2012 in pictures. Part 2

2012 was an awesome year for me. Besides a number of interesting activities, it brought many photographic opportunities. The results of these opportunities are shared on this page,  I would call it a summary of my photographic activity.

For more photos please check https://raisatarasova.wordpress.com/2012/12/28/2012-in-pictures-part-1/

AUGUST

Farmer’s market in Ta’ Qali
Farmer’s market in Ta’ Qali, Malta, was my main food supplier this summer. Locally grown, fresh food and vegetable of great quality from friendly and cheerful farmers, make it a great place for food shopping. Besides all the other advantages of this place, prices for such quality products are more than appropriate. With 20 Euro be prepared to fill up 5 or 6 bags – the amount of food enough for two weeks!

Farmer's market in Ta' Qali. Farmers are selling the freshly harvested fruits and vegetables
Farmer’s market in Ta’ Qali. Farmers are selling the freshly harvested fruits and vegetables

Fireworks of Lija
Fireworks of this small Maltese village (Lija) are among most impressive on the world’s scale.

Fireworks of Lija, Malta
Fireworks of Lija, Malta

State funeral of Dom Mintoff
25th August  was a hot sunny day, when thousands of Maltese citizens gathered in Valletta to give a final farewell to the former Prime Minister Dom Mintoff. Before heading to Saint John’s Co-Cathedral, where the funeral mass was held, the body was kept at the Palace in Valletta. Once public tribute was over, the doors of the Palace closed, leaving a great emotional tension in the air. Few minutes after the doors revealed a coffin covered with the national flag. The crowd greeted the deceased Prime Minister with applauses and weeps, chanting “Viva Mintoff! Mintoff! Mintoff”.

More photos can be found here (check my fellow photographer’s blog): http://ontestinggrounds.wordpress.com/2012/09/01/101/

Once public tribute to the former Prime Minister was over, the doors of the Palace closed leaving emotional tension in the air. Few minutes will pass before the doors will reveal a coffin covered with a national flag. The guards are ready to give the final farewell,
Once public tribute to the former Prime Minister had been over, the doors of the Palace closed leaving emotional tension in the air. Few minutes passed before the doors revealed a coffin covered with a national flag. The guards were ready to give the final farewell.


SEPTEMBER

A man with harmonica
This photo was snapped in my home town Astrakhan at the City Day feast (16th September). Ethnic Tatar man with harmonica was playing, singing Tatar national songs and, by all means, he was having fun despite the surprised looks of the passers-by.

A man with harmonica (Astrakhan, 16th September 2012)

A man with harmonica (Astrakhan, 16th September 2012)


OCTOBER

The stairway to heaven
Two schoolboys climbing up the ladder on the school playground. This photo was taken in my home town, Astrakhan, on 2nd October.

Two schoolboys climbing up the ladder on the school's playground. Astrakhan, 2nd October.
Two schoolboys climbing up the ladder on the school’s playground. Astrakhan, 2nd October.

Happy birthday to Tango!
On Saturday, 27th October, all tango lovers living in Malta gathered to celebrate the 15th anniversary of the introduction this dance to the  Maltese public. The event took place at Palazzo del Piro in Malta’s medieval capital, Mdina, and was organized by Isla del Tango.

More about Isla del Tango here: http://isladeltango.com/

Tango passion. Celebration of the 15th anniversary of tango in Malta (27th October, Mdina, Malta)
Tango passion. Celebration of the 15th anniversary of tango in Malta (27th October, Mdina, Malta)


NOVEMBER

Exhibition of greeting cards “A window to our past”
Exhibition of vintage Soviet greeting cards from my (family and own) collection was held in Valletta, Malta, from 7th till 15th November at the Russian Centre for Science and Culture.  The exhibited cards symbolized the epoch gone with the wind.

Exhibition of vintage Soviet greeting cards. Valletta, Malta, 15th November.
Exhibition of vintage Soviet greeting cards. Valletta, Malta, 15th November.


DECEMBER

Ban animal circus!
The protest against animal circus in Malta was organized by movement Graffiti and happened in Valetta, Malta on 12th December. Around a hundred of protesters gathered in Valletta to express their disapproval  of the animal abuse at the circus.

Ban animal circus! The protest in Valletta, Malta, on 12th December, organized by movement Graffiti
Ban animal circus! The protest in Valletta, Malta, on 12th December, organized by movement Graffiti

For more photos of Malta check the blog of Darrin Zammit Lupi, one of Malta’s most renown professional photographers:
http://darrinzammitlupi.wordpress.com/

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2012 in pictures. Part 1

2012 was an awesome year for me. Besides a number of interesting activities, it brought many photographic opportunities. The results of these opportunities are shared on this page,  I would call it a summary of my photographic activity.

JANUARY

Testing my new Canon lens in Mdina.
1st January 2012. Mdina.

1st January 2012. Mdina. Malta
1st January 2012. Mdina. Malta

FEBRUARY

Carnival in Valletta (19th February 2012)

Carnival in Valletta (19th February 2012)
Carnival in Valletta (19th February 2012)

MARCH

Perfect storm
Stormy weather on 10th March 2012 in Valletta, Malta.

Stormy weather on 10th March 2012, in Valletta, Malta
Stormy weather on 10th March 2012, in Valletta, Malta

Ragusa Ibla
In March I travelled to Ragusa, Sicily, where this photo was snapped.

Architecture of Ragusa Ibla (the old, historic part of the Sicilian town Ragusa) is truly magnificent

Architecture of Ragusa Ibla (the old, historic part of the Sicilian town Ragusa) is truly magnificent

MAY

Cannabis March
The march supporting legalization of cannabis was organized by movement Graffiti and held in Valletta on 5th May 2012.

Cannabis March held in Valletta, Malta on 5th May 2012
Cannabis March held in Valletta, Malta on 5th May 2012

JUNE

First day of June. Filfla.

First day of June. Filfla
First day of June. Filfla


Steve McCurry Meet and Greet Session

Maltese public had a splendid opportunity to meet one of the world’s most renowned photographers, Steve McCurry, on 19th June at Malta Conference Centre.

If you are not familiar with Steve McCurry’s works, then (shame on you!) have a look at his blog http://stevemccurry.wordpress.com/, it is a must-do!

Steve McCurry Meet and Greet Session on 19th June, Valletta, Malta

Steve McCurry Meet and Greet Session on 19th June, Valletta, Malta

 

JULY

March against institutional racism

The silent protest against institutional racism was held on 11th July. Protesters tried to attract public attention to the murder of two immigrants, Mamadou Kamara and Ifeanyi Nwokoye, at the detention centre.

The silent protest against institutional racism was held on 11th July. Protesters tried to attract public attention to the murder of two immigrants, Mamadou Kamara and Ifeanyi Nwokoye, at the detention centre.
The young protestor

 

Key and lock adventures

I tend to get into adventures quite often and the funniest of them usually involve keys and locks. I am going to share the two most amusing stories with you. These have no age restriction and have nothing to do with S&M :).

1. Story of a nerd: Deadly locked

This curious accident happened to me in 2005 when I still was a university student. The research institute where my mother worked was located in the neighbourhood of my university, and from time to time I used to pass for her after lectures. Once I came to her room after lectures, took a book and focused on the assignment (the deadline was approaching with the speed of light). Mum walked in and asked me to bring keys to her colleague whose room was located in the other end of the corridor. The corridor was long and dark, two large windows, one in each side of it, were the only source of light during the day. Doors on both sides of the corridor were placed in a niche, what made them hidden from light even more – quite a scary corridor it was, perfect for thriller movies. I had walked in that corridor a million times but had never paid attention on the door numbers. There was a feeling as if I saw these doors for the first time in my life, and I suddenly noticed they all could be opened from the left side.

Finally, I stopped in front of the room I needed to enter and, bearing in mind that all the previous doors were left-sided, started searching for a handle. Nothing. My hand went all the way along the door side and sensed nothing, not even a lock. “How do they open this fucking door themselves?! There must be a way.” – I thought and continued. I dipped my fingertips in the chink and tried to pull the door – failure. I could hear women talking inside the room, the noise of my manipulation with the door attracted their attention – the conversation paused. “OK, I don’t know how on Earth anyone can open a door without a handle, tightly fit to a door frame! And if they heard me anyway, then I can ask them to open the door from the inside” were my thoughts when I knocked on the door. “Come in!” – said a woman. “Are you kidding me?!”- I though and said “Can you please open the door because I cannot do so myself!”. In the next few moments I remained quite … amazed and confused at the same time. The girl opened the door … from the right side. Next few moments we stayed curiously looking at each other before the girl wondered what was so difficult about opening the door. “We thought you were holding something fragile in your hands”. “Ah, I see. And I was trying to open from the other side”- said I and laughed. Mum’s colleague was famous for her sharp sarcasm and nasty jokes but this time she did not find anything to say. Instead, she stared at me silently and I could read the message in her eyes “You are studying too much, girl!”. I would love to know myself why trying to find a handle on the other side did not cross my mind :).

2. Story of a hero: Munich wanderer

December pre-Christmas weeks remind me of another adventure of the same kind. In 2010, two weeks before Christmas me and my ex partner went to Munich, the first week was dedicated to his business trip whereas the second week was all for fun and culture. We stayed at a tiny studio apartment of his friend at the centre of Munich, the place with central heating means paradise for me, by default. On the first day of our stay in Munich he mentioned where his office was going to be as we passed by the district in a tram. I had a glimpse at the two towers and continued exploring lovely Munich streets from the tram window.

The next day I planned to familiarise myself with Munich museums, so soon after my partner left to work, I was prepared for a lovely day at Munich museums. There was a small thing to do before locking the door – taking garbage bag out to the corridor. All in perfect mood, humming a song, I opened the door, stepped into the corridor, dropped the garbage bag and turned to lock the door… The door had silently snapped and, most certainly, the key was left in the lock, inside the apartment! For a second I stupidly stared at the door, pushing it just in case. Then, hectically started searching for the key in my bag, which was perfectly senseless and stupid as the key could not be there. The old motto “Don’t panic!” tried to calm me down but thoughts were already jumping from one matter to another. “How can I get inside? What will I tell the neighbours, they have never seen me before? The key is in the lock, how can we open this fucking door without damaging it?! What will I tell my partner, he’s going to kill me?!”. Prostration. Few moments later I noticed two ladies looking at me with growing curiosity. I told them about the accident and they advised to the building manager. The manager listened to me with an attention, trying to hide a smile, and told me that, obviously, he had spare keys but could not give it to me and, moreover, he doubted the door could be opened with a key. He advised to call a handy man specializing on such accidents, expressed his condolences and got busy with some other matters. I needed to let my partner know as soon as possible. Going down the stairs I tried to find my mobile and realised I left it charging! Damn! Few stories down I met a lady who guessed something was wrong and tried to help. She was going to dial the number but I did not remember his Munich number by heart. “Excellent”!”- I though, “Perfect adventure”.

There was no choice other than trying to find his office. I had a glimpse at the towers on the previous day, and it was somewhere not very far. But how to find it?.. Trying to restore our route, I realised the metro station was “Ostbanhnhof”. To get there I needed to take two trams, then from the station itself, I would take another tram and then walked a bit. The towers were found – hallelujah! But where exactly his office was – I did not know. The receptionist had all the information and she gallantly agreed to call to my partner’s office and notify him about my presence. “What is his surname, please?” – she asked me. I told her. “And what is yours?”. Guess, our surnames together seemed too complicated, she did not want to nod her tongue. “Do you want to go there yourself?”. Yes, I did. The towers were interlinked by glass corridors, on some 15th floor, different parts of the building were locked – a perfect labyrinth. Passing through some corridors required a cardkey but I managed to pass without it – Bavarian gentlemen politely opened the door to let the lady pass. Eventually, I got to the office of my partner. His colleagues and he were equally surprised by the accident and the fact that I managed to get to that office. Their surprise was very strong and could be explained – second day in the perfectly unknown city, passed through security obstacles with no problems. Then my nationality was linked to KGB and that explained everything. Russians (read “KGB”) get anywhere they need to. A person who had spare key for the apartment was on leave and, besides, everyone agreed that the key stuck in the lock was too bad. The story seemed like an adventure to everyone, many remembered stories of same kind and gladly shared their experiences. They equipped me with a screwdriver and instructed how to remove the lock cover and to push the lock. All that was in vain since the lock was fastened to the door from the inside (realized that when arrived to the disastrous door). Again, I had to call to my partner’s office (thankfully, he provided me with a mobile) and ask to send some handy man. The handy man arrived very soon, said many words in German (“Kaput” was the only I understood) and opened the door in a minute… leaving a quite visible hole in it and charging me a serious amount of money.

The rest of the day was quite wonderful though – exploring the city centre, museums and taking photos.

Kunstareal, I saw a guy surfing on icying cold Isar waters
Walking around Kunstareal, I saw a guy surfing on icing cold Isar waters