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Good Morning Nanty Glo!
Wednesday, August 8 2001

Public interest in travel

Travel and travels have captured the imagination of readers and hearers of tales throughout recorded history. The book of Genesis has only a line or two about the travels of Abram (later renamed Abraham, the "father of the faithful") from his native land of Ur to the "land of promise," yet that meager information has been exploded in dramatizations of the life of Abraham as having cosmic significance. Other travels played pivotal parts in biblical history: the partriarch, Joseph (Abraham's great-grandson) being sold into slavery to Egypt and taken there by his buyers; the trips to Egypt years later by Joseph's brothers to buy necessary food during a general severe famine; the moving of Joseph's father, Jacob (Israel) and the whole tribe to Egypt; the subsequent journey by a much enlarged nation of Israel, led by Moses 300 years later, from Egypt back to the promised land, a journey that took the whole nation 40 years to complete; the flight by Joseph, Mary, and Jesus to Egypt to escape the infanticide commanded by Herod; the short trip of the Holy Family from Galillee to Jerusalem for the feasts, and their return; the Apostle Paul's life-changing trip to Damascus; the missionary journeys of Paul and his companions...and I haven't even tried to be exhaustive, just picking these from the top of my head.

Ancient tales of journeys, like the Odyssey, have been retold endlessly, and arguably the most ancient significant writing in the English language is an "on the road" of Medieval times, Chaucer's Canterbury Tales. Pilgrim's Progress, by John Bunyan, is not far behind, and it has inspired numerous imitations. Modern literature is full of journey tales, ranging from E.T. to Star Trek to Kerouac's On the Road. C. S. Lewis, my favorite author, has produced several science fiction novels that travel through space, his children's Narnia Tales are all built on traveling between different worlds, and his more specifically religious works include an allegorical reworking of Pilgrim's Progress.

We're more attentive when we're traveling, and thus notice things more readily and probably more deeply, in terms of memories. We're more open to new experiences and getting to know new people, though jet travel has become so commonplace now that it's probably the case that conversations with strangers in adjacent seats are not socially encouraged.

So popular is travel and reading, and writing, about it that there are more travel pages on the Internet than you could even hope to personally survey. Entering "around the world" on the Google search engine on our Front Page, for example, produces a list of more than two million pages.

What's your favorite anecdote from your travels? Have you made new long-term friends though "chance" encounters en route?

Webmaster Jon Kennedy

Through a child's eyes

ELDERLY While working for an organization that delivers lunches to elderly shut-ins, I used to take my four-year-old daughter on my afternoon rounds. She was unfailingly intrigued by the various appliances of old age, particularly the canes, walkers and wheelchairs. One day I found her staring at a pair of false teeth soaking in a glass. As I braced myself for the inevitable barrage of questions, she merely turned and whispered, "The tooth fairy will never believe this!"

Sent by Sallie Covolo

God's address

God has two dwellings - one in heaven and the other in a grateful heart.

Sent by Zan

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