Wednesday, November 26, 2008

International Rescue Committee

International Rescue Committee is a charity that works with refugees and internally displaced persons in 42 countries. They also have resettlement offices in 24 U.S. cities, where they help newly-arrived refugees establish new lives in America. I have been volunteering with them for the past few months, working with Somali Bantu infants and toddlers while their mothers take English classes. It is a very rewarding experience, though like many charities, IRC is suffering from a lack of funding in these difficult economic times.

There is a really great video on their web site which highlights their work. This season, they are offering symbolic gift baskets to aid refugees for a donation as low as $25. If you are looking to give a charity gift this year, please consider the IRC. 90% of their funds are spent on programs and services, which earns them an A+ from charity watchdog American Institute of Philanthropy.

Saturday, November 08, 2008

New Leaders


As we in the U.S. celebrate the historic election of Barack Obama to the presidency, Bhutan celebrates 100 years of monarchy with the coronation of their 5th king, 28-year-old Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuck. The new king was educated here in Massachusetts, at Phillips Academy, Cushing Academy, and Wheaton College.

These photos come from spectacular Boston Globe photo spreads entitled The Next President of the United States and Bhutan Crowns a New King.

When we visited Bhutan a year ago, preparations were well underway for the coronation ceremony, which took place in Thimpu.

©REUTERS/Jim Young

Sunday, November 02, 2008

Big Sister

Here is a picture of our godchild Aracely holding her baby brother. The baby's official name is Eddy Humberto, but he will continue to be called by his nickname, Domingo.

Saturday, November 01, 2008


It has been a tradition of ours to send out the lyrics of Tom Waits' song "November" to our Waits-loving friends on the first day of November each year, and I decided to carry that through to the blog this year.

"November" is a dark song from the play "The Black Rider" - a collaboration between Robert Wilson, Tom Waits, and William S. Burroughs.

We saw a production of "The Black Rider" in San Francisco in 2004 and have a review and pictures on our web site. It was fabulous.

I found this YouTube video of another production's "November". The staging looks exactly the same, but the dialogue is in German. The lyrics to the song are in English, though.