Cocaine is a stimulative drug which is a crystallized substance made from the leaves of the coca plant. It is illegal to grow, possess, sell or use cocaine in most countries around the world due to its highly addictive and damaging properties, however many people still use and are addicted to it.
Cocaine stimulates the nervous system and causes the user to feel euphoric, energetic and more powerful than usual. Anxiety, nervousness and depression are however also common and once the ‘high’ fades the user is often left feeling worse than before. The addiction of the high is what causes many people to continue taking the drug. Usage however leads to many medical complications, from nausea, headaches and fevers to high blood pressure, heart attacks, strokes, damage of the nasal cartilage and brain damage.
Once addicted to cocaine it is very hard to kick the habit, often requiring counselling, medical help or a period in rehabilitation.
Calvin Klein is the eponymous fashion brand of the American designer Calvin Richard Klein. Founded in New York City in 1968 as a coat shop, the brand quickly became popular and grew rapidly with the addition of womenswear and, famously, jeans in the 1980s. Calvin Klein underwear (featuring boxer shorts for men and women) was launched in the 1980s and became incredibly famous, partly due to a 1990s billboard advert featuring Mark Wahlberg. The name ‘Calvin Klein’ is now synonymous with this particular style and quality of underwear.
Dallas (population 1.2 million) is the third-largest city in Texas. Founded in 1841 as a centre of the oil and cotton industries, it has always been strategically positioned close to railways and roads which traverse the United States both north-south and east-west. Today it is an important centre of commerce, with many financial, computer and medical research companies based there.
The State Fair of Texas is held yearly in Dallas and it has a thriving Arts District and successful major league sports teams. It is historically famous as the location for the assassination of American President John F. Kennedy in 1963.
A selection of crostini and various toppings can be found here.
Transylvania is a large historical area of countryside in the centre of Romania, bounded by the Carpathian and Apuseni Mountains. Throughout history it has fallen under the reign of numerous rulers but has retained its traditions and unique characteristics. The area has a population of around 7.2 million and its economy relies on its rich mineral deposits as well as tourism.
Transylvania is famed for its beauty – mountains, castles and forests abound – and also for its associations with vampires, as the setting of Bram Stoker’s Dracula. At the same time, many areas of Transylvania are quiet, remote hamlets steeped in history and a traditional agricultural way of life.
Sardinia is an island region of Italy in the Mediterranean to the West of the country. It is the second-largest island in the Mediterranean with a mountainous topography and rocky coastline. The main town is Cagliari and the island has a population of around 1.7 million. Whilst it is Italian, Sardinia also retains its own cultural identity and strong heritage; Sardinian is widely spoken across the island. Football is very popular and the Cagliari Calcio is one of the best teams in Italy.
Hercules is the Roman name for the Greek mythological figure Heracles, who was adopted and adapted in Roman culture.
Hercules is famous for the story in which in a fit of madness he killed his sons and in order to cleanse himself he had to perform twelve tasks or ‘labours’ set to him by an oracle. These labours, which he managed to complete, showing super-human strength and determination, included capturing the Golden Hind of Artemis, stealing the girdle of Hippolyta and bringing back Cerberus, the three-headed dog who guarded the entrance to the Underworld. A full list can be found here.
Hanging Gardens of Babylon were one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World which may in fact just have been a myth as opposed to a real place. The Gardens were said to have been created by King Nebuchadnezzar II for his wife in the ancient city of Babylon, in what is modern-day Iraq and featured stone terraces of beautiful exotic plants, flowers and animals which were sustained by complicated watering systems. The Gardens were supposed to have been destroyed by an earthquake around the 2nd century BC.
There is a tradition which says that if a visitor throws a coin into the Trevi Fountain they are destined to return to Rome – an estimated 3,000 euro coins are thrown into the water each day.