China is like Chinatown in the U.S, I think you should go to China to see for yourself because China and Chinatown are completely different.

Finally, China will always welcome friends from all over the world.

Game of Thrones: A Milestone For TV Shows

By Yasemin Ongun, Turkey

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Game of Thrones is an American fantasy TV show which started on April 17, 2011. It was based on George R. R. Martin’s fantasy book series A Song of Ice and Fire. The shows running time is around 50 to 69 minutes per episode, which seems a bit long but, while you’re watching the episode, time just passes by. They also don’t have a specific location for filming. The episodes were filmed in places such as Iceland, Malta, Morocco, Canada, Croatia, Spain and the United Kingdom. At the beginning of every episode the theme music composed by Ramin Djawadi and named “Main Title” plays, and even from the theme music, you can understand how exciting the episode will be. In my opinion, a TV show should have attractive theme music so that the viewers start enjoying the show from the second they start watching it. Game of Thrones gives us this opportunity.

Weapons in the series

The show created a stir because of its unique visual effects and quality of the production, but it also attracted criticism for its many scenes includes nudity and violence. Power and violence are the main themes of Game of Thrones, and even the number of weapons used in the episodes proves that. The critics say that the show involves too much female nudity and sexual violence (especially against women). It is true that the series mainly focused on these scenes during the first seasons, but it seems like the producers paid attention to the critics and lowered the number of these scenes. In 6th and 7th seasons, instead of nudity, they mainly focused on the war going on between the houses and the developments that have been made.

The cast of the show is also very impressive. Each actress and actor fit very well to their characters and their excellent skills of expressing the characters emotions are unbelievable. Each of them has diverse techniques and with these actors, the show becomes even more enjoyable. To find such an outstanding cast must have been challenging for the casting directors, you might think. But it actually wasn’t that difficult. Most of the auditions were on point the directors say. There were some casting changes during or after the auditions, but no matter what, the current cast is splendid. To start describing some of the characters, I will start from my,-and probably most of  fandom’s favorite character, Tyrion Lannister. Peter Dinklage is playing the role of Tyrian known as “the dwarf”, who has been leading the principal cast since Season 2. Next is Daenerys Targaryen who is also known as The Unburnt, Mother of Dragons, Khaleesi of the Great Grass Sea, Queen of the Andals the Rhoynar and the First Men, Queen of Meereen and Breaker of Chains, and this role is played by to Emilia Clarke. Then there’s the Stark family, Sansa Stark, being played by Sophie Turner, Arya Stark by Maisie Williams, Bran Stark by Isaac Hempstead-Wright, and their illegitimate brother Jon Snow, the King of the North is played by Kit Harrington. The rest of the Lannister family are Cersei and Jaime Lannister who are being played by Lena Headey and Nikolaj Coster-Waldau.

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Sources write that an average Game of Thrones episode costs $6 million to make, which is two or three times more than any other TV show costs if compared. For example, each Breaking Bad episode costs nearly $3 million and each Big Bang Theory episode costs $2 million. As the seasons continued, the quality of the scenes increased which caused the cost to go up. For Season 6, each episode costs about $10 million, which shows the effort they put in while filming the show. Game of Thrones is known for its visuals and styling. Every episode has different themes, and with the new themes, new costumes come. The inspiration for the costumes comes from lots of different sources.  All clothing used is aged for two weeks so it appears realistic.

The show, Game of Thrones, has a huge fan base. In 2012, Vulture.com ranked the series’ fans as the most devoted in popular culture. The passion they have is extremely unbelievable, but no matter what, they continue to show their love for the show in every way possible. The devotion is even too much for the crew, but the fans can’t help it. The determination each of them creates a stronger fandom than ever. They never give up on supporting them, mostly on social media. When a new season starts, Game of Thrones pictures, memes, critics show up on everywhere. All of them work very passionately until the end of that season. And even when the season ends, they still keep on working. They have blogs that they share pictures of the crew on their every step or blogs that write about their lives, or even blogs that write fictional stories about them. You can spot a Game of Thrones fan everywhere you go. It is impossible to not to see one when you go out on the street.

If you haven’t watched Game of Thrones yet, it’s a bit late, but you can still view it. You haven’t lived fully if you never had a TV show that you’ve been watching so passionately. I’ll put the trailer of the first season, and after watching it, the choice is yours.

Events in Santa Barbara

By Abdulmajeed ALfrayan.  Saudi Arabia

Santa Barbara- Parks& Recreation events:

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Santa Barbara Arts & Crafts Show

Is an event to enjoy your time to give your lives more experience. There are a lot of people selling new things and they’re made in home. You can go there with your family to see new things and learn new culture.

 

Relaxing under the sun:

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In this picture we can see the people sitting under the sun and enjoying the time. Here you can chat with everyone because it’s public and there are a lot of people who come for relaxing and enjoying themselves.

 

There are some small competitions for the kids:

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There is jogging contest for the kids and there are small gifts for the winners and the moms help their children like say good things to them while they running like “you can do it”, “you’re a hero”.

 

 

Firework in the park:

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There are fireworks at the end of the day and it’s so beautiful. Everyone on this day is waiting for this moment to say it because it’s a beautiful view from the park.

 

Party in the park.

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They make a small party in the park to have fun and enjoy in themselves. But this party dose not happen every year in this event so some time it’s there and sometimes not.

Canzelle Alpacas

Boxuan Zhan, Macau, China

Have you ever seen alpacas? Alpacas are a kind of camelid in South American. They are really cute and friendly. In Carpinteria, there is a place named Canzelle Alpacas which is a nice farm for seeing Alpacas. You need to keep in mind that you need to go to their website to book a tour. One person will be charged $25.

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Important Information:

webside: https://www.canzelle.com/

Address: 4036 Foothill Rd, Carpinteria, CA 93013

Hours: Monday to Sunday 9AM–5PM

Cost: Tours start at $25/person. Discounts are available for groups of 10+.

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There is a bit of a problem with the google map directions. Google map will lead you to the wrong location, and they don’t have any sign to direct you to the right way. This map shows the correct route to go Canzelle Alpacas. Also the entrance is really to miss, so you need to be careful to identify the entrance.

4036 Foothill Rd, Carpinteria, CA 93013

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Canzelle Alpacas is a farm and there are not only Alpacas ,but also there are two llamas, two horses, two dogs, two sheep, two birds and one cat.

On the farm, the owner will tell you about Alpacas and I can tell you that he loves them very much. You can touch them and they are really friendly. There is a good place to take pictures and enjoy family fun there.DSC02454

Also there is a lot art work were made from alpaca fiber, such as dolls. They are very cute and look amazing.DSC02455

Overall, Canzelle Alpacas is a pleasant place to visit and an enjoyable farm to see alpacas. The owners are very nice. You have to go there if you want to see those cute Alpacas.