Posts Tagged terrorism

Sunday Column (499)

A full working week it seems. Not quite, actually, only four days, but I was working in London and I was busy. I suppose I will get used to it again very quickly. I also recorded another podcast and managed to finish the audio book Sapiens. In all honesty, I wasn’t as taken with the book as everyone else seemed to be. Some interesting snippets of human history but a lot of bla bla about life. Never mind, another book done. I very much enjoy reading Richard Branson’s biography, it is a fun story of a successful man’s life. Stories of Success, really.

However, I then started Homo Deus by the same author of Sapiens and it is more interesting as it is looking to the future. It is about how things might look like moving forward for humans, and mankind and on this planet in general. A philosophical book, it gets you thinking, but again if I didn’t listen to it whilst out running, I am not sure it is my time worth spend taking it all in. Nevermind.

I started writing this post as I sit at Clapham Junction on a Gatwick Express service, air conditioned, cold and with wifi access. We were held as London Victoria got evacuated due to a fire alarm. When the train guard announced that we were held due to London Victoria station being evacuated, you could see how people got really quiet on the train. I am not sure if my perception comes due to me reading about 9/11 in Richard’s book, or because everyone went really quiet, but people just seemed to be worried. And that’s a fear we are living with: terrorism. Although, based on the Homo Deus book, more people die of overeating than undereating these days, and terrorism or airplane accidents are very rare. That of course doesn’t necessarily go in line with our perception of things.

What both books show me time and again is that our thoughts form what we make of our environment. I wasn’t too worried it being a terrorist attack but it crosses one’s mind. And then your mind can go on a rampage. What if the city was under attack, would it not be better to sit in Clapham? It surely would be. It was a false alarm, which is good and we continued our journey. Your thoughts however determine what you make of things.

On that note, on Friday I had a day off. My last one for a while but holidays with the family, and I spend with cars. We had a courtesy car from the garage, an SUV, a Skoda Kodiaq. I really enjoyed driving it but it isn’t sportive, it is an SUV. On the one hand I like sitting up, maybe changing my driving a bit and enjoy more comfort. Skoda has a nice ‘Landrover green’ colour they introduced and next year they bring out hybrid models. Let’s bear all that in mind for now 😉

I also spend the day looking at a few Jaguars. My choice of a second car is clear: a Jaguar XK8 or XKR, 2006 model or younger, as the older model is too small for me. Now I need to find the budget and the time to look at one and buy. Or will I hold off and be sensible. But for what? Life is for living and who knows how long we can enjoy it. Anyway, lots to think about.

And on that note it was the last day of school for the boys. Now I got two boys in middle school from September, they are just growing up so quickly. I love that as much as I hate it. Being able to join the leavers’ assembly was great, a bit emotional but overall it is great to see them moving on, growing up and becoming little grown ups. What will the future hold for them? Will AI and robots rule the world when they will be our age? Nothing ever stays the same, things always change.

Let’s use my parents as an example who have been able to connect with us since the introduction of What’s App. I remember putting coins into a phone booth when calling my grand parents from a holiday. Nowadays we send pictures instantly, whilst then we had to develop a roll of 36 pictures and got them a week after the holidays. Wow. We are talking half a life time here, and things will only get faster.

Have a great summer, enjoy things whilst they last.
Volker

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Sunday Column (360)

Writing this post in the aftermath of the terror attacks of Paris is hard. No, I didn’t know anyone that was directly affected. Yes, I know people who know people. I have clients who were affected. My thoughts are with you all. And I love the fact that people on Social Media show their support. I also love the fact that France still committed to taking on refugees from Syria. Together we stand and fight terrorism. In whichever shape or form.

It is a terrible scenario which leaves me speechless.
A friend on Facebook said he survived Madrid, London and now Paris. I have been in London when the bombs went off here. One never forgets. Let’s hope this won’t happen again.

You don’t know. You cannot give in. I am going to Germany next week. They evacuated a football stadium in Germany, diverted two French planes from New York to Paris, they will cancel more events and evacuate more places. We are at war.

It is a new war. No one is safe and no one should give in. There cannot be a religious motivation to kill anybody. Again, this was widely acknowledged on Facebook. Whoever is after killing others is sick. What has the world come to?

Paris

I shared a few posts on Facebook this week. We are dealing with a minority, unfortunately the minority has a high impact on our lives. And I am not getting into a political debate, never have done, and never will. I am not a politician, I hate war, aggression and love peace and friendship. I am probably one of 99% of the world’s population.

And we shall not forget that in other parts of the world terrorism has been killing loads more. In other countries those attacks are part of your day. This is even harder to imagine, of course because it is far away, yet it doesn’t make it better. One video I watched from some Pakistani kids nicely said, that actually they are dealing with the same problems we are dealing with in Europe. They have the same every day problem we are having, and terrorism is just one of them. United we stand!

Let’s hope that we get through this chapter of world history together. Let’s hope we get through it safely for the sake of our children and the children and next generation of the baddies. They deserve it as well, and they deserve to live in a peaceful planet. Or don’t they? What do the children of the terrorist got to do with war? Nothing. Neither do German kids of the war generation have any association with the war either. We will get through it. United!

I am a firm believer that when your time is up your time is up. That’s it. You cannot be scared of dying. And, honestly, you shouldn’t be. It is harder for the people that remain, than for you. You will never know. But let’s not think about it and hope we all come through it together. Let’s try to not think about it and focus on the time we have with our families. This time is precious.

Anyway, the highlights this week: my children! I looooove my kids and my wife too, but she wasn’t there. So we had a men’s weekend. Pizza on Friday night, fun and games and good food and shenanigans all weekend. Despite the younger one recovering from a cold/flu and the older one having one. This time of year, bugs and all. Being able to spend a whole weekend with the boys was fantastic. They are at this stage where I can play with them, discuss things, challenge their minds and brains and their thinking. It is so much fun to just do things. That wasn’t always the case, hence I am super excited. Plus, in times like these, we should put the effort and time in, as this is what we live for!

Of course we were glad, not only me but also the kids, when mum was back, but it was great whilst it lasted 🙂 The opportunity to be able to just spend quality time with your children is something you need to make use of. Building the bond, building trust. And it only gets better over time.

With that high I wish you all a successful and friendly, a peaceful week.

Volker

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