Intensity and Memories!

Actun Tunichil Muknal, Belize, Caves and Superstition

My guide, Jose, looked around at me and put his finger to his lips, "Shh, can you feel the spirits?" I held my breath. Human skeletons and cracked pottery lay scattered on the ground. Obsidian blades that were once used to pierce the tongue and genitals sat near a...

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Meandering Morocco, part two

For part one "J'Alla, J'Alla. Madam, give me bag. Very heavy. Not for lady to carry." I watch in embarrassment as he is loaded with tonne after tonne. He just stands there obediently, no sign of resistance, not a complaint, just the odd blink and the occasional neigh....

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Malta, the Cart Ruts Mystery

At different sites over the two main islands of Malta and in the surrounding waters are found some man-made features which have been given the name ‘cart ruts’, largely because the first visitors to discover them believed they had been worn by a cart. Their most...

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Yazd, Iran and Bahrain

The City and province of Yazd in Iran holds many wonders of architectural significance. A Zoroastrian Fire Temple in Yazd holds a traditional fire, which has been kept alight by Zoroastrian priests, continuously for over 1100 years. Caravansaries, Islamic architecture...

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Krak des Chevaliers, Syria

The hill on which Krak des Chevaliers was constructed, was originally the site of a smaller fort called the "Castle on the slope". The Emir of Homs, who garrisoned his Kurdish soldiers there to protect the Syrian interior, took it over in 1011. In 1110, the Crusaders...

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In an Elephant’s Eye

I had been in Sri Lanka for a week, and now a couple of friends and I are passing through the interior of the island-nation the size of West Virginia. The road’s edge is lined with a four-pronged spacey wire fence standing roughly ten feet high, this marks the...

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Birds, Poachers, and Twitchers in Ethiopia

Sometimes, it seems like Ethiopia is all lakes, birds, and monasteries. Dirty swimming water and organized religion I can do without, but after seeing a silvery-cheeked hornbill I doubt that I could keep living my life and not become a serious twitcher - a...

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Sof Omar, Ethiopia

Never go caving with a whiner – he'll scare off all the bats. I entered Sof Omar cave with a mandatory guide in tow – a teenager in a leather jacket. As soon as I turned the corner my respectable guide began whining. Was I going to give him a tip? How much? "A tip," I...

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My Peak, Climbing Mount Kenya

It finally happened. I got there first. I'm never first. Not when it comes to mountain peaks. No, I'll make it, to this day I only have one "white whale" and it stands above six thousand meters high in Bolivia. On the bright side, I now know the limits of my body when...

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British Columbia, Mount Garibaldi

For some amazing hiking options, it really does pay to get out of Vancouver at least once during your stay. One of the best places to visit is Garibaldi Provincial Park, which comprises nearly 195,000 hectares and is perhaps Canada's most accessible and spectacular...

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