Thursday, February 24, 2011

February Newsletter

To read my latest (February) newsletter, please click HERE or on the picture!

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Finding A Good End

I found this great article that talked about the Africa Mercy. I love the ending of the article and I think it says a LOT about the impact the Africa Mercy had, not only to the people she served, but also to the everyday South Africans her crew came in contact with...

A number of the team went off to provide medical services in selected parts of the country. This included dental clinics in rural parts of KwaZulu Natal, while another group of specialists teamed up with The Fred Hollowes Foundation South Africa and the Eastern Cape Provincial Department of Health to bring eye care and cataract surgery to people with little or no access to medical care. The team worked in several parts of the Eastern Cape.

With news that the ship was nearing the end of her repairs most of the staff and crew of 450 have returned to the ship as she prepares to sail out of the port that has been her home for the past five months. The sight of the big white hospital ship filling the quayside at Bayhead is going to be missed, as will not doubt all those who lived and worked in South Africa throughout the refit, providing health care from a sense of giving and compassion, while looking for no reward. Bon voyage,
Africa Mercy, and as the Scots are known to say, “Will ye no come back again?”

The full article is posted at HERE! (Scroll about halfway down the page)

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Redemption Song

A decade ago a small group of documentary filmmakers set out with a dream to create a film rooted in the music of the streets. Not only has that dream been realized, it has blossomed into a global sensation called Playing For Change, a project including musicians of every level of renown, that has touched the lives of millions of people around the world.

In this track musicians around the world unite together with Bob and Stephen Marley to sing a song of freedom-- join me on this journey through time and space!

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Connections: February 2011

Would you like to know how the West African country of Sierra Leone began? Would you like an inside look at what it takes to prepare the world's largest privately-owned hospital ship for service in one of the poorest countries in the world? If so, you'll enjoy this month's edition of Connections.

Saturday, February 5, 2011

American Cultural Observation 331: RFD-TV’s Polka Fest

Now, I know I am a foreigner visiting foreign shores, but wow! I had no idea... While channel surfing tonight, I came across RFD-TV's Polka Fest and found that I could not move on to the next channel... On my TV screen were a gaggle of people hopping and skipping to real Polka music! Who knew it was so popular! A quick look on Google said that "The polka is a lively Central European dance and also a genre of dance music familiar throughout Europe and the Americas."
I never really listened or watch Polka before and I found myself mesmerised. I racked my brain to where I first learned about Polka and remembered it was the movie Home Alone when Kevin's mom (played by Barbara Babcock) managed to hitch a ride with a man named Gus Polinski (John Candy) and his polka band, the Kenosha Kickers, who were driving to Milwaukee after their flight was canceled due to a blizzard.

I had to know more.. so, I turned to my trusty source, good ol' Wikipedia and found this gem!

One of the very first programs to be aired on RFD-TV was "The Big Joe Polka Show", a Polka and dance variety program hosted by Omaha resident Joseph "Big Joe" Siedlik, which continued to be popular among the network's estimated (approximately) 40-plus million available households until its final RFD-TV airing on 01 January 2011. In 2010, litigation commenced between RFD-TV and Polka Cassettes of Nebraska, the creators/producers of "The Big Joe Polka Show" involving several lawsuits and counter suits (mostly over a contractual dispute). RFD-TV contends they had an option to air the program until December 31, 2010, while Polka Cassettes of Nebraska contends that the show was being aired against their wishes, and after cessation of the effectiveness of the previous contract, which expired on December 31, 2009. In August 2010, a multi-million dollar "slander and defamation" suit was brought against Polka Cassettes of Nebraska by RFD-TV.[Source= PUBLIC RECORD:The Fourth Judicial District Court of Nebraska Clerk of Courts, date of inquiry Monday 30 August 2010 Douglas County, Nebraska]

The show was replaced by "The RFD-TV Polka Fest" on 05 January 2011, and airs during the same time schedule.

I might have to go find myself a Polka Fest to go to in person!

Friday, February 4, 2011