Tag Archives: traveling



Week 3
Praha, Czech Republic

What is a Paternoster lift? Do you know it?
On my behalf, I had not clue about a paternoster lift even though we had bee playing the Pater Noster game.

During my 1.5 day visit to Prague I visited the Fakulta elektrotechnická. There, I discovered a Paternoster lift.

Some people did not wanted to use it, as they were concern with security. On my behalf, I thought it was so exciting. It was as having rollercoster in your own school!. So, as you can imagine, we should try it and we did. Being honest, I try it myself more than once! : )

In this first video, you will see the Paternoster lift.

In this second video I record our journey, inside the paternoster, towards the third floor. I turn the camera a bit later, as I needed to learn how to jump in, and later how to jump out. 🙂 Our conversation is in Spanish, wondering about this machine! 🙂

I really enjoy discovering our world!

internet inside the bus

Week 40
Kuopio, Finland

In August 24th after I landed in Oslo, I needed to take a 1.5 hrs drive (aprox.) to my destination, Gjovik.  I got surprised in this bus drive, as I could connect to the internet inside the bus, and for free!!!! 😉

Today on my way to Kuopio I am missing the internet connectivity while I am on the road. Of course one can use the mobile phone, but nevertheless, it is not the same….

Finland you are one of the most connected countries in the world, but in reference to bus transportation, we are lacking behind!

connecting to the intenert in the bus

connecting to the intenert in the bus

connected to internet for free in a bus

connected to internet for free in a bus


week 2 of 2011
from Distrito Federal, Mexico

Days keep on being busy, but I escape and assist to the  MUAC (Museo Universitario de Arte Contemporaneo) , which it is a GREAT museum with FANTASTIC expositions.

Due to the lack of time, I  only visited carefully two exhibitions: Expectografias: memorias e historia, and the art of   Cai Guo Qiang: Resplandor y Soledad. Both exhibitions were very rich and impressive, highly recommended.

Below is a video that I found of Cai Guo Qiang when he did his gunpowder work for the MUAC, you will see how innovative and impressive his work is:


The graduation was a big event. Schoolteachers, Tumaini University students and some teachers, family and community member were present. The children move the desks from the schools to allow adults to sit, and they were at one side of the area sitting on the floor, however all assistants were under the shade of the same tree.

To start the event, the school children performed some songs. Small video clips of it below.

A song about Tanzania

Other song

There were several speeches specially stressing the importance to have computers and access to them, the importance of education and the relevance to learn the English language.  It also was stressed the responsibility of our children (who were selected by the head-teacher for the workshop) to transmit their new knowledge to the community.

When it was my turn to speak, I confess, drops came out of my eyes. The main message I wanted to transmit is: we should understand that the most important thing in life is what we feel and what we think, as the unique richness is inside ourselves and not outside. Computers are tools that will help us for different activities, but our inner is the most important thing that we have. Honestly, for be my first time in Africa, Ukombozi children gave me A LOT, much more than I could give them back.

To give does not require to say words, or to give (expensive or no expensive) presents. To give is when one connects to another one and a magical exchange takes place.

One thing I am complete sure about our planet: it does not matter the physical location, color of skin, language, culture or whatever, anything of those things need a “specific” configuration in order to be able to connect with other humans. Inner harmony with oneself and what surround us is what actually matters. Things that are not thought at school, sadly.

Each day working with the Ukombozi pupils, the experience connected as when I was a missionary at the Sierra del Zamorano in Mexico (in several winters), or when I was working every Saturday for so many years at the marginal areas of Mexico city, or in that intensive trip to India. People is so rich of life.  Even as illogical as it might sound, due that the comparison is not so straight forwards, but some of the activities relate to my experiences working with the seniors in Joensuu and the people in Lieksa keep stressing this.

When a human being is, and it does not pretend to be someone else based on what s/he has or  how s/he self-protect, then life just expresses. One can connect with different individuals and when one just is.

I am thankful for all these experiences.

Everybody elegant dressed and concentrated to hear and try to understand what the selected children of the workshop did in this period. The workshop participants explain this by themselves first to family and visitors and later with other students. Life is made by details and this one was a milestone on the way.

(Photo: workshop participants getting ready to received and explain their work to parents and visitors )

(Photo: workshop participants presenting to other schoolmates)

(Photo: A group photo of all of us. Well, we are missing two persons actually,one student and one tutor)

intensive workshop: ” Working for my Dreams” (1/2) – background & trip

The reason for me to be in a, Tanzania, Africa is to run this workshop. Within my research this is the way to validate my model, but this will be material for other post. Right now let’s focus on “Working for your Dreams”.

Until now I am able to write about this. Before my trip, in Finland, was VERY . I was working hard until Nov 5. In that day we had an intensive and very productive meeting in Helsinki, which we will update later too, but that night I depart to South. Since I reached Iringa, my night sleep had been reduce dramatically (average 4 hrs), as days are HECTIC.

And  today I have time to update this blog and I want to share my African journey in few sentences. This post will focus in the idea, trip and background.

  • Idea

In July 2009, in Joensuu, Finland. I was talking with a Marcus Duveskog about why are we always “lecturing” about the subject of HIV/AIDS instead to make something more active and engaging for the students? more meaningful. Instead we could focus in constructive things as their dreams, and how we can support/help individuals to go forward instead to focus in the problems. We agree on this and together, and we like the idea and we start to conceptualize a workshop with this purpose.

First sketch of our workshop idea

First sketch of our workshop idea

  • Trip

It took me several days to reach Iringa. The route trip was:

Thursday Nov. 5th: Joensuu – Helsinki – München. Friday Nov.6th München –Dubai, Saturday Nov. 7th Dubai – Dar es Salaam, Sunday Nov 8th. Dar es Salam – Iringa.

Outstanding comments:

  1. Emirate Airlines – my favorite airline (confirmed after used it in 2003): good service, environmental aware (recycle plates, silverware, etc.), state of the art entertainment system (for me the game section is just GREAT!!! Individual and multiplayer with other flight members).
  2. Dubai Airport – where west meat east. Dubai airport is the most multicultural place I have met in my life. People gather together in one place being themselves. Hindu, African, Middle East outfits are present as much as western ones. You can see all colors, religions, backgrounds, shapes, is the planet in one airport. —— Tip if you are stock in this airport, as I was, forget about sleeping, they charge 60 US per hour in the hotels there. BUT you can get access to the SPA with a private shower for 17 US, worth it!
  3. Tanzania, my first reaction is EXTREMELY friendly people, I had a GREAT host in Dar es Sala.
  4. The trip to Iringa is long but I was lucky enough to see one elephant, some giraffes, zebras, antelopes,  monkeys, AMAZING!!! (no photos, we were driving fast). In addition to some country side, villages, outfits, colors…. I was tired, but I couldn’t close my eyes a bit.
Tetris game in my sit, with multiplayer options :)

Tetris game in my sit, with multiplayer options 🙂

  • Background

On Sunday I had on my hands for first time an OLPC. If you had tried to download the simulator and succeed, it will be good to hear about it. I didn’t succeed myself then to have this little thing in my hands was IMPORTANT.

A paper about our experiences with this XO (name of the computer of OLPC)  will come out, because in brief: there is much to say about it.

From the workshop perspective,  Marcus had set up everything perfectly. He had done all the in-site pre-arrangements, and even find me a place to live 😉 . He seems as  a fish in the tank.

Once we were together we start to get the information that we needed from Tutors and kids. Having a focus interview with the tutors on Monday and an individual interviews with the 17 children on Tuesday.

Wednesday the workshop started, but we had a no-show. The children were sent home. (something to do with the national examinations). Nevertheless was a good opportunity to talk with the teacher and explain how important the workshop is.

Instead we  join our supervisor and all the team from North-South project (they were running an even in here, which was making Marcu’s life a bit busier I must say). For me, it was a GREAT opportunity to talk with Seugnet Blignaut. She helped me and gave me valuable feedback about my research design and methodology. Quality of time I must say, and I start to see that my intensive period of thinking and writing this year, it seems will pay off.

This is the brief story of the idea, trip and background. Next post is a brief story of our workshop.

First contanct with OLPC

First contanct with OLPC

My first meeting with the tutors of our workshop. Outstanding Tumaini University students

My first meeting with the tutors of our workshop. Outstanding Tumaini University students

First contact with our workshop participatns :)

First contact with our workshop participatns 🙂