Thursday, September 30, 2010
DDW has partnered with socially conscious travel company GoPhilanthropic to offer innovative travel opportunities that combine culture, adventure, accessibility, and a way to contribute to international deaf communities.
As part of the DDW: Journeys program, you can zip-line through the treetop canopy of a Costa Rican jungle, visit a colorful floating boat market amidst the city canals of Bangkok Thailand, and explore the ancient ruins of Angkor Wat in Cambodia. At the same time, you will meet with deaf leaders along the way, learn about the issues they face, and participate in local efforts working towards solutions.
All trips will be fully accessible to deaf and hearing travelers with guides fluent in English, American Sign Language, and the local sign language of each country (Thai, Khmer/Cambodian, and LESCO-Costa Rican Sign Language).
Additional information including the trip itineraries are available at the GoPhilanthropic website. This article came almost entirely from the DDW blog.
Personally, I would love to take the Costa Rica trip. Is anyone else interested?
Wednesday, September 22, 2010
When I was telling my friends and family about Discovering Deaf Worlds, someone asked me if sign language is an international language. She meant, "Is it the same all around the world?" The answer is no. Sign language is unique to cultures and varies from country to country. When I took an ASL sign language, I was shown that there are regional variations as well. Deaf families may even use home signs that have special meaning to the family members.
Photo taken by DDW Team in Japan and shared on flickr.
....the first question our new hearing friends almost always ask is, “So sign language is universal, right? That must be cool to know a universal language!” But of course, sign language is not universal. The roots of sign language, just like any verbal language, are influenced by culture and geography. For example, the sign for “Thank you” in Japan is adopted from the karate-chop-like gesture a sumo wrestler makes after winning his prize money, whereas in China, “Thank you” is signed as a fist with a bending thumb to represent the subtle head nod Chinese people use to acknowledge thanks in passing.
Tuesday, September 21, 2010
DDW's first successful project was creating a film titled Discovering: Shuktara. This documentary tells the story of 18 boys and girls in Kolkata, India who were given a new chance at life after being abandoned by their families or escaping abusive homes. While many non-governmental organizations in India often overlook homeless children who are deaf, Shuktara embraces them. You can view a trailer of the film here.
Friday, September 17, 2010
In June, I posted about how I lost my glasses. To this day, they still haven't turned up. In August, I posted about how I got a new pair of glasses. Well, not long afterwards, I opened my case one morning to find the frame broken. Argh. All I could figure out was that the hard shell case must have been just a bit too small for this pair and over time the pressure on the frames snapped them. Sigh. I took them back to the optical shop for a replacement. The optician thought perhaps it was due to a weak frame rather than the case, but she promised to give me a bigger one next time.
On Friday September 3 I got the call that my glasses were in and ready for pickup. I was elated. It would be tight for me to get there before the optician left for the day but I managed to arrive 5 minutes before she left. I immediately put my new glasses on and put my old pair in the new, larger case I was given. Right away I noticed a difference in my vision but figured that was due to the bifocals. After I left, I stopped at the pharmacy and then drove home. By that time I realized I wasn't seeing quite as well as I should. I chalked it up to a smudge on the lenses.
When I got inside the house, I took my glasses off to clean them and saw 7 scratches on the left frame and 3 on the right. What!!! In disbelief I sprayed them with my lens cleaner and wiped them off carefully with the cloth provided by the optician. Sadly, the scratches remained.
I returned to the optical shop. The optician was gone for the day but another lady was still there at the doctor's office. I told her what had happened and asked her to take a look. She verified that indeed there were scratches. I left the glasses with her with a note for the optician. From the parking lot, I left a voice mail for the optician explaining the situation. I was very upset as you can imagine, but I chose to calmly explain the situation without any editorializing about what I thought of the service I had received. Over the weekend, I wondered what the optician was going to say.
Thursday, September 16, 2010
At last year's picnic I met Jen [pictured above] for the first time. We saw each other again at the HLAA convention in Milwaukee and have stayed in touch sporadically through email and facebook. It was amazing to see her again at this event, one she drove a significant distance to attend.
I was also happy to spend time with Bill and Ann who are new to the group(s). They are a couple I know from my church who I have encouraged to come to other events, but this was the first one they were able to attend. It was interesting to share our hearing loss experiences. Interestingly, they've recommended that I sit by them in church so I will hear better. They said I've been sitting in a very bad spot for sound. Further into our conversation, I found out that Bill is sponsoring a short story contest and that Ann is in the process of writing a cookbook with recipes for cooking from scratch. I'm looking forward to hearing more about those projects.
As this was my third time coming to the picnic, I saw a lot of familiar faces. Big smiles and hugs were the standard greeting here. Even though I had a few butterflies in my stomach before coming, reminiscent of my first time, I was able to morph into a social butterfly once I arrived because I felt welcomed by everyone. Especially Kim, Tahar, Kitty, Marsha, Ann, Gary, Jen, and Linda.
I recommend that everyone with hearing loss join a support group and make friends with people who understand what it's like and will take the time to communicate with you. Here are links to the two groups that sponsored the picnic. They are national organizations with local chapters throughout the country.
ALDA - Association of Late Deafened Adults
HLAA - Hearing Loss Association of America
If any of my international readers would like me to add the links to their organizations, please leave me a comment and I will add them to this post. Thanks.
Tuesday, September 14, 2010
A Real Man
A real man is a woman's best friend. He will
never stand her up and never let her down.
He will reassure her when she feels insecure
and comfort her after a bad day.
He will inspire her to do things she never
thought she could do; to live without fear
and forget regret. He will enable her to
express her deepest emotions and give in to
her most intimate desires. He will make sure
she always feels as though she's the most
beautiful woman in the room and will enable
her to be the most confident, sexy,
seductive, and invincible.
No wait... sorry... I'm thinking of wine.
It's wine that does all that.......
This gem came to me in my email today and I couldn't resist passing it on. If any readers want to share their idea of a real man, or if any men want to respond, please leave a comment.
Friday, September 10, 2010
Flickr gallery called Serenity and Its
Infrastructures. You can see this gallery here.
This is the first time one of my photos has been
selected for a photo gallery on Flickr.
Wednesday, September 8, 2010
The topic of black sand comes up in prospecting sometimes more than gold does! And it is very misunderstood. You often read or hear that the presence of black sand in an area means there is gold in the area also. This is not true.You may want to keep that quote in mind when you see the film!
Tuesday, September 7, 2010
Almost everyone I know has seen this movie and recommended it. I don't know why I waited so long to see it. I guess it was hard for me to imagine Meryl Streep as Julia Child. I'm just old enough to remember Julia Child's first cooking series on TV and to have a fixed idea of what she looked like. But I needn't have worried, Meryl Streep drew me in right from the start of the movie. Of course, I've loved Amy Adams, who plays Julie, since I first saw her in Enchanted.
This movie was utterly relaxing. I found myself enjoying learning about Julia Child before she was "Julia Child" and I'm eager to read the biographical story, My Years in France on which half of the movie was based. I've been to France myself and have memories of their wonderful food. When I was there, I felt as though my stomach were smiling. To share that with my family, last night I made croque monsieur, the only French dish I know how to cook. Don't be too impressed. It's only grilled ham and cheese.
Did you know?
- Julia Child's first cooking series was the first television program to be captioned for the deaf.
- The movie Julie & Julia is the first major motion picture based on a blog.