Kasha, London, UK


* For those who don’t know it, the Desert Island Disc is a cult programme on BBC radio 4, where celebrities reveal their top 10 songs and life experiences combined with those songs. The story goes that a lot of wannabes carry their top 10 lists around, just in case they’ll be asked to appear on the programme.

1. Joan Baez – The Crimes of Cain

The year was 1980, Polish population was caught in the middle of the marshal law, following the workers’ strike in the Gdansk shipyard. The country was on the edge of the civil war, but life goes on… My mother would come home with a glint of triumph in her eyes because, after two days of queuing, she managed to buy an autumn/winter pair of shoes. (It was one of the two pairs assigned per person per year. The other pair was officially related to as a “spring/summer” pair). Standing in lines required a certain art, and certain code of behaviour. Usually, you turned up in a line once a day, to tick your name off on a social list. You could bring a replacement for a couple of days/hours, or you could even rent a professional queue stander.

A cousin of my neighbours, who lived in a village, gave them half of a pig. Since meat, as everything else, was rationed, they skinned it and turned into pork cutlets in the bathtub of their studio apartment, under the forgiving wings of the night. My dad got some chops in return for a litre of a potato moonshine (that was my uncle’s production). (more…)

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I would start with fashion industry – utterly irritating, self-cantered breed which thinks they can dictate us what to wear, waste global resources and make people slave away in sweatshops in order to produce some flimsy looking piece of clothing which is then sold for equivalent of my monthly rent; and if nobody buy it, it’s not even recycled- it’s thrown away.

Youth culture- why do you have to look hip and trendy in your 40’s and 50’s. 40’s and 50’s are for you to look and feel your age – you don’t have to spend thousand on botox, breast fillers, fake tan to pretend you are your daughter. In this, I’m siding with the latest Dove campaign and their pro-age adverts.

Celebrities – being famous for being famous doesn’t really cut the mustard with me. I can understand if you have talent to act or to sign, but if your only claim to fame is that your granddad owes a chain of hotels… forget it (more…)

Years ago, when I first moved to London, lived in a dilapidated Victorian house with four other culprits. The most expensive things I owe was a £80 mattress. I was really proud of myself because it meant I could just get up and leave whenever I wanted. One day, standing it front of a shop window, me and my housemate were admiring beds, spread in front of us on the other side of that window. “They are lovely” –she said- but… We looked at each other and finished together “too much commitment”!

And indeed, that how I could characterise my life. I spent it running away from possessions, romantic relations, family ties. Opening to somebody meant they could hurt you, so I made sure I went out with people who were least interested in getting know me and I could keep it casual. I limited contact with my parents to occasional phone call once a month. I didn’t want them to participate in my life-that was easier.

I’ve strained my memory trying to remember any accident in my childhood which made me so emotionally walled –off. I couldn’t remember anything. I was just this weird creature who could talk about everything and anything.. as long as you didn’t expect her to open up about her emotions. (more…)

 

I love a good crime story, but I’ve been always afraid of horrors and spooky stories. It goes back to my childhood, and actually to my dad. He is a very down to earth person, you couldn’t find anybody more level-headed. Yet, since he was a child, he had a six sense and ability to predict people’s death. When he was young, it happened to him on many occasions that he saw ghosts. The scariest of those encounters was when he woke up one night only to see his father-in-law, dead for several months, sitting in a chair opposite the bed and watching him and my mum. (Why would my granddad decide to come back, it was never established, nevertheless, he chose his son-in-law for that last encounter).

 

When my dad tells this story he says that, when he woke up and realised that he was facing a ghost, for a couple of seconds he felt nothing – as if the time stood still – he just watched the man opposite him, until a wave of panic hit him, and he dived for cover screaming and waking up the whole house. There were also lots of stories told by ma dad’s siblings about a hunted house they grew up in after the war. (Dad doesn’t want to talk about it at all.) Supposedly, on several occasions, he saw people nobody else could see. (more…)

This post will be short and sweet. Lately I have discovered an amazing character whom I totally worship- doctor Gregory House. What can I say, I have a thing for anti-heroes.

 

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he’s a cantankerous cynic – something I can associate with

he’s a substance addict – warms my heart to see the weakness befalls even the greatest ones.

he is a softie underneath all of this – rouge with a golden heart is simply irresistible

he’s simply sexy and smart, and like good wine he gets better with age.. and he’s in touch with his feminine side

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It happened at the sunset hour at one warm spring day in Moscow at Patriarch’s Pond. Two men sat on a bench discussing religion in general, and Jesus in particular. One of them, Ivan Bezdomny, was a poet who wrote a derogatory poem about Jesus. The other one, Mikchail Berlioz, an editor of a highbrow literary magazine and chairman of the management committee of the largest Moscow’s literary clubs, was trying to convince Bezdomny that the core of the problem is not that Jesus was evil but that he didn’t exist at all.

In the fervour of the discussion that didn’t noticed when they were joined by a stranger. The stranger wore an expensive grey suit, spoke with a foreign accent and had a limp. He told them that not only did Jesus exist, the proof of this being that the stranger knew him and spoke to him, but also; to emphasize the proof; the stranger told Berlioz that he will die with his head cut off by a female member of a Konsomol…… (more…)

I have lately slipped in the frequency of writing my blog contributions for which I dearly apologise. Reasons for this being several:

 

I decided to take a very adult step and start house hunting – a step considered close to lunacy in a property obsessed London

I went sailing with a group of colleagues in Polish lake district, which almost lead to two deaths by drowning and one death by being knocked down with a portable loo (full to the brim) – more about it later

I have spent a night in a castle attending a ghost hunting event – more about it next time since I still shudder remembering the experience

 

So, a couple of weeks ago I was invited to join a group of colleagues to sail across Polish lake district. No sweat! We rented a couple of boats, the weather was supposed to be beautiful. I was looking forward to getting away from civilisation, enjoying dramatic sun sets, silence, nature and picturesque landscapes. (more…)

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