maps

Potable Water – Why I’m Lucky

It’s safe to say I have ventured around the world several times. I think I have visited over 36 countries in my travels and hundreds of cities.

My husband and I took a trip to Hong Kong and Bangkok recently.  It was during our time in Hong Kong, a city with 7 million people, the best public transportation system we have ever seen,  and sky scrappers that would put New York City to shame, that it dawned on me. Most of the world doesn’t have water that they can drink straight out of the tap.

Hong Kong, endless skyscrapers

Hong Kong, endless skyscrapers

The government in Hong Kong says the drinking water is fine leaving the water treatment facility, but they can’t guarantee that it’s potable when it gets to your house.  After doing research we learned most locals boil their water before drinking. Apparently we were suppose to wash our dishes during dim sum with the boiling water they brought us.  We had already poured tea in our cup.  The lady from the table over made us dump it out and told us “eww dirty dirty.”  I wonder what she thinks of the street food we ate for dinner the night before?

It comes at a shock that in most of China the water must be boiled.  As  American’s we know not to drink the water in obvious places like Mexico and South America.  But you must add Asia to the list, (albeit Japan, South Korea, and Singapore).  It sounds like most locals in Russia also boil their water before they drink.  I’ve drank the water in Eastern and Western Europe and lived.  Including some Balkans states, and survived.  LET ME BREAK IT DOWN:

United States, Canada, Europe, Australia, Japan, New Zealand, Singapore, Argentina.

There that’s it! * These are the only places in the whole entire world that you can safely drink your tap water.

So, I bring this up because I feel lucky!  I’m so thankful that I can brush my teeth with tap water, take a shower with out worrying that I will get sick from some dripping in my mouth.  I’m glad I can make ice without having to boil then cool it down.

We travel to see the world, enjoy the culture, and taste the world.  However, we always end up with a better respect for how lucky we were to be born in the United States.  Plenty of air conditioning, heat, food so plentiful  that 35.7% of American’s are obese, cars galore, low unemployment, education, and equal opportunity.

*Of course that’s not all the countries, but that sums it up pretty good.

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Categories: adventure, eyes, flying, hong kong, maps, potable water, public service announcement, safety, survival, thailand, thanksgiving, travel | Tags: , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

How to trust a town that doesn’t have Jeopardy

bebiberland

I was there, but now I’m here. Deep, very deep!

As some of you may not know, I have resigned from crafting in Philadelphia and moved on to crafting in Memphis.  As with my move to Philadelphia (I was not excited) Memphis doesn’t have the best rep.  However within  a week of being here I saw the nice parts of Memphis  and I’ve been warming up to it.

Here are some shocking fact about Memphis:

#1 No Jeopardy,  what the F%^$!  

I judge a city on when they play Jeopardy.  If they play the Wheel of Fortune before Jeopardy I usually think less of the town.  Well, I don’t have that problem in Memphis.   Memphis plays Jeopardy at 3:30pm!  The same time Maury is telling some raging whore that her sixth paternity test is negative.  WTF  Memphis, are you guys not educated enough to watch an Emmy award-winning quiz show?  Get your shit together, I’m sure Mississippi has it on at 6:30 pm before Wheel of Fortune.  Okay that got a little violent, sorry I had to vent.

#2 Memphis doesn’t have a full-time NPR station!   

National Public Radio is the best news and entertainment station in the world!   Oh how I miss hearing Michele Norris tell me the world news.  I cry for not hearing Wait Wait Don’t tell Me (this is better than John Stewart show) missing Rosetto Casper on Splendid Table, talk her way through food subjects.  I have to tune into a Mississippi radio station to hear 1 hour extra of programming when I drive.  That’s right Mississippi has more NPR than Memphis.

#3 Expect to get robbed at gun point

Everyone I work with keeps telling  me stories of fellow co-workers and family members getting robbed at gun point.  I just moved here from Philadelphia and I found this comical.

For the record:

Memphis has 17.9 murders per 100,000 people

Philadelphia has 21.2 murders per 100,000 people

With this being said, I never was told by any of my co-workers in Philadelphia that their loved ones had been mugged.  I gather that the Memphis folks just have guns and want your money but are polite enough not to kill you.  Will just call it Southern hospitality.

So, aside from the mugging, no  jeopardy, and NPR I’m learning to embrace Memphis.  This means going to Church (we are in the bible belt) and eating BBQ.

Categories: adventure, bbq, bible belt, craft, crashpad, crime rate, jeopardy, maps, memphis, mugging, npr, philadelphia, safety, survival, survival skills, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Someone trusted me with an exacto knife

I am fascinated by maps!   There is an awesome map store in Meyers Park Charlotte ironically named “The Map Shop”.  You queen city folks probably have driven past this store and never stopped.  However, I suggest that you make a trip to the store!  I guarantee that you will spend a good 30 minutes looking at all the amazing maps that they have.

1500 E. Morehead St, Charlotte NC

The other day I found a posting on http://www.etsy.com/shop/StudioKMO?ref=top_trail  for some hand cut maps of a few major cities.  They were beautiful, however they were $1200!!!

A Washington DC map

I figured I had nothing to do at the crashpad so I invested in an exacto knife from the local Staples store and a legal pad of paper to cut my map on. I found a few maps via Google and had the nice lady at the copy center assisted me in doing a reverse blow up on a legal sized paper.

** It’s important to print the map backwards FYI**

Maps, maps, and more maps

I ended up using the SEPTA map (the local city bus map) because it seemed the easiest to locate streets on.

This ain’t so bad!

Things starting getting hard so more then a few Philly streets got accidentally cut.  Not a 100% accurate map, but freaking close enough.  As an added bonus when you cut the street blocks you get free confetti!

My $5 map of Philadelphia

This was a great thing to do while it has been in the 100’s outside and humid.  All I have to do is make a trip to the craft store and find a frame  and mat board and I’ll be ready to rock!

Categories: art, city, craft, crashpad, globe, maps, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

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