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Individuals of all economic strata are shedding their jobs, hometowns, and lifestyle to embrace a wider experience and a more meaningful existence.

Alexandra Kovacova

Alexandra KovacovaAlexandra Kovacova was born on the 14th of November in 1984 in the small town of Snina, Slovakia - she is a former stewardess who quit the airlines to travel the world and share her adventures as a travel blogger.

After spending her childhood traveling around her home country and the surrounding countries of Central Europe, at the age of 18 she went to the Czech Republic to study for her Masters of English and Spanish philology.

She had decided she wanted to be treated as a beautiful girl with a University degree than just a pretty un-educated model, so she quit her short modeling career in order to finish her studies.

After Slovakia and Czech Republic, Alex lived in other 4 countries: Spain, Scotland, Italy and Mexico. In Scotland and Italy she used to work as a cabin crew which helped her to travel more and realize her biggest passion.

But then she decided to quit her job and dedicate all her life to what makes her the happiest – travel around the world.

So, in October of 2010 Alex launched a travel blog www.crazysexyfuntraveler.com where she writes about her crazy travel and fun adventures and takes plenty of sexy photos of herself in these locations to accompany her writing.

"I live to travel, I travel to live" is her motto.

Alexandra Kovacova"I was born in Slovakia but already at early age I knew I was going to leave the country. When I reached 18, I left and keep coming back only for holidays. It’s been 9 years already and I think I will always live abroad."

"I studied in the Czech Republic and in Spain, but when I got my Masters degree in Spanish philology I decided to work while getting my last exams in English philology."

"The first job offer I found on the internet the following day was for cabin crew for an airline. It made me laugh a lot as it was my mom's idea of a dream job for me so I took the chance, passed the interview in Slovakia and then also the 6 weeks of everyday tests in the Czech Republic."

"They promised that I would be based in Spain as I didn't care that much about the work but more about the country I'd be residing in. Unfortunately, I was sent close to Glasgow, Scotland."

"After a year there I realized Spain was never going to happen so at least I managed to change the base to somewhere warmer – this time to Brindisi, a little known town in Southern Italy. Since I worked for an airline that only flew European flights I only traveled to destinations across Europe."

"You can find cabin crew job offers all over internet or you can just go to the airline website directly to check it out. You need to pass a few weeks of tests and memorize technical terms. Depending on the airline, sometimes you have to pay for the cabin crew course like I did - which cost 1,000 to 2,000 euros."

Alexandra Kovacova"I didn't like many things about being a flight attendant so I quit after 2 years of working. And to be honest, I never did find the best airline to work for, as I only worked for Ryan Air."

"The amount of money you can make and how many hours per week you work, varies between the airlines and their particular bases. I was lucky enough to have a lot of free time in both bases I was placed at. You are paid per airborne hours – the hours in the air, not those on the ground."

"In Glasgow I was paid around 1,000 to 1,300 GBP per month, in Brindisi it was 1,000 to 1,600 euros. But there were people who worked more in other bases and earned more, but also people who earned much less."

"The airline cabin crew lifestyle is not so glamorous as some people might think. Airlines that are not doing longhaul flights, such as the one I worked for, never let cabin crew stay at a hotel/airport."

"We had 2 longer flights or 4 shorter flights per day (some bases even had 6 super short flights) starting at your base and finishing there also, so every night we came back to base."

"People think you travel, but no - you don't see much of anything, not even the inside of the airport as you have 25-minute turnaround when the passengers disembark, while you prepare everything for the next flight.

"Then the new passengers embark and we leave on the flight. Yes, all this has to be done in no longer than 25 minutes, so please next time when you leave/board a European flight, move your ass!"πŸ™‚

Alexandra Kovacova"The scheduling for flight crews is another downside. Usually I worked 5 days straight with either 2 or 3 days off in between, but your schedule can be ruined by standby scheduling."

"They could call you during 11 hours of that standby day to go to work. It happened to me only twice during 2 years but some people were called off every week from standbyes."

"You have to answer the phone the first time they call you, or you are in trouble. They were even checking on us to see if we answered the phone."

"And my luck had that most of the time they called me when I was in the shower or taking a pee, literally - or at 4am during the earliest hours of the morning."

"Not fun if you are insomniac like me and finally manage to fall asleep and they wake you up just to see if you answer the phone."

"There are many rules saying how many hours you can work and when. I mostly had 12-hour days."

"So yes, the lifestyle is busy and people party a lot - even the pilots and first officers. I used to live with some of them, so I know."

Alexandra Kovacova"So, you get to travel only while on your days off - and most of the time I flew somewhere for those 2 or 3 days, unless it was beach time or someone was visiting me."

"To anyone interested in being a flight attendant I would advise them to drink lots of water - as on a plane your body dehydrates quicker. Also use more body lotions, face and hand creams and take care of your hair more for the same reason."

"Every sickness gets worse on board and some of the worst are simple colds, earaches and headaches."

"Try to work for an airline with longhaul flights so that you travel more and can stay in nice hotels."

"Develop a lot of patience for those times you get nasty passengers who make sexual comments, stare at you and think butt-slapping is OK."

"Get used to being made fun of or shouted at for no reason. Get used to delays and not making many plans as they will easily change them for you. But at least getting used to hanging out with pilots is cool πŸ˜‰"

"Every year I go on holidays with my mom, and at least once during the summer, too. Usually I am spending summer in Slovakia or on holidays with people dear to me."

"I've already traveled around Kosice region in Eastern Slovakia with dad (active, architecture and nature trip), now relaxing spa holidays with mom in Western Slovakia."

Alexandra Kovacova"Then an active trip to Bulgaria and Serbia with one of my best male friends, and then beach holidays with my best girl friend. Originally, I planned on spending all summer in Slovakia. But sometimes the reality becomes better than plans."

"I do not have normal days, and that's exactly one of the things I love most about my life as a blogger. I do hate the stereotype. But I could say that when I travel, during the day I'm out, I'm photographing, I am getting information and facts for articles, then I'm at the computer where I spend long hours writing articles, I'm taking photos to post on social networks and writing e-mails."

"On 'holiday' at home, in Slovakia, I do online work during the day. I also do a lot of things personally, like lectures, workshops, raw vegan courses, yoga, and other things that interest me."

"I am from the small town of Snina, but for over 13 years I have been mostly abroad. I'm still improving, educating, trying new things, so I've my head against the wall, just not doing what everyone else is doing."

"Without endless work, a blog can not be successful, but only other bloggers will know what I am saying in detail."

"About a year ago, my mother convinced me to travel with tear gas in my pocket, but I only used it once on a single Arab who had persecuted me a half day after leaving Barcelona. Then the tear gas was seized at the airport, so since then I'd rather believe my Thai boxing."

"But no, I'm not afraid for myself. Rather, I'm afraid I'll make the point like I could personally do something. I am 180cm tall, so I'm a head taller in many countries, and so I do not allow anything to get out of hand and that it has always been enough."

Alexandra Kovacova"Once they wanted to rob me on the beach at night, but fortunately I was there with my Canadian friend, who is a master in Taekwondo, so he protected me and my cellphone remained with me."

"I think it's enough to use some common sense and to avoid dangerous areas - especially at night. So, I transmit a positive energy around myself so that I can get the same kind of energy returned to me."

Alexandra is spending most of her time during the pandemic at home in Slovakia because of travel restrictions where she is posting photos of herself in bikinis trying to catch some sun - even though it is cold in Slovakia with snow on the ground.

She is a warm weather kind of girl and is patiently waiting for travel restrictions to ease so she can get to the nearest beach and get some color back into her skin.

For a dedicated traveler and a sunshine lover, Alexandra has had pretty much her maximum dose of snowy cold weather for this year.



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Alexandra in the Maldives


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Bonesetters Waiting Room

In the Bonesetter's Waiting Room:
Travels Through Indian Medicine

BBC Radio 4 Book of the Week India defies definition, and the story of medicine in India is similarly rich and complex: shaped by unique challenges and opportunities, uniting cutting-edge technological developments with ancient cultural traditions, fuelled by political changes which transformed the lives of millions and moulded by the energy of forceful individuals. Here, Aarathi Prasad investigates how Indian medicine came to be the way it is. Her travels will take her to bonesetter clinics in Jaipur and Hyderabad and the waiting-rooms of Bollywood's best plastic surgeons, and introduce her to traditional healers as well as the world-beating heart surgeon who is revolutionising treatment of the poor around the globe.

Like a Virgin

Exploring the Frontiers of Conception

Sexual evolution is a slippery business. Like all mammals, we humans seem to have been left no choice in the matter: even though it is costly, inefficient and dangerous, if we want to reproduce we simply have to have sex. Yet most human cultures tell the tale of a maiden who gives birth untouched by a man - and in the wild there are plenty of creatures such as turkeys, komodo dragons, sharks and the "Jesus Christ" lizard (which walks on water, too) and that take various approaches to reproducing without sex.

In LIKE A VIRGIN, the biology writer Aarathi Prasad discusses how reproduction without sex is achieved in animals and explores why evolution hasn't made it an option for humans yet. In doing so, she provides a quirky, entertaining and perceptive overview of the mysteries of evolutionary biology, sex and reproduction's past, present and future.

It is a remarkable story that ranges across Greek mythology, natural history, agriculture, conservation and medicine; takes in some of the most exciting areas of developmental genetics and molecular biology that other popular science books largely ignore; and is packed full of a cast of amazing characters, be they obscure animals or eccentric scientists such as the respected geneticist Dr Helen Spurway who in the UK in the 1950s unwittingly sparked a nationwide search for a virgin mother.

There is now a plethora of strategies being developed in reproductive medicine that could ultimately keep our species going in a world of embellished sex: the creation of artificial eggs and sperm from bone marrow, labs-on-chips on which eggs are fertilized, silicone wombs and artificial wombs (where fetuses can spend their full nine months), and even research to prepare us for reproduction in space. What is more, we are finally beginning to understand what genetic modifications are needed to allow for the creation of women who could have babies without having sex. Now that we have the competent hand of science in our lives, will girls still need men?

Publisher: Oneworld (UK/US)
Pub Date: 16 August 2012
Status: Draft manuscript
Length: 288 pages

All rights available excluding:
UK & Commonwealth, US, Arabic (Arab Scientific), Japan (East Press)

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Yabanci is a book by a Dutch woman who moved from Holland to Turkey to start a new life in a Turkish village overlooking the Mediterranean Sea. A great read for those who are considering a move abroad or have lived in a different culture. Available in English as an ebook or in Dutch in both print and popular ebook formats... take a look

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