Smoke and Mirrors: Just by throwing out the country’s commercial tobacco farmers – the backbone of Zimbabwe’s economy, accounting for approximately fifty percent of Zimbabwe’s foreign currency earnings - and seizing their land, President Robert Mugabe systematically destroyed a country that was once southern Africa's second-largest economy after South Africa and the world’s second largest tobacco export industry. Now Zimbabwe lies in ruins, a landfill of devastated lives and shattered dreams decaying into hellish nightmares. As hundreds of farms were taken over, sometimes by local people, often by senior government officials, production and export of grain and tobacco collapsed.
An honourable African: A shadow passed over his face. “We would be fully justified in celebrating
Belgium, a nation of humanitarians: Most people will agree that every country in
Rwanda's unlikely hero: I sat across from Paul Rusesabagina, a soft-spoken, refined African, whose courageous actions saved more than 1,200 refugees as documented in
Belgium's Coffee Culture: Each European country has a different interpretation on how this pleasure should be achieved. Italians enjoy it with a Corneto ice cream,
New Age Philanthropy: I noticed some tea pickers being bussed off to a building in
Berlin, the other side of midnight: The nightclub was an extraordinary place, musty and dark, unusual art, a swing - I felt my way through the gloom, seeking a good vantage point of the stage. Something nicked
Sri Lanka, a renaissance in tea ethics: I was spellbound by the vivid saris of the women, whose hands resembled butterflies flitting over the shrubs, moving independently of one another, nipping off the youngest and topmost leaves by snapping the stem with a sharp movement of the index and middle fingers, then tossing their pickings into large baskets on their backs.
New Age Guerrillas: Although not a key producer when judged against giants like Brazil and Colombia, Malawian coffee farmers have learned and can teach a useful lesson to other smallholder growers who may be considering either diversification or uprooting their coffee trees. The lesson is that financial success depends not on growing more but on reducing costs of production and bold, guerrilla-type marketing tactics.
Phat Phil Cooper: “It’s a passing trend that’s been coming to your ears for three decades!” says International DJ, Phat Phil Cooper, who has helped steer the concept and design success of NuNorthern Soul to the movement it is today.
Ferrari's Wildman: When Jody Scheckter blasted onto the F1 scene many considered his aggressive tactics menacing to others on the track. Following one of the biggest accidents in F1 history, the then World Champion, Emerson Fittipaldi, accused Scheckter of being a madman who did not belong in the sport.
In search of the world's best coffee: Other than receiving Napoleon’s approval,
Women's Rights: The idea that the women of the West are empowered or emancipated, or any way in a better position to Muslim women is deceptive.Compared to Muslim women Western women face a constant struggle to meet the sordid and exploitative expectations set by our consumer driven society.
Coffee Out of
Vertical Limits: At 08h00 on May 25th 1996 Cathy O'Dowd, a 30-year-old mountaineer from
21st Century guide to parenting teenagers: To many, a father’s role is limited to providing financial support and appearing on ceremonial occasions. But increasingly, we are presented with findings that suggest just the opposite. Many boys, lacking the father role model, and are far more likely to find difficulty in developing stable relationships with members of the opposite sex. It is also likely to be an obstruction to successful parenting.
Halloween Elsewhere: I passed an elderly gentleman stooped over a freshly dug mound of earth. He was poking at it with his cane. Numerous clucking hens were at his feet, scratching at the soil, ferreting for worms and grubs. One let out of whooping squawk and attacked something only she could see in the dirt. Her action caused the other hens to rush across in excited anticipation.
Our forgotten people: Heather spoke of her mental and physical exhaustion. “You must bear in mind that for most elderly folk to do anything like get up in the morning, go to the toilet, wash, dress, eat and prepare for bed at night takes about ten times longer than it would take us younger people – the everyday things that we all take for granted are now a time consuming, sometimes painful and often frustrating chore, taking hours out of a day.”
The private life of a male sex worker: We spoke of his clientele and I enquired about his ethics when called upon by a man he knows to be in a heterosexual relationship. “Most of the people that make use of my services are married or attached men. Some are heterosexual and a few are homosexual. Some want excitement, while others need a secret escape from outside their bonds.”
Lions and bushmen of a wildlife sanctuary: Driving through the farmhouse gates, I was greeted by an expanse of manicured lawns on which two Jack Russell terriers wrestled with a lion cub. Marlice and her husband, Dr. Rudie Van Vuuren, were there to meet me. "Thanks to Angelina Jolie, we have fenced our entire 100 square mile wildlife sanctuary and as a result, we have successfully released many of the animals that have undergone rehabilitation."
Backseat boys: I asked David when and what he planned to do when he leaves this work. “I don't know. I’m not getting any younger”, he said. He thinks it will probably be three more years on the streets for him, and then he would have to make another move. “Once I am 21 I know I won’t attract much business. We have a sell by date you know. Clients want young blood all the time.”
“Learning from text books about due diligence, for example, should only be considered as basic grounding; the easy, technical stuff. Working with people that have dissimilar views, different agendas’ or who fight you every step of the way is something no text book can teach you. On the job training is constant, regardless of how long you’ve been in business; every day poses new challenges, whether you’re in the corporate office or in the mailroom.”
The Super Executive:
An international career: Live-in carers earn between £350 to £500 per week, depending on their experience, which is relatively high earnings but bear in mind it is temporary work and a working holiday visa holder is supposed to spend a considerable amount of time in leisure pursuits.
For old times sake: “These are the very people that molded the