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Wednesday, October 1, 2014

The light for Hong Kong's full democracy

The light for Hong Kong's full democracy


The light for Hong Kong's full democracy

Posted: 01 Oct 2014 08:35 AM PDT

The number of LED lights shining above shows that achieving a peaceful movement is what Hong Kong is all about.

 

The people of Hong Kong has chosen such alternatives to bring forth a fully pledge democracy in the simplest ways possible.

 

This my friend, is Hong Kong.

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Happy 90th birthday, President Carter!

Posted: 01 Oct 2014 05:22 AM PDT

I had the honor of volunteering and later working at The Carter Center from 2003-2007. During that time, I got to meet Jimmy Carter on a handful of occasions. Each time, he was as friendly, personable and generous with his time as possible.

 

During an event one evening, I walked into the wrong room for dinner -- a small space with a few tables where President and Mrs. Carter and a few special guests were seated. Mortified, I went to turn around and leave the room, but President Carter motioned over to the empty seat next to him for me to sit down. We spent the entire dinner talking about a recent college trip I'd made to Palestine, with him asking me all sorts of questions. It was an amazing experience I'll never forget.

 

Happy birthday, President Carter! Thanks for being such an inspiration.

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The Faces of Hong Kong's Umbrella Movement

Posted: 01 Oct 2014 04:52 AM PDT

The Umbrella Revolution - The sit in organised in the financial district of Hong Kong has successfully disrupted businesses and government executive offices in the area. The government isn't up against arm chair hippies - the kids are tech-savy, high on energy, very well organised and belong to the powerful and aware middle class of Hong Kong.


Braving adverse weather conditions of Hong Kong - extreme heat and humidity in the day, thunderstorms and torrential downpour at night - these kids choose to devote the time they could be studying, partying, playing or doing other things that teenagers do to the cause of democracy and universal suffrage.

Non-violent, resilient and brave - these kids lead the way to future reform of the island state. The kids I spoke to know that things might not necessarily change overnight - but these faces are here for the long haul.

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Sydney protest support (close-ups)

Posted: 01 Oct 2014 03:33 AM PDT

The wall of "Hong Kong House" in Sydney's Central Business District is carpeted with notes of support for the protesters in Hong Kong. Passerby are encouraged to add their notes of support.

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Sea of protestors underneath the skyscrapers

Posted: 01 Oct 2014 02:19 AM PDT

September 29, 2014
#OccupyCentral #UmbrellaRevolution

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Umbrella Revolution

Posted: 01 Oct 2014 01:08 AM PDT

Photos from the protests in Admiralty and Causeway Bay districts in Hong Kong.

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Refugees

Posted: 30 Sep 2014 05:29 AM PDT

Defaulted children from Syria. Living at the roadside on the way to Amman.

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Glaciers and Green: The Coastal Classic from Seward to Anchorage

Posted: 30 Sep 2014 05:00 AM PDT

Trains are magical. Whether we're taking a ride on Northern California's quaint Skunk Train or Japan's lightening fast, silky smooth shinkansen (bullet trains), we love the rhythm and glide of moving through the countryside on steel rails. Bringing a summer to a close in Alaska, we decided to take the train from Seward to Anchorage. We departed Seward at 6:00 PM and four hours later arrived in Anchorage energized and relaxed.

Large windows and the freedom to get up and walk around are part of what make train travel so pleasant. After an excellent meal of almond-crusted Alaskan cod accompanied by a glass of Chardonnay, we made our way to the rear of our GoldStar car where an open deck allowed us to take in the sights, converse with fellow passengers, and enjoy the warm (for Alaska) summer air. Mountainsides of magenta fireweed and mixed forests of deciduous and evergreen trees, moose, Dall sheep, eagles, beaver lodges and glaciers were part of the 114 mile train journey through the Kenai Peninsula. Bears – both grizzly and black – and caribou are also frequently sighted.

This is one of the world's truly great one-day train rides through some of the most beautiful countrysides to be experienced.

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The ICE Train at Berlin Hauptbahnhof

Posted: 30 Sep 2014 01:41 AM PDT

The ICE Train at Berlin Hauptbahnhof

Markku Rainer Peltonen

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Sydney Protest Support

Posted: 29 Sep 2014 09:00 PM PDT

The wall of "Hong Kong House" in Sydney's Central Business District is carpeted with notes of support for the protesters in Hong Kong. Passerby are encouraged to add their notes of support.

The Government of Hong Kong purchased the former Hotel Gresham building to become the Hong Kong Economic and Trade Office, Sydney. With its decorative stone facade and ornate Victorian aesthetic, Hong Kong House is an important part of the Sydney Town Hall precinct, originally built in 1891.

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When the romance ends

Posted: 29 Sep 2014 12:56 PM PDT

People around the world have been having a love affair with trains for hundreds of years. Trains first appeared in America in the 1700s with passenger service starting in the 1830s.

 

Luxury passenger train service began in 1890 and by the 1920s Americans were enamored with train travel and passenger revenues were at an all time high.

 

There were other ways to get to destinations but people really wanted to get there by train. It was not so much the destination as it was the journey by train that was important.

 

Everything ends at some point. And so it is with trains. Some of those majestic passenger train engines and cars were wrecked beyond repair. Others were sold for scrap and some simply abandoned. Some of the more fortunate engines and cars found their way to railroad museums where they are restored to operate as tourist attractions once again carrying passengers. Others merely become motionless displays destined to deteriorate in place.

 

But when it comes to trains, America's love affair will probably never end.

 

Photo 1 – Trying to bring new life to an old steam engine in the shops of the Western Pacific Railroad Museum, Portola, Calif.

 

Photo 2 - It takes constant loving care to keep these old engines running at Railtown 1897 State Historical Park, Jamestown, Calif.

 

Photo 3 – An old passenger car waits for restoration in the shops at Railtown 1897 State Historical Park, Jamestown, Calif.

 

Photo 4 – An old luxury passenger car sits empty behind the shops at Railtown 1897 State Historical Park, Jamestown, Calif.

 

Photo 5 – The old Western Pacific engine 805-A silently sits hoping for a chance to pull the California Zephyr once again at the Western Pacific Railroad Museum, Portola, Calif.

 

Photo 6 – This old California Zephyr Silver Plate, a luxury car in its day, won't be going anywhere soon. Western Pacific Railroad Museum, Portola, Calif.

 

Photo 7 – The empty passenger compartment of the California Zephyr Silver Plate car. Western Pacific Railroad Museum, Portola, Calif.

 

Photo 8 – Nothing has been served at the counter of the California Zephyr Silver Plate passenger car in a long time. Western Pacific Railroad Museum, Portola, Calif.

 

Photo 9 – More empty tables and chairs in the rear of the California Zephyr Silver Plate passenger car. Western Pacific Railroad Museum, Portola, Calif.

 

Photo 10 – Old engine X5274 sits rusting in the weeds on a back track at the museum waiting for its turn to be restored. Western Pacific Railroad Museum, Portola, Calif.

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Photos from Hong Kong protest

Posted: 29 Sep 2014 08:42 AM PDT

Some photos I took on the streets of Hong Kong

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Glacier Express

Posted: 28 Sep 2014 10:37 AM PDT

We took several trains around Switzerland including the famed Glacier Express from St. Moritz to Zermatt. It was a glorious ride through grassy valleys and snow capped mountains, and reaching our destination was the ultimate reward. Zermatt is mostly a pedestrian zone; a charming town with Swiss chalets, church bells ringing and the breathtaking beauty of the Matterhorn mountain. This experience was the pinnacle of our trips abroad.

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