Recounting the Alytus Meeting

1st Day by Marc Wolf


Our journey started early in the morning. We met at 8 o’clock at the  Vienna Airport. Afterwards we went to the check-in counters and then we flew to Lithuania. After about 1 ½ hours we arrived in Vilnius. It was very cold with about 2 degrees and rainy. At the terminal, we met the Portuguese people – really open-minded and friendly people. We drove with a very old bus from Vilnius to Alytus. It took us about 2 hours. The landscape around Alytus is very flat and sparsely populated. We have seen some new and also very old houses on the way. Also the roads are partly new and very smoothly and partly bumpy and holey. As we got to our room, we were lucky that it was furnished very well and we were sure that it would get a nice and teaching week.

2nd Day by Christoph Hurter

Our day began at 7 o’clock in the morning. After we found out that the shower gets warm when you turn it on blue, we all took a shower and went for breakfast which started at 7 o’clock. The Breakfast was different when compared to a traditional Austrian one. We got burger bread with some sausage, cheese and vegetables. 10 Minutes after 9 o’clock the Lithuanian students showed us the way to the Alytus vocational training center. The school was enormous.  We all had our presentations about “Safer Internet” before we got known with the history of the Lithuanian Bread. They also showed us some traditional Lithuanian dances and music. The last point of this day in Alytus was a nice Coffee-Brake where we got in contact with our new friends from Lithuania. At the evening, we were walking around the city where we enjoyed a kind of “kebab” which was so big that we couldn’t even eat a half of it.  The City is very big and we really enjoyed it this evening. It was also nice that there was Wi-fi in the park.

3rd Day by Vanessa Nekam

 

Our day started already early in the morning. We had breakfast at 7 o’clock. Like every other day we got some sort of pancakes with sour cream or burgers with vegetables.

After breakfast we had time to get dressed because at about 9 o’clock all students met in the lobby where the Lithuanian students picked us up to go to school.

Today we created presentations on sheets of paper about the topic cyber-bullying. Of course, we also had to present our work in small groups.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Furthermore, we listened to a lecture of a police man from Lithuania. He also talked about our main topic cyber-bullying and showed us some interesting videos. In the afternoon we went to Kaunas where we had a guided tour through the Old Town. We visited the castle and some old churches. Another worthwhile stop in our tour was at the point where river “Memel” and “Neris” meet each other. Luckily the sun finally came out during our trip and therefore all of us enjoyed our stay in Kaunas a lot. After our tour we had an hour free time, where most of us got something to eat. Altogether, it was a really great but also exhausting day.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

4th Dayby Iria Karl

We started the fourth day in Alytus as every other day. In the morning we had breakfast and after that the Lithuanian students picked us up and took us to the school.

At school we had two great workshops according 3D printing and programming little robots. In-between we had our coffee break before we changed groups and had the chance to try the other workshop.

After the workshops we were all able to recharge our batteries at lunch before we headed to the mayor of Alytus who welcomed all Erasmus participants really friendly.

 

 

 

 

 
Our last stop in the afternoon was Drusininkai where we had a tour with a guide who informed us about Drusininkai’s history and important facts. Moreover, we had the chance to try the salty water of the spring “Prie-saltinio”. Our fourth day was exhausting but nevertheless really educational and nice.

 

5th Day by Elisabeth Hamal

Today we visited the capital of Lithuania called Vilnius. We have seen numerous churches, some sights and historical places. Parts of the Vilnius lifestyle was shown to us too.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Afterwards we made a stop at a typical Lithuanian restaurant. There we got the opportunity to try some of the national meals and snacks.

The highlight of the day was the Trakai Island Castle. We proceeded in the time of the Middle Ages, visited castle parts, collections and unique pieces of the history.

 

6th Day by Lisa Brezina

Our day started early in the morning. We had breakfast at 7 o’clock. The selection of breakfast was the same as the other days.

After breakfast we had some time to get dressed before the Lithuanian students picked us up at 9 o’clock to go to school. It was our last day at school.

In the school we had a presentation about dangers in the internet and after the presentation we were allowed to create a comic on certain topics.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

After lunch two students from the Lituanian school showed us a cocktail presentation and after that we were allowed to cost one.

In the afternoon we visited the White Rose Bridge, the peace statue and a citypark in the centre of Alytus.

The rest of the day was freetime and we used them to prepare us for the imminent return journey.

 

7th Day by David Müller

Suddenly we have reached on our last day of our journey. Without knowing what the future will bring we are having a last look on our room in the youth hostel in Alytus and finally find our missing underwear in some places nobody expected them to be. A quarter before ten we take our stuff and ship it into the bus. Then we went into the bus, having some emotional conversations with our Portuguese friends while we are waiting for the last people. Five before ten everybody is in the bus and after counting we finally left. We were driving about two hours from Alytus to Vilnius. During the bus drive we changed numbers, did some selfies, had a little cultural experience in musician and were playing with a balloon. On this day the time was running very fast in my opinion and so suddenly we walked into Vilnius Airport and thus we left the territory of Lithuania. After check in and doing some stuff which has to be done normally on an airport we had to say goodbye to our Portuguese friends. So now there were only two parties left. Because the Greek participants under the leader Mr. Apostolos [Syropoulos] went with us home to Austria because they wanted to do some sightseeing in Vienna. After losing many tears our dehydrated bodies went into the aircraft and we had to order some “Spritzer” to refresh our brain again. Time was going fast, I was sleeping most of the time in the plane and finally we landed at Vienna’s Airport.

An awesome trip has finished – thanks a lot to everyone – we will miss you!

Memories from the Xanthi Meeting

Miguel Correia was part of the Portuguese team that visited Xanthi during the 2nd meeting. He talked about his experience in the new school he is going and he realized that his schoolmates as well as his teachers were excited about his experience. Here is what how he described it:

I think this was everything I sayd. More or less Hello everyone! Good Afternoon. Today I ill talk about 2 or 3 topics If I my brain dont block after the first one ! – I spoke about 2 topics – And the one I love to talk about… Erasmus! I had the pleasure to go to greece with the program ” Erasmus Plus “. And I must tell you that it was pretty funny! And it helped me to raise my culture level. When I woke up in the morning It was a bit confusing to start speaking in English, but I did It hehe! we had breakfast with our host family, and then we went to school by bus with the son of the host family. Then we visit some important / historic places of Xanthi. ( yes I went to Xanthi – Greece.). In the last day me, my friend Kostas  ( Kostas is the son of the host family ) and more people from greece went out at night and we had some fun!

The Effects of Excessive Computer Use on out Body

Spending time on the computer is a common thing in present time. People are spending a lot of time on Internet, using computers, notebooks, tablets or smartphones.
As a child, my parents at home, and teachers at school, especially the kinesitherapy teacher, told me about the right posture. When we walk, when we talk, when we sit on a chair, at school, or at table at lunch, when we watch TV, always we had to have a right posture. A right posture means a good development of spine, and a good health, because all the intern organs develop right as we grow up.
At school, in the Erasmus+ project, I learned that I had to have a right posture of the whole body when I sit at the computer, on even when I use my smartphone. Why? Because if not, in time, a wrong posture, especially when we are staying at the computer a long time, or a long period, could lead at some issues on our health. The first sign of an incorrect posture of spine is pain. But not only is the spine posture important. Also is important the position of our arms, hands, legs. If we spent a long period on a computer without breaks, with an incorrect posture of our body, we can fill neck and shoulder stiffness, headache, or lower back pain. An important issue of excessive use of computer on human body is obesity, a health problem of which percentage is increasing.
For a good health of our body, when we use computer, we should have a right position in front of the computer, have a 5 minutes break at every half hour, breaks to relax the muscles (if we don’t know how to do stretching type of exercises just stand up from the computer and walk, and make some relaxation movements), and have a right position of our spine, arms and legs.
A kinesitherapy specialist recommendation for a good health is to walk as often as we can. Walking involves an increased number of muscles. Also it is recommended that any child to be involved in sports or participate in organized sport activities.
So, use computer with moderation, with a right body posture, take breaks to relax, and don’t forget to make sports!

Mirela Bărbulescu

Let us Say NO to Internet Addiction!

At my school, in October, was held an international meeting. We have guests from 5 countries, in an Erasmus+ project – Responsible European Digital Citizens, and the theme of the meeting was about Internet Addiction.
I learned a lot of things from that meeting.
I am a teenager, and, like other teenagers, I live in a “digital world”, being almost a “digital native”. I like to surf on the Internet, at school or at home. I am interested in a lot of things, so I always find motives to surf on Internet and make searches about places, countries, music, movies, football players, singers, actors or other things. I can search on Internet about everything. Also, on Facebook, I like to chat with my friends, I am looking on my school Facebook page, and I like to make new friends. I was so happy, when I won a tablet (was a prize at a contest), so I could spent time on Internet and play games on my own device!
But, in this meeting I learned that I could become addicted to Internet if I don’t take care. We watch some video clips about Internet Addiction, and we had to fill in a paper titled “The Shield”. We should remember the discussions after that, about the fact that we have qualities and talents that we should show to other people, in real life. We have to pay attention to and always keep in our mind the first signs of Internet Addiction: more and more time spent on Internet, lack of socialization in real life, isolation, not fulfilling other tasks (at school or at home), etc.
We have to set limits about the time we spent on Internet; we have to make friends, and talk with them, and spend time with them in real life, we have to focus on the important things in our life, we have to play games outside, like football, we have to walk in the park, we have to go in trips, we have to pursue our hobbies, like drawing, dancing, singing, or make hand crafts objects, or other things that keep us away from spending time at the computer.

In this way we can say “Log off” to Internet Addiction!

Robert Pietrariu

Video Games and Game Addiction

I like to play games. I like to play video games. I like to play at the computer online games or offline games. Who doesn’t? The majority of my friends and school colleagues are playing different games on the computer.
When I am at school, I don’t have too much time to play on the computer, but in weekends or holidays, I am playing as much as I can. At school, sometimes, I am allowed to play, with my classmates, in the breaks between classes. I have the chance to see what games are playing my classmates, and play together if the game is a multiplayer game. We talk about the level we reached, almost like we are in a competition.
I had the chance to participate in our school Erasmus+ project, and one activity was about games addiction. There are different types of games. At school we have educational games, but I like most to play platform games and adventure games, or, sometimes, strategic games. In weekends and school brakes I play as long I can. Sometimes I want to play more, or delay the lunch time, because I want to achieve new levels, to conquer new places, but always my parents stop me from playing. I learnt from the pupils, teachers and specialist presentations that if I don’t manage my time spent on playing videogames, in time, it could lead to games addiction. I have to be aware of the warning signs: spending more and more time on playing video games, being tired, having red eyes, having sleep problems, not fulfilling my school work or task (that could lead to lower grades), being nervous, or not paying attention to things or people conversation.
A task in the project activity was to fill in a table with what we “WANT TO DO” and what we “HAVE TO DO”. It was a kind of time management exercise, we had to approximate the time spent in the activities we want and like, and in the activities we have to do, like tasks (at school, or homework, or other tasks at home, or to help our parents), and after that we made the total amount of time (the sum of minutes or hours spent on each activity).

What I have learned from these exercise? That never the time spent on what I want to do, should exceed the time on what I have to do. First I have to finish the task that I have to do, and, after that spend the rest of the time on what I want. I should organize my daily or weekly activity in that manner. Why? Because if I don’t do that, and do just what I want, like playing games all the time, I could become games addicted, and I don’t want that.
The most important thing that I have learned was that I can ask for help in case of addiction. I can ask and receive help from my parents, my teachers, my relatives, my friends, from specialists, even from NGO’s who have free call centers, or what is called a “help line” specialized in this matter.
But, most of all, I will play with children at my age, with my friends, outside games, like football. Now, the winter is almost here, and I cannot wait to make a snowman and play with my friends in snow!

Cosmin Andrei

Erasmus+ REDIC: Meeting in Bucharest

Sunday, October 9 th 2016

The first day of our journey. image2 At 7:30 in the morning, the Austrian team met at the airport in Vienna. After the check in we had time to eat breakfast. 3 hours later our aircraft to Belgrade departed off. When we arrived in Serbia we had one hour spare time. In this time, we walked through the airport. Then we flew to Romania. We were so happy when we arrived in Bucharest. The way to get to Bucharest was very arduous.

 

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The Romanian teachers picked us up the airport they drove us to our hotel. It was named “Hotel Capitol”. It was very funny that the receptionist spoke German. From the very first we knew that the Romanian people are very helpful and friendly.

 

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Later, we had a walk through the old town of Bucharest. The teachers and the Greek team joined us. For lunch we stayed at “Paul”. It is a French restaurant and it was very delicious. We were very tired so the day ended very early.

 

Monday, October 10 th 2016

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On Monday morning all teams had arrived and our group was complete. We enjoyed a very sunny start We went to school by bus at 9:00 am. It was our first day in school. We got heartily welcomed with a cake by the teachers and got a guidance through the school. It was a school for disabled children.

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After that all students from the other countries joined us giving presentations about internet addiction. Some of them were very interesting and well prepared. Occasionally every day we got a lot of cakes and other sweets, they took care of us very much and we got optimally aided there.

image6Every day we went back for lunch to the hotel by bus and got there something at the buffet. We always had appetizers, main dishes and desserts. It tasted each time very good. In the afternoon we went to the Village-Museum in Bucharest also by bus. In this museum there were a lot of old houses like they lived in former times, it ́s like Carnuntum in Austria. Our hotel was located directly in the historic center so the Austrian group decided to go there and just walk around to have a look. It was very beautiful and there were a lot of small cafés and restaurants.

At 10 pm we went back to the hotel and went to bed because it was a very arduous day for us.

Tuesday, October 11 th 2016

image7In the morning, we had breakfast and then we drove to school. At school, we had a lecture from a doctor and after that from a psychologist which was very relaxing because we closed our eyes and chilled down.

There we also got food and drinks. Especially the freshly baked things were delicious. Therefore, we always ate a lot.

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We also worked together at different topics. One topic for this day was to find 10 rules to avoid internet addiction.

After school, we drove back to the hotel, where we had lunch. In our opinion the lunch was indeed different and good every day.

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Grace, one of the Portuguese teacher had birthday so she got a birthday cake and we sang for her. In the afternoon, we went to the National Museum of Romania, which is a big beautiful building. In this building is located the workplace of the Romanian president. After a long day we had dinner together. I think the dinner was a great finish of every day.

Wednesday, October 12 th 2016

We were sad that it was already halftime.

image10That day we were allowed to sleep a bit longer than usual. We switched our normal daily routine, because we made the trip in the morning and the school lessons in the afternoon. We woke up at 8.30 am and went to breakfast, which was very delicious
like every day. Our bus left at 9.30 and we drove straight to the house of parliament. Because of the busy traffic, it took us about half an hour to get there. We had a very interesting tour there.

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The palace of parliament is the biggest building in Europe. It was built from 1983 to 1989. It was the planned by Nicolae Ceausescu, who lived there. The first building he ordered is now the National Museum, but he complained that it was too small for him, so they built the palace of parliament.

image12At midday we went back at the hotel and had lunch. After lunch we had time
to relax until 3 pm. In the afternoon we were at school and listened to two
interesting presentations about sleep deprivation on teens and online games. After a training session we went back to hotel and finished the evening with a tasty meal.

Thursday, October 13th 2016

image13As normal we had a great breakfast in the morning. This meal was our favourite because there were so many different food varieties, so everyone was pleased. After breakfast we drove to school by bus. This day was a special day for us. We were allowed to visit the students in the Romanian school for one hour. We were so excited that the kids were so supported. We could see that the teachers do their job with passion and love.

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In the school we heard a presentation about computer work and addiction to computers. This was very interesting. Every day we had a few breaks, so we could eat the delicious food which as arranged for us. We loved the sweets with curd inside. The PE teacher showed us some stretching-exercises to avoid hardening the neck.

image15This day was our favorite day of all. We had a big surprise. We, the Austrian girls, went to the park with Romanian teachers. One of them was Catalina. She invited her band fellow who plays the guitar very well. They both sang for us. This was one of the most beautiful moments of our journey. It sounded perfect. When we are thinking about this, we get goose bumps all over.

Friday, October 14th 2016

image16Our next to last day we spent in Bucharest. It was the last day we were at school. The Austrian group thought that it was the best day from the whole week. We and the other students had to present our home countries. We got a lot of things for it like watercolors or colorful paper. We could let our creativity flow. After that we played a little game on the internet called “Internet safety” and got a certificate for it.

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The Romanian teachers prepared a typical dance and sang for us and created a happy atmosphere and asked us to join the dance!  This was a wonderful experience as we had the chance to take part in Romanian folklore event.

image18Finally, we got the certificate for the project Erasmus+ REDIC. Our last dinner was very sentimental, after eating we danced a typical song from each country. It was really funny and we recognized that we have made already friends with all of them. Before we went back to the hotel said goodbye to the other students and teachers. Each teacher got a flower from the Austrian girls as a thank you present. Some of us began to cry because we were so sad that such a wonderful week was over. It was an interesting and great project for everyone of us and we have learned a lot in this week about internet, the different cultures and of course speaking English.

Saturday, October 15 th 2016

image19Last day!
We had a great last and relaxing breakfast. Then we took a short walk in a park together with Corinna, which was very nice. We walked near a little lake. In the park, there was a small stand where you could buy hot chocolate and coffee. For sure we warmed ourselves with a hot drink because it was so cold.

image20Later, the Austrian team and the Turkish team were driven to the airport, which was about 2 hours before we took off. So we enjoyed the time remaining and we took our last
photo with the Turkish team. I think saying goodbye to all the great persons was one off the saddest moments.

The duration of our first flight which was to Belgrade was about 1 hours. Because of our stopover, we spent our time at the duty free. After 1 hour and 20 minutes we landed in Vienna again. We had a great time and it was one of the most beautiful experience we’ve ever had.

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Thanks a lot for this awesome time!

Video-Game Addiction

Nowadays, children and teenagers share a common platform of interests that is video games. Internet has revolutionized this industry, developing new types of games, creating new avatars, new strategies, new adventures, new roles, etc. How is it possible to stay apart from the fascinating and enticing world of video-games and not try one video-game?

Teacher Ilona Chiriac distinguished six types of video games: platform video-games which appeared in the 80’s with Mario; simulation games; adventure video games;strategy video games; shooting games and serious video games.

Why do children and teenagers devote so much of their time and attention to this type of games? There are different reasons for playing video games: these games give them the possibility of becoming heroes, of living adventures that thrill them, of creating avatars that they can manipulate, of building a virtual world apart. But sometimes the fact of playing viedo-games is a way of compensating something that is lacking in their lives, for example, when they play to create new social relationships due to the fact that they feel isolated; when they fight to show that they are good at something because their self-esteem is low.

Video-games can be understood as having two opposite sides: one negative and other positive. On the negative side, when children and teenagers play intensively, especially shooting and war video games, they gradually lose some important ethical feelings like the importance of the respect for other human beings and, even worst, become alienated in the real world. However, on the other side, it is possible to identify some positive aspects in video games: they develop quick reflexes in hand-eye coordination, focus in detail, development of memory and a fast response to conflicts. At emotional level, video-games can be a source of relaxation, where they can expel the tension they may feel; video-games can also work as a place where they can meet new friends and may feel integrated in a social group, which they might have problems in communicating directly to other people in their school; they can also improve their feelings of self-esteem when teenagers can achieve some tasks, or even reach the goal of the game.

What to conclude from all this? Online gaming can disclose some negative effects, but it can also assume other roles, as the effect of relaxation, some provide an educational orientation, others allow young people to easily integrate in a circle of friends. There should be a balanced use of video games, so that the negative effects don’t overrun the positive effects.

Bernardo Rodrigues
João Miraldo

Internet Addiction

Internet has opened a myriad of opportunities to everyone, and especially to us, young people that it is almost impossible to live apart from it. In fact, for so many people like us, it has become an addiction, “a strong and harmful need to regularly have something or do something” as teacher Corina Ionescu pointed out in her power-point presentation. It is an addiction like a sort of drug, but instead of being a substance-related addiction , it is a type of behavioral addiction, like an obsession for being all the time connected to the Internet.

Why do we, young people, become so addicted to Internet? We like to socialize with our friends, either chatting, or playing games or simply acceding to a world of information, or simply researching for more interesting topics than those learned sometimes at school.

It is not always evident to identify that kind of obsession, but there are visible signs. According to teacher Corina Ionescu for example: when you get home and you immediately hurry to the computer, stay there for more than 2 hours on a row and ignore people physically around you and loose track of the time you spend there. Emotionally, you experiment different types of feelings, from social isolation, depression to the opposite: a state of euphoric feelings and agitation; and these states of mind provoke physical reactions like headaches, since you focus your eyes in the screen and concentrate on what you are doing; backaches due to the position you are in front of the computer and can even loose hours of sleep(sleep deprivation), because of the excitement it causes.

What could be done about Internet addiction? Many suggestions were proposed, like: to establish a limit to the number of hours spent in front of the screen, find a balance between the hours isolated and the time spent hanging out with friends, going to the cinema, doing some physical exercise, learn other skills.

Bernardo Rodrigues
João Miraldo

Excessive Use of Internet and its Effects to our Health

The excessive internet use affects our health, not only emotional but also physically. In fact the negative effects can be felt by teenagers who play frequently and or a very long time and they are revealed in the following symptoms and consequences:

 

SYMPTOMS

Emotionally

  • Desire to spend more time online
  • Neglect family
  • Neglect school and personal obligations
  • Reduced social activity
  • Lack of interest in their own health
  • Lack of interest in other important activities to say longer on the net

Physically

  • Sleep disorders
  • Visual problems
  • Problems in the flexiblity of muscles

CONSEQUENCES

Negative

Positive

  • Predisposition for the development of depression and states of anxiety
  • Predisposition for aggression
  • Less sensitivity to violence in real life
  • Social isolation
  • Low self-esteem
  • Boredom
  • Immaturity
  • Addiction
  • Get used to technology and the online universe in a easy way
  • Learn to perform multitasking
  • Learn to follow instructions
  • Learn to think logically, rapidly and to solve problems and take decisions
  • Improve eye-hand

coordination

  • Reduce anxiety and increase self-esteem
  • Overweight

 

Bernardo Rodrigues
João Miraldo

Health Effects of the Internet

The availability of the Internet has accelerated the pace of life,the information has become available around the world, communication among people has become possible at any time and in any corner of the Earth. The Internet has a lot of advantages, but we have a number of problems associated with it. Although there is no specific statistics how many people do not control this habit, but we have a lot of people who are addicted to the Internet and have to look for some help if they want to get rid of this harmful habit.

To begin with, we can state that people who like coomunicating on the Internet more than in a real life are addicted to the Internet. One of the symptoms of the addiction is the loss of control. The people who are dependent to the Internet stay long hours in the network and they forget the time and moderation.

Research shows that such people are no longer interested in previous hobbies, become anxious, less physically active and they have disorders of sleepness. Misuse of the Internet will undoubtedly has an impact on human mental and physical health, it changes his/her mental status. Such individuals become irritable, they experience symptoms of depression, they do not pay attention to their family members.They are only interested in the events in the virtual reality, surf the Internet without any aim and are not longer interested in their previous activities. Of course, this has a bad impact on their work results, relations to their coleagues and family members. They are getting nervous if they are offline. The family members suffer from such people, because they are inattentive and unsociable. Moreover, such people do not communicate directly, because they are only interested in a virtual reality and virtual interlocutors. The research shows that such people are very lonely.The experience of psychologists shows if the parents ban using the Internet suddenly for teens, the situation will become worse.

To sum up, it is recommended to reduce gradually the time spent at the computer screen. Criticism can only lead to even greater resistance. The reason is that everyone wants that his/her actions, no matter what it is (in this case – surfing), would be respected. Parents and teachers should find out why teenagers become addicted to the virtual communication, to find the ways to establish warmer relations and make efforts to restore a lack of real communication.

Gabriele