Marjolein Katsma

is adding location data to my recent photos from Istanbul

I'm doing 5 things
Recent entries
have a hammock and sleep in it
Here's why



P.S. the completion date is approximate – I no longer can remember the actual date since it was more than 15 years ago!

sleep in a hammock

Ever since a trip to Venezuela in the early nineties (during which trip sleeping in a hammock usually was not an option but the only way to sleep), I’ve been addicted. I just sleep better! I returned from that trip with two hammocks, then had to figure out how to hang one in my flat.

Ever since, I’ve slept in my hammock when at home. But to get a good, relaxing night of sleep in a hammock you need one where you can lay in it sideways: a sleeping hammock is thus at least as wide as your body is long. All hammocks from Venezuela, Brazil and Colombia are this type. Woven from sturdy cotton thread, usually with pretty patterns from either colors of the threads, or the weft itself (or both), the most beautiful ones are hand-woven (but easily 3x as expensive as a factory-made one).

Sleeping in a hammock every night, I found that the cotton does wear, until it literally tears apart… a good hammock lasts me between 4 and 5 years. I just bought my fourth one, as the current one (already repaired) is about to give up. After the first one brought from Venezuela, I now get mine from a local store that imports them from Latin America (mostly Brazil) – they actually have whole villages working for them making hammocks!

And finally this: Sleeping in a hammock is healthy!
  1. No bedbugs :) just wash it in the washing machine
  2. Because you sleep across, your body is almost flat: the very gentle curve relaxes your back muscles, while your whole body is evenly supported: enough to cure most back aches in one or two nights
  3. Recent research has shown that people who sleep with a gentle swaying motion (just what happens in a hammock!) actually sleep deeper; indeed I find I need less (shorter) sleep when sleeping in my hammock.

taste all the beers of the world
Great surprises

Wherever I go, I always try to taste the local beer, or beers. Some great surprises can be had, such as Meta beer in Ethiopia (see picture), Beer Lao in Laos, and several local beers in Cuba (not the stuff they sell to tourists, the real local beers!).

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