Photos

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Sometimes, pictures tell more than written stories. Enjoy some of photos from various moments of my life, arranged in different galleries. Enjoy viewing them!


Earthquake and tsunami in Sulawesi of Indonesia

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Please note that pictures in this gallery may be found disturbing or graphic to some viewers, as they present extreme destruction and humanitarian suffering.

On 28th September 2018, in the evening hours, Central Sulawesi of Indonesia was struck by the earthquake of 7.7 magnitude RS. The earthquake caused massive destruction in the City of Palu, and triggered a strong tsunami, as well as mudslides and phenomenon called ‘soil liquefaction’ across City of Palu, Sigu and in costal areas of Dongala. 

At the time of writing, the official figures suggest that at least 5,000 lost their lives and thousands people got injured. However, it is clear that the number of people will increase dramatically, as more excavations are done. We all fear that the death toll could exceed 20,000 people. 

The calamities caused apocalyptic destruction with ten of thousands houses being turned into rubble. Roads, electricity, water networks, hospitals, schools, shops, hotels are all destroyed or damaged. 

The disaster has brought many people within Indonesia and some from outside of the country joining hands to help those surviving the disaster. But what is the most impressive is the solidarity and self-support of the families that survived themselves. People just do whatever they can to help one another - thus trying to cope with the loss of their loved ones or their possessions. 

This gallery of pictures is a tribute to victims and survivors of this terrible tragedy, and to those doing whatever they can to help. You can view pictures, by clicking this link

Visiting Tahir and friends in Toronto

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After years of waiting, the dream of seeing Tahir as a free man comes true. Tahir is in Canada, legal, free of fear, able to build his own life. 

This gallery of pictures shows my visit to Canada, my visit to his new beginnings. 

Click here to view the gallery.

A day in Krakow with Mum

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A short day in Krakow on the way to Toronto. Spending time with Mama was wonderful. We chatted, laughed, had good food and walked endlessly. See it for yourself!

Visiting the Pacific again

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Six months after the cyclone Gita devastated the nation of Tonga, it is time to visit the nation - as well as Fiji to learn how the communities recovered from the disaster. Explore the pictures from Hong Kong, Fiji and Tonga to learn about the trip to this fascinating part of the world. 

Ko Chang for the last time?

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We made it to Koh Chang with Tahir and his friend Shazi... I came here with an expectation to rest, after exhausting month at work. But, while we were in Koh Change, we received a message from the Canadian authorities saying that the decision for his resettlement to Canada has been taken. A frustrating part is that we do not know what the decision is... They will communicate it to Tahir within next few days... Needless to say, how stressful we are... And perhaps, it is the last holiday together in Thailand? 

Enjoy the pictures and view them by clicking at this link

Race against the time

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Monsoon rains are arriving to Bangladesh. While rains are a blessing to farmers in many parts of the country, they are a real curse to the Rohingya refugees of Myanmar, who found refuge in the southern region of Bangladesh, around Cox’s Bazar. 

The area is home to the largest refugee camp in the world, often referred to as ‘The Magacamp of Kutupalong’, where some 600,000 people live. There are smaller camps in its vicinity too, bringing the total population of refugees in this tiny part of Bangladesh to around 1 million. 

While the people of Bangladesh are very hospitable, accommodating to their guests and always happy to lend the helping hand to the their guests, the mother nature is far less favourable. The camps are located among steep hills, which are mainly composed of sands. These areas are completely inappropriate for building any kind of residential infrastructure, let alone shelters for one million people! The main worry is that the heavy rains cause hills slide, valleys flood: which is a source of a grave danger to safety of people living there. The risks are not only related to immediate danger to body integrity (especially being buried in landslides), but also to public health issues. Flooding in the area with little and poor sanitation infrastructure, with poor access to potable water, in the area that is severely overcrowded makes the people extremely vulnerable to water-borne diseases, such as cholera, or diseases such as malaria or hepatitis A (and many, many others). Rains and muddy road also make it so much more challenging to bring supplies. Getting food, medicines, or anything else becomes a logistical nightmare!

So the race with time continues. Refugees and aid agencies of all sorts try prepare to minimise the effects of the disaster that will strike on many fronts. Reinforcing houses, levelling hills, building flood protection trenches, reinforcing mud roads, moving people to safer grounds, stocking up on medicines, vaccinating people, making latrines safer… The tasks are overwhelming, and we will clearly not be ready - however hard we try - we are just out of time already. However, as the struggle continues, the hope carries on too. 

I salute the refugees, countless Bangladesh communities of Cox’s Bazar and countless number of aid workers trying to get ready for the emergency to come! Please look at the pictures here to admire their work and the beauty (yes, I insist saying - BEAUTY) of the camps!


Learning my new adopted country: Portugal

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April 2018 is marked with a visit to Óbidos in Portugal, a small town in central-western part of the country. As you may know, Óbidos has become my adopted home - the European base of mine, in addition to my native Nowy Sacz of Poland. The pictures in this gallery show my journey through the town itself and through places around it. Moving in to Óbidos motivates me to learn about my adopted country, which turns out to be wonderfully pretty and friendly indeed. Check out yourself by watching the pictures in this gallery

Early spring in Vienna

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While travelling to Lisbon (and from Lisbon), I had a chance to explore a bit of Vienna. Vienna, and Austria in general is close to my heart, as this is where my father was born during the 2nd World War. As usually, Vienna does not disappoint. It is just a wonderful city that is so worth visiting!

Magical Sukhothai

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Beginning of March brought a long weekend for us in Thailand. Together with Tahir, and some other friends, we decided to visit a new place: Sukhothai and its vicinity. Sukhothai is around 400 km north of Bangkok and is primarily known for its ancient town (which is also on the UNESCO World Heritage List). The place turned out to be magical and definitely has become my favourite in Thailand. Except beautiful architecture, there is also some stunning nature too! Judge it on your own, by visiting this gallery.

Travelling to the Pacific to help bridging humanitarian needs caused by the Severe Tropical Cyclone Gita

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The Pacific is incredible in so many various ways. People are warm, hospitable, and live their lives as if tomorrow never existed. The countries in the region are of exceptional beauty, which many of us tend to associate with ‘paradise on earth’. Yet, the islands of the Pacific are frequently ravaged with powerful storms and cyclones, which can destroy literally everything on their ways and pose a real threat to people’s well being and frequently their very existence. In February 2018, a very powerful cyclone, referred to as Gita hit the islands of Tongatapu and 'Eua in the Kingdom of Tonga. As it became clear that the scale of devastation was going to be big, I was sent to the region to help bringing humanitarian needs that the disaster brought to the country. 

The gallery (click for link here) shows the images from the trip: You will be able to catch some glimpses of Tonga - its beauty, but also the destruction that the calamity has brought to its people, nature and infrastructure; and also Suva of Fiji, and Sydney of Australia - the two places that I visited on the way to and from Tonga. 


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