Wednesday, 2 July 2014

C1 COURSE REVIEW

How can I really sum up this C1 course in a nutshell? That's the question I asked myself when I started to write these lines.
Firstly, the illusion of the beginning mixed with the responsibility of finishing the huge tasks we had to do and the high level of my classmates, it was a demanding plus that made me to do my best.
Apart from this, I had a very bad time just after Christmas, when I was aware that it was impossible for me sometimes to combine all the activities I had to do with my job and my family responsibilities. To be honest, I have to say that I considered dropping out the C1 course because I had no time for my wife and my two young daughters. But at that moment, I realized that I enjoyed attending English classes without pressure of homework and my wife encouraged me to continue because she noticed that it was important for me.
 Moreover, that particular day Emilio gave us a superb speech about what was really important in learning English, he said: "The thing is you come to class, and do not worry so much if you can do or not all the tasks I demand, because it is here where we can practice and learn as much or more than doing exercises, activities are very important but they are not the only thing”. You were right Emilio, and thank you for telling me in that particular moment!
From this moment till the end of the course I enjoyed my English classes in a different way. I participated more than I used to do, I tried to do everything I could but without pressure and the most important thing, I consider that the moments and the experiences we lived, the topics we discussed were so interesting, that it was worth attending your classes in English, in Spanish or in Chinese.
Finally I would like to say that the atmosphere we created in the classroom with my classmates "the small circle" was something I have not felt for a long time and I do not know when it will be repeated.
Thanks Emilio for everything you taught me and also for trying to improve my English to the best of my ability!



 Signed: Alfonso Rodríguez Láinez





Tuesday, 3 June 2014

SELF-PORTRAIT IN THE MIRROR


I have receding hair lines that always show honest ideas and seldom bright. Broad forehead with wrinkles that furrow in parallel, they are obvious signs of age and lived experiences. A large face and chubby cheeks is the genetic inheritance from my mother. My thick eyebrows are never surprised of anything. Big, sad and green eyes never lie, and which have seen wonderful and horrible things. My elongated and pointed nose can smell goodness but not treason. Three beauty spots on my left side to remind me what are the three most important things in life. Thick lips ready to love and be loved with passion as if for the first time. Big ears prepared to listening wonderful noises of life that are sick of hearing the hypocrisy of those who govern us. In short, it is a facial expression that shows the greatest compassion and sometimes the greatest hatred in the same person; it is well known for those who are loved and hated by me.


Wednesday, 5 March 2014


A Sailor-Boy's Tale
 

A Sailor -Boy's Tale was written by Karen Blixen - Finecke von Christenze or Karen Dinesen. She was a Danish author also known by her pen name Isak Dinesen. She is the author of many books and tales, whose best-known novel is “Out of Africa” that was adapted to the big screen by Sidney Pollack.

The story narrates the experiences of a young sailor who sails the seas in different vessels round the world. In this tale are mixed youthful love, unexpected tragedy and fantastic characters that have certain powers to transform their appearance.

Everything happens in a small Norwegian port, where sailors from different countries, coexist with the locals (Lapps) in a mystical setting such as the long days of spring in northern Scandinavia. In this context, a story of impossible love comes between our young sailor and a beautiful girl where fate plays a dirty trick on them, but both (Nora and Simon) will never forget.

The writer masterfully combines all these elements (love, mystery, fantasy and gratitude) in a short story that intrigue readers till the end, which is unexpected and wonderful. It is a tale that reminds us the connection between all living beings on this planet.



 

Thursday, 6 February 2014


GLOBAL HUMANITARIA
 
Since 1999, Global Humanitaria has worked around the world, actively pursuing human rights intervention and establishing community-based development programs on behalf of children, women and families. What sets us apart? The Global Humanitaria staff is comprised exclusively of locals from each of our program locations -- our employees understand the communities and the challenges they face from the inside out.
Our programs reach some of the most vulnerable and marginalized communities in nine different countries; Bolivia, Colombia, Guatemala, Nicaragua, Peru, Ivory Coast, Cambodia, India and Nepal. Our initiatives include education, health, food security and nutrition, women’s empowerment, and child protection services.
This NGO develops different programs:
a)      FOOD SECURITY AND NUTRITION PROGRAM IN COLOMBIA (FSN)
For over 10 years, Global Humanitaria has spearheaded a number of important interventions on Food Security and Nutrition in Colombia's southern Pacific coast. This is one of the most severely affected areas of the country’s humanitarian crisis, generated by armed conflict, and drug trafficking, and inhabited mainly by Afro-Colombians. Click here to read a quick overview of the Colombian Pacific Coast.
 The comprehensive FSN program is designed to build the capacity of these Afro-Colombian communities and local government agencies to achieve the right to food security, and to improve the nutritional status for children and the more than 183,000 residents of the municipalities of Tumaco, Francisco Pizarro and Mosquera. The programs range from direct assistance, such as the provision of complementary nutrition to children in school, to the training of community change agents for their active participation in the design and implementation of Food Security and Nutrition public policies.
b)      PROTECT AGAINST CHILD SEXUAL EXPLOITATION
Every year, hundreds of millions of children in countries around the world are victims of exploitation and abuse. They are abducted, rented and sold for sex, or are trafficked into prostitution rings; they are victims of modern day slavery. The consequences are devastating. The victims are frequently in poor physical and mental health, and have been denied their right to a childhood. Many of these children suffer in silence because in many cases, child abuse is privately tolerated and publicly denied.
To conclude, I would like to say that all NGO’s are important but some more than others, and this is one of them. The development of projects against hunger and children’s sexual exploitation deserve our collaboration. Contributing is very easy, you only have to provide 21€ and you will become the godfather of one of these wonderful children. Come and join us!

Thursday, 12 December 2013



To: The Institute for Research into Global Issues

From: Alfonso Rodríguez Laínez

Subject: Redistribution of wealth in the world

Date: 10/12/2013




Distribution of wealth:

            The purpose of this report is to analyze the distribution of wealth that is a comparison of the wealth of various members or groups in a society. It differs from the distribution of income in that it looks at the distribution of ownership of the assets in a society, rather than the current income of members of that society.


Data and current situation:

            The richest 1% of adults in the world own 40% of the planet's wealth, according to the largest study yet of wealth distribution. Europe, the US and some Asia Pacific nations account for most of the extremely wealthy. More than a third lives in the US, Japan accounts for 27% of the total, the UK for 6% and France for 5%.


Causes:

            The surprisingly small number of companies that control many of the basic commodities we use in everyday life, globalization has been accompanied by an extraordinary concentration of ownership. Five companies dominate the U.S. petroleum industry and five control the worldwide trade in grain…


Proposal for the solution:

            In conclusion, it is apparent that radical changes are necessary in the world to redistribute wealth such us: higher wages, more progressive tax burden, more extensive public resources and more capital in public hands.

           
 

Wednesday, 27 November 2013


“...A GOVERNMENT OF THE PEOPLE BY THE PEOPLE AND FOR THE PEOPLE”.




Do we really have a real democracy? Do we really vote to decide our future or we can only decide who will govern us in a better or worse way? In fact, these are questions that many people ask themselves and they have no answer.

I would like to start with the analysis of what a democracy system means and for this reason I am going to use “The Gettysburg Address”, the famous speech that was delivered by Lincoln during the American Civil War. In this discourse he explained what is a real representative and participatory democracy. It implies “a government of the people by the people and for the people”.

Secondly, I would like to explain what he wanted to express with “a government of the people”. It means that the government must be chosen by people who belong to a nation. But do we really elect our representatives or we only choose between two lists of candidates that are drawn up and blocked by political parties? And would it be possible that a perfect candidate who did not belong to the two main political parties won an election? Frankly, I must say that he or she would not have any opportunity.

Thirdly, he talked about “a government by the people”, and I have to say that it is perhaps the only thing you will be able to find in our democratic system. They (our representatives) decide instead of us because it is impossible to vote every single decision that affects us.

Moreover, he referred to “a government for the people” but sadly at this point, I have to manifest that no government actually governs for the people’s interest. All decisions are taken to defend the interests of the banks and multinational companies to the detriment of its citizens.

All things considered, I would like to finish learning something from the new technologies, and it implies that when one system does not work properly we have to restart it.

 

Monday, 11 November 2013


THE STORY OF A SOLDIER

The National Front troops advanced rapidly towards their goals. It was winter and everything was so frozen that the cold seemed to seep into Juan’s bones, a Spanish soldier.

More and more prisoners from the Republican side were arrested and summary executions were carried out all time.  Juan was horrified to see how humans can contemplate such horror while feeling almost nothing.

Sebastian, captain of Juan’s company, ordered him to join with the next firing squad. All the soldiers boarded on to the truck and four detainees were with them. One of the prisoners was staring at Juan with fear in his eyes. In that moment, Juan thought that he had become a murderer who followed orders without questioning.

Not so long time ago, Juan had been a nice guy who was studying in a high school at Teruel and was full of joy playing football with his classmates. He liked to remember those times watching a photo of the football team in which he played. But the war had changed everything and he had been changed by the war.

Suddenly the truck stopped close to the cemetery walls and the soldiers ordered the inmates to get off and stand next to the wall. In ten minutes the shooting ended the soldiers’ mission; after that they reviewed the clothes of the dead in case there was something of value, before they were buried in a common grave. Juan revised the prisoner belongings who were staring at him in the truck and he found a wallet and an old watch.

When he returned to the camp he opened the wallet and could see that the prisoner carried the same picture of the football team as he did. He was stunned when he checked the prisoner’s ID and realized that he was his best childhood friend.

At that moment he felt devastated by what he had done, he had become a monster. Then he ran out and returned to the walls of the cemetery beside the grave where the bodies were buried, suddenly he took out the picture that kept like a treasure, he looked at the sky and a shot was heard and everything was over. If he could not restore his life at least he would accompany him in the afterlife.