Terromoto, temblor, earthquake.

It’s what Puebla is known for. In the past month there have been 3 major earthquakes all above a magnitude of 6. I felt the first one which was at the beginning of the month and was mostly just in shock. I know what to do when there are tornados but earthquakes I have no clue. The second one was during class. It was in the middle of the month. People were still recovering from the first earthquake. I could see the fear in my fellow peers’ eyes. That night I made a bug out bag. Which is just a bag that has all the essentials that I would need in the moment. Sometimes I feel like an earthquake is happening and I have to reassure myself that it is not actually happening. The third earthquake I barely felt but that’s only because it was very far from Puebla.

This past month has taught me that earthquakes are serious business. Even though there are no warnings for them doesn’t mean you can’t be prepared for the worst.

Another thing is how aware the general population is of what is happening in other countries. I hardly heard anything from my friends about the earthquakes. I feel that it our responsibility to stay aware of what is occurring around the world and help as much as we can.

600 Years of Wine

A few weeks ago, Germany played host to the Dürkheimer Wurstmarkt festival… for the 600th time. Held in the small city of Bad-Dürkheim, it is the largest wine festival in the world. Getting to the festival isn’t as simple as one would think, and definitely not for those of us not familiar with the train system. Anyhow, after three switches/2 hours later, (for what is supposedly a 45 minute car ride) I arrived at the train station.

The walk to the festival was simple, and not overly crowed. After another fifteen minutes, I stepped foot into the festival grounds. A note on the security, there was not much. Although I’m not one to let this ruin my outing, I can say that there was a lingering worry in the back of my head.

At the festival, there were amusement rides, little store selling all sorts of various trinkets, tons of food, and, of course, a seemingly endless assortment of places where one could buy alcohol. For the first hour, we (Kelsey and a girl named Rebecca) walked around. Taking in the sights, we were amused by how many rides had US flags on them. As if it was the only country that contained rollercoasters and thrill rides, haha! Eventually, after witnessing so many people eating and drinking, we succumbed to hunger.

First, we ordered food. I got a 1/2 metre-long wurst, and Kelsey and I both ordered a small wine, which was still substantial! (25 ml)  We sat ourselves down on a long bench inside a tent, and talked about nonsense while taking in the atmosphere. People were singing, glasses were clinking, and alcohol was flowing.

Finally, we got up and started to walk back to where we would catch the train home. But, before we did that, Kelsey and I wanted to ride the giant ferris wheel. And we did, for five Euros, the views payed for themselves. We could see the world’s biggest wine fest, the world’s largest wine container, and the surrounding area. It was spectacular.

After that, we went home, only having to make two stops this time. For those of you still reading, if you ever have the time/opportunity to go to this festival, I recommend it.


Gilman Scholarship

Receiving the Gilman scholarship covered a lot of my expenses for my summer study abroad in Morocco. I would definitely recommend applying for it, especially if you have financial need or are studying a critical language. Since there is no Gilman representative at OU, here is my experience of applying for the scholarship.

First of all, there are two different application deadlines. I chose to apply for the earlier deadline, even though this meant I did not have all the details for my program and not even been accepted into it yet. While I was accepted, I was told by others that there is some room for accomodation if you end up changing from your original plan. The benefit of applying for the early deadline is that you receive notice of the award much earlier. If you are dependent on financial aid for studying abroad, as I was, this can be crucial in planning. You can see the full list of deadlines here.

The application is fairly straightforward. It includes information about yourself and the program, an essay, and a follow-on service project proposal. One potentially confusing detail is that the information about the program and the application itself are found on two different sites. Also remember to save your password somewhere – you will still need it when you return.

As you are applying, remember to leave yourself time to contact a number of people. There is only one financial advisor at OU, but you will need to contact the study abroad office to figure out who your advisor is, if your regular study abroad advisor is not also a Gilman advisor. You may need more information than you have about the program itself. The service project will also require you to contact people on campus to make sure that your proposal is feasible.

Speaking of the service project, try to maintain a balance between what will be sufficient effort but also what will be feasible upon your return. Keep in mind your class schedule and any jobs that you have that might affect your ability to complete it. Think of groups you will be engaged with and how they mind benefit from awareness about the Gilman scholarship.

Assuming that many of my readers are Global Engagement Fellows, the Gilman Scholarship would be an excellent option for many you. The Spring 2018 and Summer 2018 applications are currently open, and I encourage you all to apply.

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Boomer Sooner at Baab Mansour in Meknes

Saturday, September 30

Today is Saturday of Week 6. I hope you are enjoying the weekend!

Update: There are some problems with the OUCreate web service this morning, so the randomizers are not available, and there are images missing.
Update again. Everything should be working now. Thanks as always to the great people at OUCreate for fixing problems like this so quickly!

Class Procedures and Reminders

Project Stack. I replied to almost all the assignments turned in last week with just a few items left in the stack; those will be first in line on Monday! While you are waiting on comments back from me about your Project assignment, you can check the stack to make sure I received your email.

Extra Credit. If you feel like having a technology adventure this week, try an extra credit Tech Tip! Find out more in the extra credit section of this week's assignments.

The following items are for fun and exploration:

Class Twitter. From yesterday's Twitter @OnlineMythIndia, something lovely from Debbie Ridpath Ohi.

Words from Mythology. From the Roman god Vulcan, we get the word VOLCANO.

Storybook Archive. This project is from the Indian Epics class: Shadows of the Ishvara: A Search for the Truth. Where are the gods in the modern world? In this Storybook a young man in possession of a sword inscribed with the word "TRUTH" goes on a quest for the gods, meeting Brahma, Vishnu, Yama and, finally, Shiva.

Free Book Online: Today's free book is Wonder Tales from Tibet by Eleanore Myers Jewett. See the Freebookapalooza blog for links and the table of contents. The illustrations are by Maurice Day.

Story of the Day. Today's story is from the Buddhist jatakas: How the Monkey Saved His Troop. This is a story about a monkey who is both wise and brave.

Video: The video for today is Jeff Provine's IgniteOKC talk on Ghosts of Oklahoma City. Find out more about Jef Provine below.

Growth Mindset: Today's growth mindset cat is expanding her reach: Stretch yourself so you can reach new goals. You can find out more at the Growth Mindset blog.

Event on Campus: Jeff Provine will be conducting an OU Ghost Tour today, starting at 7:30PM in front of Holmberg Hall; details in the OU Daily. And if you can't make the tour, check out his Kindle book: Campus Ghosts of Norman, Oklahoma.

September 30: Dussehra. The Hindu holiday of Dussehra celebrates the victory of Rama over Ravana, good over evil — a story that is now very familiar to everybody in the Indian Epics class, and to some of you in Myth-Folklore also! You can read more about the festivities at Wikipedia. The ten-headed demon Ravana is often burned in effigy as part of the Dussehra celebration:

Check out the Twitter stream for information and fun stuff during the day, or click here for past announcements.

Slow Dancing in a Burning Room

“The room is on fire and she’s fixing her hair.”

Life is not perfect — we all know this. But when that storm hits, man oh freaking man, does it hit where it hurts the most. We can tell ourselves, “Psh yeah, life is hard. Life is not perfect,” all day every day. The truth is, IT SUCKS and NO, I DON’T KNOW HOW TO DEAL WITH IT.

All my life I thought I had to have life figured out. When one slight thing went wrong, I would have a complete meltdown. Maybe I’m just a Type A kind of gal, but come on, who doesn’t want a perfect life? So that’s what I aimed for. A 100% perfect life. HA HA HA. I was young and naive. Life was easy back then. The worst thing to happen to me was probably not being invited to the Sweet 16 party of the year. (Okay, completely kidding but you get the idea.)

Reality struck hard in college. As I got older, life got harder. I was struggling in school. I worked shitty jobs. I was fighting a mental illness. I lost too many loved ones. And so. much. more. At first, I didn’t know what to do. I was on my own and I had to cope with situations by myself. It was rough, I’m not gonna lie. No one can prepare you for the real world.

What I learned from these obstacles? I’ve been through it all and I’m ready for the worst. Bad things happen. No one’s life is perfect. It’s hard, it sucks, it’s unfair, but that’s life sometimes. I’m not here to sugar coat anything.

The room may be on fire, but baby, I don’t care. I’ll continue to dance and fix my hair. Bring it on.

Tasting – White Zinfandel

Name: White Zinfandel

Variety: 100% White Zinfandel

Region: Oklahoma

Country: United States

Year: NV

Price: $12.95

Winery Description: Our all American, semi-sweet blush crowd pleaser

My Review: I really like this wine. It’s a blush wine with a really pretty golden-pink color. It smells like apples and caramel, and something else that I can’t quite name. It had a complicated taste – I had to get help to figure it all out. At first sip it’s very fruity like you would expect: apples, strawberry, and a hint of peach. But there was another taste that I had to enlist a friend to help me identify. It was a bit earthy and a bit spicy. We figured it was a spice and had to smell a couple from his kitchen to get there, but it turned out to be cinnamon! Very tasty!


I drank this wine initially on its own, and then tried it again while eating a pork dish. It was nice by itself but the savory food really brought out the sweetness of the wine. I think that this is a really good dinner wine, depending on what you’re eating.

Beginner’s Guide to Essential Oils

Ok, Ok, I know.

You’re tired of hearing about essential oils. Everybody and their dog seems to be jumping on the essential oils bandwagon, and you’re just not sure if their all they’re all they are cracked up to be. I get you. BUT before you roll your eyes or click out of this post, read on a little bit. I really want to convey to you just how beneficial integrating essential oils into your lifestyle can be. I have been using them for years to help regulate my autoimmune disease, and I honestly could not live without them. So please, keep an open mind, and read on to find out why everybody (including myself) is so obsessed with them, and how you can start incorporating them to improve your overall health and well-being.