Wednesday, February 8, 2017

Daily Life in Belarus

Posted in Environment, Nature, People and Society, Places, Travel by admin
Belarus is a country of 10 million citizens in the heart of Europe. Its president, Alexander Lukashenko, has been in power since 1994, and U.S. Presidential candidate John McCain recently described him as a “brutal dictator” and supports continued U.S. sanctions, imposed in reaction to rigged elections in 2006. This September, over 700 international observers will be on hand to monitor new parliamentary elections, and Lukashenko may be trying to warm up to the West. Here is a look at some recent scenes in and around Belarus.

bela1 Daily Life in Belarus
A Belarus Interior Ministry soldier runs through an obstacle course during rigorous physical examinations for the “Madder Beret” outside Minsk in Volovshchina on June 5, 2008. Troops who pass the examinations receive a burgundy colored Madder Beret and become members of the special forces. (VIKTOR DRACHEV/AFP/Getty Images)

bela2 Daily Life in BelarusTatiana Litvinchuk holds her cat at an international cat exhibition in Minsk, Belarus, Saturday, May 24, 2008. (AP Photo/Sergei Grits)
bela3 Daily Life in BelarusA girl practises gymnastics at a sports school in Minsk June 03, 2008. (REUTERS/Vladimir Nikolsky)
bela4 Daily Life in BelarusA man greets Border Patrol Servicemen as they walk through Minsk on May 28, 2008. The Belarus Border Patrol Service recently celebrated its 90th anniversary. (VIKTOR DRACHEV/AFP/Getty Images)
bela5 Daily Life in BelarusA Belarusian police officer stops photographers from taking pictures of a bomb blast site in downtown Minsk, Belarus, early Friday, July 4, 2008. More than 50 people were injured in a rare bomb attack at an outdoor concert in the capital of Minsk. The stage for that concert is visible at center right. To date, no claims for responsibility have been made, and those arrested initially have been released. Investigations are ongoing. (AP Photo/Sergei Grits)
bela6 Daily Life in BelarusBones of a mammoth are displayed near workmen digging the foundation of a building in Minsk on July 25, 2008. The workmen dug up the bones during construction. Scientists estimate that the remains are approximately 12,000 years old. (VIKTOR DRACHEV/AFP/Getty Images)
bela7 Daily Life in BelarusBelarusian neo-pagans carry a wheel as a symbol of the sun celebrating the summer solstice in small town Rakov, some 45 kilometers (28 miles) northwest of Minsk, Belarus, Monday, June 23, 2008. The festivities of Ivan Kupala, or John the Baptist, is similar to Mardi Gras and reflects pre-Christian Slavic traditions and practices. (AP Photo/Sergei Grits)
bela8 Daily Life in BelarusThe woman at right is a Lithuanian citizen, standing in the Lithuanian village of Norviliskes. She is speaking with her Belarusian relatives, behind a fence that is built on the border between Belarus and Lithuania, while a Belarusian border guard watches over the scene on Friday, May 2, 2008. The border between the two countries runs right through the middle of this village. The diverging paths taken by the two countries since the 1991 Soviet collapse have left former neighbors in this border village separated not only by an imposing fence but by increasingly different ways of life. (AP Photo/Sergei Grits)
bela9 Daily Life in BelarusA Belarusian border guard patrols along the border with Lithuania in the village of Pyatskuny, Belarus, Friday, May 2, 2008. (AP Photo/Sergei Grits)

bela10 Daily Life in BelarusBelarus Interior Ministry troops dodge fire in an obstacle course during rigorous physical examinations for the “Madder Beret” outside Minsk in Volovshchina on June 5, 2008. Troops who pass the examinations receive a burgundy colored Madder Beret and become members of the special forces. (VIKTOR DRACHEV/AFP/Getty Images)

bela11 Daily Life in BelarusA serviceman of a special unit from the Interior Ministry takes part in a test near the village of Volovshchina, 25 km (16 miles) west of Minsk, June 5, 2008. Servicemen have to pass several tough tests before being awarded entry to the ministry’s elite “Red Beret” unit. (REUTERS/Vladimir Nikolsky)
bela12 Daily Life in BelarusA Belarussian soldier places wreath into a river near the ruins of Brest fortress on the Belarus-Polish border early on June 22, 2008 to mark the Day of Memory and Mourning for victims of World War II. On June 22, 1941 the Brest fortress was on the frontline of the German Nazi army invasion of the then-Soviet Union. (VIKTOR DRACHEV/AFP/Getty Images)
bela13 Daily Life in BelarusFireworks explode over a medieval castle and are reflected in a lake during a Festival of Fire in small town Mir, 95 kilometers (60 miles) west of Minsk, Belarus, early Saturday, June 28, 2008. (AP Photo/Sergei Grits)
bela14 Daily Life in BelarusCatholic faithful from Belarus and neighboring countries attend a religious festival marking the miracle-working icon known as the Mother of God of Budslav in the Belarus village of Budslav, some 150 kilometers (93 miles) north of Minsk, early Wednesday, July 2, 2008. (AP Photo/Sergei Grits)
bela16 Daily Life in BelarusBelarusian honor guard soldiers perform during a parade marking Independence Day in Minsk, Belarus, Thursday, July 3, 2008. The holiday was set on July 3, in Nov. 1996 to mark the day when Minsk was liberated by Soviet army from the Nazi invaders in 1944. (AP Photo/Sergei Grits)
bela17 Daily Life in BelarusAthletes perform during a parade marking Independence Day or Day of the Republic celebration in Minsk, Belarus, Thursday, July 3, 2008. (AP Photo/Sergei Grits)
bela18 Daily Life in BelarusMembers of the Belarus Olympic team visit a church for a blessing in Minsk on July 18, 2008 the day of their departure to participate in the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games. Belarus will be sending a total of 80 athletes to the games this year. (VIKTOR DRACHEV/AFP/Getty Images)
bela19 Daily Life in BelarusArtists wearing Belarusian national dresses hold traditional bread-and-salt as they meet participants of a cultural festival of various ethnicities living in Belarus, in the town of Grodno, Belarus, Friday, June 13, 2008. Representatives of more than one hundred nationalities live in Belarus.(AP Photo/Sergey Grits)
bela20 Daily Life in BelarusEugene Yanovich tries to keep his horse back from his wife Yanina’s potatoes. Yanina is sorting the potatoes for planting in the Belarusian village of Pyatskuny, on the border between Belarus and Lithuania, Friday, May 2, 2008. (AP Photo/Sergei Grits)


The Milky Way Over Ontario

Posted in Beauty, Environment, Nature by admin
scenicmilkyway hepburn big The Milky Way Over Ontarioclick on image to enlarge

Explanation: Sometimes, after your eyes adapt to the dark, a spectacular sky appears. Such was the case earlier this month over Ontario, Canada, when part of a spectacular sky also became visible in a reflection off a lake. To start, the brightest objects visible are bright stars and the planet Jupiter, seen as the brightest spot on the upper left. A distant town appears as a diffuse glow over the horizon. More faint still, the disk of the Milky Way Galaxy becomes apparent as a dramatic diffuse band across the sky that seems to crash into the horizon far in the distance. In the foreground, a picturesque landscape includes trees, a lake, and a stone wall. Finally, on this serene night in July when the lake water was unusually calm, reflections appear. Visible in the lake are not only reflections of several bright stars, but part of the Milky Way band itself. Careful inspection of the image will reveal, however, that bright stars leave small trails in the lake reflections that do not appear in the sky above. The reason for this is because the above image is actually a digital composite of time-consecutive exposures from the same camera. In the first set of exposures, sky images were co-added with slight rotations to keep the stars in one place.

Copyright:(Weather and Sky Photography)

25 Wonderful Places To Visit In Your Lifetime!

Posted in Nature, People and Society, Places, Travel by admin

Grand Canyon:
1 Grand Canyon1 25 Wonderful Places To Visit In Your Lifetime!

Grand Canyon is the steep-sided gorge carved by the Colorado River in Arizona State of United States. The powerful sources that cause an impact on the Grand Canyon is erosion, first is by water and second is by wind.

Nearly 5 million people visit the 1 mile deep Grand Canyon every year. Planning a vacation to the Grand Canyon national park provides a great relief for you and your family.

The best time to visit Grand Canyon is during the summer, fall and mild spring, but most locals agree that winter is the great time to visit. There are various camp grounds both on the top and floor of the Grand Canyon. Camping at the floor of the Grand Canyon needs a permit from the country office.
Great Barrier Reef:
2 Great Barrier Reef1 25 Wonderful Places To Visit In Your Lifetime!

This is the world’s largest coral reef ecosystem. It is one of the top travel destinations in Australia. You can see it from the outer space and it is the world’s largest single structure, which is made of living organisms.

The reef supports 10,000 species which consists of 1500 types of fishes and 200 kinds of birds. This beauty inspires many of the travelers to visit the place.


3 Florida1 25 Wonderful Places To Visit In Your Lifetime!

This state built its entire identity with tourism. This is the south eastern state in the US. It is a most popular winter destination. Florida is also called as the Sunshine State. Central Florida is conquered by Orlando and it is well known coterie of theme parks, sea world, universal studios, Disney world, and many more attractions to tourists.

The South Island:

4 The South Island of New Zealand1 25 Wonderful Places To Visit In Your Lifetime!

The South Island of New Zealand is characterized by grand open landscapes. The island is well known for spectacular fiords, large beach forests, golden sand beaches and broad plains. Everybody can enjoy the travel to south island.

The south island has ten national parks. These parks incorporate world heritage sites, lakes, glaciers, fiords, native forest, coastline, and world class hiking tracks. The fabulous scenery across the south land attracts many people to plan vacation.

Cape Town:

5 Cape Town1 25 Wonderful Places To Visit In Your Lifetime!

Cape Town is situated at the tip of the African Continent. The only way to understand and enjoy Cape Town is by experiencing the unique range of multicultural lifestyles and scenic national surroundings for yourself.

During the summer season, Cape Town is filled with holiday makers enjoying the hot weather, sunny beaches and beautiful scenery. So, if you want to spend your time during holiday season, it is best to make reservations as soon as possible. Before reaching the place, have a rough idea about the places around Cape Town, which you want to visit.

Golden Temple:

6 Golden Temple1 25 Wonderful Places To Visit In Your Lifetime!

This temple has a glorious setting and it exists in the middle of the large blue sacred pool. Don’t miss the peaceful and interesting ritual that goes inside the two-story golden temple. When you take a tour to India, you should visit the golden temple.

Las Vegas:

7 Las Vegas1 25 Wonderful Places To Visit In Your Lifetime!

Las Vegas is the largest city in the state of Nevada. This is commonly referred to as entertainment capital of the world. The city has great casino hotels and creates a fantasy like atmosphere. Las Vegas is a great travel destination for honeymooners and travel addicts.

A trip to Vegas is usually a trip to “the strip”, about 20 long blocks of neon lights, public drinking and casinos.


8 Sydney1 25 Wonderful Places To Visit In Your Lifetime!

Sydney is the economic powerhouse of Australia. The place is full of sun-drenched natural attractions, delicious and daring restaurants, dizzy skyscrapers, friendly folk and wonderful shopping, so most of the travel addicts want to visit the place. You can take a trip to Sydney at any time of the year.

New York:

9 New York1 25 Wonderful Places To Visit In Your Lifetime!

New York is the USA’s largest metro area. The city is a great center for fashion, culture, finance, research, media, food, art, and trade. The city consists of 5 boroughs and each is differentiated by its own culture.

New York is cinematic. Every year this is a backdrop for about 200 movies.

Taj Mahal:

10 Taj Mahal1 25 Wonderful Places To Visit In Your Lifetime!

According to most of the travelers, Taj Mahal, most beautiful building, in India is one of the great wonders of the world. This is a hybrid of many artistic styles. Once you visit Taj Mahal, you can enjoy various places near it.

The river side behind Taj Mahal provides a wonderful environment. You can enjoy greatly along with your family.

Canadian Rockies:

11 Canadian Rockies1 25 Wonderful Places To Visit In Your Lifetime!

Canadian Rockies is one of the most spectacular places of the earth. This place has potential outdoor opportunities and world class resorts. Visit the two national parks of Canadian Rockies and find why most of the travelers choose Canadian Rockies as their home away home [Canada Travel].

This place offers you the best of the best. It offers you the hikes that you don’t want to miss, scenic drives and many more natural highlights. You can go for the vacation even along with your children.

Winter is a great time to enjoy the place. During this time, you can try sports like skiing, snowshoeing and then relaxing around a roaring fire on every evening.


12 Uluru1 25 Wonderful Places To Visit In Your Lifetime!

Uluru or Ayers Rock in Australia is one of the world’s great natural wonders. Planning to visit this place is a great way to explore and experience the cultural and physical significance of this Australian icon.

The rock is at its visual best at sunrise and sunset. Most of the travelers like to climb the rock by using an ancient aboriginal trail.

Chichen Itza:

13 Chichen Itza1 25 Wonderful Places To Visit In Your Lifetime!

Chichen Itza is a Mayan word. Chichen Itza is one of the largest archeological cities of Mexico and one of the Seven wonders. It is the most visited tourist destination. Travelers like to visit Chichen Itza as a day trip. If you want to enjoy all the activities near by Chichen Itza, it takes 2-3 days stay.

Before entering into the Chichen Itza, you will come across an informative museum, clean rest rooms, a dining room, few vender stands and gift shops. You can visit the site at any time of the year.

Machu Picchu:

14 Machu Picchu1 25 Wonderful Places To Visit In Your Lifetime!

It is one of the Seven Wonders of the World. This is mystical place and a great spot to divinity. It is the Peru’s most popular place, so most of you like to see the place. People of Machu Picchu feel that they are the creators of god. This place offers you strange forces of nature that permit the individual to attain a contrary cosmic state.

The place is located at 2300 meters above the sea level. So, you can enjoy the vicinity of the place. One day is enough to visit the spots around Machu Picchu.

While planning to visit Machu Picchu, you need to understand a little about the geography of this area, because the location is remote and inaccessible.

Niagara Falls:

15 Niagara Falls1 25 Wonderful Places To Visit In Your Lifetime!

Niagara Falls can be accessed from both the American and Canadian side, but the best view facing the falls is completely from the Canadian side. When you take a trip to Niagara Falls, don’t forget to take a ride on the famous maid-of-the-mist boats. You won’t get the entire experience of Niagara Falls until you ride one of these boats.

It is the foundation for many interesting places to see and things to do. If you love beautiful landscapes, romantic getaways, family adventures and vibrant nightlife then Niagara Falls is the best place to visit.


16 Petra1 25 Wonderful Places To Visit In Your Lifetime!

Petra, one of the seven wonders, is fabled rose red city and is a well known earliest Nabataean city in the south Jordan. If you have decided to travel to Jordan, then Petra is at the top of your priority list. The solid red stand stone buildings in Petra are unlike anything that you have ever seen before.

tyle="text-align:justify;">One full day is enough to see everything around Petra. This town offers you a wide variety of hotels to fit your budget.

The Pyramids:

17 The Pyramids1 25 Wonderful Places To Visit In Your Lifetime!

Pyramids and wonderful temples are the great things to enjoy in Egypt. Travel to Egypt offers you the nature and desert treks, fishing, golfing, scuba diving and birding groups. You can choose the places like Sinai coasts or red sea to relax.

Winter is the best season to go for a vacation to Egypt. March-May and September-November is the best time to enjoy the warm days of Egypt.


18 Venice1 25 Wonderful Places To Visit In Your Lifetime!

Venice is one of the Italy’s greatest tourist places. You will be surprised by hearing how the city is built up. The city is built on 317 small islands and has 150 canals which are connected through 409 bridges. During the spring time, Venice is completely filled with tourists. At that time it is very difficult to find the accommodations.


19 Maldives1 25 Wonderful Places To Visit In Your Lifetime!

Maldives is a great place for tranquil tropical islands, palm trees, white beaches and brilliant turquoise lagoons. Maldives is a group of 1190 coral islands. This place is a great destination for scuba divers.

Visiting Maldives between December and April can makes you to spend some extra hours of sunshine. Also this is the main season for tourism.

Great Wall of China:

20 Great Wall of China1 25 Wonderful Places To Visit In Your Lifetime!

The Great Wall of China is one of the Seven Wonders of the World. It is the travel icon of China and is one of the most popular travel vacation destinations in the world. It took hundreds of years for its construction. When you have decided to travel to China, don’t forget to see the wall.

Victoria Falls:

21 Victoria Falls1 25 Wonderful Places To Visit In Your Lifetime!

Victoria Falls was also one of the Seven Wonders of the World and is the most beautiful waterfalls in Africa. This is a cheap travel destination and is full of fun. Those who want to try for adventures will find plenty of activities like elephant safaris, bridge swinging, water rafting and so on [Adventure travel].

There are two sides of the falls, one is Zambia and the other is Zimbabwe side. Both sides are awesome and are a year round destination.

Hong Kong:

22 Hong Kong1 25 Wonderful Places To Visit In Your Lifetime!

Hong Kong, an oriental pearl, is simply amazing. It will be very hard for you to find a more exciting city other than Hong Kong. The best thing about being in Hong Kong is getting confused and fired by the confluences and contradictions of a Chinese city with multi Asian and western elements.

The best period to take a vacation to Hong Kong is in the months of October, November and most of December.

Yosemite National Park:

23 Yosemite National Park1 25 Wonderful Places To Visit In Your Lifetime!

Yosemite is located on the western slopes of Sierra Nevada Mountains. It is one of the nation’s most famous national parks in US. Yosemite Valley is the most famous destination in Yosemite. Every year more than 4 million people come to visit Yosemite Valley. It is packed with restaurants, shops and campsites.

This has hundreds of miles of hiking trails. You will find a great variety of wildlife along with mule deer, black bears and various bird species. When you plan your vacation to Yosemite, you can enjoy various activities like hiking, skiing, camping, snowshoeing, horse riding and bicycling.


24 Hawaii1 25 Wonderful Places To Visit In Your Lifetime!

Going for Hawaii vacation will make you feel very happy by the beauty and hospitality. They want to do the things that they would not do at home. The beautiful Hawaii islands offer you to see world famous beaches closely; offer you peace and calmness somewhere off the beaten path.

During winter season, Hawaii is fully packed with tourists. When you visit Hawaii, don’t forget to enjoy the activities like: Seeing Molten lava flow at Kilauea volcano, hiking through Waipio Valley, visiting the largest Hawaiian religious temple Puukohola Heiau and playing in the snow atop Mauna Kea.


25 Paris1 25 Wonderful Places To Visit In Your Lifetime!It is the most beautiful place and also the capital of France. Springtime is the best time to visit Paris. Paris is the city of life, love and light. You will find romance and magic when you visit Eiffel tower to Mona Lisa and from the bustling Champs Elysees to the winding streets of Montmartre.

The Top Five Greatest Places to Live and Not to Live

Posted in Environment, Nature, Places by admin

This could be used to decide on a job you were thinking of taking out of state, a place to get an idea on where to purchase that second house, or simply to just visit. First we will start out with

The Top 5 Best Places to Live,

not in any order.

Charlotte, NC

1 charlotte 8322 550wm The Top Five Greatest Places to Live and Not to Live
The same qualities that appeal to visitors have made Charlotte one of the Southeast’s premier places to live. More than 500,000 people reside within our borders, approximately 1.3 million within the metro area, and 6 million within a 100-mile radius. We’re home to 292 of the top Fortune 500 companies and more than 340 foreign firms. Financial experts know us as the nation’s second largest banking center (next to New York City), with more than $362 billion in banking assets. The nation’s fifth largest urban region, Charlotte and environs have attracted more and more people who want to become part of our team.

Austin, TX

2 Austin2 The Top Five Greatest Places to Live and Not to LiveHip and trendy, although in a ventage way, Austin is very high-tech and laid back. Austin is simply not like the rest of Texas. From the quirky cast of characters that populate Congress Avenue to burnt orange-clad University of Texas students, bats to Longhorns, four-star restaurants to down-home barbecue joints, corporate CEOs to a struggling musician, Texas’ capital city stands apart from the rest. Austin became home to many large employers, in the 1990s.

The city is the cultural and economic center of the Austin-Round Rock metropolitan area with a population of over 1.5 million. Austin was selected as the #2 Best Big City in “Best Places to Live” by Money magazine in 2006, and the “Greenest City in America” From the cleanest lakes, to cliff diving, or from the warm hospitality you will receive, Austin is a wonderful place to live and or visit.

Albuquerque, NM

3 Albuquerque Bridge%2C New Mexico The Top Five Greatest Places to Live and Not to Live(Albuquerque Bridge in Sasebo, Japan – Albuquerque’s sister city)

The largest city in New Mexico, Albuquerque boasts a unique multicultural heritage Native American, Hispanic & Latino, Anglo history and other cultural influences become a part of everyday life. During the 21st century, the Albuquerque population continues to grow rapidly, the city proper and metro area population have both increased 13% from 2000 to 2006, and this is expected to continue through more years to come. Most residents are attracted to Albuquerque’s sunny and dry climate. Brilliant sunshine defines the region, averaging more than 300 days a year; periods of variably mid and high-level cloudiness temper the sun at other times. The city has four distinct seasons, but the heat and cold are mild compared to the extremes that occur more commonly in other parts of the country.

Grand Rapids, MI

4 Grand Rapids MI The Top Five Greatest Places to Live and Not to Live

When you move here, it is said that you will become one of the many who swear they will never live anywhere else. Many young people leave Grand Rapids for the Detroit area, to further their studies perhaps, or the lure of a job, but most hanker for their town, and they return. So, what makes Grand Rapids a place that brings out such loyalty? Could it be its ever so breathtaking beauty, no matter the season? Perhaps the unique homes that have been built here, including some famous Frank Lloyd Wright homes, or perhaps it’s the exquisite downtown area where people of all ages come together as one? Grand Rapids is definitely a popular place, whether you’re a newcomer or a long time resident. There’s lots to do, right in the town, or just minutes away; including Binder Park Zoo, an authentic African experience in Battle Creek. This zoo features one of the nation’s largest herd of giraffe! With over 600 animals in a lush forest setting, this is not your typical zoo! Another popular place is the Blandford Nature Center, with its woods, ponds and streams preserved within the city. The animal exhibits and trails are open year round.

Del Mar, CA

5 Del Mar CA The Top Five Greatest Places to Live and Not to Live

In 1882, the Southern California Railroad began its new route from San Diego to San Bernardino. A man by the name of Theodore Loop, who worked for the railroad, instantly fell in love with what he called “the most attractive place on the entire coast.” He and his wife, Ella, built a tent city on the beach, which Ella called Del Mar after a popular poem titled, “The Fight on Paseo Del Mar.” Today, Del Mar remains one of the most beautiful destinations along the Western Coastline. The City consist of two square miles of coastal land and has a population around 4,500. Del Mar offers a beautiful, 2.5 miles stretch of Sandy Beach. Excellent conditions for surfing, boogie boarding, swimming and just lounging in the sun. Dog lovers will enjoy bringing their dogs to the Dog Beach to run free (limited time of year). Visitor’s can enjoy a leisurely picnic at one of the two parks adjacent to the ocean. The Powerhouse Community Center is a wonderful community asset for private and community events.

Although listed above are the Top 5 in the United States there are many other cities in which you would love to live in. These include: San Antonio, TX., Greenville, SC., Tulsa, OK., Stevens Point, WI., Huntsville, AL., Seatle, WA., Destin Beach, FL., Las Vegas, NV., Savanah, GA., Nashville, TN., and Knoxville, TN.. I hope this has been a useful and knowledgeable time for you.

Now for the Top 5 not-so-great places to live in.

New Jersey

6 Jersey The Top Five Greatest Places to Live and Not to LiveFirst of all New Jersey has two of the highest crime areas in the nation. Trenton and Newark have both made the list of the highest amount of crime, which despite efforts does not seem to be getting any better. Another reason is because New Jersey happens to have s

ome of the highest taxes in the country. It seems that each year they get higher and higher, and in most cases cause people not to be able to afford their house anymore. That leads me to reason number three which is the price of homes in New Jersey is absolutely ridiculous. A one-bedroom condo is priced at one hundred thousand dollars and up. One hundred thousand dollars for a condo will probably one get you a place in some of the higher crime areas. In order to actually be able to afford living in some of the nicer areas you can expect to pay a whole lot more. The fourth reason why New Jersey should make the worst place to live list is because of how overcrowded it is.

Miami, FL

7 Miami skyline The Top Five Greatest Places to Live and Not to LiveLarge areas of Miami are no longer a good place to live. Crime is high, quality of life has plummeted, schools are struggling, people are not friendly or respectful, and worst of all…you better speak Spanish to get along. For the third consecutive year Miami has been voted the worst American city for road rage, according to a new survey. The sunny Florida metropolis topped the poll of 25 cities because its drivers were the least courteous and most likely to run red lights, speed, text and talk on cell phone while driving. Palm Beach is different than Miami, which sits in its gorgeous aqua water with half-built and abandoned condos, a shrinking job market, a tough time getting insurance against hurricanes and a job problem. Yes, you can get a good deal, but do this only if you don’t need the appreciation from the home in the next decade. Rat infestations due to the heavy bull dozing of land, and street gangs forming to claim drug territory(more population equals more drug sales).

Houston, TX

8 houston commercial office space The Top Five Greatest Places to Live and Not to LiveAccording to the report, this is how Texas ranks among the 50 States today:

* 1st Percentage of Uninsured Children
* 2nd Income Inequality Between the Rich and the Poor
* 1st Percentage of Population without Health Insurance
* 47th Scholastic Assessment Test (SAT) Scores
* 50th Percentage of Population over 25 with a High School Diploma
* 50th Percentage of Non-Elderly Women with Health Insurance
* 44th Rate of Women Aged 40+ Who Receive Mammograms
* 47th Rate of Women Aged 18+ Who Receive Pap Smears
* 5th Cervical Cancer Rate
* 43rd Women’s Voter Registration
* 49th Women’s Voter Turnout
* 44th Percentage of Eligible Voters that Vote

Add to this list that Texas has the highest rates for home insurance, 25% higher than 2nd place Louisiana. (See The Most Expensive States To Insure Your Home 2005 by Forbes Magazine.) Deregulation of electricity has resulted in skyrocketing electricity costs costs have soared by an average of 39% in just one short year once again as a result of deregulation.

Los Angeles, CA

 The Top Five Greatest Places to Live and Not to Live

Fires, freeways are just two small negative parts that make L.A. It was also called the most polluted city in the country by the American Lung Association. Everyday you will be bumper to bumper in traffic for L.A. is the worst traffic congestion in America. Gangs of course everywhere love LA. Crime rate increased over the past five years.

Detroit, MI

10 renaissance center detroit mi The Top Five Greatest Places to Live and Not to LiveMorgan Quitnos annual reference book on crime stats ranks Detroit the most dangerous city in America. With the decline of the auto industry and Motown, Detroit has been a blighted ghost. City boosters tried to fix it up for the Superbowl in 2005, but it didn’t quite live up to expectations. Detroit holds the distinction of currently being the most dangerous city in the nation. More than 30% of its residents live below the poverty level. Abandoned buildings and garbage and vermin infested vacant lots cover an unoccupied area roughly the size of San Francisco.

Detroit has lost almost half of its population since the 1950′s, and as if “living” in Detroit weren’t bad enough, even the dead are leaving as more and more people are digging up relatives that are buried in Detroit and moving them elsewhere, just so they do not have to risk their own lives by returning to the city to pay their respects!


95 Ways You Can Help The Environment

Posted in Environment, Nature, People and Society by admin

Conserving Energy – At Home

1. When using an oven, minimize door opening while it is in use; it reduces oven temperature by 25 to 30 every time you open the door.
2. Wash clothes with warm or cold water instead of hot.
3. Purchase appliances and office equipment with the Energy Star Label
4. Turn off lights, computers and other appliances when not in use.
5. Plant trees to shade your home.
6. Replace old windows with energy efficient ones.
7. Install weather stripping around all doors and windows.
8. Keep your thermostat at 68 in winter and 78 in summer.
9. Use compact fluorescent light bulbs to save money and energy.
10. Use a microwave when- ever you can instead of a conventional oven or stove.
11. Clean the lint filter in your dryer after every load so that it uses less energy.
12. Clean or replace air filters on your air conditioning unit at least once a month.
13. If you have central air conditioning, do not close vents in unused rooms.
14. Lower the thermostat on your water heater to 120.
15. Wrap your water heater in an insulated blanket.
16. Turn off unneeded lights even when leaving a room for a short time.
17. Set your refrigerator temperature at 36 to 38 and your freezer at 0 to 5 .
18. Unplug seldom used appliances.
19. Reverse your indoor ceiling fans for summer and winter operations as recommended.
20. Only use electric appliances when you need them.
21. Keep your thermostat higher in summer and lower in winter when you are away.
22. Insulate your home as best as you can.
23. Shut off electrical equipment in the morning before leaving for work and in the evening before going to bed.
24. Shade outside air conditioning units by trees or other means.
25. Use cold water instead of warm or hot water when possible.
26. Connect your outdoor lights to a timer.
27. Buy green electricity – electricity produced by low – or even zero-pollution facilities
28. Unplug electrical items such as video game systems and plasma TV’s when not in use.

Reduce Toxity – At Home

1. Learn about alternatives to household cleaning items that do not use hazardous chemicals.
2. Review labels of household cleaners you use. Consider alternatives like baking soda, scouring pads, water or a little more elbow grease.
3. Use traps instead of rat and mouse poisons and insect killers
4. Use cedar chips or aromatic herbs instead of mothballs.
5. Buy the right amount of paint for the job.
6. Eliminate mercury from your home by purchasing items without mercury, and dispose of items containing mercury at an appropriate drop-off facility when necessary.
7. If you have an older home, have paint in your home tested for lead. If you have lead-based paint, cover it with wall paper or other material instead of sanding it or burning it off.
8. Have your home tested for radon.
9. When no good alternatives exist to a toxic item, find the least amount required for an effective, sanitary result.

In Your Yard

1. Avoid using leaf blowers and other dust-producing equipment.
2. Leave grass clippings on the yard-they decompose and return nutrients to the soil.
3. Use recycled wood chips as mulch to keep weeds down, retain moisture and prevent erosion.
4. Water grass early in the morning.
5. Take actions that use non hazardous components (e.g., to ward off pests, plant marigolds in a garden instead of using pesticide).
6. Put leaves in a compost heap instead of burning them or throwing them away.
7. Use an electric lawn- mower instead of a gas-powered one.
8. Create a wildlife habitat in your yard.
9. Rent or borrow items like ladders, chain saws, party decorations and others that are seldom used.
10. Minimize pesticide use.
11. Use only the required amount of fertilizer

At The Office

1. Copy and print on both sides of paper.
2. Reuse items like envelopes, folders and paper clips.
3. Set up a bulletin board for memos instead of sending a copy to each employee.
4. Use e-mail instead of paper
5. Use mailer sheets for interoffice mail instead of an envelope.Use mailer sheets for interoffice mail instead of an envelope.
6. Use recycled paper.
7. Use discarded paper for scrap paper.
8. Encourage your school and/or company to print documents with soy-based inks, which are less toxic.
9. Use a ceramic coffee mug instead of a disposable cup.

Protect Our Air

1. Ask your employer to consider flexible work schedules or telecommuting.
2. Recycle printer cartridges.
3. Report smoking vehicles to your local air agency.
4. Don’t use your wood stove or fireplace when air quality is poor.
5. Avoid slow-burning, smoldering fires. They produce the largest amount of pollution.
6. Burn seasoned wood – it burns cleaner than green wood.
7. Use solar power for home and water heating.
8. Purchase radial tires and keep them properly inflated for your vehicle.
9. Ignite charcoal barbecues with an electric probe or other alternative to lighter fluid.
10. Walk or ride your bike instead of driving, whenever possible.
11. Join a carpool to get to work.

Use Less Water – Here’s What You Do

1. Check and fix any water leaks.
2. Install water-saving devices on your faucets and toilets.
3. Don’t wash dishes with the water running continuously.
4. Wash and dry only full loads of laundry and dishes.
5. Follow your community’s water use restrictions or guidelines.
6. Install a low-flow shower head.
7. Replace old toilets with new ones that use a lot less water.
8. Turn off washing machine’s water supply to prevent leaks.

Ways to Protect Our Water Sources

1. Revegetate or mulch disturbed soil as soon as possible.
2. Never dump anything down a storm drain.
3. Have your septic tank pumped and system inspected regularly.
4. Check your car for oil or other leaks, and recycle motor oil.
5. Take your car to a car wash instead of washing it in the driveway.
6. Learn about your watershed.

How About Less Trash – Reduce Your Waste

1. Buy items in bulk from loose bins when possible to reduce the packaging wasted.
2. Avoid products with several layers of packaging when only one is sufficient. About 33 of what we throw away is packaging.
3. Buy products that you can reuse.
4. Maintain and repair durable products instead of buying new ones.
5. Check reports for products that are easily repaired and have low breakdown rates.
6. Reuse items like bags and containers when possible.
7. Use cloth napkins instead of paper ones.
8. Use reusable containers to store food instead of aluminum foil and cling wrap.
9. Shop with a canvas bag instead of using paper and plastic bags.
10. Buy rechargeable batteries for devices used frequently.
11. Reuse packaging cartons and shipping materials. Old newspapers make great packaging material.
12. Compost your vegetable scraps.
13. Buy used furniture – there is a surplus of it, and it is much cheaper than new furniture.

These are only 95 tips to getting starting. I’m positive there are more ideas and tips out there on ways to staying green and improving your lifestyle.

The Museum of Nature by Ilkka Halso

Posted in Nature, Places by admin
nature2 The Museum of Nature by Ilkka HalsoFinnish photographer Ilkka Halso’s photographic series ‘The Museum of Nature’ intelligently challenges how we can imagine the natural environment of the future. This collection of images capture a series of man-made structures that enclose nature, protecting it like a relic of the past. Using images of landscapes and 3D digital manipulation, this photographic collection captures a future vision of nature as a rare display. Challenging the audience’s interaction with the natural environment as endangered artifact, Halso manages to truly visualize a future we so desperately do not want to see become a reality.

nature3 The Museum of Nature by Ilkka Halso

Halso’s work is a thoroughly engaging project that takes us into a future world where nature is a museum-like place and experience is controlled. We do appreciate BLDGBLOG’s pessimistic suggestion as to how appropriate these images would be as illustrations in some form of eco-catastrophic novel. However, we also think that these thought-provoking portents could stand-alone in any urban environment to remind us how truly precious our natural world is becoming.nature The Museum of Nature by Ilkka Halso

Awesome 3D Street Paintings Of Kurt Wenner

Posted in Arts and Design, People and Society by admin

Kurt Wenner 001 Awesome 3D Street Paintings Of Kurt Wenner
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Kurt Wenner is an artist who originally worked for NASA as an advanced scientific space illustrator. He became very taken by the abilities of artists from the Renaissance, and he left NASA and moved to Rome to explore the works of the great masters.

He now works in a variety of forms, and even designs houses, but one art form he has become famous for is street painting. This tradition is supposed to have started in Italy in the 16th century, where artists would use chalk and pastel to create images on the ground. They were originally known as Madonnari, since many of their images were of the Madonna. Passers by would throw coins, which is how the artists would make their living.

Kurt Wenner has combined traditional street painting techniques together with his interest in classical art, to create an art form all his own. Many of the images use anamorphic techniques as well as trompe l’oeil, in order to create a world where fantasy and reality combine.

This image was created at Waterloo train station in London. The woman, although she appears to be lying on a very convincing sofa, is in reality just lying on the ground.

And you thought crop circles were cool…

Posted in Arts and Design, Nature, People and Society by admin
They’ve got nothin’ on this Japanese rice field art.
rice field 1 And you thought crop circles were cool…Anyone else have a poster on their wall in college that was suspiciously similar?

rice field 2 And you thought crop circles were cool…
rice field 3 And you thought crop circles were cool…

rice field 4 And you thought crop circles were cool…“Mona Riza” has got to be my favorite of the bunch.

rice field 5 And you thought crop circles were cool…
rice field 6 And you thought crop circles were cool…
rice field 7 And you thought crop circles were cool…
rice field 8 And you thought crop circles were cool…
rice field 9 And you thought crop circles were cool…

Nature vs Technology

Posted in Animals, Nature by admin | Tags: ,
4886dc4b0cd038 77679781frogview gallery Nature vs Technology