1st July: I have a day off and my couchsurfers will spend that day with me. After a mediterranean breakfast I had to wait for my chest of drawers I bought the day before. Actually I had to go to the shop when they became late. At least, the chest was delivered and I was allowed to follow with the van. The workers carried the chest with the drawers all the four flight of steps up – and all for the same price = I love Malta!
Because of this my CS and me were a little late, but early enough to catch a van to Cirkewwa for going by speed boat to Comino and the amazing Blue Lagoon. Before we went back we attended a sightseeing by boat of some grottos. It seems there are lots on Malta, I think it depends on the limestone.
2nd July: My couchsurfers had to made their day by their own, because I had to work middle shift, starting at 11am and could not follow them. I explained how to get where, but they did not remember it later – so they missed the Mosta Basilica – but have had a nice day at the beach of Golden Bay. They came back to my home quite late.
3rd July: My couchsurfers left this day. For breakfast L. baked a starter filled with cheese (not a usual breakfast meal). I followed them to the X-bus to the airport – we took a warm good-bye. I hope to see them soon again! Fortunately I had time for that, but I worked middle shift even this day, starting at 11am.
I was at home around 8pm. The rent book was under my door and I knocked at my landlords’, paid the rent and asked him some questions. He will buy curtain rails 🙂 and take this weired furniture out of my flat – it is not his either ;-). He will also help me with my window cleaning, that means: He will take down the windows so I can clean them, afterwards he will put them back – whenever it fits me and he is at home :-). He said, that it is too dangerous for me to take the windows down and I am very happy about this.
4th July: This Day was a Happy Day for me
In the morning I was on the Internet, cleaned my flat and took a shower. So it was time to go to work.
Today they celebrate the independence in the USA, my father was born this day and for me it was a great day, because I’ve got the allowance to work in our customer service by my own responsibility. I like these tasks much more than the tasks I have had before.
5th July My new couch surfer is arriving. She has already been some days on Malta with another host and she also already has couchsurfing friends here. Before I was going to work we were talking about going to Marsaxlokk. I recommend her to follow me the next day, because the Sunday is the best day to go there, but she will go to Comino with her friends.
When she arrived, I had to go to work soon afterwards. I will go home and eat at 9pm so hon can come into my flat, leave the bath clothes and go out again, meeting her friends.
6th July It is Sunday and I am going to Marsaxlokk, because we (my son with family and me) were too late last time. I decided to be in Marsaxlokk at 10am, but I were too tired and I only were there at 11am. That was time enough anyway. I hoped, that there will be a flea market, but there was not. The stalls sell clothes, shoes, table clothes, fish, cakes, fruits and more on the market, but all new. So I could not really find the character of the Maltese. Anyway there were a Maltese singer with his wife. He announced Maltese Summer Folklore Nights. These are very interesting for me, even it is all for the tourists, but they are at Thursday Nights and I have late shift all that nights. He also asked me in which hotel I live and I told him, that I am working and living in Msida. At the end we found out, that we know the same person, a colleague to me at Besedo. The world is not as big as you think.
[I did not make any pictures, I am so sorry.]
When I was at work, we were only three persons in our shift, but Sunday evening there are not so many requests. I made around 70 mails already in my 8-hours-shift and that is not bad att all. If I didn’t have had some very special cases, where I had to discuss this with my colleagues and at the end had to ask my team leader, I could have done more – just the 80 expected emails. I think, there will be days soon when I can come up to it. Anyway I have still a lot to learn so I’m only answering usual service mails like deleting of accounts and similar.
7th July Today I have a day off and I am going to a furniture shop, which has advertised their furniture. I need something more for the bathroom as well as chairs and a coffee table. They have a coffee table with a storage and I like the idea. Also I found a coat hanger, a trolley for the kitchen and a tall mirror. These things will fit in very well in my flat. Therefore I was going to that shop and ordered the items. The chairs were advertised with a kitchen table and unfortunately it was not possible to buy them without the table. I ordered delivery, too. So I have to wait for them around a week – but what is a week, when I will stay here for around five years?
Because I was half way to Rabat when buying the furniture I took the bus to this city, thinking I will get another bus from Rabat to Mdina when I have seen Rabat. I was surprised, when I was leaving the bus close to the Rabat Interchange and in some minutes just was in Mdina. I walked over a bridge to a fortress and that one is already in Mdina. There were a natural history museum and I thought I should learn a little more about Maltese history and was entering there. I bought a combined ticket for that museum, another museum called “Domus Romana”, entrance to the St. Paul’s Catacombs and a Sight Seeing Tour by a sightseeing train, driven by a tractor. I’ve got all that for only 9 Euro, 3 Euro less than usual adults, because of my age.
I was a little surprised about the natural history museum because it was all about animals on Malta, the limestone and fossils. Anyway it was interesting, but I did not need so much time as usual for a museum because the subject. Also I did not have much time because all museums were closing around 4pm and the train will also stop to go at that time. I tried to go by the train after the first museum, but it was not at the start point and that is nearby the “Domus Romana”. So I went in there in the hope I will be back in time to the next train and I was – anywhere there were no time announced when the trains are going. The “Domus Romana” was really interesting because there were excavations from a house of the Roman period on Malta. It was a home for a quiet rich family. They showed some things they have found like mosaic and statues and they hade made a reconstruction of the building – only to see on drawings. It was also explained how the families were living at that time.
The trip with the train was very interesting, too and took much more time than I’ve expected. The train was driving through Rabat, the country side and Mdina. We were coming through narrow streets, came close to the catacombs, saw the outer villages and the clock tower and had a magnificent view on the Cathedral of Mdina. We could also see Mosta in the distance. At that time I was thinking I might go back to Mdina the next day when I have been at my bank branch in Mosta, but afterwards I saw all the rest I was interested in and finished the trip to Rabat / Mdina.
At the stop for the train again, I asked the driver for the shortest way to the St. Paul’s Catacombs and went there. A little while I was not sure that I was on the right way, but then I remembered I have seen the place before, sitting in the train, and felt save about it. Following the signs I came to the catacombs, but I had to hear, that my ticket was not for that catacombs, because there are three different of them in Rabat. I was advised where the catacombs of St. Paul are and I found my way. When I entered there, I was all alone, there were no guiding but an audio guide. Because my hearing aids I have some problems with this guides. I was going down under all alone and was happy to have a torch with me. Also there were lights now and sen, it was quiet dark and the ground uneven. Actually I was afraid that I would not find the way out again, but it was very well signed, I could not miss. After a while more people entered the catacombs, but there were never many. At the end I ask for a guide on paper, so I can read about what I have seen ;-).
From that adventure I was walking back to Mdina. On the way I have seen a lot like decorated churches (all still after the Feast of St. Peter and St. Paul), very small lanes, an unusual pub (only from outside because it was not open) and nice houses.
In Mdina again I was in a shop for Mdina Glass. They have so nice things there – all from bottles, clocks, lights to pictures. You can read about it here. https://www.mdinaglass.com.mt/about-mdina-glass I was thinking about to buy a light because there is no close to the bed and I have to take my torch when I switch of the light in my bedroom, but the one I liked was to expensive. Therefore I bought a kind of can, I also need. In the future my uncooked macaroni will be in there.
I continued from there to a platform at the end of a lane. From that I could see the clock tower very well and also I could see Mosta. Because I could not make a picture from the sightseeing train, I made it now. On my way back to Rabat and the bus I found a shop offering liqueur tasting. I went in asking when it will be of, if it is necessary to make an appointment and how much it is. The answers were surprising, because it is possible whenever we want, no appointment has to be done and it is for free. I think, they hope that the customer tasting the liqueur also will buy some. I will try that when I have couchsurfers who enjoy that.
Around 7pm I was at home, spending the rest of the evening with my blog.
8th July – Naxxar Next When I was hanging my laundry, the senior owner of the house was on the roof and fixed new lines. I was really surprised because I did not think, that they will do it so quickly and also I was surprised, that the senior owner and not one of the younger ones made that work. He told me that he afterwards will help me to set up the plate, I asked for (it is a plate with a picture of my home town – just the “Herakles” – I have got years ago from my elder brother). I did not take a lot of pictures or paintings with me to Malta, but that was small enough to have. I also ask the man for putting my hooks with the Swedish geese on the wall for hanging my kitchen towels and similar. He did this to. Therefore I was late for going to Mosta, but there was still time enough.
I had to go to the branch of my bank in Mosta again because I have not got my debit card yet. I planned also to go to Naxxar if it is close enough, because I read that it is a “must be there”, too. When I told the clerk at my bank that I have got the code for my debit card already the 12th June, he answered that it takes 10 days to get the card. I told him, that it is four weeks ago and he tried to help me. I was of course a little surprised by his answer, because the 12th of July has not been yet, so he could not misunderstand me. Anyway a colleague of him ordered a new debit card for me and I was free to go wherever I want because I have a day off today, too.
Therefore I went to the bus stop and checked what busses and in which direction are going there and I found one which will be in Naxxar in 6 minutes and another one, which was going to Naxxar in 10 minutes. That was perfect even I missed just the right bus. The weather was nice as usual, but a little warmer. Around half an hour later I was leaving the bus in Naxxar, close to the Parish Church. I took some pictures from the outside and was disappointed that the Church was not open – that is not Mediterranean but Maltese style!
On the other side of the street there is the Palazzo Parisio and I became inquisitive. When I entered the hall I was very surprised because there were beautiful paintings on the ceiling and the hall was very well decorated. I read, that there is an admission charge and I went to the reception to see how much it was. The lady at the reception told me, that it is for free to go to the garden – there is, by the way, also en restaurant. So I started with the garden and it was beautiful! Because I was a little late I was very hungry and took a seat at a table and some minutes later I ordered a “Luna BLT”. Luna is the name of the restaurant, but was the BLT means, I do not know yet. It was bread with a delicious spread (bacon, lettuce, tomato).
After the meal I bought the ticket and was walking through all the rooms with an audio guide. Because there are not so many people visiting these places – the most tourists on Malta enjoy just the weather – I could use this guide. It was interesting to know what they were telling by the guide, but it was amazing to see the famous building with all the paintings on the ceiling and the stucco as well as the wall papers, floors and furniture. I was very surprised to find that on Malta. I learned that the rich families on the island were very interested in these things. I was going home by bus after I have seen the palazzo, because there were no more interesting things in Naxxar.
Actually you should see it in real – I look forward to your visit!
9th July – My couchsurfer left today and I am really disappointed by her. She used me like a hotel. She was only sleeping here, hade her own meals – I could not invite her for breakfast either. She was interested in coming into my apartment for showering and changing clothes. She was always meeting her friends. I told her in the beginning, that I would like to make things together with her and I am off on Monday and Tuesday – but she was not interested att all. Even vi were at the same day at the same place (Mdina) she was not interested in an appointment there. She was not talk active either. I had to ask her if I would know something. I showed her the pictures from the Palazzo Parisio and had to ask her for showing her pictures from Gozo. She even only cleaned her plate after eating, but I had a plate in the sink, too. She left some groceries – not much, anyway she did not ask if I am interested in. So I have to take care about it. I found some yoghurt in the freeze! There were broccoli, which was to old and ice tea in the fridge – which I do not like (the ice tea I mean). Nearly she did not take the cover from the pillow. At least she invited me to visit her and she vill show me her hometown, but I am not interested in that. If I ever will visit her hometown I will surf hos another host, I guarantee!
After her leaving I had to do the usual things in a home and wash the bed linen and towel she had used. After that I was going to work as usual. It was again a nice evening at work and I love the team I am in.
10th July – 13th July Just some days more of my live on Malta Nothing special happened, but I become more and more a member of my group at work. On the other hand I make enemies in the German department because I need light for working and because it is still WM some colleagues will see the games during their working hours and would like to dark the whole room, but I cannot work without light – the light from the computer is not enough for me and I will not get worse eyesight as I already have. Therefore I defend my right for a good work environment. On 13th I had to look for another computer, which is not at my usual place and I tried three (3) before one was working! I lost half an hour and put that also in my day report as work environment issue because the football WM.
14th July – walking from the Dingli Cliffs to Siġġiewi When I was in Rabat and Mdina I already thought about going to see the Dingli Cliffs, so I did this day off. Because I am not a usual tourist, I walked from Dingli to Siġġiewi, seeing as much as possible of the cliffs. Unfortunately you have to see them from the sea to see them in full. I made nice experiences anyway and the best was the Maltese seller of fruits and refreshments at the Chapel of St. Mary Magdalen. But I try to remember the way like I walked it, adding some pictures.
I was going by bus 202 from Gzira (quite close to me) and was leaving this bus in Dingli. The first i saw was an advertising for a restaurant in the direction I had to go – but I never found that restaurant ;-). I was already on the cliffs and there were also benches from time to time, so I tried to make some pictures, but it was not so easy to get the cliffs on them. So I pictured some flowers on that barren land.
I became interested in an unusual building in front of me. It looks a little like a mosque, but could not be one. By coming closer I also saw some big antennas. I took pictures all the way 😉 and was surprised when I read that this building is a Radar Navigational Transmitting Site – and of course not allowed to come close.
… and more surprised I was when I was walking around that “thing” and found this warning – because they were warning people with cardiac pacemakers and similar devices, because the site is dangerous for them.
I continued by the coast and tried to make a good picture of the island off shore and also a boat coming to the shore, but I was unhappy with that. Later on I discovered, that this island is really far away yet from that place. After a while I came to a chapel and another building in front of the church – I think it was a tomb. There I met a nice Maltese tradesman – he was there with his car, like it is usual in this country, and it seems he was happy that someone where coming around. He was talking with me more than offering his strawberries and cherries. I bought some strawberries, they were quite expensive but so sweet I never have eaten so sweet strawberries before. So, they were worth the price! I also bought a little bottle of still water, because I never have these small bottles at home and always buy on the road. The Maltese was eager to come on a picture with me and before that, he also offered me to take a picture of his car ;-).
When I continued on my way I tried to find a place where I really could take a picture of the cliffs, but there was no really good site. Also I tried to go down to the land in front of the cliffs, but the only way I found was prohibited, because it was a private one. Nonetheless I was walking that way some hundred meters, but when it fell steeply I returned to the public road.
I found this one, too ↓ – a suitcase in nowhere!
And there were another private area – just on the cliffs!
I continued walking the road on and on because every time, when a bus was coming I was not close to a bus stop. If you are interested in: Here is only one bus route, the 202, and it is running once an hour! The road I walked seemed a little dangerous because it was very small and on some places smaller than that because of buildings or walls. I was very happy when I was coming down to the quarry. I had met a lot of quarry trucks before and now there were no more driving the road, because they were just driving from the quarry to a depot. That depot was on the way between Dingli and the quarry.
Now I hoped there were more bus routes to the nearest town, but there were not and after all I am happy I was not at a bus stop either when the bus was coming again. I was now in the “ever-green valley” of Malta. By the way there is one in Gozo, too. I enjoyed the views and to see where the lettuce is coming from.
I also found or did not a palace named Girgenti Place, once an Inquisitor’s summer palace dating back to 1625, which is today the Maltese Prime Minister’s official residence. I could actually not see the palace, but there were a gate and a sign. So it should be possible to visit it, but I suspect, not when the Prime Minister is there.
Because I saw a city not very far away I asked an old man, I think, he was a farmer, for the nearest city and what the city I can see is named. He told me that the city is Siġġiewi and that it is the closest one. So I walked on and was coming to the signs which tell me that I am close to some important places on Malta, but my legs and feet were too tired to go further than to the city.
I decided to go only to Siġġiewi and did that. I tried to find the centre of the city and because I was remembering the church I have seen from the ever-green valley I thought, the centre will be there and was looking for the church. That was quite easy and I took some pictures of the church and the place in front of it and also of the Saint Nicholas, of course. The statue is so big, you cannot miss it.
I tried to find a nice restaurant in Siġġiewi, but I did not and so I took the bus no. 62 in the direction to Valletta. On the way we were coming through Qormi and I saw a place where they were selling lots of different chairs. I have to go there soon!
I left the bus in Hamrun at Daniel’s and was eating something in an Asian restaurant, but I was disappointed. The noodles were not warm any more and the other stuff, too. It was not made for my senses either. Also, there were no vegetables. Anyway I found the shop “Attards” in Hamrun, which I was looking for some weeks ago and did not find. That time I found a similar shop with the name JB’s and it is much better than Attard’s in my opinion.
When I was coming home it was already between 8 and 9 o’clock. It was a very nice day – with too much sun (I should have had something for protecting my arms. I did take sun oil before I was leaving my home, but 5 hours in the sun – starting just before high noon, is not healthy for the skin. I know, I have to go back to Siġġiewi because there are a lot of interesting places around like Għar Lapsi with its cave and natural sea-pool of crystal green and blue waters and the temples. Also I came around the Ta Qali Crafts Village by the bus in the direction to Dingli (the village is situated between Attard and Mdina). To go there will also be an interesting day, I think.