Tuesday, 9 June 2009
When they started tearing down this fast hundred year
old villa in my village in April 2008, I wanted to
know the owner and ask why would they sell out
an ancestral home with all the memories like maybe
the voices of the children playing in the gardens with
two giant trees of chestnuts and walnuts while pigeons
of all sorts were clustering in their branches especially
on sunny days reaching for the sunlight.
I have my own share of memory of this villa as I met
here a Pinoy named Dennis who told me that he has married
a German guy but they would move to Holland where he has
found a job. I have not seen Dennis since they moved out
of this villa.
The area where the villa used to stand so majestically
taken in January 2009 and by this time, people have
been talking about a future supermarket to rise in this
ground. Gone are the pigeons and the two giants trees.
Above is the new landmark in our village called
Koenigsdorf (King's Village)and today marks the grand
opening of this chain of German supermarket Kaiser which
attracts the local residents to flock to see, maybe shop
for the especial prices for the opening.
Hubby and I joined the local attraction by having our
brunch outside the supermarket amidst the coming
and going of shoppers with roses, pineapples on sale
potted plants, cherries and strawberries on especial sale.
Introducing the new search hobby of hubby in this new supermarket:
If you, dear reader, meet one Dennis who has moved to
Holland with his hubby, please tell him to visit and
see what has happened to the ancestral home...Well, now
the locals could step on the sacred ground used to be
reserved only for the residents of this fast hundred
year old villa. At least a consoling thought for the
loss of this grand landmark in our village.
We have Kaiser in our King's village. The value of
real property here gets one notch higher.
Wednesday, 3 June 2009
(photo: Mar Lou)
Student acquitted for shoe toss at China's PM
Published: 2 Jun 09 20:54 CET
A German student who hurled a shoe at Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao was cleared Tuesday of committing a public order offence as he defended his protest as a symbolic act of defiance.
Cambridge University student Martin Jahnke told the court in eastern England that he was inspired by the notorious shoe attack on George W. Bush.
Finding him not guilty, Cambridge Magistrates' Court judge Ken Sheraton said there was insufficient evidence to prove that Jahnke had behaved as charged in a way likely to cause harassment, alarm or distress.
Speaking publicly about the incident for the first time, the 27-year-old told the court he was not out to hurt Wen but to take a stand against his "regime."
"I am very pleased with the result," the pathology postgraduate student said after the two-day trial, in a statement read by a lawyer. "I would like to thank all those members of the public who have supported me, including the Chinese community. I hope now attention can move away from me to the real issue of human rights in China."
Sheraton told Jahnke that the verdict should not be seen as an indication that the court condoned his behaviour. The judge warned Jahnke about his future conduct.
Earlier in court, Jahnke said he wanted to protest about human rights in China, object to Cambridge University allowing Wen to speak, and show solidarity with the Chinese people.
Wen was giving a lecture in Cambridge on February 2, the last day of a European tour, when Jahnke blew a whistle, branded Wen a "dictator" then threw a trainer, missing hitting him by a few metres.
"It was a symbolic protest against the presence of the Chinese premier," Jahnke told the court. "My aim was to show solidarity with the Chinese people not represented."
Muntazer al-Zaidi, an Iraqi journalist who threw his shoes at then US president Bush in Baghdad in December, is currently serving a one-year jail sentence.
"I was inspired by the Iraqi shoe thrower," Jahnke said. "The idea that you could show protest in this way was in my mind. I think it really became symbolic throwing a shoe - a symbol of defiance against a regime or authority that is not accountable to anybody, a regime that uses violence. I didn't want to hit the premier personally."
He said it was meant to be was a symbolic protest.
"I didn't intend to hurt people - people sitting in front of me, people on the stage or the premier," said Jahnke.
The student, who had pleaded not guilty, said he did not think there was any chance of him hitting or injuring Wen.
"I think I aimed quite well onto that area of the stage in front of him," he said. "He was also standing on a podium, so there was no chance of the shoe hitting him in my opinion."
Jahnke said he presumed there would have been be a large-scale demonstration inside the lecture hall and he had merely planned to join in. But realising that no one else was starting a protest, he stood up towards the end of Wen's "propaganda speech."
"For me, it was terrifying to address an audience of that size," said Jahnke. "All I was wanting to do was to get out a coherent sentence and not make a complete fool of myself."
He said also Wen should be used to political protest.
"I wouldn't have expected he could be easily intimidated. He seemed a hardened character to force his way up the hierarchy and stay there for 20 years," he said. "I didn't expect him to be emotionally distressed. His regime is responsible for a number of human rights abuses."
If my girlfriend C.M. would one day show her protest by
throwing her shoe, I am pretty sure the recipient will
ask for the other intriguing, spiky pair.