Updates from December, 2017 Toggle Comment Threads | Keyboard Shortcuts

  • hardie karges 11:55 pm on December 12, 2017 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , Sao Tome, Principe   

    Sao Tome’ and Principe’: Paradise found… 

    The country of Sao Tome’ and Principe’ is one of the world’s smallest, with less than 200,000 people and barely a thousand square kilometers scattered over a couple islands off the east coast of Africa… (More …)

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    • Esther S. Fabbricante 12:10 am on December 13, 2017 Permalink | Reply

      More power to you!!

  • hardie karges 1:31 pm on November 29, 2017 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Fiji, global warming, Melanesia, , Pacific Ocean,   

    FIJI: Putting the Mela back in Melanesia… 

    Fiji is one of the brighter spots of a South Pacific that doesn’t always live up to its image as Paradise, and probably THE brightest spot of Melanesia, the darker-skinned portion, where getting lei’d is not always guaranteed upon arrival… (More …)

     
    • Dave Kingsbury 12:01 pm on November 30, 2017 Permalink | Reply

      I wish human rights were as cross-border as music … too often nationhood gets in the way! You got me thinking …

    • hardie karges 12:15 pm on November 30, 2017 Permalink | Reply

      Yes, we’re such a young species. Hopefully we can figure some things out before it’s too late…

  • hardie karges 1:31 pm on November 14, 2017 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , Jeddah, KSA, , Rotana, Saudi Arabia, Waed, Wahabi   

    Saudi Arabia: Kingdom of Kings… 

    Saudi Arabia is one of the great conundrums of the modern world, superficially as modern as they come, but at heart as medieval as any country ever was… (More …)

     
    • Esther S. Fabbricante 4:24 pm on November 14, 2017 Permalink | Reply

      Almost too much to comprehend.

  • hardie karges 12:52 pm on October 25, 2017 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Dakar, Fulani, Orchestra Baobab, Senegal, Wolof, Youssou N'dour   

    Senegal: Life in the Mbalax… 

    Senegal is one of the brighter spots of West Africa, successor of previous local Wolof  and Serer regimes and the regional nomadic Sahel-based Islamic Fulani/Toucouleur who occupy and define much of West Africa, what with their cows, language and religion… (More …)

     
    • Esther S. Fabbricante 2:41 pm on October 25, 2017 Permalink | Reply

      For some unknown reason, my sound is silent! Enjoyed your blog, though.

    • hardie karges 2:54 pm on October 25, 2017 Permalink | Reply

      Sound works, maybe re-start your computer if nothing else…

    • Megs 10:19 am on November 8, 2017 Permalink | Reply

      So there’s always i find something interesting about different people and culture. That`s why i so much appreciate your blog! Stunning.

  • hardie karges 12:44 am on October 19, 2017 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Baltic, , , Finland, , Soviet Union,   

    E-stonia: lotta’ hard work, still not Finnish… 

    With origins on the far northern Uralic steppes, first cousins with the Finns and Sami, and distant relations with Ugric Hungarians, these groups of Finno-Ugric speakers are the exception to the rest of the Indo-European-speaking European continent… (More …)

     
  • hardie karges 12:55 pm on October 11, 2017 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Balkans, , , Herzegovina, Serbia, Tito, Yugoslavia   

    Serbia: War is Over (if you want it)… 

    Hey, it’s not easy being Serb, or any southern Slav, showing up on the southern gates of Europe post-Rome and looking for a place at the table, a table already pre-set by Dacians, Thracians, Illyrians and Celts to boot, remove your shoes at the door, please… (More …)

     
    • davekingsbury 10:34 pm on October 13, 2017 Permalink | Reply

      Nice stream-of-consciousness piece, Hardie …

      • hardie karges 12:59 am on October 14, 2017 Permalink | Reply

        Thx, Dave! Hmm, maybe this should be the s-o-c blog, wouldn’t be hard if it’s a country I’ve already visited, just random access assorted memories travels travails and frustrations, toss them in a hot skillet, stir quickly at high temps, season to taste… hmmm, not bad flavor… good idea, Dave!

  • hardie karges 12:33 pm on September 27, 2017 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , Indian Ocean, islands, Mahe, Seychelles, Victoria,   

    Seychelles: Seashells by the Sea Shore 

    Tourist mags and online rags usually start any article on the Seychelles islands with something like: “Welcome to Paradise–Lucky You!” and then proceed to talk about the various suns of beaches that define the place, with scarce mention of the various sons-of-bitches that threaten it… (More …)

     
  • hardie karges 1:56 pm on August 10, 2017 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , insurance, , kidney stones, , Obamacare, , ,   

    Hooray for Travel Insurance! Just keep traveling, fellow Americans… 

    IMG_1302

    Author’s Note: Medical issues of a sensitive nature discussed here…

    Well, I never thought I’d see the day when I’d write a post lauding the insurance industry, but since I once wrote a ‘sh*t-list’ post on the bad ethics of bad bizniz, here, then I guess it’s only fair that I write a special post for one of the good guys, in this case Aon Travel Insurance, who just wrote me a check for almost $2222 (I’m too lazy to look up the actual number), for what was hopefully the last of a series of ‘pee gravel’ episodes in my ‘Year of the Kidney Stones’. I almost didn’t even file the claim, I was so skeptical…

    Back story: I’ve traveled to some 155 countries, but almost NEVER got the suggested shots, much less purchased travel insurance. After all, some of the shots seemed worse than the disease itself, and travel insurance was only as good as the doctor, and the hospital, and the country, and the policy, AND… (More …)

     
    • Esther S. Fabbricante 4:22 pm on August 10, 2017 Permalink | Reply

      Oh, my! What a life – and Godspeed.

    • jgf 12:50 am on August 11, 2017 Permalink | Reply

      Keep on truckin’, old man. Love and Bliss from Joketown!

    • davekingsbury 11:34 pm on August 11, 2017 Permalink | Reply

      Studying is a sort of travelling … what’s that line from TS Eliot? I read much of the night and go south for the winter. Or something. Anyhow, best wishes for the next phase …

  • hardie karges 6:04 pm on June 23, 2017 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Amtrak, , , ,   

    LA at Midnight, Tucson by Morning… 

    IMG_2475Thumpity thump thump thumpity thump thump thumpity thumpity thumpity thump thump, thumpity thump thump thumpity thump thump thumpity thumpity thumpity thump thump, thumpity thumpity thumpity thump thump thumpity thumpity thumpity thump thump…

    “Man with a plan don’t play with no band just me and these hands and a few hundred fans who never hesitate to step up and donate, so please don’t wait, I get off at the next gate…”

    The guy on the Metro ‘Red Line’ is playing a tune, using only his hands, and the long metal walls of the subway car, in a style probably best described as rap, early style, long before hip-hop, long before the progeny and the misogyny and the world-wide knock-offs as appropriate to local milieu… (More …)

     
    • esther Fabbricante 9:40 pm on June 23, 2017 Permalink | Reply

      Too deep for me.

    • hardie karges 10:00 pm on June 23, 2017 Permalink | Reply

      Okay, no more deep stuff, I promise…

    • davekingsbury 10:21 pm on June 27, 2017 Permalink | Reply

      Oh I like deep … travel writing with a free-wheeling Kerouac style spiritual dimension still has a way to go – surface not even scratched – and is always up my alley, done v well here, keep up the g work!!!

      • hardie karges 8:14 pm on June 29, 2017 Permalink | Reply

        Thank you, sir, thank you thank you thank you… there is no higher compliment than Jack K…

  • hardie karges 1:49 am on June 13, 2017 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , , Nubian, Sudan   

    #Egypt in #Music, #Nubian and Urban… 

    Egypt (Misr) is a mother, the mother of us all. With origins at least ten thousand years ago and a well-documented history for at least half that, this is where it all began, the bottle-neck between Africa, Asia and Europe, where black and white have rubbed shoulders since time immemorial and big ideas have been made and canceled as a matter of course, where Greeks, Romans, Arabs, Mamluks, French, British and Ottomans have all had their day, until Egyptians ultimately have their say and their way, and agree to disagree…

    The last six years say it all, at the start of which I could travel freely all over the region, over land and water, like a pilgrim in search of everything, now divided into safe zones and no-fly zones and there-but-for-the-grace-of-God-go-I zones. Pick any God. The pyramids are the big deal, of course, but Thebes is all about columns, though never given credit as the prototype for Greece, with whom Egyptians share more DNA than has ever been acknowledged, either, only now obvious with the world genome now revealed…

    If you want to travel there, do it. There is an overland route going south, too, you know, South Sudan optional. Sudan also has a border with Eritrea, and onward to Ethiopia via Djibouti, more of that same Greek/Nubian DNA there, apparently. Get visas in advance, if possible. You can always fly. The horn is the heartland. Welcome to the Bible. Go before WW4…

     
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