Martin Buber, philosopher (1878-1965)
Pictured: JSG Managing Web Producer Marina Farrell at Trakai Castle, Lithuania.
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Fiesta Editor Vivienne
Mackie lists holidays, carnivals and
parties all over the world. Visit http://justsaygo.com/fiesta/fiesta.html for
Fete de la Musique
The true story of one man's journey through 28 cities and 15 countries in 31 days, alone.
ride. "I was determined to see as much of Europe as possible, and wanted to find some truth. It was a physical and mental expedition, and definitely threw me off kilter," says
TRIP documents, with modern slang and an Irish twang, a whirlwind tour of places as varied as Amsterdam to Auschwitz. The journey took place in 1995, before the Euro had arrived, when former communist countries were changing fast, and the internet hadn't yet kicked in. MacO gives us a glimpse of what it must have been like to live a month full of daily culture shocks. The languages, currencies and national traits fly by, but the trek gradually takes its toll on the storyteller.
I felt in
I was glad
I was on
can be a
- you can
get to know
"The culmination came after two weeks, in my seventh country and twelfth city in fourteen days. I still had two weeks to go, and could go to whatever countries I wanted. That was when I broke down and cracked up! But
on the trip
with a head
for a few
I was alone,
me on to
- a new
for a month."
MacO's words tell the story in a lighthearted way of what must have been a mind-blowing experience. The reader sees not only how the author himself was affected by the solitude of the journey, but also how even complete strangers can shape your view of the world when your social interaction is limited.
"If you had even just brief contact with someone, whether it was positive or negative, it would stand out in your head longer because you were alone," says MacO, who made the trip when he was 24 years old and single for the first time in five years. "You
in a good
in a ticket
Or if someone
The whole adventure covers the full gamut of emotions, and details the author's questioning of what he believed and why he believed it. One notebook entry says that all the people wanting you to believe in them seemed like they needed it too much.
"The impressions and ideas that I was having were totally overwhelming. I was conversing with my notebook, simply because I had to get it all off my chest and out of my system. The
at the world
but I am
I did it.
Neither the main title of this book (Three Cups of Tea) nor the cover (three young Muslim girls sitting, their heads covered with white scarves) prepare the reader for the contents of this amazing book.
You can read this book on many levels: it’s part travelogue, part memoir, an adventure story, a love story, and a clear discussion of modern history and current events in northern Pakistan and Afghanistan. It’s also an amazing example of how cultural understanding, or at least an attempt to understand another culture, can lead to more tolerance and acceptance.
This is Greg Mortenson’s story, as told by David Oliver Relin, a journalist. It took two years to research and write, but spans a 10-year period, from 1993 to 2003.
Mortenson was a mountaineer and nurse and, after a failed attempt at scaling K2 in Pakistan’s Karakoram mountain range, he ends up in a small remote mountain village. He is treated with great kindness as he recuperates and, on finding that they have no school, he determines to help them build one.
Thus begins his new quest in life: To raise money to build schools for poor children, especially girls, in this part of the world. His basic philosophy is that with education comes understanding, and with understanding there is less likelihood of these young people blindly following extremist Muslim leaders. It’s a peaceful way to fight terror, by going to one of the root causes---lack of education.
Mortenson tells his story very openly, of his successes and failures, his frustrations, and the extreme hardships he often endures to get the schools built. But he perseveres and, one school at a time, life changes for those village children, who fondly call him “Dr. Greg”.
He was in the region at the time of the September 11, 2001, attacks and we get a different perspective of the tragedy from him from that side of the world. He even had tea with someone from the Taliban.
Mortenson has expanded my world view. I personally have a much better understanding of the life, politics, and religion of that area now. The book is inspiring, uplifting, exciting and non-judgemental and I thoroughly recommend it. We can all learn a valuable lesson from his story and his mission.
JSG Product Reviews
As snug as a bug: Bedbugz bedrail
One of the problems of families traveling with small children is bedtime. When our daughters were little we had to either move the mattresses on the floor or barricade the bed with pillows to keep them falling off the edge. Enter Bedbugz, a productthat eliminates the need to worry about their safety or traveling with those metal jail-like bars that slide under the mattress to keep them in place. Bedbugz is an inflatable bedrail that packs easily and attaches to any size mattress. Your little tike will feel safe and secure as they can snuggle right up to the rounded edge of the soft material that holds itself in place. The product sells for $34.99-$39.99 at retailers nationwide or check www.toddlercoddler.com for locations.
Product Description: Hard metal bedrails for children and toddlers' beds are a thing of the past! Now your child can feel cozy and safe with BedBugz, an inflatable bedrail that works without a box spring. It attaches to any size mattress to make on-the-go travel easy. Great for bunk beds, toddler beds, and convertible cribs. Perfect for travel!
Rebit™ computer backup
Let me be honest, I hate to back up my computer whether it be a laptop or desktop. It’s not that I don’t realize that someday they might crash but rather, I have had such rotten luck with cumbersome hardware and software issues in the past that I just hope that I have done enough to recover data in the event of a failure.
If, for example, you are traveling to distant lands and want to make sure your laptop doesn’t lose your prized photographs once you have downloaded them, a reliable and dare I say easy backup program would be advisable. Enter Rebit™ the first and only “just-plug-it-in” back up program for Windows®.
As I have heard similar simplicity promises from other manufacturers I was somewhat skeptical about Rebit™. I was pleasantly surprised to find that once connected to my computer it dutifully started backing up not just my data, but the applications and the operating system—effortless I thought.
They say that recovering files is just as easy but fortunately, I haven’t had to do this yet and hope I never do.
So, if you are like me and are looking for something simple in the event of a hard drive failure, try Rebit™. They have multiple sized backup units for every size hard drive at reasonable prices. You can check out their website at www.Rebit.com for more information.