Thursday, August 29, 2013
Reading furnishes the mind only with materials of knowledge; it is thinking that makes what we read ours.
August 29, 1632: British writer John Locke was a prominent Enlightenment-era philosopher whose theories strongly influenced the Declaration of Independence. He was born 381 years ago today.
So, happy reading and thinking.
Thursday, August 15, 2013
Enemy at the Door, a series from Great Britian, revolves around the German occupation of the Channel Islands, particularly the island of Guernsey.
We have just finished Series 2.
British residents of the island are forced to surrender their homes to the German forces, however, they don't have to like it. This series paints a picture of what it would be like to live under the rule of those one neither respects nor likes.
We have enjoyed watching this series more than others.
Wednesday, August 14, 2013
"The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated."
This story involves two abandoned horses, an errant lawyer (Frank Mackay) and the community of McBride, British Columbia.
Belle and Sundance were left in the Canadian Rockies by Frank MacKay, who had no experience leading pack horses in the wilderness. He figured, wrongly, that they would find their way out of the wilderness back to "civilization". Several folks, over a period of time, had seen these horses wandering around in the alpine area of Mount Renshaw, at the first sightings there was plenty for them to forage for food, as winter drew near, still more sightings - folks would call the RCMP or SPCA, and yet no one made any attempt to get them out of the area, even the lawyer who owned them contacted the authorities, promising to get them (yeah, right!). But when they were still spotted after the snows came to the Rockies, things took on a different perspective. Snowmobile season was fast approaching, and snowmobilers started reported seeing the pair - looking pretty awful.
The community of McBride is made up of folks that depend upon each other, folks born and bred to live in a harsh northern climate, people who farm, breed horses and take care of them, so when Birgit and her friends started hearing of the condition of the two horses, and with the temperature dropping steadily, they decided to take action.
It was just before Christmas 2008 when the action went into full swing.
Digging a trench in snow, in a wilderness area to bring down to pack horses, many folks thought it better to dispatch the horses rather than save them. However, Birgit and community stuck together.
Possilby you might not want to read this story, however, this is a book of determination, strength of character, hope and love. The outcome is "happy".
Please consider this one if you are a supporter of animal rights.
Tuesday, August 13, 2013
He made me think of all the books I hadn't read, and all the ones I'd read but hadn't fully understood.
August 13, 1961: Happy birthday, Tom Perrotta! The novelist couldn't get his book, Election, published until it was made into an Oscar-winning film. He turns 52 today
Wednesday, August 7, 2013
Progress is man's ability to complicate simplicity.
August 7, 1947: Norwegian explorer Thor Heyerdahl set sail on a primitive boat, the Kon-Tiki, to test his theory that the Polynesian islands were originally settled by South Americans. It crashed on a reef in the South Pacific 66 years ago today, but he survived and wrote a best seller about the experience, The Voyage of the Kon-Tiki.
Isn't that the truth?
Monday, August 5, 2013
Guy de Maupassant
August 5, 1850: French author Guy de Maupassant is best known for short stories like The Necklace, which are often marked by a cruel twist of fate. He was born in France, 163 years ago today.