July 25, 2005

Cool Culture testing website


Eat wisely to reduce breast cancer risk

Following a smart diet strategy could cut likelihood of disease
By Karen Collins, R.D.
Special to MSNBC.com
Updated: 9:14 a.m. ET July 22, 2005

July 23, 2005

An ode to my exchange year in Belgium from my dear friend Gomo

May 5, 2005
This time has moved so far forward some memories just feel too far gone. I found a box of old letters from you guys, more particularly those you wrote to me on my departure.

I guess one real thing about my life is the depth of my bond with the few incredible souls I've been blessed to befriend here on this earth. Some things one can't explain and for the most parts some things I wish I could embrace forever with the same degree of warmth and closeness...but as this journey moves on, things get relegated behind the scenes as others more pertinent close in..memories are lost in the motion of things...People I once had right next to me become abstract souls existing only in my dreams, my memories or the objects we exchanged.

This is how I found each one of you and for as long as I live, I will love you dearly missing with each passing moment your presence in my life:

Ruby: I don't know many people who have set a target, focused on it and actually hit the mark on point. I don't know many philosophers who can cook and play just as well as they philosophise. Your warmth toward me and our endless "deep" conversations, our exchange on issues of life and the heart...nothing can compare with that!

---my response on July 23, 2005

Thank you for your kind words. I have to say we must have all been put in Verviers for a reason. I haven't found the same mix of a fun, deep, and adventurous crew all in one place in the past 5 years since Belgium.

I remember being very deep and philosophical that year and I know I am at the core that way. I loved our conversations. I find that that part of me doesn't come out easily unless I find like minded ppl. As I am about to finish 13 months abroad within the next 2 weeks, I am sort of searching for that deep, introspective side I experienced as an 18 year old in Belgium. I hope that comes back and something sparks it inside me. I hope that the underlying truth about adults mentioned in the Little Prince is not what I am experiencing.

Thank you for being you. Thank you for keeping in touch with us all. And as I try to contemplate my most recent year abroad, I will try to reflect once again on the year that affected me the most in Belgium.

Stockholm, Sweden

Raining and cold and it is late July!! Ugh. We arrived by bus after an 8 hour ride from Copenhagen. We went promptly to our friends house and just crashed. We slept in a comfortable bed for a few hours and have just watched tv all day. Our hostess has internet, tv in many languages, free laundry services, and well is super nice so we are very comfortable. We are thinking of actually leaving her place for the seeing Stockholm tomorrow. But, maybe we will just stay inside another day.

We saw a really unique clothing dryer and the laundry facilities of her place had two different ironing machines for sheets and large scale ironing. We went to the grocery store and were amazed by several new products. We took a lot of photos.

Now we are just watching Chicago on DVD and eating popcorn. How American? Monday I am going to speak to the only English-speaking Rotary Club in Stockholm, RC Stockholm International. After Monday, I will have spoken in seven countries in three languages.

Night, night, rubes :)

July 21, 2005


Did you know Legos are Danish? Lego means Play Well. Also Hans Christen Anderson wrote the Mermaid, the ugly Duckling, and the Emperor with no clothes, etc. Also, Walt Disney got the idea for Disneyland from Tivoli, an amusement park in the center of Copenhagen.

We had a short 1.5 days here but had a great time with Lene and her fiance, Lasse.

We are off tonight for an 8 hour bus ride to Stockholm where we will stay with a friend we met in Barcelona almost a year ago.

Signing out, rubes

July 19, 2005

Amsterdam so far....mariah carey and the hague

Quick note: We stayed the first night with a Rotary Ambassadorial Scholar living in Amsterdam from El Paso, Texas. She introduced us to her friends and showed us around.

Saturday we went to a hookah bar, a couple of great resturants, and got kicked out of a bar at 1am when they closed. That is sooo early compared to Spanish time!

Sunday we went on a canal tour of the houses then I spotted Mariah Carey and our tourguides ran after her. We went to an Australian rest. and had half price cocktails at happy hour. It was my first pina colada in ages.

Monday, Larae (the scholar), and I went to the Hague just an hour from Amsterdam to the International Criminal Tribunal of the Former Yugoslavia to see Slobadan Milosevic. He was there and he looked so relaxed. We stayed for a couple of hours and fun listening to a general answer the lawyer's questions. There a ton of translators from Serbian to English and also the two languages into French, etc. We went home and made an Italian dinner for her friends and Burak joined in on the fun.

Tuesday, I went with Larae to her club, the Rotary Club of Amsterdam. It is the oldest club in Holland. I spoke briefly in English and then they went back to Dutch. They had bread, meat slices, cheese, and croquettes. They served milk and coffee. I was having culture shock. After all my Rotary mtgs in Spain, I excepted wine to be served a least. Milk for lunch!

Tonight we are going to do some last minute Amsterdam stuff and we are off Wed am for Copenhagen to stay with a friend for a night.

Sorry I wish I could write more. Oh yeah they have an animal ambulance and pudding in a milk container called 'Vla!'

July 15, 2005

Powers European Excursion - coming to a town near you!

Burak and I are about to leave Spain after having lived here for the last 11 months. Before we leave Europe, we are going to run around for a few weeks to various cities. Here is the list just in case you are there, we can stay with you, we can go out for dinner or a drink and catch up and/or you have any advice for our voyage.

July 16 - 20 - Amsterdam/Rotterdam/Hague
July 20 - 21 - Copenhagen (we are going to visit a Danish friend)
July 21 - 26 - Stockholm (staying with a Swedish friend)
July 26 - 27 - Berlin
July 27 - ? - Munich ( Have two German friends there…might be able to stay with them)
July 29 - 31 - find our way to Hungary
August 1 - 6 - Budapest and surrounding areas (Staying with an old friend of Burak's)
August 6 - 9 - Barcelona ( staying with a friend b/c we moved out of our place)
August 9 -10 - Washington, D.C. ( pick up our stuff!)
August 11 ------- ? Durham, NC (going settle down for.... a couple of years :) )


July 14, 2005

London bombs spur Congress to rethink visas

Under waiver program, jihadists from U.K., other nations can enter U.S.
By Tom Curry
National affairs writer
Updated: 7:49 p.m. ET July 13, 2005

July 13, 2005

Pamplona - Running of the Bulls 2005

I thought it was really dirty, too many drunk people, and the only thing that made it different from a regular 24/7 party was there were bulls...Anyway, that is just my opinion.

More to come..