My Dentist Would Not Touch Me Today and Here’s Why #Ebola


I really feel compelled to share my story today because I saw personally how afraid Americans are of Ebola. I strongly believe the fear is largely fueled by the media. Everyone is terrified and it’s just unreasonable.

My Story! 

I went to my dentist this morning and he wouldn’t touch me because I just came home from Tanzania. First he made me sign a health declaration form saying that I haven’t been to or have been around anyone from west Africa recently and that I don’t have Ebola symptoms. That was fine. I signed one of those forms when I landed in Dar es Salaam a few weeks ago.

Then, I asked him if he knew where Tanzania was. He didn’t, so I DREW him a map!!! …. DREW it on the back of the form. But, it didn’t matter.

Then he told me to come back in 21 days! He pulled up a calendar on his computer and COUNTED DAYS, friends!

I understand that people are afraid of Ebola. If my dentist wouldn’t see me then he shouldn’t see people who have traveled to Atlanta or Dallas either. That’s how ridiculous my morning was…..

New! Airplanes, Helicopters, Engines + Flying


Friends, have I told you how much I love airplanes? Maybe a time, or two, or three.

They fascinate me!

Years ago, I used to hate flying. Now, I get on an airplane as often as I can because they give me great peace! I can’t be reached when I am thousands of feet in the air. Yes, I know, airplanes have Wi-Fi now (even on international flights), but believe me, when I am flying, no matter whether I am going to Addis or Dar es Salaam or London or Johannesburg or Lusaka or a few states away I am never checking my emails.

It’s a shame that the only place I can get a little peace from the world – even though temporary – is in the air.

Flying

(left to right) Flying over Washington, DC, Kenya, Ethiopia, Zambia,  Tanzania, New York

I really love airplanes even though I have no idea how they function. I am always fascinated that big chunks of metal can lift off into the air and fly for hours to the other side of the world.

Amazing!

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Photos: Flowers + Macchiatos #Ethiopia


For the past few weeks the news has been utterly insufferable. It’s just been really bad – there’s no eloquent way to say it. Bad! In fact, I needed to back away from my laptop last week because the news was a little too much to bear.

I am the type of person who reads as much as I can. I get my news from curated Twitter followers, Flipboard, Facebook (from time to time), and my daily rounds of the major US and UK newspapers and magazines.

Now that I think about it, that may be a bit much! 

So, in honor of how much I need to just get away from the 24-hour news cycle again, behold: flowers + macchiatos from Ethiopia. And a great song at the end.

Flowers  in the Southern Highlands - Ethiopia

Flowers in the Southern Highlands – Ethiopia

Double Macchiato - Addis

Double Macchiato – Addis

Flowers in Hawassa

Flowers in Hawassa

Macchiato at Radisson BLU Addis

Macchiato at Radisson BLU Addis

Flowers in Bahir Dar, Ethiopia

Flowers in Bahir Dar, Ethiopia

Traditional Cup of Ethiopian Coffee

Traditional Cup of Ethiopian Coffee

Flowers in Bahir Dar, Ethiopia

Flowers in Bahir Dar, Ethiopia

Double Macchiato at Coffee House, Addis

Double Macchiato at Coffee House, Addis

Wild Flowers - Great Rift Valley - Ethiopia

Wild Flowers – Great Rift Valley – Ethiopia

[Photos] #TBT Future We Want: Rio + 20 #Brazil


Future We Want - Museu de Arte Moderna Rio de Janeiro

When I went to Rio in 2012 for Rio + 20 I stopped by the Museu de Arte Moderna Rio de Janeiro on the last day before I had to head back to Miami because there were exhibits by local sustainable artists and green companies that were showing off their wares and services for Brazilians.

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I stopped by the Future We Want exhibit at the Museu de Arte Moderna where museum goers shared their thoughts for the future. I shared my thoughts too, but I have no idea what I wrote. It was probably something about mothers and children.

Other photos from the entire exhibit.

Museu de Arte Moderna

Museu de Arte Moderna

Museu de Arte Moderna

Museu de Arte Moderna

Museu de Arte Moderna

Museu de Arte Moderna

 

Where I’d Rather Be…


New York City

… in New York City!

I haven’t been to New York all year and I really, really miss Manhattan.

I think I took this photo in September of last year! That’s a long time in traveling years and too long to be away from NYC!

There was a time when I was in New York every other week just a few years ago. I was that busy! But, now as I spend most of my time traveling abroad, I am feeling that I cannot forget to travel a little north to the greatest city on Earth.

September can’t get here fast enough! 

Fingers crossed that I can get to New York and I am not on a plane with passport in hand and a new time zone to adjust to.

My Morning Walk


Every morning, the first thing I do almost immediately after I wake up is check my email. That’s not a good thing I’ve determined, but I can’t seem to shake the habit. I’m not sure I ever will or even if I want to. For the most part I do enjoy email until it gets overwhelming which is more often than not.

One thing is certain, I am too tied to my devices. I need to back away from them from time to time. I do take some time (although limited) to just walk and think and get away from technology for a moment. Today was one of those days. Instead of making coffee at home this morning, I walked to Starbucks and appreciated all of the loveliness along the way.

It’s a rare moment when I stop long enough to notice the flowers and the trees. It’s definitely something I need to do more often especially before summer ends. This morning I felt a slight nip in the air. It was lovely. That signals to me that fall is really just around the corner even though it will be nearly 100 degrees for much of August.

I’m glad I chose this morning to take a walk and clear my mind for a bit. It was good for my soul.

??????????????????????????????? ??????????????????????????????? ??????????????????????????????? ??????????????????????????????? ??????????????????????????????? ??????????????????????????????? ??????????????????????????????? ??????????????????????????????? My Morning Walk

 

Dreaming of Africa – Again!


Africa Dreaming

It’s a little ridiculous to dream about going back to Africa especially when I just got back from the continent a little over a week ago. I understand that. But, as ludicrous as this sounds I am already thinking about traveling to Africa again. I think it’s because Africa is so expansive and there is still so much for me to see. Plus, I’m not getting any younger. I want to be able to climb mountains and walk in the rural areas whenever I want and not be hampered by my age. OK, I’m only 39, but still.

Another thing that is bothering me terribly is that I have only visited east African countries and South Africa. That’s it! I’m not sure how that happened, but I have never visited west Africa and I have traveled to the continent seven times. Now, I’m itching to see that side of the continent.

I really want to visit west Africa, but that’s out of the question now that ebola is running rampant throughout Liberia, Sierra Leone, and Guinea. Even though ideally I want go to Dakar, Senegal, I can’t take any chances. People travel extensively throughout the region and you just never know if someone is flying with ebola. When I go to Africa I am always worried about malaria and dengue fever. Ebola shouldn’t be on my list of disease worries, so for now, west Africa is out of the question.

Africa Dreaming - Again

I have heard from many people that Rwanda is a fantastic place to visit. And I know I can get really great stories there. Even after the genocide, great strides have been taken to make Rwanda whole again. Kigali is supposed to be extremely safe and clean, so yes, Rwanda is intriguing to me. I also really want to visit Namibia because of its deserts. And Botswana and Mozambique would also be interesting countries to visit. Above all, however, I really want to visit Mali (always have!), but because of the instability there I will have to wait until it’s safer (at least in my mind).

Africa Dreaming - Again!

I have no doubt that I will visit Africa again this year. It’s just a matter of where and when. I do need to stay put for awhile. That’s for certain, but there’s nothing wrong with a little “Africa Dreaming” from time to time.