G'day folks,

Here are some famous quotes from a well known Prime Minister. Sir Winston Leonard Spencer-Churchill, KG, OM, CH, TD, PC, DL, FRS, RA was a British statesman who was the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom from 1940 to 1945 and again from 1951 to 1955.


Clancy's comment: There ya go, folks. He was a man many have quoted.

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G'day folks,

Welcome to a few tidbits about some famous storytellers.

Long ago, in primitive times, stories were passed on by word of mouth. Since the invention of printing, stories have been part of the world's literature. The fairy tales, legends, and fables we know today have often come from far in the past. Lewis Carroll, the author of Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, called stories “love gifts.”

Aesop's Fables

Aesop was a storyteller who lived in ancient Greece. Animals are the main characters in his fables, which show how a problem is solved and a moral or lesson is learned. Aesop's stories include “The Boy Who Cried Wolf” and “The Tortoise and the Hare.” They were first written down around 300 B.C.

Andersen's Fairy Tales

Hans Christian Andersen lived in Denmark in the nineteenth century. He was considered an ugly child and had no friends, so he lived in a dream world, reading about the lives of famous men who had risen from poverty to fame. At age 14, when his father died, he moved to Copenhagen and tried to become an actor. When he was still unsuccessful at 30, he decided to try writing down the tales he had been telling children as he traveled around the countryside. Some of his stories are “The Emperor's New Clothes,” “The Ugly Duckling,” and “The Princess and the Pea.”

Arabian Nights

According to legend, a queen named Scheherazade told these stories to Sultan Schahriah to save her life. Each night she told him tales, stopping at the most exciting part so that he would have to wait until the next night to learn what happened. After 1,001 nights, the sultan granted Scheherazade her life. She became his wife, and her stories were recorded for all the world to read. They include “Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves,” “Sinbad the Sailor,” and “Aladdin and the Magic Lamp.”

Grimm's Fairy Tales

Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm were brothers who lived in Germany. After their parents died, the brothers traveled about the country and gathered stories. When they published these tales in the early 19th century, they became famous. Their collection includes “Hansel and Gretel” and “Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs.”

The Legend of King Arthur

The story of King Arthur and his Knights of the Round Table was published by Sir Thomas Malory in 1469, while he was in a London jail. These tales had delighted European audiences for centuries before Malory brought them together in one book.

Perrault's Fairy Tales

Charles Perrault lived in France in the seventeenth century. When he retired from government service, he began to take popular folk tales and change them into children's fairy tales with morals. He was very successful because he was one of the first French authors to write especially for children. His most famous fairy tales are “Sleeping Beauty,” “Tom Thumb,” and “Puss in Boots.”

Clancy's comment: I wonder how many books from modern authors will be read in years to come. I guess we won't be around to find out, eh?

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22 August 2016 - KIDS FROM ETHIOPIA


G'day folks,

Here is another post in the kids around the world series. Ethiopia, in the Horn of Africa, is a rugged, landlocked country split by the Great Rift Valley. With archaeological finds dating back more than 3 million years, it’s a place of ancient culture. Among its important sites are Lalibela and its 12th-13th century rock-cut Christian churches, and Aksum, the ruins of an ancient city with obelisks, tombs, castles and Our Lady Mary of Zion church.

    • Because much of Ethiopia is rural, kids who attend school may have to walk several miles each way.
    • Unlike in most African nations, school in Ethiopia is free. However, many kids work to help support their families. Less than half are still enrolled by grade 5. 

    • Gebeta, a game of strategy, has been popular for hundreds of years. It is played using seeds or pebbles and a board with rows of cups.
    • Many kids learn the lively and irresistible eskista dance, which is performed almost entirely with the shoulders. Soccer is the most popular sport.

    • Most families live in rural areas. It is common for an extended family to live in a cluster of houses and farm together.
    • Traditionally, parents and children do not share a last name. Most kids take their father’s first name as their last name.

Favorite foods:
    • Injera, a pancake-like bread that is used to scoop up spicy dishes such as doro wat (chicken stew) and mesir wat (lentil stew).
  • Did you know? Ethiopia is the only African country that was never colonized. Formerly called Abyssinia, it was the setting of powerful ancient kingdoms.

Clancy's comment: This is a very poor, and very ancient country. And, I mention it in some detail in my next book - 'Bold Journey'. 

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