Hachiko, the faithful dog.

After a profound demonstration of devotion for his master, a dog becomes the symbol of loyalty for an entire nation. Eizaburo Ueno, professor in agriculture science at Tokyo University in Japan, had long wanted a purebred Japanese Akita dog. He had looked for the perfect Akita puppy for a long time, until one of his students encouraged him to adopt Hachiko, from the Odate city in the Akita prefecture of Japan. If there was one thing that Professor Ueno could count on, it was certainly the sight of his loyal…

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Götz von Berlichingen: the legendary German Knight of the Iron Hand

Götz von Berlichingen was born in Germany around 1480, around the time that even those belonging to families of the small nobility with few means, like him, very often became soldiers of fortune, in the pay of the highest bidder. Before his 17 th birthday, von Berlichingen it seems that to have enlisted in the army of Brandenburg-Ansbach, and was in the service of the Holy Roman Empire for the two following years. At the age of 20, von Berlichingen is said to have stopped serving the Emperor, and assembled…

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Colorow’s Cave

In the middle of a suburban Denver neighborhood, there is a cave that once provided comfort for a prominent Ute chief and his people. Before the European settlers went west, Ute, Arapahoe, Cheyenne, and other nations roamed the mountains and plains of Colorado. Even if a lot of the evidence of their existence has been lost, or probably destroyed, some of this sites still remain, but you have to know where to look to find them! For example, in a Denver, Colorado, suburb, there is one of these fascinating historic…

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Göbekli Tepe: the most mysterious Archaeological site in the world.

We are in Turkey, where this strange hunter-gatherer architecture believed to be the oldest religious complex known. In 1994, German archaeologist Klaus Schmidt and his team unearthed a handful of findings that continue to revolutionize the way archeologists think about Stone Age man, in fact this important archaeological discovery will probably lead to reconsidering everything that until now had been supposed on the evolution of primitive man. Today’s theories state that only after the advent of agriculture, and subsequent sedentarization, did our Neolithic ancestors come to perform religious practices. The…

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Pontusval Lighthouse.

The savage beauty of the Pays Pagan coastline, known as “Shipwreck Shore”, has long been feared by sailors on account of its granite rocks, strong currents and the tradition sourronding it. For a long time the area was frequented by ships seeking shelter in bad weather near l’Aber-Wrac’h, the Ile de Batz or the port of Pontusval. However, in the 19th century the lighthouses of Ile Vierge and Batz were not visible in heavy fog and strong currents would pull boats towards the Beg-Pol rocks, causing many shipwrecks in the…

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Miracle Mike: The chicken that lived for 18 months without a head

Mike the Headless Rooster was a specimen of Wyandotte cockerel who, according to the stories of the time, lived for 18 months after his head had been cut off. Although this may resemble the classic urban legend, the story is fully documented and testified by the pages of Time Magazine, Life and many other newspapers of the time. The story of “Mike the Rooster without Head” begins about seventy years ago, in April 1945, when an anonymous chicken was born on an anonymous farm. Here, a farmer beheaded a chicken…

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SVL: the Very Fast Soviet jet-propelled Train of 1970

Before high speed, which today we consider a service almost obvious, railway companies around the world were looking for different tricks to make their convoys fast and able to travel huge distances in a short time. During the 1960’s, Americans, followed by the Soviets, experimented with turbojet trains. The idea was that, like a jet aircraft, the train is propelled by the jet thrust of the engines, rather than by its wheels. From Russia, in 1970, a futuristic project arrived that today appears to be decidedly vintage, a piece of…

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Pinch ‘n’ Sip: in Edinburgh, you can assemble your cocktails via kitschy claw machine! ~

Here we are: Yes. It’s all true! Strange but true! At a subterranean Edinburgh bar, in Scotland, every drinkers can assemble their cocktails via kitschy claw machine. At Hoot the Redeemer, a subterranean bar in Edinburgh, alcohol comes in many crazy and unusual forms. Hoot the Redeemer is a 50s-styled New Orleans funfair-themed dive bar and here, amidst the 1950s-themed decor, sweet-toothed patrons spoon boozy ice cream straight from the carton, and competitive drinkers play board games on the backs of menus. Furthermore, arcade gamers can win a bespoke cocktail…

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France: La Maison Sculptée

We are in a quiet village, where an incredible work of outsider art, appears like a hidden treasure trove of paintings, sculptures, and carvings that seem to bring the architecture to life. In 1968, Jacques Lucas and his wife Marie-France bought a row of abandoned houses that had been in ruins for decades. They were located about thirty kilometers east of Rennes in the northwest of France. So, they worked for over a year to make their new property habitable. Lucas met a painter and sculptor named Robert Tatin, and…

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Turnip Jack-o’-Lanterns Are the Root of Halloween traditions~

Of course, many people herald Halloween as an American festival of ghosts and ghouls, but most of the activities associated with this time of year are rooted in European folklore and tradition. For example, the pumpkin carved into a jack-o-lantern, is of course an American introduction, but it quite literally has its roots on Europe, where people have been carving turnips and other root vegetables for centuries, to ward off evil spirits. In 2015, the United Kingdom was in pumpkins shortage due of a wet weather. As a result, some…

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Ireland’s Hungry Tree

We are within the grounds of The Honorable Society of King’s Inns, Ireland’s oldest school of law, founded in 1541 during the reign of King Henry VIII, where an 80-year-old plane tree is devouring an iron bench. We know most trees feast upon a steady diet of carbon dioxide, water, and sunshine, which they absorb through their roots and leaves. However, it seems that some trees like to absorb other things as well! The Hungry Tree in Dublin is an 80-year-old London Plane tree that’s currently in the process of…

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Longyearbyen: the Norwegian town where it’s illegal to die.

Longyearbyen might just be one of the strangest and particular towns there is to visit in our planet. But that’s sure, it is the most Nordic part of the world. Here the streets have no name: streets in Longyearbyen are numbered, and residents require an “Alcohol Card” in order to purchase drinks. This, it seems, was a relic from the town’s old mining days where miners were given a “rations card”, which they used to get a drink or a bottle of beer. It’s considered polite custom to leave your…

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Colorno: the sad story of suffering in the abandoned asylum.

Colorno, the italian abandoned psychiatric hospital near Parma, still seems to make its walls speak. Inside now there is nothing, only crowded blankets, clothes, old weelchairs and scattered documents, but the souls of so many suffering still remains. It was closed in 1979 with the Basaglia law, which also takes on the modernization of the clinical setting of psychiatric assistance, establishing renewed human relationships with staff and society, fully recognizing the rights and necessity of a quality patient life, followed and cured even in territorial structures. Now the inner courtyard…

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Baunscheidt’s Lebenswecker: The 19th-Century “Life-Awakener”

On an unspecified day in 1847, the German inventor Carl Baunscheidt sat in his own garden, suffering from the pain his hands caused by gout (or perhaps rheumatoid arthritis). The man tried to defend himself from the mosquitoes that were trying to sting him, but in the end one of those annoying bugs got the better of him, and he managed to poking him on his painful hand. As the classic and itchy mosquito bite formed, Baunscheidt realized that the pain was gradually alleviated. The inventor later wrote, in his…

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Venice and The Collapse of St. Mark’s Bell Tower

It was the year 1902 and San Marco and Venice were not very different from what we know today. The Basilica and the bell tower were standing, similar to today, since the twelfth century, although with many changes and renovations due to natural disasters (lightning) and malicious, such as fires. The bell tower, in particular, was in a very precarious equilibrium, and until 1776, when it was equipped with a lightning rod, it was itself the main driver of electric shocks that, over the centuries, had damaged the structure tens…

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Will Scarlet’s Grave In Blidworth.

We are in the shade of the yew trees rooted in the graveyard of a medieval church, where there is an enigmatic, unmarked stone monument. According to the legend Will Scarlet, one of Robin Hood’s Merry Band of Outlaws, who was supposedly a native of Blidworth, was buried near this weathered pillar in the heart of Sherwood Forest, Nottinghamshire. His grave is not marked, but there is a black marble plaque commemorating one “T. Leake” on the church wall, surrounded by an alabaster frame. Is said that this alabaster frame…

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Fountain of Union: Slovakia’s largest fountain is a relic of its Soviet past.

At the center of a city square in Bratislava there is a big relic of the Soviet era. It’s called the “Fountain of Union”, or “Druzba” and it’s the Slovakia’s biggest fountain. The fountain was built between 1979 and 1980, by sculptors Juraj Hovorka, Tibor Bártfay, Karol Lacko and architects Virgil Droppa and Juraj Hlavica, and it was designed so that water would flow from an underground tunnel before bursting into the air, creating a really impressive spectacle. It is made out of stainless steel and its core represents a…

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The Hermitage in St.Petersburg maintains still today a Colony of Cats to keep the Museum free from mice.

The State Hermitage Museum in the Russian city of St. Petersburg is one of the oldest and most prestigious museums in the world. The gigantic collection, which has over three million pieces, was started by the Tsarina Catherine, but became accessible to the public, like a museum, since 1852. Among the historic buildings that make up the great Hermitage complex is the Winter Palace, the residence of the Russian imperial family. The tradition of Cats at Court dates back to a 1745 decree of Empress Elizabeth, the daughter of Peter…

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The misterious abandoned plane in Bali.

We are in southern Bali, near the southern coast of the Bukit Peninsula, where there is an abandoned Boeing 737. It’s not at an airport or an airplane boneyard, but it sits in a field near a kind of limestone quarry. It’s just off the Raya Nusa Dua Selatan Highway and only five minutes from the very popular and turistic Pandawa beach, so, it’s not exactly hidden away from the world! What makes it even stranger, is that no one seems to know how it got there! It would normal…

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Scandinavians use blood to make dense, dark and savory Pancakes~

A balanced breakfast is a very important meal in just about all over the world, but not many of them require a blood sacrifice. There is a traditional dish that is exactly what it sounds like: a pancake made with a healthy helping of blood. And that’s true. Scandinavians use blood to make dark and savory flapjacks! During the icy Scandinavian winters, local cooks learned to make the most out of every animal they hunted, so, nothing was wasted. They boiled hooves into gelatin, fried hearts into nuggets, and baked…

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The girl tattooed with “The Garden of Earthly Delights” Isn’t what It seems to be!

What seems to be a photograph of a girl showing off her Hieronymus Bosch-inspired tattoo isn’t a photo, but an incredible oil painting by Polish artist Agnieszka Nienartowicz, a creative reproduction of the highest work of the Dutch artist born in the fifteenth century. Bosch’s figures, expertly painted in oil by the young artist, show the fall of man, contrasting with the delicate beauty of the young woman depicted, who offers her back like a canvas for the painter. Nienartowicz’s work follows a modern trend, which sees the return to…

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Like the set of a horror movie: abandoned Carrefour in the Bari industrial area.

Deserted big parking areas, fully disemboweled escalators, broken glazed into a million pieces and signs on the ground: welcome to the disturbing scenery of the former Carrefour shopping center, now only a large abandoned structure located in the huge industrial area of ​​Bari. A macabre atmosphere that deserves to be told with a series of photographs, which has nothing to do with memory of this shopping center full of people who loved shopping and who came here more or less often, activities that took place every day, it seems until…

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Bled Island Potica: a delicacy from Slovenia.

Here we are: Many people in Slovenia, especially people with a grandma with an affinity for baking, grew up eating potica’s slices. Potica is a traditional cake, and a must for every holiday in Slovenia, be it Christmas, Easter or a family celebration. It’s made from yeast-raised sweet dough, rolled thin and spread with different fillings. Since Slovenia boasts a wealth of culturally diverse regions with a variety of culinary traditions, there are not only one version of the cake, because it’s a versatile shapeshifter that takes on various forms…

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Marula Beer: a great Tradition in South Africa~

Here we are: In South Africa, women transform a tart fruit into a famous sour brew. Even if many have questioned myths about drunken elephants wobbling through piles of fermenting marula, it’s established that humans have found multiple ways to turn the South African fruit into a beverages, from the commercialized Amarula Cream Liqueur to the more local specialty known as marula beer. The history of the Marula tree (Scelerocarya birrea) dated back thousands of years. Several archaeological evidence shows the marula tree was a source of nutrition as long…

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Wolf and Cow playing Backgammon: a curious viennese mural~

This is a crazy medieval mural preserved on the side of a Viennese house. In the 15th century, Enea Silvio Bartolomeo Piccolomini, better known later in life with the name of Pope Pius II, described all the nice houses of Vienna as being painted inside and out with fabulous scenery. As says the marginalia found in illuminated manuscripts, the houses would have featured religious and historic portraiture, but also some humorous imagery. Moreover, a 15th century description of Vienna claims that all of the burghers’ houses were adorned with splendid…

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Fairies: Mysterious ladies of the Celtic Folklore.

The fairies…magical creatures we’ve heard of since childhood. Fairies are imagined of small stature, dressed in green or red and intent to occupy the day doing the same tasks as men. However, it could be very dangerous to meet them, because, staying with them, people could lost the notion of time and risked “aging” hundreds of years without realizing it (lot of stories tell of people who were entertained to dance with the fairies, but when go back home, they find no more their homes, and centuries have passed!). Also…

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Mongrel Mob: the most terrible Gang of New Zealand.

In Hawkes Bay, New Zealand, was born in 1960, the first nucleus of what would become the largest gang in the country, now spread throughout the country: the Mongrel Mob. The gang, initially formed by young people of European origin, has expanded to include Maori and Polynesians, although it has the appearance of a band of Nazi bikers: their symbols are a swastika and a British Bulldog wearing a German Stahlhelm, and supposedly is an image intended to offend as it is a British Bulldog wearing the helmet. Mongrel Mob…

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Stańczyki Viaducts: this two abandoned overpasses are among the largest bridges in Poland!

This two big Roman viaducts are located near a small Polish village. These abandoned railroad bridges tower over the little village and its surrounding woods. The Stańczyki Viaducts are among the largest bridges in Poland, stretch nearly 182 meters long, stand 36 meters tall, and boast arches that clock in at just under 15 meters long. The two bridges were built in the 20th century. the northern one approximately in 1914 and its southern counterpart between 1923 and 1926. They served as railway overpasses that connected the towns of Gołdap…

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Villa Epecuen: The town that remained submerged for 25 Years.

We are in Argentina, in the 1920’s: Villa Epecuén and its nice salt lake are a popular tourist destination for Buenos Aires vacationers. Arriving by train, visitors can relax in luxury quarters after taking advantage of the therapeutic waters of Lago Epecuén. This mountain lake is unusual because its waters are saltier than any ocean, in fact, it is second only to the Dead Sea in salt content, and people suffering from depression, diabetes, and similar come to soak in its healing waters. The therapeutic powers of Lake Epecuen have…

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Crecchio Castle, history, legends and Byzantines!

The castle, of Norman-Swabian origin, was built around a watchtower around the 11th-12th centuries. The original tower, called “normanna” and “dell’ulivo”, part of a territorial defensive system, was visually connected with other towers in the surround, like the Mucchia tower (on the coast) and with the city of Lanciano and Guardiagrele inside. To it are linked many legends related to the cruelty of one of its owners who, ruling these places with terror, beheaded its opponents on the highest tower, that of sighting. The tower became a symbol of terror…

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