The sulphur miners

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Every single day, and through the rest of their lives, the food of the Kawah Ijen miners and their families will entirely depend on the deep and colossal crater of the active volcano they were destined to work in. In a landscape that is surreal, hostile, beautiful as well, the human effort and suffering take form in the skinny figures of more that one hundred and twenty men that have no different choice than dying slowly while alive. No man here, however strong or prepared he might be, will live beyond 40 years.

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The boyhood of Raleigh

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History has held that Sir Walter Raleigh was a successful seaman and an insatiable explorer; that he was a skillful politician and also, that he performed as a merciless pirate. Poet, writer and soldier, this English nobleman played an important roll in the epic defeat of the Spanish Armada in the XVI century as well as being the responsible one for bringing back to Europe tobacco, potatoes and some other products from the new world.

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As a kid I was always under the impression that my uncles were really bad at hiding the porn magazines they used to buy every month. To do it in a proper way was probably not important for them at all, and around my grand parents house I constantly managed to find those magazines and look at them with plenty of time and patience in the corners of their rooms. Back then Playboy was their main choice. It was practically the only porn magazine a man could only get in the drug stores of every neighborhood in Bogota. The seventies were about to end and sex was much more than a taboo around me. I was seven, eight years old perhaps.

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Batavia is just one of the many names with which Jakarta was referred to in the past. Today, the name remains attached to an old colonial port that doesn’t seem to age at all, and some are trying to call Sunda Kelapa, or more simply, Jakarta Port.

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It was sunday and I remember waking up after ten in the morning that day. London was sunny and at that time the TV only showed scenes of a wrecked car somewhere in Paris. The voices and comments of the journalists were paused and dramatic; they talked about the Ritz, about a tunnel and some photographers. They said it was a national tragedy and it was; Princess Diana had passed away early that morning. Her body would arrive hours later to a military base in the north of the city and six days later her funeral would take place in Westminster Abbey.

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