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Petition to support local coop

20 Jan

Petition to support local coop

I guess this is the right time to write about the project I am supporting with all my ❤ and time whenever I can.

Coffee Cranks Cooperative is this amazing community project I’m talking about and the one that needs my, your, OUR help now!

It has been recently set up by a couple of friends who wanted to change the world but started with their nearest environment. With the help of one of the dads, they built a beautiful cargo bike which they wanted to use to ‘sell delicious and ethically sourced coffee, tea and snacks’ and to ‘bring positive change to our communities’.

Being a regular participant of the Critical Mass and many other cycling events, customers and sellers at different festivals and markets they became an inseparable part of Manchester cycling scene (and not only) and have brought such a positive change to the community!

By being a coop, Coffee Cranks promotes equality

By selling ethically sourced tea, coffee and snacks it advocates fair trade and people’s rights

By using a cargo bike instead of a car/van etc. CCC cares about the environment, climate change and promotes healthy life style

As the idea was to being a street trader, in December 2013 Coffee Cranks applied for a street trading licence. At the beginning of January the application was rejected and the Coop is not allowed to trade either in front of the Edinburgh Bicycle Coop (can you imagine a better place? Fair trade coffee sold from the bike by the coop in front of another coop) or Dover Street at Manchester Uni that is in the places they applied for.

Those who objected were Manchester University and Oxford Rd Corridor whose arguments are ridiculous. One of them is the ERDF Funding both of them refer to which apparently is one of the reasons why they can’t support projects like Coffee Cranks but when you check it online, it clearly states that:

‘The money [from the Funding] goes to public, private and voluntary sector organisations to support economic growth.

The priorities are to:

*support innovation and the knowledge-based economy

*stimulate enterprise and support successful businesses

*ensure sustainable development, production and consumption

*build sustainable communities’

And again: ‘Nine of the programmes we manage focus on regional competitiveness and employment. These aim to strengthen a region’s competitiveness by promoting innovation and enterprise, as well as development, production and consumption that does not damage the environment.’ Doesn’t it mean that ERDF Funding indirectly supports projects like Coffee Cranks? If so, isn’t such an argument an absurd?

Both the Corridor and the University mention loads of other reasons why they don’t want to support these sort of initiatives but as my dad put it: ‘The i-tree projects The Corridor refers to is an action which aims to ‘fight against climate change’- isn’t CCC the best example of how to do this? They sell their goods from a bike, they ride it (not load it on a van and drive with it), they don’t pollute the environment and also promote this healthy lifestyle among others. Isn’t it enough? It seems to me that Claire Lowe who wrote the comment didn’t even bother herself to have a look at the website to see what the bike looks like and what the project is all about but simply copied pasted the text the Corridor has got prepared to use in such situations. Shame on you and the whole Corridor Board!’

Please sign the petition and spread the word. WE NEED YOUR HELP NOW!

http://chn.ge/1eED0Mq

Thank you!

 

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Manchester Upcycling

30 Nov

Together with my two friends we will be at the Vintage Market, Manchester today (https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.439733639466033.1073741841.278367285602670&type=3). Lidia will be selling her hand made crochet scarfs and stuff, Claire has a wide range of printed tote bags and I’mm be there with my UPCYCLED jewellery (I run under the auspices of Cofee Cranks COop! :D)! Here’s the link to some of the items: https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.439733639466033.1073741841.278367285602670&type=3 and you can see some more in the pictures below. Oh yeah! Not every single part is upcycled but many of them are! I use inner tubes, chains, spokes (wow, that’s soo cool!) so if you’d like to treat yourself to an original piece of jewellery or think your girlfriend or sister or even a grandma would love to feel and look exeptional just pop in to the market and buy a little something for them! We’ll be there from 10am to 8pm (hmmm.. will see!) so don’t miss a chance! 😀 Oh, there will be keyrings there as well!! But don’t worry if you don’t live in Manchester. Email me and sort it out!

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Bicycle Anecdotes from Amsterdam

22 Nov

Have you seen the video? I wonder whether I’ll ever be able to turn left or right here in Manchester without signalising it cos every other road user is cautious and prepared for that…

This is how you DO NOT lock your bike!

26 Sep

I know some people get their bikes for free and some get them really cheap but if I locked my bike the way those bikes owners did I would be so ashamed of myself that I would never admit that I owe any of these. Shame of you people, shame!! ImageImage

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Link

Viva Belarus (2012), dir. Lukaszewicz

21 Jul

Full version with English subtitles

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VejaZSorg8M

Belarus. Zyvie Belarus!!!

20 Jul

Although my friend says this film is a bit out of date, I still recommend to anyone who would like to see what happens (OK, she says that what we can see in the film happened in Belarus 5-10 years ago) just behind the Eastern border of the EU. ‘Zyvie Belarus’ (http://www.imdb.com/title/tt2723138/) is the the fi

lm I’m talking about. Based on real story, the film shows the fight for freedom of expression and for the use of the Belarussian language and is one of the ways to show that people still are ready to fight for what they believe in. The other way to show that they’re not idifferent to what happens around is the festival that has been organised continuously since 1990 in Grodek, Podlaskie Voivodeship, Poland. It’s Basowiszcza! (http://www.basowiszcza.org/https://www.facebook.com/Basowiszcza).There are both Polish and Belarussian bands playing there and I can already recommend a couple of them:

ILILI (BY)

RE1IKT (BY)

INDIOS BRAVOS (PL)

Enjoy! 🙂

Norway

1 Jul

Norway is a beautiful country but an expensive state

Homemade cheescake made of homemade cheese is what I ate today

Everyone has and rides a bike and noone locks them up

You don’t know where Norway is located? It’s the Northern part of the European map!

People live here in big wooden houses with loads of flowers and no fences

Statoil is the answer to how they cover their huge expences!

Norway is a beautiful country! Egenes Camping in Flykkefjord.

Cafe Latte that cost me 5 quid!

Homemade cheescake! Delicious! 😀

Homemade cheese

Even dogs can cycle here!

This is how they lock their bikes- they don’t!

This is an example of where the Norwegians live…

Yes, it is quite an expensive state.. This packet of tobacco cost me over £20!!

 

Useful Tips (honestly)

27 Jun

I wrote this quite a long bit on a train from Sandefjord to Drammen and finished on the way from Drammen to Bryne.

A good piece of advice for those who plan to travel. Before you leave home…

1. Check if you have enough available funds in your bank account and/or inform your bank you’re going abroad (some banks still need that). I wanted to withdraw some NOK using my Polish card and the transaction was rejected. Twice. I didn’t dare to try the third time.The blocked card was the last thing I needed. If it hadn’t been for my UK card, I would have been left at the airport with no money and chance of getting out of there.

2. Check with your mobile phone provider if there’s any limit on your account and what it is. If you don’t you can get a text saying that ‘your service was suspended’ like I did this morning…

3. If you have two mobile phones take them both with you, no matter how old they are, just in case your mobile runs out of battery cos there’s no place where you could charge it (bear in mind that there’s no cuch a place at Warsaw Chopin Airport). This happened to me again…Not a big loss as my ‘service was suspended’ anyway but still. I charged it and put my Polish simcard in on the train to Drammen. But this cost me 100NOK that is 10 quid because this is how much I paid for Komfort class which is I understand kind of a Business Class where you get a complimentary tea/coffee (actually you get a token and use it in a vending machine located on the train) and have LOADS of room for your legs, bags etc. I guess, Ryanair would consider it a waste of space and money and make two rows of seats there, at least two…. So this is where I managed to charge my mobile but you may not be so lucky, neithe may I next time..

4. If you’re vegetarian have  a proper (or bigger than usual) meal before you travel. Unless you want to starve and get angry from the very beginning. Remember, not everywhere vegetarians are equal meat eaters. Definitely not at the Chopin Airport. There was only one place there where I could eat something veggie- I had two cheese pankaces (with kind of a cottage cheese) which cost me 18PLN that is over  £3.5!!! I could have also taken some cooked vegetables…

The vegetarian options among sandwiches were also limited… to an egg sandwich and tuna sandwich… I know, I know, it’s just some people don’t consider fish meat. The decision was difficult to make but as I had already had some stomach problems, I couldn’t go for egg. I’m so sorry tuna…

5. If you travel to Norway it’s like traveling to Rainchester (Manchester) so do’n forget your raincoat or at least an umbrella. And wellies are a must. And don’t this you’ll buy everything here- it’s rather expensive.

6. Last but not least- if you have a chance to travel by plane from one faraway place in this country to another faraway place here, choose plane, not train. I know it’s opposite to what I wrote about in my earlier post but honestly, you’ll have enough. I don’t remember when I wanted to get of the train so much before. But it might be because of the long travel time in general, the night spent at the airport, no food etc.

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Sandefjord is known for whales or rather whaling…

One of the walls at Drammen Train Station

One of the walls at Drammen Train Station

 

Dreary Norwegian weather

Dreary Norwegian weather

 

The Journey has started :D

25 Jun

I mentioned in my first post that my plan for summer was to travel around Europe so.. here I am, my journey has started! 🙂

I flew from Manchester to Warsaw last night and I’m currently awaiting my flight to Norway which is early in the morning. I’m flying to Torp-Sandefjord and it will take me around 9hrs to reach my final destination which is Bryne. I could have taken a plane but thought I’d rather go and visit the places I’ve not been to before (this is what I want to do this summer) than do it the easiest way but not see anything new.

Not everything began the way I planned- my bf got a job and couldn’t go with me… and until Monday afternoon I was convinced I would be flying to Poland on Wednesday so I wasn’t too worried about getting packed and moving out but as I found out it was Tuesday, I had to prioritise things and unfortunately, didn’t have time to go to my allotment :/

Warsaw is hot but the airport prices can kill or at least make you think twice before you spend your money- a small bottle of water costs more (£2) than at the Manchester Airport and so does a cup of mocha (£4). But because they are so expensive they taste delicious! 😉 And the airport is open overnight so you don’t end up on the street 😉

Expensive but delicious cup of coffee ;)

The Airport

25 Jun

Sleeping at the airport is very easy

Nobody’s rude and no one is busy

You can have all the metal seats for yourself

You have time to read a book and worry about your health

The only thing that may not let you have a proper sleep

Is when they close the airport overnight and you end up on the street…