Monday, July 31, 2006
is raul castro now in charge of cuba permanently? i mean, fidel is 80 and he just handed down power to his little brother raul who is 75. what next? neither one of these guys are gonna last that much longer, are they? are there any other little castro brothers? cousins? second cousins? twice-removed?
and don't even get me started about the middle east. why did the palestinians have to go and kidnap those israeli soldiers back in july? man, they opened up a can of worms. and while israel is defending itself to some degree, too many folks from lebanon are going into syria and iran and getting those folks all riled up. the arabs hate us already--for many reasons that i don't even blame them. i understand israel's point but you can't go and bomb the crap out of lebanon and kill all these civilians and children. and what about qana? can they prove that hezbollah or hamas were there amidst the innocent? the u.s. has got to stop "overnighting" weapons to israel. everyone hates us already. soon it's gonna be the world against america and israel. and i must say, israel is in a worse geographic position to handle such hatred. at least the americans can sit across the ocean and be all self-absorbed as usual. i wonder how many u.s. citizens actually know that syria is getting their military ready. and unfortunately, there are plenty of americans who have no idea there is even a conflict in the middle east. actually, probably don't even know where the middle east is. what's it gonna take to get a nation with half-way intelligent or informed citizens?
being in china was cool for yet another reason: i got to see three different viewpoints on the war. i watched CNN of course, (my least favorite), the BBC, and the chinese news channel in english. the more viewpoints, the better. it's easier to make a determination of what's really going on. but i feel like i still haven't a clue. but i do have a picture in my mind of mt. megiddo--in israel from my 1997 visit. i wonder where all my pictures are from my middle-east trip....
i did honestly enjoy our little side trip to the golan heights winery. i hope that little institution gets to stay. it was cute.
yeah, it's hot here. it's 78 degrees since the storms rolled thru and the dew point is about 70. (the heat index is at 81 degrees.) humidity is about 80% and it seems hot. but i've gotta tell you that in china, SOUTHERN china, even around midnight, the actual temp would be 96 degrees with a heat index of 104. the dew point would be 82 easily and the humidity in the 90's. the heat over there was so OPPRESSIVE that i would go to the hotel pool in guangzhou to try to cool off and the pool water was the same temp as the air! so then i'd just go back up to my room and lay on the bed with the a/c cranked. i would tell myself i'd go shopping later for souvenirs and stuff--like after dark--but it was just as bad after dark. the smog and haze would trap the sun's energy/heat so even in the dead of night you couldn't escape it. i won't even go into detail about the heat during the DAY.
our hotel was on an island (shamian island) which was on the pearl river. at night the city of guangzhou went wild with neon lights. kinda different. even our hotel was outlined in green at night. the two pools were amidst many pieces of foliage. mostly trees of some kind--lots of palm trees too.
Saturday, July 29, 2006
many apologies about having my blog blocked from good ol' china. all blogs are blocked as well as a few other things. ah well, democracy isn't all bad i guess.
i came back from china with some crazy chinese germs that cause my throat to hurt unimaginably and i'm quite certain i have an ear infection. the fever comes and goes but right now it is gone. (asian bird flu?) just kidding. but who knows. anyway, i have a doc. appt for monday to maybe get some antibiotics but until then, my mom took pity on me and although i have my own vicodin from my rotator cuff injury last fall, she gave me her tylenol 3 from a recent colon surgery she had. woohoo!
the baby my friend adopted is the cutest thing ever. even if she DID share her germs with me. actually, all the babies from the orphanage were sick so i could have gotten whatever i've got from any of them. sigh. but it was worth it. we saw the great wall, the forbidden city, summer palace, and all the other cool stuff. beijing is WAY under construction. they have to hurry to get stuff done by 2008 for the olympics there!
brynn (formerly liu qian guo) loves to play. she is a happy baby who only cries when she's hungry or tired. she's adjusting well to her new environment and new mommy. she's not a drama queen (like some of the other high maintenance little girlies over there....) brynn is very active and has to check out EVERYTHING. she smiles a lot and loves to chew on plastic water bottles.
now that i've posted a few pics, i've got to get back to making this dvd.
Tuesday, July 11, 2006
well, i must pack a lot of stuff into a little space. not good for me. with my bag's weight and the baby's stuff, i have only SIX pounds for my own stuff. hmph. i'll make it work. wow. but it's tuff.
i hope i have access to my email in china...i've heard they often block stuff so even on my own computer i may not be able to access stuff like this blog, for instance. ah well, i'll hope for the best. the guy in this picture...the tall one with his arms crossed...that's dave. he's been to china before--a few years ago. hopefully he's given me enuf good advice to help me thru. otherwise, i'll email him and give him a hard time. that i will.
for anyone who wants to download skype, it's free. just go to www.skype.com and there it is. the time zone in china is 13 hours ahead of valpo time. wow. (it's free internet calling.) i'll be up late, most likely. so on most of your lunch hours, (if you're one of my dear american friends reading this) you can reach me. if you're a friend from elsewhere, just look online for china's current time and figure it out. and yes, it's one ginormous country but with ONE time zone. kinda handy, i guess. maybe not. i dunno.
o yeah, my skype name is "bekihull." see ya in august!
Saturday, July 08, 2006
it's over! we got back today from purdue and i leave for china on tuesday. nationals was a really great time this year and with speakers like francis chan, mark cahill, ryan dobson, and SHANE CLAIBORNE, how can you go wrong? (man, it was good to see shane after 9 years!) he's got a new book out called "the irresistable revolution." i highly recommend it. i haven't finished it yet but i'm loving what i've read thus far. you can get it at barnes n noble. prolly borders too.
anyway, i'm not ready to leave yet. honestly, i haven't unpacked the car yet! i had to go to northwestern to get my second round of hepatitis a & b shots. owch. so while i was downtown, we went to the taste. (taste of chicago.) it was actually my first time! i'm not usually around this time of summer to do such things! i ran into kelly (friend from church) at the taste with one of her friends too!
so here are two pics: me and mike kane at one of the rallies at purdue and one of a sign from the taste. hopefully my little blog here won't be blocked while i'm in china cuz stuff is censored/restricted and i may not have access to it. i'll figure something out and email everyone. otay? i'll have fun pics daily and everything. if anyone wants to talk to me while i'm in china, download skype. it's free. late!
Saturday, July 01, 2006
okay, well it's a 2001 (toyota camry) but to some people, that's a classic. anyway, i had to run into church for a few minutes last night during what was apparently a car show in the parking lot. so you KNOW i had to back up my car and pop the hood too. when i came back out about ten minutes later, there were FOUR people standing around my car! yeah, my car thinks it's pretty cool now. getting all that attention.