Guelb Agantour: The dust cloud of French driver Francois Lethier’s buggy during the seventh stage of the Africa Eco Race. The race started in Nador, Morocco and continued through Mauritania to Senegal
Hubei province, China: Golden-haired monkeys huddle to keep warm at the Shennongjia national reserve
2) Orthodox Christian Epiphany Day, January 6th
From the Guardian a slide show of Orthodox Christians who celebrated Christmas, Epiphany Day, two weeks after other faiths do, on January 6th. http://tinyurl.com/29gvmlq
Bethlehem: People greet the Greek Orthodox Patriarch of Jerusalem, Theophilos III, during a ceremony at the Church of the Nativity
Bethlehem: A Russian nun prays during Orthodox Christmas at the Church of the Nativity
Byzantine chant “Ο αίρων την αμαρτίαν του κόσμου” (You who bears the sin of the world) – Service: Feast of the Epiphany
3) People making a difference
Madeline Kolab, 17, is Gaza’s only full-time fisherwoman.
I can’t think of any job that a person should be excluded from solely because of their gender. Can you?
I would love to hear about any teenager you know of who is trying to change the world, and make it a better place, as Madeline Kolab is.
“Every morning as the sun casts its first rays across the Mediterranean waves, scores of Palestinian fishermen cast their lines and hunt for fish. So does one fisherwoman.
Sixteen-year-old Madeline Kolab, in modest garb with a head scarf, stands tall atop a flat blue raft and digs her long paddle into the rocky sea as she heads out to collect a net she set the day before. This is easier said than done in a place like Gaza, where Palestinian society abides by traditional gender roles and the governing Islamist group Hamas dictates how women should behave in public.
“Our traditions here say that fishing is only for men,” Madeline says. She says she invites her girlfriends to join her, but their families won’t let them. A fisherman nearby yells that he’d be ashamed if his daughter went fishing.
Madeline shrugs. “I don’t care about what people say. I only care about feeding my family,” she says. The fish and crabs she catches are too small to sell. Instead, her family eats whatever she catches. Her father, a veteran fisherman, became disabled, so she quit school after ninth grade to take over the job.
Fishing in Gaza is risky. The Israeli navy allows boats only a few miles offshore, to prevent weapons smuggling and attacks from the sea. A young fisherman on the shore grins when he says that Madeline can dive deeper in the sea than any of the men can. The old-timers on the beach may not like it, but Gaza’s only full-time fisherwoman is making waves.”