KOLO - blog about travel, cultures and art of living.

 

 


Radomysl Castle, Ukraine

 

The Radomysl Castle Museum is located 86 km from Kyiv and is part of Via Regia route - is the name of the oldest and longest land route between the East and Europe, which stretched from Kyiv to the Atlantic coast. Already in the 13th century, a stable route with a length of 4,500 kilometers was formed, which passed through eight European countries: Spain, France, Belgium, Germany, Poland, Lithuania, Belarus and Ukraine.

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5 must see places in Belarus

 

When we were just planning to visit Belarus, everyone asked in surprise: “What to do there?” After all, many believe that Belarus is closer to Europe only geographically, and Minsk is still the Soviet Union. Oh yes, the roads are good, everything is clean, but in general it’s boring and everything is very authoritarian. But all these arguments only fueled the interest to see what was really going on there? Destroying the existing stereotypes of some countries is the main reason why I started writing this blog. We definitely decided to go and see, and when we returned, we didn’t regret what we saw and experienced one bit.

 

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Chinese tea culture

 

Hot tea is the best way to warm you up in winter. In China, people drink black tea in winter and green tea in summer. Believe it or not, all tea is made from the same plant. It is an evergreen shrub that can grow into a small tree. The subspecies Camellia sinensis originates from Southeast China. Plants can live up to 100 years or more, and the leaves are harvested year-round. Another subspecies called Camellia sinensis assamica comes from India. All the tea consumed in the world comes from these two plants.

 

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Do the Bakhtiari tribe still exist?

 

Bakhtiari have roamed the lands of Persia for thousands of years and are an integral part of its history. They trace their lineage directly from Cyrus the Great. There is another version that they are descendants of the Iranian epic hero Fereydun.

 

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Five self-care tips from Chinese women

 

Chinese women knows the secret of health and happiness does not lie in radical diets and extreme workouts that prove impossible to stick to. The key is to implement small daily measures that are simple, pleasurable, and fit effortlessly into everyday life. Think about how daily teeth-brushing has become a habit for most of us. Do this and you’ll set yourself up for good mood, even on the dark days.

 

 

1. Five minute eye massage

 

Every student who attended public school in China learned the eye massage. It consists of four segments of stimulating different pressure points with your eyes closed, and the whole thing takes less than five minutes.

 

The eye massage, or 眼保健操 (yǎn bǎo jiàn cāo) uses Chinese acupressure technique to release tension from eye muscles, increase facial circulation, and refresh your mind with a little break in the day.

 

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Planning a greener getaway

Roam close to home and do right by the planet.

 

First, let’s acknowledge that there is no truly green holiday, only shades of grey. At home or away, each one of us is a net drain on the planet’s finite resources. But small changes can make a big difference, and travellers today are more willing to scale back their consumption. We might opt for environmentally friendly travel in future, such as taking buses and trains to cut down on airplane carbon emissions. Companies have been quick to exploit this trend, to the point of utter market confusion. A Google search for “green travel” now yields more than one million results. Consumers are wisely suspicious. 

 

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Iran, the Makhneshan mountains

 

Thanks to their colors, these mountains attract many visitors and nature photographers. Moreover, very contrasting color stripes glow most intensely after rain.

 

It was not at all easy for nature to create such art - it took 24 million years of painstaking work to collect mineral deposits, like pouring sand of different colors into a jar. Subsequently, these heavy layers were compressed into rock, and then a small and incredibly slow wave from the collision of the Iranian and Eurasian tectonic plates crushed the landscape into these wonderful waves to complete the effect (at the same time also giving birth to the Alborz Mountains).

 

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Story of Cedar

Among the many tree species that inhabit the humid rainforests of British Columbia, the mighty and fragrant cedar has special significance for the indigenous people.


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Earth: The Seven Mother Earth Ceremonies

The limitations of space and time prevent us from comprehending with any certainty the nature of the spirits who come to us. In the end, we can only surmise their nature and purpose, although it is my belief that basing our assumptions on natural evidence is the best way.


 

Обмеження простору й часу заважають нам з упевненістю зрозуміти природу духів, які приходять до нас. Зрештою, ми можемо лише здогадуватися про їхню природу та мету, хоча я вважаю, що найкраще базувати наші припущення на природних доказах.

 

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Northern Iran

 

 What is life in Iran along the Caspian Sea?

 

 Believe it or not, life here is ordinary and busy. Sometimes sweet, sometimes bitter. The main population of the southern Caspian coast of Iran are Gilaki and Mazandarani people. They are actively engaged in farming and fishing.

 

 They grow up, getting old and enjoy their life on the shores of the largest lake on Earth.

 

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They were people of the forest

Tsimshian people, 1892, Metlakatla.
Tsimshian people, 1892, Metlakatla.

 

A thousand years ago, and many thousands before that, men were cutting down trees in the forests of British Columbia. They split planks to build houses, hollowed out logs for canoes, chopped off choice sections of wood to make tools and weapons. Furniture, dishes, storage containers, kitchen utensils, games and musical instruments were made of wood. The aboriginal people of British Columbia used trees (branches, roots, bark, and wood) as a primary source of raw materials. It is almost impossible to describe their culture without referring to forest products.

 


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Audain Art Museum

 

Traveling around the world, you may come to the general conclusion that cities are just abstractions of international finance – we build what the market demands. But when you meet the works of John and Patricia Patkau, you understand that there are still artists’ hands at work. For example, the Audain Art Museum, which has collected many awards.

 


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The story of the Ukrainian Easter egg

 

The egg is a symbol of new life and rebirth - this meaning was known to all peoples in ancient times. On the territory of Ukraine, even today, the usual egg-eating at the dawn of Easter, after the end of the service in the churches, has been massively popular.

 


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History of Ukrainian embroidery

 

The first embroideries on the territory of Ukraine appeared in the time of the Scythians. Archaeological excavations confirm that male figurines found in Cherkasy, created as early as the 6th century, have in their decoration not only features of Ukrainian clothing of the 18th-19th centuries, but also elements of ancient ornamentation. The Arab traveler also talked about the same ornament in his descriptions of the Rus, which date back to the 10th century.

 


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Chinese tea culture

 

Hot tea is the best way to warm you up in winter. In China, people drink black tea in winter and green tea in summer. Believe it or not, all tea is made from the same plant. It is an evergreen shrub that can grow into a small tree. The subspecies Camellia sinensis originates from Southeast China. Plants can live up to 100 years or more, and the leaves are harvested year-round. Another subspecies called Camellia sinensis assamica comes from India. All the tea consumed in the world comes from these two plants.

 

 

The spirit of the tea ceremony is the core of tea culture, in other words, it is harmony, peace, happiness and truthfulness. The most important thing, of course, is happiness. Tea has a health-improving effect, and regular tea drinking can strengthen the body. Physical health is a prerequisite for "satisfaction and nourishment", and only through self-indulgence can the sublime sphere of life be obtained and the quality of life improved. In general, by getting to know the spirit of the tea ceremony, we can better inherit and popularize tea culture.

 

In the beginning, tea in China was a luxury item consumed mainly by nobles and royalty. The elite started drinking tea to invigorate the body and clear the mind. Tea was brewed with other plants to make tea soup, which was considered a combination of medicine, food, and drink. The consumption of the soup did not become popular among the masses because of its bitter taste. Records also show that ritual worship during the Zhou dynasty included tea ceremonies conducted by officials. Tea was considered an exotic plant from southern China, so it was offered as a tribute to the emperor and served to nobles.

 

 

Artisans have created hundreds of examples of tea art, such as poems, drawings, songs and even literature. One of the first to write about tea was Lu Yu.

 

Lu Yu was born in China. His parents are unknown, he was found at an early age near the walls of a Buddhist monastery. The abbot of the monastery gave him the name Lu Yu, which literally means "dry" and "feathers".

 

  

He lived and was educated in a monastery, but at the age of 11 he voluntarily joined a troupe of wandering actors. While traveling, Lu Yu saw how different layers of the population lived, observed traditions and various ways of preparing tea. During his 16 years of travel, he visited many cities and monasteries in the modern provinces of Hubei, Jiangxi, Anhui, Jiangsu, Henan and Sichuan. He learned the techniques of shadow theater, marionettes and traditional drama. He met famous people of his time, got patrons and lived in monasteries for a long time. All this time, he collected tea, tasted water, studied local tea customs and recorded his observations.

 

In 760, he settled alone in Huzhou county in the territory of modern Zhejiang province. Here, in 778, the "Tea Canon" was written, and in 795, a book with a description of the 20 most famous springs of China.

  

 

He encouraged commoners to drink tea by including a section on which teaware could be omitted if one could not afford it. Lu Yu is known as the "Tea Sage" and "Tea God". His classic book linked the consumption of tea to spiritual matters, art, Chinese lifestyle, morality and philosophy. Although the majority of the Chinese population did not read it, intellectuals, nobility, and spiritual leaders embraced it.

 

Confucian teachings indicated that the world should be governed, improved, and morally taught through classical learning. According to Liu, "Chinese intellectuals considered culture, or all literature and knowledge, to be the vehicle or instrument of human morality, serving to fulfill the civilizational function of Dao (the way the universe works)." Lu Yu's book helped turn the pleasant drink into an art woven into Chinese culture.

 

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Five self-care tips from Chinese women

 

Chinese women knows the secret of health and happiness does not lie in radical diets and extreme workouts that prove impossible to stick to. The key is to implement small daily measures that are simple, pleasurable, and fit effortlessly into everyday life. Think about how daily teeth-brushing has become a habit for most of us. Do this and you’ll set yourself up for good mood, even on the dark days.

 

 

1. Five minute eye massage

 

Every student who attended public school in China learned the eye massage. It consists of four segments of stimulating different pressure points with your eyes closed, and the whole thing takes less than five minutes.

 

The eye massage, or 眼保健操 (yǎn bǎo jiàn cāo) uses Chinese acupressure technique to release tension from eye muscles, increase facial circulation, and refresh your mind with a little break in the day.

 

 

2.  Soften up your exercise routine

 

Have you ever seen fat Chinese women? I haven't seen yet. And it all because they choose mild forms of exercise such as yoga and Qi Gong - exersices, that help relax body and mind to ease the stresses of daily life.

 

Qi Gong is the use of breath work for self-healing and is one of the pillars of Chinese medicine. If you visit China, every morning you'll see the public parks filled with locals moving as one in a languid, bewitching dance.

 

Tai chi has a positive effect on muscle strength, flexibility, and balance. It improves fitness and endurance levels of the heart and lungs. 

 

 

3. Healthy and Mindful Eating

 

A balanced and nutritious diet promotes healthy Qi flow. Focusing on colorful, seasonal and natural ingredients is essential to health and longevity. Fruit, vegetables, legumes, grains, organic, pasture-raised meat and poultry and wild and sustainably caught fish are just some of the natural foods to base Chinese women diet around. Mindful eating is also key to appreciating food and where it comes from and for optimal digestion. 

 

 

4. Skincare with SPF

 

Women from China have traditionally valued pale skin, so they go to great lengths to protect their skin from the sun's damaging rays. In Asia, pale skin is associated with wealth, while tanned skin is associated with manual labor. The average Asian woman, and increasingly the men too, wear layers of SPF and UVB every time they leave their home.

 

 

5. Drink warm water, tea, or soup at mealtimes.

 

Chinese and many other East and Southeast Asian cultures agree that ingesting warm liquids balances your body’s physical and energetic temperature. Teas and soups are balance a meal and aid in digestion.

 

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Chinese New Year

 

The Chinese are the first in the world to welcome spring. This holiday is called Chinese New Year and is celebrated for two weeks. Traditionally, it was a time to honor the gods and ancestors, as well as a time for feasting and visiting family members.

 

 

Regional customs and traditions in China vary widely but share the same theme: seeing out the old year and welcoming in the luck and prosperity of a new year. The main Chinese New Year activities include are putting up decorations, offering sacrifices to ancestors,

eating reunion dinner with family on New Year's Eve, giving red envelopes and other gifts, firecrackers and fireworks, and

watching lion and dragon dances.

 

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