Tuesday, February 7, 2017

High Tech Bomb Dogs – More Than Man’s Best Friend

High Tech Bomb Dogs – More Than Man’s Best Friend

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bombdogboxes High Tech Bomb Dogs   More Than Mans Best Friend

Man’s best friend has the capabilities to do more than just sit, stay and fetch your slippers. Dogs are known for their keen sense of smell and their ability to hear sounds beyond the audio range of humans. Because of these talents, law enforcement agencies, the military and other security companies utilize these amazing creatures in a variety of ways to ensure the safety of the public.

As an elite member of a bomb dog squad, they are highly trained and work hard to save lives and prevent deaths. Because of their attention to detail and sensitivity to smells, the canine crime fighters receive praise for being both effective and precise in their efforts.

Training

The training programs for bomb sniffers focus on breeds who are hardworking, friendly and enthusiastic to the learning process. Golden retrievers, Labradors and German Shepherds are prime candidates because they possess traits that are unique to the program. The schools typically own and breed the dogs from the puppy stage of life. Although the pups are allowed to stay with their mothers, it’s also important for their early development to have human interaction.

Activities and Exercise

Pups are allowed plenty of exercise by focusing their activities on romping through tight spaces and a playground with a series of obstacles and services. This environment introduces them to the challenges that they will face in serious real life situations. This may sound unusual but as they mature to adults, the teachers will focus on developing endurance by having them run on a treadmill. This prepares the animals for hours of long work.

Procedures and Techniques

In order to achieve the best results, trainers must expose them to various materials both explosive and non-explosive. Non-explosive materials such as hexachlorophene are typically used in order to introduce the dogs to the smell of bombs. Food is another integral part of the training program, and the hound is rewarded with a small treat when they are able to detect a bomb. This gives them the incentive to proceed and search for the explosives.

Shah EDD at action search a bomb

Because Labradors are voracious eaters, trainers find them to be the preferred choice for the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) as they respond extremely well to training that is food based. However, the dogs are not fed out of bowls and strictly hand fed several times a day by their handlers during the course of the training program.

Completion of the Training Program

Unfortunately some of the dogs may not meet the crucial criteria that are expected of them. The dogs who do not meet the level of standards expected of their bomb sniffing purposes are put up for adoption and placed in loving and caring homes.

Slovakian NSE, EOD team at KAF, Kandahar

Upon completion of successful training program, most of the dogs will be chosen to work various jobs in the military, law enforcement agencies or other security programs across the country. Both the AFT and Transportation Security Administration implement bomb sniffing dog training programs. Private security companies also incorporate bomb sniffing dogs into their lineup. One such company, MSA Security, found online at http://investing.businessweek.com/research/stocks/private/snapshot.asp?privcapId=22249789 uses bomb dogs to provide screening services for chemical, radiological and improvised explosives.

As many security companies and law enforcement officials know, the life of a dog can go beyond fetching. Teresa Stewart writes to extol the virtues of bomb sniffing dogs for those interested in their protective services.

Photo Credit: Flickr Creative Commons  Flickr Creative Commons  Flickr Creative Commons

 



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How to Recognize Mesothelioma In Your Pet

How to Recognize Mesothelioma In Your Pet

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beagleSadDog How to Recognize Mesothelioma In Your Pet

 

Mesothelioma is a very aggressive form of cancer that most often impacts the lungs but can affect the lining of the stomach. The disease has been directly connected to asbestos, and nearly every case that has been diagnosed in humans or animals can be connected to the inhalation of this substance.

Dogs have been found to be just as susceptible to mesothelioma as people, with the very first case of this type of lung cancer diagnosed in a dog in 1931. This disease seems to be more prevalent in middle aged dogs of larger breeds. However, it can appear in any breed and at any age.

Symptoms

• Your pet is not very active.
• Your pet seems feverish and ill.
• Your pet has a decreased appetite, even for treats.
• There is swelling in the chest area or in the stomach. Swelling appears like it is water retention and not fat.
• Your pet has trouble breathing. When they are laying down their breathing seems as labored as if they were out running.

Your veterinarian will have to conduct extensive tests on your pet to confirm this diagnosis. On average, it could take up to a month from your initial visit until your pet is diagnosed. Prognosis is not very good for this type of cancer.

Mesothelioma is very aggressive and by the time your pet actually shows signs there may not be a lot of treatment options. If you reside in the upper eastern US, for professional advice it might be beneficial to contact a Mesothelioma lawyer in New York to determine you and your pet’s legal rights.

How Can A Dog Get Mesothelioma?

Asbestos is a very fine fiber-like material and can easily attach to a pets fur. If your dog is out running in an area that has asbestos contamination, they can easily carry this poison around on their paws until the fibers are inhaled. Continual exposure can lead to the contraction of this type of cancer.

Is There Legal Recourse For The Pet Owner?

This is a very tricky subject and one that would have to be approached on a case to case basis. In some instances, a dog’s owner may have the right to sue a building owner if their pet has become sick due to the lack of asbestos removal in the building which has created a dangerous condition. The owner would have to show that by living in that building and allowing their dog to interact in and around that building that has asbestos contamination, their pet was injured.

However, if the dog was prone to roaming, it would be harder to prove fault. For instance, if the dog enters into a construction area where asbestos is being removed, there may not be reason enough to prove fault. Signs are posted to caution humans in this area, but the dog got in by jumping the fence when it was chasing a squirrel. The owner could not be held liable for the damages because they did not create a hazard, but were rather trying to remove one.

Again, since there is no real case law to base these scenarios on at this time, both examples are just speculation on what could happen in those scenarios.

If you believe that your dog was a victim of the negligent act of someone concerning asbestos, you should seek legal advice from a personal injury attorney that specializes in mesothelioma cases. They will be able to provide you with the most updated and accurate information on this type of case.

Teresa Stewart writes about the unusual disease of mesothelioma for pets and their human owners. A Mesothelioma lawyer in New York can be found at The Perecman Firm, P.L.L.C.; they have experience uncovering where the exposure occurred, and which parties should be held accountable to maximize benefits received from claims submissions.

Photo Credit: http://www.flickr.com/photos/78428166@N00/3887941247/



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Pink iguana discovered on Galapagos

Pink iguana discovered on Galapagos

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A new species of iguana with unusual pink skin has been discovered by scientists on the island where Charles Darwin first developed his theory of evolution.

SCIENCE Iguana 125439

The large lizard, which is at risk of extinction, has rose-coloured scales and only lives on one volcano in the Galapagos Islands.

Darwin, whose 200th birthday will be celebrated on February 12, observed both marine and land iguanas when he visited the archipelago in 1835.

The way the creatures adapted themselves to their surroundings helped to develop his revolutionary ideas about natural selection.

But he never explored the Volcan Wolf volcano on the island of Isabela and therefore did not see the pink iguana.

The creature was first spotted in 1986 by park rangers but was dismissed as a curiosity and soon forgotten.

It is only now that scientists have discovered that the “rosada” – or pink – iguana is a species in its own right after comparing its genes with other land iguanas on the Galapagos.

There were also physical differences, besides the striking pink and black-striped colouring. Pink iguanas had flat head scales, unlike other land iguanas, and a thick fatty crest on the back of the neck with small conical scales.

Action is now needed to prevent this scientifically valuable creature becoming extinct, say the researchers writing in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

The discovery comes as seventeen previously unknown species of reptiles and amphibians were found in the threatened rainforests of eastern Tanzania.

The new species, which include chameleons, tree frogs and snakes, were discovered by scientists from the Natural Science Museum of Trento in Italy.

The discovery shows the rich biodiversity of the area which is under threat from fire, logging, collection of wood for fuel and land clearance for cultivation.



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The Mysterious Mimic Octopus

The Mysterious Mimic Octopus

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While persons with dissociative disorders, or multiple personalities, have been known to have as many as 100 personalities, they have not been known to morph into totally different creatures — except in the movies, of course
. But one cephalopod, the Indo-Malayan octopus, totally transforms itself into at least 15 different sea animals. So far, at least, the Indo-Malayan octopus is the ultimate biomimic — life imitating life.

Here is the Indo Malayan octopus in its natural state, sitting on a burrow of sand…

octopus The Mysterious Mimic Octopus
Photographs by M. Norman and R. SteenePhotographs by M. Norman and R. Steene

Some animals, particularly certain species of birds and fish, are known to change colors to attract mates or to camouflage themselves to protect against predators. The Indo-Malayan octopus, first identified in 1998, has not had many years under man’s proverbial microscope, so much about how the octopus developed his many skins is not known. But in the meantime, it’s fascinating to study.

First observed by Mark Norman, Julian Finn, and Tom Tregenza on research dives in Indonesia, these unusual mimics were observed in many disguises during a 24 hour period. The researchers photographed the octopus in many phases, as the photos below will show.

Here the octopus is shown foraging for food, using the tips of its arms to probe down holes and the flared web-like part of their arms to trap anything trying to escape from the holes… almost like digging finger tips at the end of clasping hands.

b The Mysterious Mimic Octopus
Photographs by M. Norman and R. SteenePhotographs by M. Norman and R. Steene

When moving, the Indo-Malayan octopus draws its arms together into a leaf shape.

c The Mysterious Mimic Octopus
Photographs by M. Norman and R. SteenePhotographs by M. Norman and R. Steene

In the next photo, the octopus seems to mimic a particular kind of sole fish found abundantly in the same waters.

d 0 The Mysterious Mimic Octopus
Photographs by M. Norman and R. SteenePhotographs by M. Norman and R. Steene

Here, the mimic octopus is swimming like a lion fish…

eimg assist custom The Mysterious Mimic Octopus
Photographs by M. Norman and R. SteenePhotographs by M. Norman and R. Steene

… sometimes with its “poisonous” spines flared, as below. (In the lion fish those spines are poisonous; it is not suspected that they are poisonous in the octopus, only that the octopus is mimicking the appearance and movements of the lion fish for protective purposes.)

f The Mysterious Mimic Octopus
Photographs by M. Norman and R. SteenePhotographs by M. Norman and R. Steene

In the next two photos the octopus is mimicking a banded sea-snake.
gimg assist custom The Mysterious Mimic Octopus
Photographs by M. Norman and R. SteenePhotographs by M. Norman and R. Steene

h 0 The Mysterious Mimic Octopus
Photographs by M. Norman and R. SteenePhotographs by M. Norman and R. Steene

Mark Norman and his fellow researchers have included some short videos of their octopus subjects in their study. Here is one submitted to YouTube by member Marcelnad that is a bit longer.

There are two very striking observances made of this sea character, the Indo-Malayan octopus. One is that some of the 15 species of sea life are likely never to have been observed by the octopus, and the other is that when facing a predator, the octopus will become that predator’s most fearful predator. How does the octopus know how to become something that it has never observed? How does it know what is most feared by its own predator?

The answers are not known yet. What is know is that the Indo-Malayan octopus will likely be a subject of study for a long time. What can technology learn from the observing the mysterious mimic octopus?



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The Sky Can be Incredible

The Sky Can be Incredible

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sky photos 1 The Sky Can be Incredible

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The sky is the part of the atmosphere or of outer space visible from the surface of any astronomical object. It is difficult to define precisely for several reasons. During daylight, the sky of Earth has the appearance of a deep blue surface because of the air‘s scattering of sunlight. The sky is sometimes defined as the denser gaseous zone of a planet’s atmosphere. At night the sky has the appearance of a black surface or region scattered with stars.

During the day the Sun can be seen in the sky, unless covered by clouds. In the night sky (and to some extent during the day) the moon, planets and stars are visible in the sky. Some of the natural phenomena seen in the sky are clouds, rainbows, and aurorae. Lightning and precipitation can also be seen in the sky during storms. On Earth, birds, insects, aircraft, and kites are often considered to fly in the sky. As a result of human activities, smog during the day and light radiance during the night are often seen above large cities (see also light pollution).

In the field of astronomy, the sky is also called the celestial sphere. This is an imaginary dome where the sun, stars, planets, and the moon are seen to be traveling. The celestial sphere is divided into regions called constellations.

See skies of other planets for descriptions of the skies of various planets and moons in the solar system.

Light from the sky is a result of the scattering of sunlight, which results in a blue color perceived by the human eye. On a sunny day Rayleigh Scattering gives the sky a blue gradient — dark in the zenith, light near the horizon. Light that comes in from overhead encounters 1/38th of the air mass that light coming along a horizon path encounters. So, fewer particles scatter the zenith sunbeam, and therefore the light remains a darker blue.

The sky can turn a multitude of colors such as red, orange and yellow (especially near sunset or sunrise) and black at night. Scattering effects also partially polarize light from the sky.

Sky luminance distribution models have been recommended by the International Commission on Illumination (CIE) for the design of daylighting schemes. Recent developments relate to “all sky models” for modelling sky luminance under weather conditions ranging from clear sky to overcast.



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Things that could destroy life on earth

Things that could destroy life on earth

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There have been volcanic eruptions thousands of times more powerful than Mt. St. Helens.  Recent storms have redefined the ranking systems for wind speeds.  The hottest place on Earth has hit temperatures 288 degrees hotter than the coldest place on earth.

Yep, it’s an amazing world.  Here is a compilation of the most extreme conditions that add a little spice (and devastation) to the planet Earth and its inhabitants.

The Fastest Recorded Wind Speed Near Earth’s Surface

Oklahoma, United States – 318 MPH

1 Things that could destroy life on earth

Scientists measured the fastest wind speed ever recorded, 318 mph, in one of the tornadoes that hit the suburbs of Oklahoma City on May 3, 1999.

The record-setting wind occurred about 7 p.m. near Moore, where the tornado killed four people and destroyed about 250 houses.

Joshua Wurman of the University of Oklahoma says he and his research team were about a half-mile away when they measured the record wind. Wurman says the actual speed in the part of the tornado measured could have been nine or 10 mph slower or faster than 318 mph.

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Wurman’s group used a truck-mounted Doppler radar, one of the two used in the Doppler On Wheels (DOW) project at the University of Oklahoma in Norman.

The fastest speed previously measured was 286 mph clocked by a portable Doppler radar April 26, 1991, in a tornado near Red Rock, Okla.

The 318-mph speed would put the tornado only 1 mph below an F-6 on the 0-to-6 Fujita scale. No tornado has ever been classified an F-6

The Driest Place on Earth

The Dry Valleys of Antartica – Rain-free for 2 million years and counting

antarctica dry valley Things that could destroy life on earth

One interior region of the Antarctic is known as The Dry Valleys. These valleys have not seen rainfall in over two million years. With the exception of one valley, whose lakes are briefly filled with water by inland flowing rivers during the summer, the Dry Valleys contain no moisture (water, ice, or snow).

The reason why the Dry Valleys exist are the 200 mph Katabatic down winds which evaporate all moisture. The dry valleys are strange: except for a few steep rocks they are the only continental part of Antarctica devoid of ice.

Located in the Trans-Antarctic Range, they correspond to a mountain area where evaporation (or rather, sublimation) is more important than snowfall, thus all the ice disappears, leaving dry barren land.

The Hottest Recorded Temperature

Lut Desert of Iran – 159 °F

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A NASA satellite recorded surface temperatures in the Lut desert of Iran as high as 71 °C (159 °F), the hottest temperature ever recorded on the surface of the Earth.  This region which covers an area of about 480 kilometers is called Gandom Beriyan (the toasted wheat).

dasht lut Things that could destroy life on earth

Its surface is wholly matted with black volcano lava. This dark cover absorbs excessive sunshine, which due to difference of temperature with neighboring elevations forms a wind tunnel. There are reports that no living creature lives in this region. That is why this is arguably the driest place on earth next to the Dry Valleys of Antarctica.

The Coldest Recorded Temperature

Antarctica – 129 °F below zero

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The lowest temperature ever recorded on earth was -129F recorded in 1983 at the Russian Base Vostok in Antarctica. Antarctica, a continent owned by no one, covers the southern end of our globe. In addition to being the coldest place on earth, Anarctica is also the wettest and the driest place on earth. How is this possible?

Over ninety eight percent of Anarctica is covered by ice. Antactica contains seventy percent of the earth’s fresh water and ninety percent of the earth’s ice.

The Antarctic Ice Sheet is the largest sheet of ice on earth, with an average depth of 7,200 feet. According to NASA’s Cold Facts, “the thickest ice found is in Wilkes Land, where it reaches a depth of 15,669 feet: about as deep as the highest of the Alps is high.” If this ice cap were to melt the sea level would rise an average of 230 feet and would inundate most coastal cities, including New York, London, and Hong Kong.

antartica Things that could destroy life on earth

Antarctica is technically a dessert. It receives less than two inches of precipitation a year, about the same amount of precipitation as the Sahara Desert.

One interior region of the Antarctic is known as The Dry Valleys. These valleys have not seen rainfall in over two million years. With the exception of one valley, whose lakes are briefly filled with water by inland flowing rivers during the summer, the Dry Valleys contain no moisture (water, ice, or snow). The reason why the Dry Valleys exist are the 100 mph Katabatic down winds which evaporate all moisture. The freezing temperatures and the absence of water, plant life, and animal life simulate, to a degree, conditions on the Planet Mars. Consequently, the Dry Valleys are used as training grounds for astronauts who may one day make a voyage to our neighboring planet.

The Most Rainfall in 24 Hours

La Reunion Island, Indian Ocean – 6ft 2in

As you can see by the image below, this volcanic island in the middle of the Indian Ocean could use the rainfall.  They just weren’t expecting to get over 6 ft in a day.

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Between March 15-16th, 1952, Cilaos at the center of Réunion, received approximately 74 in (6ft.2?) of rainfall. This is the greatest 24-hour precipitation total ever recorded on earth. The island also holds the record for most rainfall in 72 hours, approximately 155 in (12ft.11?) at Commerson’s Crater in March, 2007.

The Longest Bolt of Lightning Ever Recorded

From Waco to Dallas, Texas, United States – 118 Miles Long

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Positive lightning develops in the same way as typical lightning bolts, but the positive bolt draws electrons upward from the ground.

These lightning bolts tend to be much, much stronger than regular lightning, and may carry as much as a hundred times the energy of a normal flash of lightning.

These “superbolts” of lightning, thankfully, are very rare. Only about five superbolts occur for every ten million normal lightning strokes.

Superbolts can reach way beyond the normal eight to ten miles of a typical lightning stroke. The longest superbolt on record reached from Waco, Texas to Dallas, after having traveled about a 118 miles.

The Largest Volcanic Eruption

La Garita Caldera in SW Colorado, United States – 1,200 cu miles

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This was chosen because of the firm evidence rather than theory. The eruption that created the La Garita Caldera was the largest known eruption since the Ordovician period, with a VEI magnitude of 8.

The scale of La Garita volcanism was far beyond anything known in human history. The resulting deposit, known as the Fish Canyon Tuff, has a volume of approximately 5,000 cubic kilometers (1,200 cu mi), enough material to fill Lake Michigan (in comparison, the May 18, 1980 eruption of Mt. St. Helens was only 1.2 cubic kilometers (0.3 cu mi) in volume).

The area devastated by the La Garita eruption is thought to have covered a significant portion of what is now Colorado, and ash could have fallen as far as the east coast of North America and the Caribbean.

The Deepest Place on Earth

Mariana Trench, Pacific Ocean – 6.77 miles

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The Mariana Trench (or Marianas Trench) is the deepest part of the world’s oceans, and the deepest location on the surface of the Earth’s crust. It has a maximum depth of about 10.9 km (6.77 mi), and is located in the western North Pacific Ocean, to the east and south of the Mariana Islands, near Guam.

The bottom of the trench is farther below sea level than Mount Everest is above it (8,850m/29,035ft).

The Largest Recorded Earthquake

Valdivia earthquake, Chile – 9.5

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The Valdivia earthquake or Great Chilean Earthquake of May 22, 1960 is the most powerful earthquake ever recorded, rating 9.5 on the moment magnitude scale. It caused localised tsunamis that severely battered the Chilean coast, with waves up to 25 meters (82 feet).

Coastal villages, such as Toltén, disappeared. Later studies argued that the earthquake actually had 37 epicenters through a 1,350 km (839 mi) north-south line that lasted from May 22 to June 6th 1960.

Elsewhere along the western coast of the United States, Crescent City, California, experienced notable tsunami waves and run-up. The tsunami travel time of the first wave to arrive at Crescent City was 15.5 hours after the occurrence of the earthquake in Chile.

At Crescent City, tsunami waves of up to 1.7 meters (appr. 5.6 feet) were observed and minor damage was reported.



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The Worlds Best Sports Destinations

The Worlds Best Sports Destinations

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One way of distracting yourself from the gloom and cold of February is to plan your vacation. I’ve got some ideas for an adventure you’ll remember for the rest of your life! Or maybe you can just enjoy them on the net. Warning: for some of these, you must be well-trained. For others, you’ll have to at least be in good shape.
Hang Gliding -Rio de Janeiro

Hang glide Rio de Janeiro!

hang gliding The Worlds Best Sports Destinations

The combination of mountains, ocean, and city make for an awesome experience!

Biking -China

biking china The Worlds Best Sports Destinations

A 15 day bike tour starting at Guilin, Guangxi will take you to altitudes of 2,000 feet and through many scenic and historical rural villages. This tour is rated one of National Geographic’s best picks.

Cliff Diving -Brontallo, Switzerland

t pic brontallo2 The Worlds Best Sports Destinations
In Brontallo, Ticino in Switzerland, A 26 meter dive gives you time to show off your best moves. Or you could just watch! The Cliff Diving World Tour takes place there every July.

Scuba Diving -Andrea Doria

ybdoria 2 The Worlds Best Sports Destinations
For the best scuba diving vacation, The Great Barrier Reef is the largest coral reef in the world, almost 2,000 kilometers long, off the coast of Queensland in Australia. But for the most challenging dive, the wreck of the Andrea Doria off Cape Cod has been referred to as the Mount Everest of diving. At 240 feet deep, it is well below the recommended limit for scuba divers. 14 people have died attempting such a dive. Divers have retreived all kinds of treasures from the ship. The ship sank in 1956, and recent reports are that the hull is collapsing and the wreck is not as fascinating as it was in the past.

Surfing -Cortes Bank

kitesurfing ryanmcvaygetty460 The Worlds Best Sports Destinations
Catch the big ones 100 miles out of San Diego at Cortes Bank. Here, a 17-mile underwater mountain range comes to a head 30 feet below the surface at a spot called Bishop Rock. The waves there are so big they show up on radar. Waves can range up to 60-70 feet when conditions are right. This surfing trip isn’t easy. You have to get there by helicopter or boat, and the waves move so fast, surfers must be towed into position with jet skis. Cortes Bank was featured in the movie Step Into Liquid.

BASE Jumping -Norway

base jumping The Worlds Best Sports Destinations
Not only is BASE jumping still legal in Norway, it also has the best landscape for it.

Snowboarding -Nepal

ybsnowboarding The Worlds Best Sports Destinations
Snowboarding in Nepal is for only the hardiest adventurers, but the thrills are huge. The first ever snowboard descent from Mount Everest was in 2001, and the industry has grown ever since. Snowboarding in Antarctica is pretty awesome, too! Find more destinations at the World Snowboard Guide.

Whitewater Rafting/Kayaking -Zambezi River

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The Zambezi River on the border between Zambia and Zimbabwe offers not only a variety of river conditions, but African wildlife and amazing scenery, including Victoria Falls.

Rock Climbing -Joshua Tree
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Joshua Tree National Park in California is very popular with rock climbers. Even with 4,500 established routes, crowding can cause problems during high vacation periods. See a ton of photos at Joshua Tree Climb.

Gator Wrestling -Mosca, Colorado
gator wrestling The Worlds Best Sports Destinations
The premiere -or possibly only- alligator wrestling academy is in Mosca, Colorado. Colorado Gators will begin classes for 2007 Memorial Day Weekend. Yes, you have to wrestle different sized alligators to advance to the next levels. You might even qualify for the Alligator Rodeo!

This was a thrill to put together. I may have a volume two sometime soon! Any suggestions?



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Tonga- The country we know nothing about

Tonga- The country we know nothing about

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tonga Tonga  The country we know nothing about

In last two years in Tonga, one of the most peaceful countries in the world, called by Captain James Cook the friendly islands, turned up an uptight atmosphere. In November 2006 pro democratic rebels set on fire the business part of the capital city. Police and army managed to calm down the situation. Australia and New Zeeland sent their troops to help them. In August 2008, George Tupou V was crowned for a king, but he got accused for spending more than 1.300.000 pounds for the celebration.

tonga king Tonga  The country we know nothing about

Tonga King

Tonga is also specific for being the only member of Commonwealth who’s got its own climate to the thrown, and not queen Elisabeth II. Modern Tonga is based on two ancient and
In strange way framed ideologies- on medieval tendency to conquer new land and on Christian missioners enthusiasm from 19th century.

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Tonga started to grow a thousand years ago, which provided that Tongan culture overwhelms more than 3 millions of square miles of ocean. That is one of the most amazing colonial achievements in the human history.

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For couple of centuries 3 leading noble families were fighting for dynastic rights, sometimes fighting, but mostly by arranged marriages. Actually the royal dynasty now has its origins of all 3 families. Tonga preserved Christian-missionary legacy which made big difference in religion but also stoked people to preserve political and social values. Missionary influence of Methodist in Tonga began in 19th century, while the Samoans islands belonged to Congregationalists. Missioners in Tonga helped to establish monarchy in this country.

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tonga tattoo Tonga  The country we know nothing about

Establishing the monarchy and fighting the colonization they managed to preserve ancient Togas customs and society. But not being colonized, Toga never managed to become a democratic society.

The main reason for mutiny in 2006 in Tonga was animosity towards China. In front of Tonga
There are 3 challenges: To become democratic republic, to preserve costumes and like a society to become independent economically and in the field of education.

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Shangri-La – Story of lost paradise

Shangri-La – Story of lost paradise

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The story about Shangri La actually is a modern fairytale which has been told by English writer James Hilton in his book “The lost horizon”. The story is being set in the time between two world wars, in the Tibetan monastery in the lost valley of Shangri La which has been cut out of the rest of the world. All the great wisdom was there, in the minds of people who gathered around.

shangri la tibet02 Shangri La   Story of lost paradise

The Hiltons story is touching the bottom line. In the 20th century this was very popular book, that the retreating of American president in Camp David was called for some time Shangri La. Some went even further. For example, Hitler has sent a scientifically expedition in 1939 to Himalayas, in hope to find the lost super race of people, who have similar genetic resemblance as Germans. That project remained remembered as one of the biggest error in the history of science.

shangri la Shangri La   Story of lost paradise

By all means “The lost horizon” was at that time the real story, at time when the west civilization was on the road to self-destruction, as Carl G. Jung said: “smell of soot was felt in the air”. That’s why the thought of lost paradise, far away from eyes of public was so irresistible. Another thing also influenced to relive this myth. Tibet in the middle of 30’s was the real personification of incomprehensible and Eastern magic, one of the lat untouched and unmarked places on Earth, the real forbidden land. The chosen place even today is very interesting, since all the things which happened to Tibet after the book was published, when China has occupied Tibet and the Cultural Revolution in the 60’s.

shangri la tibet11 Shangri La   Story of lost paradise

In this novel “The lost horizon”, the group of western tourists are saving themselves with a plane from the raging war and chaos in the world, by landing in the valley of the biggest mountains in the world. Even if the valley is being made up the writer is decrypting it in details. He is telling us about the monastery whose Capuchin lama is a twenty years old man. The monastery has al the cultural fortunes in the world and theirs habitants are against the violence and materialism. The great building is situated in the valet of the big white mountain, the most beautiful in the world. Burt there must have been an older story about some kind of lost paradise on which Hilton has based his story. Did the real Shangri La ever exist? Or maybe the better question would be, why the stories about paradise occupies human mind?

shangri la tibet08 Shangri La   Story of lost paradise

The story about the lost kingdom in Himalaya has for the first time draw the attention of some people 4 centuries ago. And, as all the stories which are saying about the lost treasure, have a lost map, which was found and then lost again. It was a part of autobiography of a missioner who was on the court of Mogul king Abu Ul Fata Jelaludin Akbar, one of the biggest Indian rulers. He is best known in history as one who tried to unite different religions and to cancel slavery.

shangri la tibet0 Shangri La   Story of lost paradise

On his court lived in unity and in respect all the religions and all the people from all over the kingdom, as well as the missioners from the west.

shangri la 2 Shangri La   Story of lost paradise

One Jesuit priest collected all the miraculous stories which he had heard on Akbars court, and after that he had made a drawing. On his map the space of Tibet was represented as a big blank space, except one place which carried a name Manasarvovar lacus- the lake Manasa Sarovar, and there was writing: here live Christians. This priest was old and he was not able to go across the big mountains in search for Christians, but much younger priest Antonio Andrade was so charmed by this story and decided to make his move and cross the mountains. Armed with faith and a little map he took of from Akbars castle and at the beginning on the mountain he was passing over some monks who were praying, but after a while the place became unpleasant. Some bad things started to happen and he was starting to curse himself and the mountains. But some kind of a miracle has happened to him. He managed to find a very wealthy kingdom even if there were no Christians as the map was saying. His journey was found in Calcutta in 19th century, and in 1926 was published as “Finding Tibet”. The resemblance of “The lost horizon” and this book is more than obvious.

shangri la tibet06 Shangri La   Story of lost paradise

shangri la tibet07 Shangri La   Story of lost paradise

The thought about lost kingdom on Himalaya was well known even in Buddhist stories, and there is a possibility that this story was mentioned on Akbars court. Name “Shambala” has firs appeared in text known as “kalachakra tantra” or “The weal of time which is teaching”. The teaching kalachakra belongs to the highest class of Buddhist teaching, and the followers can reach the lighting only in several years not as the practice is several decades. The place Shambala is a mystic and not a geographic place, but getting there is represented as a travel across the mountains that look like lotus flowers.

shangri la tibet04 Shangri La   Story of lost paradise

The story about Shangri La is a modern story with a powerful lure for the world as we know it today. One of stories is about evermore misunderstanding the East and its mysticism and their stories which are rising spirituality and freedom of the mind and liberating from material goods and dogmas. It is true that we live in time when we think that bad things are going to brake us, but the things are the same from as well as the mankind exists. The hope would not exist without the fear.

shangri la tibet09 Shangri La   Story of lost paradise

The story about Shangri La is a masterpiece in telling stories. As the times are tougher and the treat is bigger, the need for believing in better tomorrow and next day is bigger. The sad thing is that Shangri La exists only in our imagination. And imagination can sometimes be so strong.



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