“There are things you only see in Vietnam,” told me our guide as he saw my eyes widen in surprise as we emerged from the Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum and I saw the museum shop. In place of the stylish shops that we are used to, we saw a large market stall caring the inscription “Museum shop.” The “shop” is an example of the uniqueness of Vietnam. Ho Chi Minh, Uncle Ho by the locals, is considered the father of the nation. His big dream was to attain independence. He succeeded in ousting the French and establishing the Democratic Republic in the northern region of the state. Though he was a modest man, the Mausoleum, about twenty feet high is huge and luxurious. He asked that his body will be burned and the ashes will be scattered upon three hills: in the north, in the center, and the south. And yet, in the mausoleum, the embalmed figure of Ho Chi Minh is displayed. There is no telling whether this is a wax figure, or the human being himself. At the exit of the site is the “museum shop,” a typical Vietnamese store!
In past years, “reading comprehension” used to be the essential skill that children were taught among all other skills, and it was much needed in the workplace. Nowadays, writing has taken its place and became the most significant expertise that children have to master. Writing turned into the commonest skill of life’s two facets: professional and personal. Today the debate shifted, and it focuses on the medium, the way of writing: by handwriting or by typing; should we forsake teaching children handwriting in favor of typing? Continue reading The shift of skills or the uncertain future of handwriting
Sometimes we feel without energy. We do not want to talk to anyone, we do not want to hear anything, and we do not desire to watch or read anything. The general feeling is that we have become a shell. No one is inside. As if we had posted a sign: “Out on vacation.” Who cannot recall coming out of bed after a good illness and feeling she had no strength to deal with anything, leave her alone. Usually, the lack of energy comes after dealing with difficult issues or diseases. But recently, I feel that way at the close of every day. Not to mention how fast the days fly! Continue reading Why are we pressed for time and energy?
Sometimes we do not agree with the decisions made by the government, by our parents, our boss or kids, etc. However, apart from changing the government by vote every few years, or complaining (about the boss), or trying to argue (with parents or children) we don’t have a lot of options, so we shrug, ignore and move on. I want to share with you an act of injustice, which we can correct. Continue reading Yes, we can – to unite a family cruelly torn apart
As a child, I used to see my brother consuming sandwiches and cakes and stay as thin as a match. I had only one a day at school and looked somewhat stout. To lose weight, I did the “Weight Watchers” Diet, and I’ve lost the “roundness” (who said bikini?) Before going to the university, I went on a diet, again, this time a quick one – no time to waste before finally starting life. Continue reading Four tips for watching your weight over time (maybe even lose some!)
For a long time, we are told repeatedly that the book as a reading device is doomed and that it will disappear. In the digital age of today, people read with the aid of electronic tools. There are general ones that we carry around all day, like the cellular phone, which is used by many for reading articles and news. Besides, there are dedicated devices, whose primary purpose is to serve as an “electronic book,” for example Amazon’s Kindle or Barnes and Nobel’s Nook.
If you carefully read the list of ingredients of any food, you’ll notice that the list generally contains sugar or one of its substitutes. I can understand why there is a need to add sugar to yogurt; natural yogurt, without additives, is made by adding to milk some bacteria, which feed on milk-sugar, lactose, and they secrete lactic acid. Acid is exceptionally sour thus many people have a problem with eating real yogurt. Ketchup with sugar understandable as well, that is what Ketchup is – a sweet tomato paste! But what is the logic of adding sugar to soy sauce, which should be salty? Or to chili sauce that has to be sharp? Continue reading Sugar or Fat – That is the question – updated
The Internet is crazily competing for our time with our other occupations. I don’t succeed in reading everything that is of interest to me, like email, Facebook, Instagram, as new ones are rushing in. There are so many electronic newspapers, mostly free and all about my interests’ subjects, what, not to register? So, every day I have two or three such publications suggesting a world of interesting articles.
Sometimes I run out of stories, so I turn to read, which is the raw material for writing. I found in the mail a link to an article from an Israeli daily business newspaper “Calcalist,” by the title “Storytelling Festival: Prof. Ron Shachar presents the surprising administrative tool of the present era.” I do not know Prof. Shachar, but it seemed to me that he is not a literature scholar, so what does he have to do with a “storytelling festival”? Stories are the raw material of literary theory throughout the ages. However, for some time now I find the term ‘Narrative,’ adopted by various domains, so much so that it has become a buzzword. For example, prosecutor’s arguments in court are a narrative, a story.
No one in Israel can forget the T.V. program of Chaim Hecht “Between Karkur and Singapore.” Not because Karkur, which is an Israeli village, is important, but because Singapore looked so good that we couldn’t understand how come things are so different in Israel especially since they learned many things from us. The program certainly raised the Israeli awareness of this island-country, but few know how much Israel helped Singapore reach this country. The cab driver asked us where we were from.