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  1. #221

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    Quote Originally Posted by alilou View Post
    I liked your piece about beggars. Very interesting the situation with beggars in China, and very difficult. It's wonderful that you take the time to sit and eat with some of them from time to time. It's also really quite complex here too with the begging cartels in the big cities that "own" and maim children and send them out to beg. The worst of humanity really. I know I've only found one small solution for me for where I'm located at the moment.

    One woman who I regularly give money to was at the entrance to the grocery store yesterday. I gave her 10 rupees as usual, but she kept talking to me wanting something else. I couldn't understand what she wanted so I went into the store to do my shopping. When I came out she had managed to make Mr alilou understand that she wanted some soap. Such a simple thing. She wanted some soap so she could wash her clothes. I took her into the store and had her choose what she wanted - a bar of soap and a bag of laundry powder. I was so happy to buy it for her. Such a simple thing. When I paid for it (less than $4) and came out of the store and gave them to her she wiped tears from her eyes. Mr alilou too. And then she and I hugged each other. The experience of beggars in India has been a huge heart-opener for me. Such a simple thing to bring joy.
    I've interesting how perceptions shift in poorer countries. Do you think you'll give equally to beggars in Vancouver when you're back, alilou? I suppose one could say that beggars here are generally after drug money whereas beggars in developing countries like China or India are genuinely desperate. But in my view, desperate is desperate.

    I only very occasionally give to beggars here because there are just so many of them. If you follow the Christian tenet of 'Love the Neighbour', you've got a lot of neighbours to give to out of your pocket.

    We help out one homeless person on a regular basis - give him all our recyclables and cash from time to time. One is manageable, multitudes are not.

  2. #222

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    Japanfan, for me personally, loving thy neighbour doesn't mean giving all beggars money. I give them food, a smile, chat with them etc. I no longer give money at all, but I no longer cross the street to avoid them.

    Alilou, I've had quinoa in my cupboard for ages! I'm about to post in the FSU Chefs thread for a salad recipe. If you've got one, please share!

  3. #223

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    Quote Originally Posted by Angelskates View Post
    Japanfan, for me personally, loving thy neighbour doesn't mean giving all beggars money. I give them food, a smile, chat with them etc. I no longer give money at all, but I no longer cross the street to avoid them.
    That's a good idea if one has the time. I almost always seems to be in a hurry or in a mood where I find people assertively, even aggressively, approaching me for money and to tell me their hard-luck story to be an invasion of my space.

    A friend of mine has a fabulous reply, though. She says "My pockets are empty, but I give you my blessings".

  4. #224
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    Quote Originally Posted by Buzz View Post
    Great to hear you are back to your normal self Alilou! We sometimes forget how lucky we are here in the west.
    Thanks Buzz. It feels great to be back to normal energy levels. When you come to a place like India it really becomes obvious how lucky we are. So full of gratitude for being born where I was.

    Quote Originally Posted by skatesindreams View Post
    It's a shame that people need to beg/ask for what we would consider a necessity.
    I'm glad that you were there to help.
    For many life here is tough, and I'm glad I could help too, but you know people here are wonderfully friendly. I walk down the street and say hello to everyone whether I've met them or not. Almost always I get a big smile and a hello in return. I'd never do that in Vancouver. People would think I was nuts. Mind you I am in a small town, not the big city.

    Quote Originally Posted by Japanfan View Post
    I've interesting how perceptions shift in poorer countries. Do you think you'll give equally to beggars in Vancouver when you're back, alilou? I suppose one could say that beggars here are generally after drug money whereas beggars in developing countries like China or India are genuinely desperate. But in my view, desperate is desperate.

    I only very occasionally give to beggars here because there are just so many of them. If you follow the Christian tenet of 'Love the Neighbour', you've got a lot of neighbours to give to out of your pocket.

    We help out one homeless person on a regular basis - give him all our recyclables and cash from time to time. One is manageable, multitudes are not.
    I think helping out one person is a great idea. As you say one is manageable, and you get to make a difference. Many westerners I know in Tiru never give to beggars, but do give to a charity that helps the homeless, or support one family.

    I'm not sure what I'll do in Vancouver. Here I can give each one 10 rupees and it's enough for a cup of chai and something to eat, but in Vancouver that's the equivalent of 20 cents which buys pretty much nothing. I'd have to give each beggar something like $10 to have the same affect and that's not going to happen. What's more important for me really is my shift in perception about them, more open-hearted and less defensive. It's liberating to not have to turn away which I mostly did in the past. I know most of the beggars in Van are there because of drugs, but as you say desperate is desperate.

    Quote Originally Posted by Angelskates View Post
    Japanfan, for me personally, loving thy neighbour doesn't mean giving all beggars money. I give them food, a smile, chat with them etc. I no longer give money at all, but I no longer cross the street to avoid them.

    Alilou, I've had quinoa in my cupboard for ages! I'm about to post in the FSU Chefs thread for a salad recipe. If you've got one, please share!
    No longer crossing the street to avoid them - This! This is the thing for me. This seeing them as fellow human beings instead of going into contraction around them.

    Time to cook some of that quinoa! But sorry no I don't have a quinoa salad recipe.

    Quote Originally Posted by Japanfan View Post
    That's a good idea if one has the time. I almost always seems to be in a hurry or in a mood where I find people assertively, even aggressively, approaching me for money and to tell me their hard-luck story to be an invasion of my space.

    A friend of mine has a fabulous reply, though. She says "My pockets are empty, but I give you my blessings".
    I know what you mean when some of the beggars in Van can get pushy - it can get annoying. I like your friend's response.
    My travel and adventure blog http://alisonanddon.wordpress.com

  5. #225
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    The next blog post is now done.

    This one is about death and funerals
    coping with the reality of life here and
    open-heartedness

    and wobbling heads

    And a bunch of photos as usual.

    Use the link in my sig line.

    If that doesn't work for you try http://alisonarmstrong.blogspot.com
    My travel and adventure blog http://alisonanddon.wordpress.com

  6. #226
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    Ah the Indian head wobble! Those drums are also present at Hindu weddings so I hope you get to take one in. They can also be quite lengthy affairs.
    Last edited by Buzz; 03-19-2012 at 07:54 PM.

  7. #227

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    Fascinating thoughts and observations, alilou.

  8. #228

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    Quote Originally Posted by Japanfan View Post
    Fascinating thoughts and observations, alilou.
    Agreed!
    I'm not sure how I'd react to some of the situations you've experienced.
    Thanks, for making me consider the question.

  9. #229
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    Quote Originally Posted by Buzz View Post
    Ah the Indian head wobble! Those drums are also present at Hindu weddings so I hope you get to take one in. They can also be quite lengthy affairs.
    We didn't get to go to a wedding. That would have been fun. I heard there was one happening, but since we didn't know the people we weren't invited

    But we did get to join in with about 50 people singing Bharjans (Hindu devotional music) tonight - way fun!

    Quote Originally Posted by Japanfan View Post
    Fascinating thoughts and observations, alilou.
    Quote Originally Posted by skatesindreams View Post
    Agreed!
    I'm not sure how I'd react to some of the situations you've experienced.
    Thanks, for making me consider the question.
    Thanks Japanfan and skatesindreams. India sure gets you thinking. It's hard to spend any time here and not start looking at a lot of stuff, because the outer world is so insistent and chaotic, and assaults your senses, and the inner search and practice is so prevalent here. Almost all people are religious, and many many people meditate on a regular basis. Everyone wants to find a way home it seems.
    My travel and adventure blog http://alisonanddon.wordpress.com

  10. #230
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    Well the final blog post from India is done - the flower market (fabulous), blessed by an elephant (fun and sweet), Indian dancer (beautiful), peacock dancer (just wow!), monkeys (just too clever for words), crowds on bikes (yikes!) and more fun stuff. India was amazing.

    We are now in beautiful Bali

    I have bought a subscription to the ISU stream for Worlds and it worked pretty good last night for men's prelim. Internet connection is a bit slow so I think it will be a bit choppy but at least I'll get to see something

    Use the link in my sig line. If that doesn't work try this one http://alisonarmstrong.blogspot.com

    click on the pictures to make them bigger - and better
    My travel and adventure blog http://alisonanddon.wordpress.com

  11. #231
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    Glad you enjoyed India Alliou and thanks for taking time time to share with us your adventures.

  12. #232

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    Alilou, we thought of you last night at Jo-Jo's Not at Worlds Party. I asked Overedge if she would give a demo of some of the skating moves/details. She's keen and Jo-jo and I are keen to attend, on our own blades. . .

    We thought we would schedule the occasion when you are back in May, figuring that your enlightened self would be ready to put on a pair of skates and take it to the next level .

  13. #233
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    Quote Originally Posted by Buzz View Post
    Glad you enjoyed India Alliou and thanks for taking time time to share with us your adventures.
    Thanks again Buzz. We're in Bali now. It is heaven

    Quote Originally Posted by Japanfan View Post
    Alilou, we thought of you last night at Jo-Jo's Not at Worlds Party. I asked Overedge if she would give a demo of some of the skating moves/details. She's keen and Jo-jo and I are keen to attend, on our own blades. . .

    We thought we would schedule the occasion when you are back in May, figuring that your enlightened self would be ready to put on a pair of skates and take it to the next level .
    You want me to skate?
    I can (mostly) remain upright, and go forwards. That's about it. Don't talk to me about going backwards, or deep knees or anything remotely beyond that. But then we'll arrange it at a time we can all go out for dinner afterwards
    My travel and adventure blog http://alisonanddon.wordpress.com

  14. #234

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    Quote Originally Posted by alilou View Post
    You want me to skate?
    I can (mostly) remain upright, and go forwards. That's about it. Don't talk to me about going backwards, or deep knees or anything remotely beyond that. But then we'll arrange it at a time we can all go out for dinner afterwards
    It will be the " Definitely Not At Worlds" get-together.
    You should never write words with numbers. Unless you're seven. Or your name is Prince. - "Weird Al" Yankovic, "Word Crimes"

  15. #235

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    Quote Originally Posted by alilou View Post
    You want me to skate?
    I can (mostly) remain upright, and go forwards. That's about it. Don't talk to me about going backwards, or deep knees or anything remotely beyond that. But then we'll arrange it at a time we can all go out for dinner afterwards
    Shouldn't take more than a few attempts for the two of us to master the death spiral.

  16. #236
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    Quote Originally Posted by overedge View Post
    It will be the " Definitely Not At Worlds" get-together.
    Oh definitely . But I hope I'll get to see some of your moves overedge

    Quote Originally Posted by Japanfan View Post
    Shouldn't take more than a few attempts for the two of us to master the death spiral.
    sure, we'll do it after just one or two tries. I bags being the female - that way I can keep my knees straight
    My travel and adventure blog http://alisonanddon.wordpress.com

  17. #237
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    Finally have a new blog post done. I let it slide for a bit. You will all understand why - I was completely engrossed in whatever of the world championships I could get to see, and all the php and gossip on FSU What fun, though I was a bit peeved that I bought an ISU package for worlds and the internet where we are staying crapped out after the first night . Still I got to see both the SD and FD live and am slowly catching up with the rest VoD. This way, having read FSU, I'll only watch the ones worth watching and not have to sit through the less fortunate skates. Though maybe I'll watch Alissa's LP just for the factor

    Anyway the new blog post is from Bali It is beyond wonderful here

    Use the link in my sig line or this one http://alisonarmstrong.blogspot.com for IE users (I think).
    My travel and adventure blog http://alisonanddon.wordpress.com

  18. #238

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    I'm so pleased that Bali is such a lovely place to "decompress".
    I'm sure that you needed that after the "adventure" that was India.
    Your photos and descriptions of Balinese culture/people are wonderful.

    I'm glad that, thanks to the Internet/ISU, figure skating can be enjoyed anywhere!

  19. #239
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    Quote Originally Posted by skatesindreams View Post
    I'm so pleased that Bali is such a lovely place to "decompress".
    I'm sure that you needed that after the "adventure" that was India.
    Your photos and descriptions of Balinese culture/people are wonderful.

    I'm glad that, thanks to the Internet/ISU, figure skating can be enjoyed anywhere!
    Yes Bali is certainly a great place to decompress. Even though it has been discovered by the world, and there are heaps of tourists here (like us ) the Balinese have retained their beautiful culture and mostly retained the beauty of the island.

    I discovered the hard way that the ISU package is time-limited for VoD and is no longer available to me
    So I will see the rest of worlds in June when I get back to Canada where the wonderful kwanfan1818 has recorded everything for me.
    My travel and adventure blog http://alisonanddon.wordpress.com

  20. #240
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    A new blog post is up - lots of art, a bird park, some time at the beach , a Balinese teeth filing ceremony and wonderful, and a wedding. (I think that's all.)

    As per usual use the link in my sig line or if it won't open for you use http://alisonarmstrong.blogspot.com

    As per usual click on the pics to make them bigger - and better

    Thanks for reading!
    My travel and adventure blog http://alisonanddon.wordpress.com

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