UDAIPUR, India – The people of Rajasthan, sporting colorful saris, thickly wrapped turbans, and ear-to-ear smiles, are as compelling a reason to visit this Indian state as its wonderful sights. See it all in today’s photo gallery.
Archive for the ‘the people we meet’ Category
It’s the people that we meet that make a place, for us, the face of Kenya will always be that of Benard Langat’s. A long distance runner, hoping to make it onto the international scene, Benard graciously found time in the middle of his busy training schedule to show us around Nairobi. The following Q&A comes from a discussion we had with him during our time in Kenya.
Full Name: Benard Kibrono Langat
Born: Sironet, Kenya (Rift Valley Region)
Currently resides in: Nairobi, Kenya
Number of siblings: 8 (four brothers and four sisters), Benard is the oldest. The youngest is two years old.
Occupation: Professional long distance runner specializing in 10K and half marathon.
What are your long-term career goals?
I hope to be successful enough as a runner to provide money for my family to farm their land and buy more cows. I come from a poor family and I hope to be the light of my family and to provide whatever they need. (more…)
On Saturday afternoon we visited Brazilian hip-hop artist, filmmaker and author MV Bill in the neighborhood where he was raised and still lives today, Cidade de Deus (City of God). To read more about our visit and see what this activist is about, click on today’s photo gallery.
A disheveled man with a weathered face struck up a conversation with us in the bus station in Buenos Aires.
“I live in Oklahoma,” he said, his eyes wide and expecting, as if to say “What do you think of that?”
I tried to ignore him, but Thushan decides to humor him, and in the process we find out he was Ecuadorian, traveling alone, and had a peculiar train of thought that gave off the impression that he was either mildly drunk or perpetually confused. He said he ran a Spanish language newspaper in Oklahoma City. “It makes a half a million dollars,” he said. “But then, you know, I have to pay everyone.”
“This city’s nothing compared to Iquitos,” he declared, before revealing he had only spent one day in Buenos Aires. “I payed the taxi driver to drive me around all day. I saw the whole thing.”
“We liked Buenos Aires, a lot,” replied Thushan.
“Really?” he said, at this point almost laughing at us. “What did you like about it?”
His stories were confusing, rarely had endings, and were hard to believe, but just barely believable, like this one: “I lived in London a long time ago. I was the ambassador for Ecuador. But my wife is American, she wanted to live in the States. You play the guitar?” (more…)
“You know, I’m waiting for the day when I wake up, and whether its light or dark out, I just don’t even think about what time it is,” said a groggy Adam. It was around eight at night, but Adam had the look of someone who had just rolled out of bed. He lit a cigarette and continued, “That’s when I know I’ve been here long enough, but it hasn’t quite happened yet.”
We were sitting at a table in an open-air restaurant that sat a block from the beach. Next to Adam sat a guy named Josh. The two had only met the day before, but already had plenty to reminisce about. “This town was supposed to be the capital of nightlife in Costa Rica, but last night we were so bored we started keeping a tally of how many times we were offered drugs and sex, just to pass the time,” said Adam, a native of Michigan and former U.S. soldier.
“Last night the dealers were working harder than the prostitutes,” Josh said, a 24-year-old pilot for a domestic airline out of the Midwest. He continued: “I think the final count was drugs 16 and prostitutes 7. Or maybe we just look more like the drugs type.”
We’re on our way up a curvy mountain road to the sizzling mineral baths of Fuentes Georginas, riding in the flatbed of a camioneta – a pickup truck that doubles as taxi and delivery truck in rural towns like Zunil, Guatemala. Halfway through town, the driver—whom we’ve paid the equivalent of $3 for an 8-kilometer (about 5-mile) drive—slows and shouts to a 20-something man who is ambling along with a group of men. The man, two Coke cans in hand, deftly pulls himself into the flatbed with us as the driver hits the gas.
Almost instantly and without any reservation, he greets us in nearly flawless English, “Where are you guys from?” he asks.
Immediately, my eyes are drawn to his mouth full of bling. Try as I might, I can’t help but notice his two gold-plated canines. While it is definitely not rare to see the indigenous people of Guatemala with full-on golden grills, witnessing this young man’s mouth of Olympic gold up close makes it harder than normal for this foreigner not to give in and stare. His mouth – both the English and the shine flowing freely from it – is certainly not his only distinctive characteristic. His slightly baggy pants and dark blue denim coat atop a white tee are not-oft-seen reflections of the west in a sea of straw hats, flannel shirts and bolts of colorful floral cloth.
This is Sebastian, and he has golden teeth. (more…)
You can find his site here.