Saturday, January 11, 2014

Salām Egypt

Yours truly is heading to Egypt for the first time on a tour guided by my friend Doug Baum of Texas Camel Corps. Doug's trips are sort of a total immersion program; we live with his friends in Giza. We will begin with the camel market at Birqash, then on to the pyramids, the multi-religious compound in Cairo, Alexandria, a camel trek in Sinai, Saint Catherine's Monastery (among many many other things), and end with the 45th Cairo International Book Fair where I have been asked to provide a photo essay "through the eyes of an American attending for the first time" for the folks at Arabic Literature (in English).

I am excited beyond belief. In preparation for this trip, Doug assigned some homework for me, including The Cairo Trilogy (a lyrical delight) by Naguib Mahfouz, Egypt's Nobel Laureate in Literature, and The Yacoubian Building (fabulous!) by Alaa Al Aswany. I will be reading Where Mountains Roar: A Personal Report from the Sinai and Negev Desert by Lesley Hazelton on a plane somewhere over the Atlantic. Stay tuned; I'll check in regularly, sorta taking y'all with me, inshallah.

Thursday, January 9, 2014

Welcome Spain!

This is my favorite part and I get to do it twice today. This morning it is my privilege to welcome Spain to Texas. Bienvenidos!

Welcome Philippines!

This morning I am delighted to welcome Philippines to Texas. Mabuhay!

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Yours Truly is the Featured Texan for January!

Texasbooklover has been named a Texas Treasure and the featured Texan for January by 12 Rounds Media! And I quote:
TexasBookLover Blogspot Sometime there are people who just have a great spirit about them, people you’ve never even met. TexasBookLover is one of those people. Please go check out her site and support her endeavors as she tries to shine a little sun on everyone’s day. Great site!
Books, Bookstores and Bloggers
Texas Book Lover: Be sure to visit this site for many great things related to Texas, not only books but locations too. Great site!
Don't forget that you can also find me on

Welcome Belgium!

This morning I am delighted to welcome Belgium to Texas. Y'all have three official languages so here we go: Bienvenue! Welkom! Willkommen!

Monday, January 6, 2014

Welcome Hong Kong!

Tonight I am thrilled to welcome Hong Kong to Texas. Fùnyìhng! 

Friday, January 3, 2014

Reading is Good For You

As we begin 2014 and go forth with the best of intentions to accomplish our resolutions for the new year, here's some food for thought about why reading is good for you. Reading books really does make you better.

Brain function is "boosted for days" after reading a novel
"The new research, carried out at Emory University in the US, found that reading a good book may cause heightened connectivity in the brain and neurological changes that persist in a similar way to muscle memory." - The Independent
For better social skills, scientists recommend a little Checkhov
"Say you are getting ready for a blind date or a job interview. What should you do? Besides shower and shave, of course, it turns out you should read — but not just anything. Something by Chekhov or Alice Munro will help you navigate new social territory better than a potboiler by Danielle Steel." - The New York Times
Doctors are now prescribing books to treat depression
"If your primary care physician diagnoses you with “mild to moderate” depression, one of her options is now to scribble a title on a prescription pad. You take the torn-off sheet not to the pharmacy but to your local library..." - Smithsonian Magazine

Welcome Vietnam!

This afternoon I am thrilled to welcome Vietnam to Texas! Chào đón!

Thursday, January 2, 2014

Welcome Nicaragua!

Tonight it is my pleasure and privilege to welcome Nicaragua to Texas. ¡Bienvenidos!

Welcome Nigeria!

This morning it is my privilege to welcome Nigeria to Texas. The official language of Nigeria is English but it is spoken by a minority and mostly in the larger cities. According to UNESCO the languages spoken by the most number of people are: Igbo - Nnabata! Yoruba - Kaabo! and Hausa - Maraba!

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Welcome Slovakia!

This first morning of 2014 I am delighted to welcome Slovakia to Texas. Vitajte!

Happy New Year!


I want to say thank you to everyone who visits my blog from around the globe. Our community now includes every continent but Antarctica. I am never so excited as when I check my stats and see a new visitor. I wish you all peace, health, happiness and many, many great stories in the year to come. 
And now for those black-eyed peas...

Migas with Black-eyed Peas, courtesy of The Homesick Texan