Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Comments from Others about the Blog

(Lauren) Jill, Chapel Hill 30 July, 2007

Just yesterday I made reference in passing about this blog to a list I'm on, a list comprised mainly of single Episcopalians, age: post baccalaureate on up. Here are some responses:

"The web site is a gift. How much we need some stories from the Middle East that encourage greater understanding. I have taken to watching Iranian films and had to face the fact that I had no images of family life in Iran. So the site makes things less inscrutable."

"I think it is wonderful that you are following your passion, Lauren Jill. It is so important to learn about other cultures and to meet people from other parts of the world. The more we know and understand others the better the chance for peace, I think. Here's to meeting in 2008 and listening to the stories."

Since Lauren Jill provided a web site -- we could read over the year. Love to hear about ... family life in these countries that are foreign to me. We are all God's children and we need to know that ... Lauren, it sounds like a single life -- far different than I ever imagined."

Context: the organization, Solo Flight, has an annual conference Labor Day weekend in the mountains outside Asheville [N.C.]. Interestingly, this year's theme is "On Pilgrimage." Pilgrimage is held in esteem by various religions. And I think that the Tar Heel Travelers are largely on informal pilgrimages.

I decided not to go to this year's Solo Flight conference because my close Cairene friends (a couple with children aged 2 and 4) arrive Aug. 29, stay with me before they move into an unfurnished apartment, and they don't drive. They are here for 9 months while she does a Fulbright and he does post-doc studies (both are on the faculty at Cairo University). I want to be here to help them get set up.

One person on the list asked me about music in Egypt. I will tell her that there is such incredible musical literacy, ability, and activity there. I heard so much music making: people (largely non-professionals) who sang and played with talent and knowledge and skill. And I have also heard this in areas outside Cairo. Music seems to be more a part of their lives than in the States; it includes a broader spectrum of music, including, of course, popular music. It seems to me that somehow the U.S. has gotten away from shared musical consciousness and involvement, something we had a couple of generations ago. And in this country I perceive a split between "professional" and "non-professional" (and I was a professional for years). There, as I think is true in some European countries, music and music-making just "is" and is for anyone who wants to be be involved.

Anyway, my sharing of perceptions of this wonderful blog.

Anyway, peace and adventures be yours. Duktor Nasser sounds great, from my occasional contacts with him.


Gale said...


I am comforted in reading "Others..." as it shows many of us feel the same way.

Maybe there is hope. A pessimist like me needs to see this (hear it) every once in a while.

Go tarheeltravelers!!!

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