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A few good things (my weekly round up from across the interwebs)

Saturday, February 18, 2012 by Marianne Elliott

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My favorite link this week is from a journalist writing about the solace she finds in food while working far from home, in Afghanistan. 

“As I stood in the morning light in my grimy Kabul kitchen, the hot coffee made me feel almost at home,” she writes, evoking my own memories of the very same feeling in my own grimy Kabul kitchen.

I also loved this piece by Brene Brown – a love note to over-achievers (as a chronic over-achiever in some kind of strange recovery/relapse cycle at the moment, I shall be pinning this one to a noticeboard over my desk)

Some lovely writing also from Alanna Krause on how yoga leads us, inevitably, to service – and how service leads us to healing.

I’ve long identified as a ‘connector’ rather than a ‘networker’, and although I don’t agree with everything in this article (How to be a connector), I do like the emphasis on a willingness to be of service “even if there is no obvious or immediate payback” as an essential element of connectors.

Like many who have loved his writing about the Middle East, I was saddened to learn that New York Times writer Anthony Shadid died this week in Syria. If you have never come across his work, I highly recommend you read this collection of short extracts of his writing.

“The horror of this war is its numbers, frozen in the portraits at the morgue: an infant’s eyes sealed shut and a woman’s hair combed in blood and ash. “Files tossed on the shelves,” a policeman called the dead, and that very anonymity lends itself to the war’s name here — al-ahdath, or the events.” – Restoring Names to War’s Unknown Casualties, The New York Times, Aug. 30, 2010

And some good news, to end on. I love this short interview with Fawzia Koofi, Afghanistan’s first female Speaker of Parliament, about her plans to run for President.

“There are fears that we will lose the gains we have when it comes to women’s rights, democracy – so people who believe in a better Afghanistan need to come forward. … Afghanistan needs leaders.”

Amen to that. And on another hopeful note, I’m hoping to be able to pull together a trip back to Afghanistan in March/April to take copies of my book back to the people who inspired it, and to begin research on a new writing project. Wish me luck, this one is going to be a bit tricky to pull off!

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