Texas Will Survive

 (Astrid Stawiarz / Getty Images)

Gloria Gaynor is dedicating a new version of the original survival anthem ‘I Will Survive’ to all her ‘neighbors in Texas’ who are enduring unprecedented flooding in the wake of Hurricane Harvey.

Gaynor tweeted out ‘Texas Will Survive’ Wednesday evening with the updated lyrics.

At first we were afraid, we were petrified,
Kept thinking Texas couldn’t live in flood waters this high.

We know you spent plenty of time preparing for this hurricane,
Who could have known that it would come with so much devastating rain?

But, we will strive. And you’ll survive.
With all our love and help and prayers,
We will stand strongly by your side.

We are your neighbors, tried and true,
And we’ll do all we can for you.

And you’ll survive.
You will survive.

You will survive.

Gloria Gaynor’s iconic song “I Will Survive” is one of personal empowerment and overcoming adversity. The revised version of “Texas Will Survive” has touched the hearts of the survivors in the Texas  floods and the population across the country who are donating time and  treasure to aid our suffering neighbors. The message has grown to     unify to  care for the suffering of our neighbors. It has been noted that the death toll would be much higher than the actual 39 if all the volunteers  had not come to the rescue in Houston. ( The death toll in Katrina was 2000.)

This is the American spirit I know and love.   Doesn’t it make you  feel encouraged that we can Make America Great Again?

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Flying . . .

Sassy Frank Sinatra has joined  the upbeat joyful  Big Band   sound with exquisite lyrics of love.  Can’t you imagine young lovers moving over the dance floor  in perfect rhythm?

Ah  to experience  such  love  out of this world. . . . . . . . and back!

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The Kung Fu Nuns and Self Defense

Namaste !Image may contain: 2 people, people smiling, text A Mighty Girl

The Kung Fu Nuns are fighting back against the rise in sexual assaults in India by training women in self defense! The Buddhist nuns, who live in a monastery in the Indian Himalayas near Tibet, have trained in martial arts for years and are now using their expertise to empower women in their community. The nuns just completed their first-ever women’s self-defense workshop for 100 young women which aimed to build their confidence, raise their awareness of sexual assault prevention, and teach them practical self-defense skills. “Most people think nuns just sit and pray, but we do more,” says 19-year-old Jigme Wangchuk Lhamo, one of the nuns conducting the training. “If we act, people will think if: ‘If nuns can act, why can’t we?’” Adding that the nuns decided to start teaching women’s self-defense after hearing about the rising rates of sexual assault, Lhamo asserts: “Kung Fu will make them stronger and more confident.”

The Kung Fu Nuns first attracted global attention two years ago when they served as first responders after a devastating earthquake struck Nepal. As nuns of the Drukpa lineage, a thousand-year-old Buddhist tradition, the Kung Fu Nuns are committed to championing gender equality and helping the local community. Over the past several years, they have trekked and cycled thousands of miles through India and Nepal to raise awareness on issues ranging from human trafficking to pollution and sustainable living. Carrie Lee of Live To Love International, a charity which works with the nuns, says that “the Kung Fu Nuns are heroes of the Himalayas. They are fiercely compassionate and brave. Not even earthquakes, avalanches, monsoons and cloudbursts can stand in their way.”

In recent years, rape and sexual assault have become one of the biggest threats facing women in India: the country’s National Crime Records Bureau says that reports of rape increased by 43% between 2011 and 2015. After learning of this growing crisis, the Kung Fu Nuns decided to get involved. “We thought we must share what we know with others,” says 28-year-old nun Jigme Yeshe Lhamo. By all accounts, their first women’s self-defense workshop was a tremendous success. One of the participants in the intensive five-day training, 23-year-old Tsering Yangchen, spoke about its impact on her: “I am often uncomfortable going to the market as there are boys standing around looking, whistling and cat-calling. I was always hesitant to say anything but now I feel much more confident to speak out and even protect myself if I have to.” And, she encourages other women to seek out similar training, asserting, “It’s been tough and my whole body is aching but the nuns were very inspiring. All girls should learn Kung Fu.”

To read more about the Kung Fu Nuns on Reuters, visit http://reut.rs/2vbNrKh – or check out their website at http://www.kungfununs.org/

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Music Monday on Tuesday. . . . . . Omni

Here is Omni  a band we discovered at the movies!

My favorite theater  in the area is Spectrum 8 which is now owned by Landmark Theater.  This is a national group with 56  theaters.  They are dedicated  to exhibiting and marketing independent and foreign films. This is  the roots of Spectrum Theater in Albany.  Back in the 80s these were the only films that were shown, but slowly for obvious economic reasons, the playbill featured foreign films and current traditional films as well and  a children’s film then and again! We are usually there early when the ads are going and the different music is played in the background. Friday night this was the featured band. Another feature is popcorn with REAL BUTTER and Carrot Cake which I adore. Sadly it is not on the diet! Neither is the popcorn but I can rationalize easier  to miss a meal and eat  that!

Omni is a very current  post punk Atlanta band with a hard to define  style.  I like the staccato beat and the sound or sounds.  The funny thing about music these days is that there seem  to be few popular established bands just lots of fledgling bands dreaming of hitting it big!

 

Oh yes, we went to see the film “Good Time” which doesn’t match our  expectation.   I am posting the trailer.  The professional critics all to a one praised its originality and speed.  On my recommendation,take all that with a grain of salt. In my experience, the critics always  like the “unusual”  films. I guess they get tired of the repetition and predictability of many films.

Just watching the trailer reminded me that there is a positive aspect of the film in the realtionhip between the brothers, one is is challenged either emotionally and or mentally

* * Two Stars !

 

 

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They Gave Their Tomorrow For Our Today

This is photojournalism from Huff Post UK  with clever integration of  current photos and 70 year old shots from D-Day.               A German body lies where he fell in the street.

Tourists on the way to the beach pass one of the German bunkers.

Children play in the sacred sand of Omaha Beach.

German prisoners of war waiting for their transportation.

A family walking to the beach and the soldiers marching to their positions.

 

Debris on the beach  but  not the usual trash.

The rubble  and loss of the old villages have been rebuilt into new places for living and shopping.

Running  to take a bullet for freedom vs running to play soccer!

May we never forget the sacrifice and blood our heroes gave for our  freedom!

“They gave their  tomorrow for our today!”  

 

 

 

 

 

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Freedom Provides Choices

Battle lines form between white nationalists and antifa protesters at the entrance to Emancipation Park during the "Unite the Right" rally August 12, 2017 in Charlottesville, Virginia. (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images/AFP)

When people ask about the political situation in the United States during my lifetime, somewhere in my rambling reply is that nothing  can compare to to the Vietnam era especially 1968.

The picture above is from the demonstration that turned tragically violent in the newly named Emancipation Park in Charlottesville ,Virginia.  This iconic university town which is the home of the University of Virginia which  was  conceived, designed, and built by Thomas Jefferson. I was living there from 1968 – 1973. This was the height of the opposition to the war in Nam.  There were many demonstrations but none that I remember as violent as this one,  not even during the invasion of Cambodia.  The National Guard came to enforce a curfew and there were loud demonstrations on the steps of the Rotunda. I remember standing at a distance watching and thinking that Mr. Jefferson would approve of this  practicing the  right of “free speech.”  I do vividly remember the National Guard tanks parked in the lot for University Hall. Seeing them brought home the severity of the situation.  Oddly, I don’t remember the resolution but the relief when it was over.

In the image above, the opposing groups are lined up across from each other.   For my non- American friends who read my blog, I will explain.  The group at the bottom of the image is the White Supremacists protesting the removal of the Confederate statue of General Robert E. Lee.  He was the supreme general of the Army of Northern Virginia which fought for succession from the Union and his wife inherited slaves. The KKK and White Supremacists. are demonstrating to preserve the history of the south.

Across from the white supremacists are the Antifa dressed in black.  We have in the United States gotten used to  this group, professing to be anti-fascists protesting and destroying property at colleges around the country to protest and stop speakers with whom they don’t agree.  They want to fight directly the right-wing ideology by all means.

A young woman from Charlottesville tragically  lost her life in the violent clash of ideology, Heather Heyer.

A few days later, I witness this huge and peaceful  crowd in Conneaunt, Ohio who have come to celebrate our history and heroes at D-Day 1944. These were the people that we see cheering for President Trump at his rallies. They are hardworking, middle class, patriotic  people who have come to honor our history.

I am willing to say that I would like for this later group to prevail.  I would like to say I don’t want to see any kind of  fascism  end our rights either by the radical right wing or the radical left wing. It seems that is what each in their own understanding is  trying to do.  They want the same results with a twist  of opposite sides.   The middle class is much larger in number and more peaceful. The media gives much more attention to demonstrations by the Antifa and white supremacists while ignoring the middle class.

We as free Americans must be vigilant and knowledgeable of what is going on or our freedoms will be gone  and  it is too late to regain them.

We have to decide what we want Security or Freedom.

https://talesalongtheway.com/security-or-freedom/

As a sign of the times at D-Day Ohio , there was a mobile tower  high above the crowd of thousandths marked and manned by Homeland Security.  I don’t remember noticing that last year.

 

 

 

Image result for image of crowd at D-Day Ohio

 

I would love to hear from any of my readers as to your take on this time in the United States.

Posted in D-Day Conneaut Ohio, Freedom or Security ?, politics, Uncategorized, USA, WWII | Tagged , , , , , , , | 8 Comments

French Legion of Honor Medal

The French government awards this highest French order of merit to living  Americans who fought in Normandy or the Rhineland.  Napoleon Bonaparte created the medal and award.   Two French officials flew from Paris  flew to be  in  Conneaut to award three medals this year. Some of the men are wheelchair bound and  others in remarkable shape though  they are all in their 90’s .  Most of them were hugging and posing for pictures with the lovely young girls dressed in styles from the 40s. It is an interesting question whether that is their usual behavior or if the uniforms, though threadbare, give  them the courage to hugs the girls!

The medal ceremony was very touching with not a  dry eye. I was thinking of the life and approaching end of life of each dear man. There was  a time during the  following hour for 7 of the veterans  to tell  stories from the war.  I am so glad these are being recorded  as there are fewer and fewer  veterans  each  year.

The thoughts I took away were  how young they were, 17, 18 , 19 when they joined the fight.  My brother George was killed when he was 20 . Just  as my family always says that George was an normal American boy who saw his duty,  these veterans had  been ordinary  boys answering  their country  without much understanding of what the war was  all about.  Loving their country and doing their duty lead their decision.

Today and forever they will always be our Greatest Generation! God bless them.

 

 

 

 

Posted in American history, awards, D-Day Conneaut Ohio, France, Travel, Uncategorized, USA, WWII | Tagged , , , , , | 4 Comments