Wednesday, October 12, 2016

The Birth of a Nation

Really? Why another slave movie? These were my first thoughts as I sat in the screening room at Magno screening in Manhattan to watch "The Birth of A Nation". This story is not one learned about in that one month dedicated black history. Nor would you ever read about it in your America history book. I applaud the cast for their performance in this production. They did a great job of depicting life in that era. The movie evoked a lot of emotion for me. It showed rape, beatings and hangings; things that we would rather forget about. Some scenes truly brought tears to my eyes. While other scenes made me almost angry enough to fight. I also question the silencing and exploitation of women in this movie. Let's also remember women played a huge role in the fight for freedom. The story line unveiled love, oppression, dehumanization, despair, and rebellion.

The Birth of A Nation was written and directed by Nate Parker. Parker was also the Star as the character Nat Turner an enslaved, African American preacher who lead the slave revolution of 1831. I was prompted to read about Nat Turner because I saw this movie. I can not attest to the accuracy of the actual historical events verses those in the movie. We all know nothing is ever 100% accurate. However the movie was well put together.

The Birth of A Nation tells the life story of Nat Turner who as a slave child learned to read. His gift of reading led him to being taught the bible by the slave masters wife. Turner's slave master took him on the road preaching to slaves throughout Virginia to discourage a revolt. During that time Nat witnessed the unjust and inhumane treatment of slaves at other plantations. It saddened and ignited anger in him. Then his wife was brutally attacked. He began to have visions and felt he was called by God to fight. What he did next changed history! I will not spoil the ending for you. I would suggest you go see the movie if you can stand a little violence. Take your children. Have open discussion about how far America has come, where we need to go and the sacrifices made for the freedom of Black America! 

(Photo credits:

Tuesday, October 4, 2016

Travel Safety tips for women

In lieu of the recent robbery of Kim Kardashian in Paris I felt compelled to offer som tips for women traveling alone, especially abroad!

1) Always pay attention to your surroundings! A predator likes to attack people who are preoccupied!

2) Don't make it obvious you are alone, in conversation mention you are waiting for some one or meeting a friend. When doing tours spark a conversation and attach yourself to a group or another person traveling alone.

3) Don't wear expensive jewelry or carry excess amounts of cash.

4) Do research on where you are going, get as much information as possible to avoid being lost. This will also help give the perception that you are comfortable in your surroundings!

5) If someone is watching you watch them back or ask someone a general question and point in their direction. They will most likely feel put on the spot and leave because  they see you are aware of their lurking. If you feel threatened tell someone, cause a scene or start yelling or talking loudly.

6) Don't go out late at night. If you must; utilze taxi or pre- arranged car service. Tell a friend or family member where you are.

8) Always keep you valuables close. Don't carry all your money, credit cards & passports in same place. Use handbags that can go over your head and/or under your top layer of clothes. Many hotels offer lockers. Utilize them to keep your things safe!

9) Don't give out too much information. Keep things like name of hotel and room number private.

10) Stay in well lit, open, high traffic areas and seek help from  police, merchants or unifomed people.

These are just a few tips to help you stay safe at home and abroad! Happy Tavels!

Hostel Bambu Mini, Puerto Igauzu

I had a wonderful stay at Bambu Mini Hostel in Puerto Iguazu, Argentina! The staff was very nice, knowledgeable and attentive to our needs. I e-mailed them in advance with questions and they provided me with very detailed responses that were very helpful for my journey! I took a taxi from the airport to Bambu Mini Hostel. I knew what transportion was available and how much it would cost because of the information I recieved from the hostel. It was about  a 20 minute ride. We were stopped to pay an entry tax. So don't be suprised by that. It was less than $2 usd.
Upon arrival at Bambu Mini Hostel I observed they were located next to a police station, so I knew we were in a safe place. A few blocks away there was a gas station, resturants and shops.
The bright colorful decor of the building gave it a very young and hip feel! I loved that they had a hammock right outside of their front door! We arrived a few hours too early for check in. They were able to accommodate us with locked storage space for our luggage and set up our tours and taxis.  It was also very helpful that most of the staff spoke English and they accepted US dollars!
They offer free Wi-Fi and free continental breakfast! The rooms were spacious and clean. You can rent a bed with shared bathrooms or opt to spend a little more for a private ensuite! We chose the ensuite which had one double bed when we arrived. It ran us about $50 Usd a night. I asked about a room with two twin beds. They had someone quickly accommodate us by dividing the double into two twin beds!
One night we decided to stay in for dinner. They offer a few stir fry options and pizza at their bar! We also got a free welcome drink!!! I had a chicken stir-fry with noodles that was delicious and very inexpensive! 
I found this place on! What a great choice! Thanks to all the staff especially Valerie and Ivan for their help and patience!!! They strive to make your stay affordable and enjoyable! Check out their website for more information!!!