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In Loving Memory of Pooh 2003-04-02 - 2023-04-18
2023.05.29 14:23 hothcanada In Loving Memory of Pooh 2003-04-02 - 2023-04-18
A memorial/ eulogy for the very best, most loved & cherished friend that I've had in this lifetime, "Pookin".
Pooh was born during the first week of April in 2003.He joined our family in the 3rd week of his life when my younger brothers' teenage girlfriend of the time brought him home. We always celebrated his birthday on April 2nd.
Pooh's favorite thing in life was being outside during the short, non-winter period here in perennially frigid central Canada that usually lasts from the beginning of May until early October. He loved to roam & explore the 5 acres of rural land on the family farm we call home. He especially enjoyed smelling the summer vegetation, laying under the trees in the yard & having an occasional bite of grass.
For all but the first 8 months of his life, wherever Pooh went, he was faithfully accompanied by his life companion & soul-mate, "Little". They were an inseparable pair.
Pooh was never interested in catching mice, instead he preferred to come inside and enjoy a plate of chicken pate when he got hungry. He was a gentle soul.
Throughout the first 15 years of his life, Pooh was a thick, robust, lengthy & athletic guy that never once fell sick.In the final months of 2018 this changed.After dropping an alarming amount of weight in a short period of time, he was diagnosed with the deadly disease, hyperthyroidism. In December 2018-January 2019, we almost lost him.Pooh recovered halfway after being placed on daily medication which he required for the remainder of his life.The life expectancy for medicated cats with this disease is 2-4 years.
From the final quarter of 2018 until only 6 weeks ago, Pooh started each & every day of my life off by pushing on my bedroom door & walking up to the side of my bed, usually at sunrise, between 5-7am. He never said anything, he would simply sit there & stare at me until I either got out of bed or acknowledged him with a good morning, pat on the head.
For the 3/4 of his life that he was healthy, Pooh ate 2 or 3 times per day.After contracting hyperthyroidism, he required 8-12 meals daily just to stay alive.
Between the end of January 2019 & the last days of March 2023, Pooh had two more condition related episodes that required hospitalization, one in the summer of 2019 and then again in the spring of 2020. During the second of those, the vet recommended putting him down.Pooh & I disagreed with that suggestion. Instead, we went home, toughed it out & went on to experience three more summers & nearly three years of happy, major incident-free living. Plenty of chicken included.
Shortly before sunrise on the morning of April 18th 2023, Pooh passed away naturally at home in the company of his loved ones.He never gave up on life & we never gave up on him.
Thank-you Pookin for being the shining light of our lives for the past 20 years.Little & I miss you beyond words & we will never forget you.Nothing & no one has ever meant more to me than the two of you & the time we had together.
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2023.05.29 13:54 SlipperyJuror Choosing the Best Data Analytics Bootcamp: A Comprehensive Guide
I thought I would make a useful guide for those who are looking to break into the field of Data Analytics or enhance your existing skills by going to the bootcamp. There are numerous bootcamps available and it is crucial to choose one that aligns with your goals and offers quality education. Things I recommend to consider:
Define Your Goals
- Defining Your Goals
- Curriculum and Course Content
- Instructor Expertise
- Learning Methods
- Alumni Success and Reviews
- Industry Connections and Job Placement Support
- Flexibility and Schedule
- Accreditation and Reputation
In order to choose the best Data Analytics bootcamp, start by clarifying your objectives. Determine whether you want to learn data analytics from scratch or enhance your existing skills. Understand your desired level of expertise and the specific areas of data analytics you wish to focus on, such as machine learning, statistical analysis, or data visualization. Curriculum and Course Content
Review the bootcamp's curriculum and course content carefully. Ensure that the topics covered align with your learning goals. Look for a comprehensive curriculum that provides a solid foundation in data analytics concepts, tools, and techniques. Check if the curriculum includes real-world projects or case studies to apply your skills. Instructor Expertise
The expertise and qualifications of the instructors can significantly impact the quality of education you receive. Research the background and experience of the instructors involved in delivering the bootcamp. Look for instructors who have industry experience and a strong background in data analytics. Their practical knowledge can provide valuable insights and guidance throughout your learning journey. Learning Methods
Consider the bootcamp's learning methods and resources. Determine whether the program offers a mix of lectures, hands-on exercises, and interactive learning opportunities. Practical exercises and projects are essential for gaining practical experience. Additionally, check if the bootcamp provides access to relevant software tools and platforms commonly used in the industry.. Alumni Success and Reviews
Look for feedback from alumni who have completed the bootcamp. Seek out testimonials or reviews to gauge the overall satisfaction of past students. Look through different reviews on bootcamps on social media such as Reddit as usually you can find helpful sources and reviews.
Here are a few examples:
Industry Connections and Job Placement Support
- Comparison table which has several bootcamps compared in one place.
- Different subreddits which are related to the subject - have a lot of different reviews on bootcamps and people who are already working on a field and can give real-life examples.
Research the bootcamp's industry connections and job placement support. Find out if the bootcamp has partnerships with companies or organizations in the data analytics field. A bootcamp with strong industry ties may offer networking opportunities or job placement assistance, increasing your chances of securing employment post-graduation. Flexibility and Schedule
Consider the flexibility and schedule options offered by the bootcamp. Determine whether the program suits your current commitments and availability. Some bootcamps offer part-time or online options, allowing you to learn at your own pace. Assess your preferred learning style and ensure the bootcamp's schedule aligns with it. Accreditation and Reputation
Consider the bootcamp's accreditation and reputation within the industry. Accreditation from recognized institutions or affiliations can provide assurance of the program's quality. Additionally, research the bootcamp's reputation among employers and industry professionals to ensure it carries weight in the job market. TL;DR:
This comprehensive guide highlights factors such as curriculum, instructor expertise, learning methods, alumni success, flexibility and accreditation. By evaluating these aspects, prospective people can make an informed decision and find a bootcamp that aligns with their goals and sets them up for success in the field of data analytics.
If you already have experience with bootcamps, please let me know if some other aspects should be included here as well. I want to make it as helpful as possible knowing that this can be quite a stressful decision to make especially when there are so many “bootcamps” that are not doing their job well and asking for thousands and thousands of dollars.
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2023.05.29 13:03 morowwwww Getting over first break-up experience. I am a cheater and I regret it.
I (19M) had broken up with my first girlfriend almost a year ago (around 10 months-ish?) and it still pains me from time to time, to this day. Admittedly, she was not the best girlfriend, and i was not the best boyfriend, though we had a LOOONG history spanning almost 6 years of me trying to court her. At one point in the relationship, I fucked up and ended up essentially cheating, and I carry that weight with me everyday. I was not in the right head space at that time and I really didn't think she deserved it. It was after a days and days of me feeling trapped within the relationship and it reached the point where I couldn't decide to stay or to leave, which prompted me to cheat. My mind wanted to experience something new and liberating, yet at the same time I wanted to stay in the relationship with this person which had a 6 year history, which you can't really find anywhere else.
TLDR: I fucked up and ended up cheating.
At this point in my life I hadn't experienced feeling THAT down ever. I realized after a few days that, not only did I lose something really special, but I also lost a lot of people I care about.
After a few months, I started realizing a lot of things. I started finding the friends who REALLY truly cared about me despite the situation and asked for my side, I ended up finding that the person I cheated with my ex, ended up being someone so healthy for me, something I genuinely needed in life. Despite all of this, I get bouts of sadness looking back into the relationship I built with my first partner which makes me really guilty. Sure, I have definitely gotten better and it has been easier, but its the fact that I still think about her and sometimes gets sad that bugs me. It's been really hard to find someone who I can connect with who genuinely regrets cheating. It isn't something I am proud of and the weight of it all is really fucking heavy. It reaches the point where sometimes I wish I did not exist.
It was the one thing I swore not to do and yet I did it. How fucked up could I possibly be.
That bring us to here, sorry for the long messy post but I guess it was good to rant about everything anonymously.
I guess my question still stands: Does anybody have advice? Any advice at anything would do.
Thanks for reading reddit.
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2023.05.29 12:54 mysticmage10 NDE & Religious Similarities
The ffg verses resonate well with these phenomena found in nde reports. I dont endorse the blind following of nde reports as fact or blind following of any scripture as fact.
Death analogy as slipping off tight shoes or clothes found in some nde accounts
As a person sheds worn-out garments and wears new ones, likewise, at the time of death, the soul casts off its worn-out body and enters a new one Bhagwad Gita 2:22
Self judged Life review
And it will be said,˺ “Read your record. You ˹alone˺ are sufficient this Day to take account of yourself Quran 17:14
So, whoever does an atom's weight of good shall see it and whoever does an atom's weight of evil shall see it Quran 99:8-9
I experienced a very vivid life recall. … It was both painful and exquisitely beautiful. It was like viewing a film, filled with precise detail. Every single thought, word, deed, decision, and action was brought forth and re-experienced and re-examined. It was self-evaluation, with total transparency and honesty. Throughout, I was never judged by any of these divine beings. They simply held me in [l]ove, with complete compassion and acceptance. … In this review, I realized that I was every single person I’d ever encountered or thought of. As I merged with and became them, I felt exactly what they experienced as a result of my loving or unloving thoughts and actions. I saw it all from their point of view, not only how my actions affected them, but then through them [how that] affected others they encountered, as the effects kept on going. … I saw that the love we express ripples out, creating an everlasting beauty that is often unbeknownst to us at the time. … It felt as if we are living inside a grand game, which is perfectly designed to always give us another opportunity to get it right this time. … I saw that everything we do makes a difference. The impact we have on one another is profound. … In this process of ruthlessly honest self-reflection, nothing went unnoticed. Nothing was able to be hidden. Nothing. Not one single thing. This life review was like going through everything with a fine-tooth comb, looking under every rock, leaving no stone unturned, seeing into each crevice with a [d]ivine [l]ight that revealed every hidden place. And through the entire process, it was all looked at and discerned through the lens of [l]ove NDE 1
I had a life review where I saw ever single event from my life. I saw every act of goodness and kindness. I saw every act of spite or ill-will. I also got to see it from the other person's point of view. Although time did not exist, this life review took forever but in reality it was only a blink of a second NDE 2
Divine love or bright light
who alone is immortal and who lives in unapproachable light, whom no one has seen or can see. To him be honor and might forever 1 Timothy 6:16
God has promised the believers, both men and women, Gardens through which rivers flow, therein to abide, and blessed dwellings in Gardens of perpetual bliss; and greater than that is Gods pleasure with them. That indeed is the supreme triumph quran 9:72
God is the Light of the heavens and the earth. The example of His light is like a niche within which is a lamp, The lamp is within glass, the glass as if it were a pearly [white] star, Lit from [the oil of] a blessed olive tree, Neither of the east nor of the west, Whose oil would almost glow even if untouched by fire. Light upon light.God guides to His light whom He wills Quran 24:35
Those who believe and do righteous deeds, the Most Merciful will bestow on them love Quran 19:96
He is the source of light in all luminaries, and is entirely beyond the darkness of ignorance. He is knowledge, the object of knowledge, and the goal of knowledge. He dwells within the hearts of all living beings Bhagwad Gita 13:18
Anybody who’s ever gone into the light comes back to talk about this … unconditional love and bliss that they experienced in the light. … Most people when they describe it, they say it’s the most incredible … loving experience, they feel full of love and what I experienced, it was kind of like, it was almost as if I had turned into champagne, and I was bubbling. You know like my molecules were bubbling and love was going through my molecules and then coming back out from them. And when people describe that, they say it’s the most incredible thing in the world. Well it is, but, it gets better. … Merging into the source was the most intense experience I had ever had. And that is one of the attributes of unconditional love, its intensity. The emotions that we have when we’re out of these bodies are far more intense than everything we ever experience in the body. The bodies really filter out a lot of emotions that we’re capable of. … Have you ever been moved to tears by something? Like maybe by love, or beauty, or gratitude? Or just had that feeling where you were just so moved that you literally cried? You know how strong and vibrant that is, and how cleansing and all-consuming it can be? The unconditional love that we feel in the afterlife is like a hundred or a thousand times more intense than that. Take that feeling and take away the tears and substitute joy, and so make it a joyous love … that you’re feeling[.] … And that will give you a tiny little taste of what unconditional love feels like NDE 3
And a lot of experiencers talk about love, about this being a place of love, and I’ve tried to think of adjectives to describe this, the intensity of this love, you know. Unconditional, pure, powerful. The only one that I can think of that works is infinite. It was infinite. … It was infinite love. If you can imagine your baby that you love, imagine like the most intense feeling of love you’ve ever had, your mother, or your dog, whatever, whatever it is, imagine that … infinite! No end. So powerful and so absorbing. Wave after wave after wave of cleansing white love washing over me, and I became, I was the light. It was so beautiful, it was so beautiful NDE 4
So I went into the light, and as I was moving up into the light, I just started to feel so good. You know like I can’t, words can’t explain it. Like the higher that I went into the light, and the more that I moved up and further away from Earth, the better I felt. And the feeling of pleasure does not really apply to this Earth, like nothing can compare. Like if you took everything that you were in favor of, like maybe getting a massage, in a hot tub, your favorite music, your favorite food, your favorite drink, everything that you love, happening to you all at once, no matter what it is, all at once, it would not even closely compare to the pleasure that was just within that light. And as you moved further into, like further away from this Earth, the pleasure felt even better. So you just moved up it felt better and better, it was insane NDE 5
I saw the white light, which was, you know, the best experience I’ve ever had. Like, basically, all the love that ever was, and all the love that ever will be, forever, for all of eternity, literally being poured onto me like a waterfall. … I’m literally saying that’s what it was NDE 6
World as a dream/illusion/virtual reality
And this worldly life is not but diversion and amusement. And indeed, the home of the Hereafter - that is the true life, if only they knew Quran 29:64
Then Godwill ask them: "For how many years did you stay on earth?" (23:113) They will say: "We stayed for a day or part of a day. Ask of those who keep count of this." (23:114) He will say: "You stayed only for a while, if you only knew that. Quran 23:115
You understand on the other side that this part, life, is actually the dream, and you just wake up after. It’s no different than one dream you had last night, out of a lifetime of dreams. This life that you’re having right now is just one, it’s just a blip NDE 6
It’s like living in a two-dimensional black and white world here, … compared to multicolor, multi-sensory VR immersion there. … And so once you’ve been in that place, coming here, as beautiful as it is, and I live in an extraordinarily beautiful place on purpose, so that I can get as close to beauty as I possibly can, but even that it’s just, like, ‘Oh well, you know, that’s really pretty.’ But not the same as ultimate divine beauty. … [Even sunrises] were ugly for a while, … the first year was very difficult NDE 7
The minute that I kind of woke up on that hillside in heaven I knew that that was more real than any time I’ve ever spent here on Earth. … And I knew instantly that my time here was really but a dream. … It’s real to us when we’re in it, but once I was there … in heaven I realized that’s more real, that felt more real, and it made much more sense to me than anything here. This is kind of nonsensical at times. … In heaven, it’s so clear, so real, so rational, so logical, but yet emotional and loving at the same time. Immediately I knew that was real and this was not. Immediately NDE8
I mean, looking back at human life from that vantage point I could not believe that I had ever thought this was real. And so the same sense of unreality that we get about dreams while we’re here in human form, I had while I was there about human life. So there is no doubt in my mind that it was real, and that’s true reality. This is a virtual reality game, a role, a play, a dream, an illusion, a character that I’m playing NDE 9
The physical [world] resembled a black and white movie in comparison with the world in front of me[.] … That’s what it felt like, waking up from a dream, waking up to who I truly am and this life was nothing but a dream NDE 10
Altered States of Super Consciousness
Eye has not seen, nor ear heard, Nor have entered into the heart of man The things which God has prepared for those who love Him 1 Corinthians 2:9
No soul can imagine what delights are kept in store for them as a reward for what they used to do Quran 32:17
Again, the kingdom of heaven is like unto a merchant man, seeking goodly pearls: Who, when he had found one pearl of great price, went and sold all that he had, and bought it Matthew 13:45
Now, what heaven looks like? ‘O m g’ doesn’t even describe how beautiful this place is. Heaven is, there are no words. I mean, I could sit here … and just not say anything and just cry, and that would be what heaven looks like. … There are mountains of beauty, there are things in this realm, you can’t even describe how beautiful this place is. There are colors you can’t even imagine, there are sounds you can’t even create. There are beauties upon this world that you think are beautiful here. Amplify it over there times a billion. There are, it’s incredibly beautiful, there’s no words to describe how beautiful this place is, it’s incredibly gorgeous NDE 11
Humans choosing to incarnate on earth Surprisingly I expected to find something like this in Hinduism and buddhism but haven't found anything except this from the quran.
Indeed, We offered the trust to the heavens and the earth and the mountains, but they ˹all˺ declined to bear it, being fearful of it. But humanity assumed it, ˹for˺ they are truly wrongful ˹to themselves˺ and ignorant ˹of the consequences quran 33:72
And in that moment I remembered that my soul chose to come to Earth, I remembered where I was before I was born, I remembered that all of our souls choose to come here, that this is a wonderful university, that we’re not here by random accident, we’re not here as victims, that we come here to choose to study, to learn, and to grow. And that on some level this is like a wonderful theater, it’s like a big university, we all play our part, and when our time to go comes, we leave NDE 12
These three pure Beings spoke to me in a different language. They used my thoughts but it was different than thoughts. They reminded me that I had chosen to be incarnate on Earth and that I had to go back. I already knew that by being by their side, everything was coming back to me. They gave me so much love. I was at home and I badly wanted to stay. I didn’t want to leave, but I had to go back. That’s how it had to be. I remember laughing a lot with them. They understood me. They knew the difficulty of an incarnation, as well as I knew it before I incarnated on Earth NDE 13
Cosmos & Vegetation being alive/sentient
The heavens keep telling the wonders of God, and the skies declare what he has done. Each day informs the following day; each night announces to the next. They don't speak a word, and there is never the sound of a voice. Yet their message reaches all the earth, and it travels around the world Psalm 19:1-4
The heavens praise your wonders, LORD, your faithfulness too, in the assembly of the holy ones Psalm 89:5
And there is not a single thing but glorifies Him with His praise, but you do not understand their glorification Quran 17:44
Then He turned to the heaven while it was all smoke. He said to the heaven and the earth: “Come into being willingly or unwillingly.” They said: we come into being willingly Quran 41:11
I look down and I see myself standing in a very gentle river, and all around me is a very beautiful, very peaceful forest. And this is where it gets hard to describe because it was a rush of all, it was everything wrapped into one. … And feeling immense awe and bliss and love and relief. … And there was no other being in my NDE, it was just me, but I didn’t feel at all alone. It was the least alone I’ve ever been in my life. It was like the place itself was alive, and it was telling me things and it was loving me NDE 14
I was taken by the hand and led into another realm. It resembled [E]arth because there were trees, sparkling sand, and aquamarine water. There were fruit-laden trees, lush foliage, and vibrantly colored birds. Everything was alive – each flower and every glistening grain of sand. Floral fragrances filled the air NDE 15
I was shown non-intelligent species. I was shown splendors of every kind, like waterfalls and being taken into the heart of a burning flame. I skimmed the surface of a sun, playing in the shifting energy and heard its jubilant joy at giving life to so many wonderful things. It was the most joyful, beautiful, wonderful, amazing experience anyone could possibly have. The size, the scope of it cannot be expressed. I met with incredible, spiritual beings like my attendant, friend, and my guide. They all were filled with contentment and joy NDE 16
The breeze blew against the tall golden wheat stalks, and as it did I could feel the spirit of all things living around me: animals, plants, the elements. I was one with them. I looked up and saw a huge ball of light that cast the purest, warm light all around me and felt God touch my skin NDE 17
Pluralism/Multiple Pathways to Divine
Whatever purpose is served by a small well of water is naturally served in all respects by a large lake. Similarly, one who realizes the Absolute Truth also fulfills the purpose of all the Vedas Bhagwad Gita 2:46
We have revealed to you this Book with the truth, as a confirmation of previous Scriptures and a supreme authority on them. So judge between them by what God has revealed, and do not follow their desires over the truth that has come to you. To each of you We have ordained a code of law and a way of life. If God had willed, He would have made you one community, but His Will is to test you with what He has given ˹each of˺ you. So compete with one another in doing good. To God you will all return, then He will inform you ˹of the truth˺ regarding your differences Quran 5:48
Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven Matthew 7:21
I asked about religion and the vastness of it all. The only answer I could recall afterwards was the word "dogma." This word stood for the concept that the truth was muddled by man's feelings. Although coming from our good intentions, it was inhibiting others from spiritually growing NDE 18
Interconnectedness with Higher Power & Creation
The embodied souls in this material world are My eternal fragmental parts. But bound by material nature, they are struggling with the six senses including the mind Bhagwad Gita 15:7
When I have completed shaping him and have breathed into him of My Spirit Quran 15:29
He exists outside and inside all living beings, those that are moving and not moving. He is subtle, and hence, He is incomprehensible. He is very far, but He is also very near Bhagwad Gita 13:16
The UNIVERSE in expression, and the Universe was within me, I was shown this, I KNEW this intimately. I was shown through energy that I was ONE with ALL THAT IS, ALL THAT EVER WAS and ALL THAT WILL EVER BE. ALL THAT EXISTED was within me. I was shown this and experienced this within every fiber of my Being. EVERYTHING WAS CONNECTED. I WAS EVERYTHING, EVERYWHERE; omnipresent, omniscense! I KNEW in this place of ONENESS that I was connected to everyone and everything. There absolutely was no seperation NDE Anna
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2023.05.29 12:44 Suspicious_Lion3376 Mach5 Keto ACV Gummies Review: Scam or Is Mach 5 ACV Keto Gummy Legit?
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2023.05.29 12:43 Mundane_Mix8918 The Rise of Sustainable Travel: How to Reduce Your Carbon Footprint
As the world becomes more conscious of the environmental impact of travel, the rise of sustainable tourism has gained significant momentum. Travelers are increasingly seeking ways to explore the world while minimizing their carbon footprint and preserving the planet for future generations. If you're passionate about sustainable travel and want to make a positive impact, this article will provide you with practical tips and insights on how to reduce your carbon footprint while still enjoying enriching travel experiences.
1. Choose Sustainable Accommodations: Opt for accommodations that prioritize sustainability. Look for eco-friendly hotels, resorts, or lodges that have implemented practices such as energy efficiency, waste reduction, and water conservation. Consider staying in locally-owned guesthouses or eco-lodges that support the local community and minimize environmental impact.
2. Offset Your Carbon Emissions: Calculate the carbon emissions generated by your travel and consider offsetting them. Many organizations offer carbon offset programs where you can invest in projects that reduce greenhouse gas emissions, such as renewable energy or reforestation initiatives. This allows you to neutralize your carbon footprint and contribute to a more sustainable future.
3. Pack Light: Packing light not only makes your travels more convenient but also helps reduce carbon emissions. Less weight means less fuel consumption during transportation. Opt for versatile clothing items and pack only what you truly need. Consider using eco-friendly and reusable travel accessories, such as a refillable water bottle, a reusable shopping bag, and eco-friendly toiletries.
4. Choose Sustainable Transportation: Whenever possible, choose sustainable modes of transportation. Opt for trains, buses, or bicycles instead of flights or car rentals. If flying is necessary, consider booking direct flights and flying with airlines that have implemented carbon reduction initiatives. Carpooling or using public transportation at your destination can also significantly reduce emissions.
5. Support Local and Sustainable Tourism Initiatives: Engage in sustainable tourism practices by supporting local businesses and initiatives. Choose locally-owned restaurants, shops, and tour operators that promote cultural preservation and environmental stewardship. Participate in community-based tourism activities that allow you to learn from and contribute to local communities in a responsible and sustainable manner.
6. Minimize Single-Use Plastics: Single-use plastics are a major contributor to environmental pollution. Bring your own reusable water bottle, travel mug, and utensils to avoid using disposable items. Refuse single-use plastic bags and opt for reusable shopping bags. Use eco-friendly toiletries and avoid individually-packaged products whenever possible.
7. Conserve Water and Energy: Practice water and energy conservation during your travels. Take shorter showers, turn off lights and air conditioning when you leave your room, and reuse towels and bed linens to minimize water and energy consumption. Respect local water resources and be mindful of your water usage, especially in areas where water scarcity is a concern.
8. Respect Wildlife and Natural Areas: When exploring natural areas, always follow the principles of Leave No Trace. Respect wildlife by observing from a distance and not feeding or disturbing them. Stay on designated trails to minimize habitat destruction and avoid stepping on delicate ecosystems. Dispose of waste properly and refrain from littering.
9. Educate Yourself and Others: Educate yourself about the local culture, customs, and environmental challenges of the destinations you visit. Learn about conservation efforts, local biodiversity, and ways in which you can contribute to the preservation of natural and cultural heritage. Share your knowledge and inspire others to travel sustainably by leading by example.
10. Be a Responsible Traveler: Above all, be a responsible traveler and practice mindfulness and respect for the places you visit. Embrace sustainable travel as a lifestyle and integrate eco-conscious habits into your everyday life. Support organizations and initiatives dedicated to sustainable tourism and advocate for responsible travel practices within your network.
The rise of sustainable travel offers an opportunity to explore the world in a way that benefits both travelers and the environment. By making conscious choices and adopting sustainable travel practices, you can reduce your carbon footprint, support local communities, and contribute to the preservation of our planet's natural and cultural heritage. Embrace the power of sustainable travel and embark on journeys that leave a positive and lasting impact.
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2023.05.29 12:42 ly_yangyy [AVAILABLE] A Wellness Way of Life by Robbins (11th Edition)
2023.05.29 12:31 Pleasant-Safe9218 Brother and Son...
My name is Ricardo, and this is a story of fractured family ties, an insidious legacy that refused to fade.
From the early years of our lives, my brother and I were entwined in a tumultuous dance of sibling rivalry and resentment. As the elder, I strived to set an example, to guide him away from the treacherous path that beckoned him. But my efforts were in vain, as his addiction to drugs gripped him tightly, consuming his very essence. Our parents' anguish grew with each passing day, witnessing their youngest son spiral into a downward spiral of self-destruction.
Then, on a cold winter's night, the final blow struck. The news of my brother's overdose reverberated through our shattered home, leaving behind a void that could never be filled. Grief, mingled with a sense of relief, washed over us. Relief for his suffering to finally end, but grief for the shattered dreams and potential forever lost. We mourned, my parents clutching onto each other, their tears merging into an ocean of sorrow. And I, torn between conflicting emotions, couldn't help but feel a strange sense of guilt for my relief, for the complex emotions that death brings.
Years later, life offered a flicker of hope. My wife and I were blessed with the birth of our son, a symbol of renewal and redemption. As he grew, the early years unfolded with blissful ignorance, untainted by the dark shadow that loomed over our family. But as the pages of time turned, a subtle unease began to gnaw at the edges of my consciousness.
It started innocuously, subtle nuances that only a discerning eye could detect. A fleeting resemblance, a shared mannerism, an eerie sense of déjà vu. My son's gaze, at times, mirrored my late brother's, haunting me with memories of addiction and turmoil. But I dismissed these fleeting thoughts as mere coincidences, the imaginings of an overactive mind.
However, the signs grew more pronounced as my son ventured into adolescence. He retreated from social interactions, displaying a disconnect that set him apart from his peers. The darkness that had claimed my brother seemed to linger, threatening to ensnare yet another innocent soul. It was as if a sinister force, woven into the very fabric of our bloodline, sought to perpetuate the cycle of pain and despair.
The defining moment arrived when my son, still in the tender grip of his teenage years, unveiled his true intentions. The veil of secrecy was ripped away, revealing a malevolent plot that shattered the remnants of my fragile peace. In a haze of intoxication, fueled by substances that mirrored my brother's demons, my son confessed his purpose, his voice carrying the echoes of the past. The realization struck me like a bolt of lightning, electrifying my senses. My brother's spirit had reincarnated within my son, carrying forth his unfinished business, his insidious desires.
A tempestuous confrontation ensued, the boundaries of reality warping and contorting in the face of this unimaginable truth. Desperation, fear, and a love tainted by ancestral ties filled the air, thickening with each passing moment. My son brandished a weapon, his gaze cold and distant, the determination etched into his very soul. In that fractured moment, the weight of the world rested upon my shoulders, my heart caught in a vice of impossible choices.
Driven by instinct and a primal need to protect my loved ones, I was thrust into a battle against the forces that had ensnared my son's spirit. I lunged forward, attempting to disarm him, to liberate him from the clutches of my brother's malevolence. But in the chaos that unfolded, an unintended consequence unfolded. The weapon fired, a deafening crack slicing through the air, and the lifeblood of my son stained the walls that had witnessed our shared joys and sorrows.
The aftermath was a cacophony of emotions, a crescendo of anguish that reverberated within the depths of my being. The truth of my son's possession and the fatal outcome of our struggle weighed heavily upon my soul. Society, with its unyielding judgment, deemed me a perpetrator of unspeakable deeds, my fate sealed by the act that ended my own flesh and blood. Imprisoned, I became a prisoner to my own guilt, locked within the confines of my remorse-ridden cell.
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2023.05.29 12:08 Hot_lady_i How to increase sex drive men
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Sex drive, also known as libido, is a crucial part of a man's physical and mental health. It is defined as a person's desire or interest in sexual activity and can vary greatly from person to person. A healthy sex drive can contribute to better physical and mental wellbeing, as well as stronger, more fulfilling relationships.
A low sex drive can negatively impact a man's physical health by affecting blood flow and hormone levels. Testosterone levels, in particular, can play a large role in a man's sexual desire. Low testosterone levels can lead to fatigue, decreased muscle mass, weight gain, and decreased bone density. Additionally, poor blood flow can lead to erectile dysfunction and other sexual dysfunctions.
Mentally, a low sex drive can lead to decreased self-esteem, depression, and anxiety. It can also cause problems in relationships, leading to feelings of guilt, shame, and frustration. A lack of intimacy can cause a strain on emotional connections, which can lead to relationship issues and decreased overall happiness. What is low sex drive?
Low sex drive, also known as low male libido, is a decrease in desire or interest in sexual activity and even porn videos
. This can be a challenging issue for individuals and their partners. It can be caused by a variety of factors, including physical and psychological conditions, medications, lifestyle factors, age, and hormonal changes. Understanding the causes of low sex drive in men is important in finding the appropriate treatment or lifestyle modifications to increase sexual desire and improve overall sexual health. In this article, we will explore different strategies that can help increase sex drive in men. https://preview.redd.it/jn20mbb1vq2b1.png?width=1024&format=png&auto=webp&s=add7406be27a7f81313f8d5c1c5f2178af0a0697 Causes of Low Sex Drive in Men
Low sex drive in men can happen for a variety of reasons. It can be due to physical, psychological, or lifestyle factors. Understanding the root cause of low sex drive can help you identify the best treatment options and improve your sexual health and performance.
Here are some of the most common causes of low sex drive in men:
- Low Testosterone Levels: Testosterone is a hormone that plays a crucial role in male sexuality. If your testosterone levels are low, you may experience a decrease in sex drive. Other symptoms of low testosterone include fatigue, muscle weakness, and mood changes.
- Psychological Factors: Stress, anxiety, and depression can all contribute to a reduced sex drive. When the mind is preoccupied with these emotions, it can be difficult for men to focus on sex and intimacy.
- Medical Conditions: Certain medical conditions, such as diabetes, high blood pressure, and heart disease, can affect sexual health and lead to a decrease in sex drive. Other conditions that may affect sexual function include obesity, underactive thyroid, and low blood flow to the penis.
- Lifestyle Factors: Unhealthy lifestyle choices, such as smoking, excessive alcohol consumption, and drug use, can negatively impact sexual health and performance. Additionally, lack of exercise and poor diet can also play a role in low sex drive.
- Relationship Issues: Relationship issues such as infidelity, lack of communication, and lack of intimacy can all contribute to low sex drive in men. Additionally, body image issues and sexual dysfunction in one's partner may also play a role.
It's important to note that low sex drive is a common problem that many men face at some point in their lives. It's essential to speak with a healthcare professional if you are concerned about your sexual health and performance. They can help you identify the causes of your low sex drive and suggest the best treatment options for your needs. Benefits of Increasing Sex Drive
Increasing your sex drive has many benefits that can improve both your physical and mental health. Here are some of the benefits of increasing your sexual desire:
- Improved heart health: Sexual activity increases blood flow and can help lower blood pressure, reducing the risk of heart disease.
- Increased testosterone levels: Higher levels of testosterone can boost energy levels, improve muscle mass, and improve overall mood.
- Boosted immune system: Sexual activity can increase the production of antibodies, which can improve immune function and help fight off illnesses.
- Reduced stress levels: Sexual activity releases endorphins, the body's natural stress-relievers, which can help reduce feelings of anxiety and stress.
- Improved mental health: Regular sex can improve mood, reduce symptoms of depression, and increase feelings of overall well-being.
- Increased intimacy with your partner: Strengthening the emotional bond shared between partners can increase feelings of closeness and intimacy.
- Improved self-esteem: A positive sexual experience can enhance feelings of self-worth and boost self-confidence.
There are many ways to increase sex drive, including regular exercise, a healthy diet, reducing stress, and addressing any underlying medical conditions. Seeking support from a healthcare professional or sex therapist may also be helpful in addressing any concerns or issues related to sexual desire.
Overall, increasing your sex drive can offer numerous health benefits and can enhance your overall quality of life both physically and emotionally. Lifestyle Changes to Increase Sex Drive
Sexual desire is an integral part of a healthy and fulfilling life, and it's natural for individuals to experience fluctuations in their sex drive from time to time. While some may turn to medications or supplements to improve their sexual function, making lifestyle changes can be a more sustainable and natural option. In this article, we explore various lifestyle changes that may help increase sex drive in men, from exercise and diet to stress management and seeking support from a healthcare professional or sex therapist. Get Regular Exercise
One of the most effective ways to increase your sex drive is to get regular exercise. Exercise has been shown to not only improve physical health but also mental health and overall well-being. When it comes to sexual health, exercise can have a powerful impact.
Regular exercise has been linked to increased testosterone levels, which can improve sexual desire and function. Additionally, exercise has been shown to improve blood flow and decrease blood pressure, both of which can lead to better sexual performance.
In addition to physical benefits, exercise can also have a positive impact on mental health and stress levels, both of which can impact sexual desire. By reducing stress levels, exercise can help to increase overall energy levels and improve mental clarity, making it easier to focus on and enjoy sexual activity.
It's important to note that the type and intensity of exercise can vary depending on individual physical health and fitness levels. It's always important to consult with a healthcare provider before starting a new exercise routine, particularly if you have any medical conditions or concerns.
Overall, incorporating regular exercise into your daily routine can have a multitude of health and wellness benefits, including improved sexual desire and function. By prioritizing your physical health, you can improve your overall sexual health and well-being. Watching porn videos
Watching sexually explicit videos can also boost sex drive in men. Studies have found that watching such material can activate the pleasure centers of the brain, resulting in a surge in libido and increased sexual desires. This increase in arousal can help to decrease performance anxiety and improve self-confidence in the bedroom.
However, it is important to note that not all porn videos is created equal. It's important to watch content that is both enjoyable and safe. It's also important to remember that excessive viewing of pornography can lead to addictive behaviors, so moderation is key! Why is sex drive important for a man?
There are ways to increase sex drive and improve overall physical and mental wellbeing. Exercise is one of the most effective ways to improve sexual desire. Regular exercise can lead to increased blood flow, improved mood, and increased energy levels. Eating a healthy diet can also help improve sex drive by providing necessary nutrients and vitamins.
One of the most significant contributing factors to decreased sex drive is stress. High-stress levels can lead to decreased testosterone levels and lower sexual desire. Therefore, reducing stress levels through exercise, meditation, and seeking the help of a medical professional can help improve libido.
In conclusion, sex drive is vital for a man's physical and mental health. A healthy sex drive can improve relationships and boost overall wellbeing. By taking care of oneself through regular exercise, a healthy diet, and reducing stress levels, men can enjoy the many benefits of a healthy sex life.
2023.05.29 11:51 phollda Might the contemporary Rwandan government be an example of a competent government?
Last time, we discussed governing competence
as the ability of a central government to understand + perform the one job they were created to do.
What might that look like in an existing contemporary example in sub-Saharan Africa? Does any such example even exist given the state of the entire subcontinent? The contemporary Rwandan government as a competent government
It is very well known the troubles Rwanda had in the 1990s, when all of the sorts of people who now question the competence and mandate of its government stood by and did absolutely nothing as tons and tons of people were hacked to death by their own very neighbors and friends.
What pointers might we have to a Rwandan government competency?
(i) Poverty reduction and economic progress
Tons of people, sub-Saharan Africans included (maybe even especially sub-Saharan Africans of other countries,) love, absolutely love to mock Rwanda.
If a person randomly tried to find a list of sub-Saharan African countries with the best potential for economic growth in the near-term future one might invest in, by any random metric, or collection of metrics, Rwanda is likely to show up somewhere on that list.
The mockers take glances at the country's legible metrics like the GDP/GDP per capita in comparison to other countries in the region and make obscene conclusions. Why does it make sense to compare a country with the tragedy that Rwanda has gone through directly with his neighbors? Why not compare the country to its previous version from say... 20 and 10 years ago? It's in the same way it doesn't make much sense to compare oneself to other people, but to previous versions of oneself.
(ii) Internal and external security
Considering the history of security in the great lakes region in these past decades, Rwanda shouldn't be internally peaceful, or safe from external threats. Nonetheless, judging by the US Security reports on sub-Saharan African countries, with the most important cities (population and activity) as proxies, (keep in mind that cities in general are very rowdy and chaotic, so that the level of chaos in a country's most bustling big city is a decent proxy [the absolute worst it is] for chaos in the entire country). Kigali is by far the safest city
in all of sub-Saharan Africa. Safer than even Gaborone in very placid Botswana
. You may choose to compare both of those cities to Lagos, Nigeria
for example, just for good measure.
Some people often question the means by which
the peace is being achieved and why. Some other people believe it is a lot more important to keep the peace at any cost, to the benefit of the country's citizens, as long as the means by which they are being kept are long-term sustainable.
(iii) Diplomacy on a chaotic sub-Saharan African subcontinent How and why is a tiny (landmass), landlocked country at the forefront of war in Mozambique in southern Africa, or Benin Republic in western Africa? Clever use of military diplomacy
is what is behind that. If the Rwandan government is so competent, why aren't they at the level of Singapore yet?
It does take time
. And Rwanda right now, isn't a perfectly competent government. They are yet to perform a leader transition
for example. Let's remember the last time a sub-Saharan African country got a re-founding leader
who laid a decent foundation onto which consequent development would come to happen. Did they become immediately successful, or were the foundations only laid during the leadership of the re-founder? Why aren't other sub-Saharan African governments attempting to be any 'competent'?
What seems to be the most popular theory of economic development these days are the ideas expressed in the book "Gambling on Development". I have not read the book, but as I gathered from this review
and other ones by different people on Amazon and Goodreads, the central point of the book is that development in states only happens when entrenched elites decide to gamble on economic growth.
The theory: the elites who already are at the top of financial and social hierarchy supposedly normally have no need to pursue economic development. Attempting to pursue development is in fact likely to be damaging to their personal interests, since the status quo which keeps them at the top would have to undergo considerable change. Because of that, they usually don't. On the other hand, some elites do decide that pursuing development could put them in even better position: even more wealth, power and influence. Sure, things could go very wrong. But they could also go very very very right. Because of this, they decide to take their chances and 'gamble' on development.
I don't buy this theory. Everyone seems to take it seriously and I'm not sure why.
The first problem I have with its fundamental point is the idea that elites are insecure by default and thence are unlikely to want to gamble on development since that might put their power in danger. That contravenes everything everyone knows about people who have things in abundance and their relationship with it. We do know that genuinely wealthy people do not worry about money, nor do genuinely smart people worry about intelligence. Why then would elites (with abundant power) worry about power?
I don't think they would. Genuine elites feel and know that they are the elites. They aren't in an existential panic about how they might lose their power. Sure they would be careful in managing their power (much like a wealthy person would be careful in managing their wealth), but it is unlikely that they would allow this be a huge bad overpowering fear which dictates what they should or shouldn't do.
So, what might be a better theory for why some elites never do gamble on development, or why the ones who do ever do?
It is all downstream of competence.
First of all, macro-competence(competence at major important things) is a monolith. An individual who is reasonably smart is also going to be reasonably healthy, and be in a reasonable financial position, averaged out over time (if they are poor at a time, it might be that they grew up poor but need some time for their good decisions to compound over a long-enough time to land them in a better position. This doesn't mean that they will ever become wealthy. What it does mean is that they will be in a reasonably decent financial position given where they started from). It's all downstream from their competence: it allows them to make good decisions in all aspects of their personal life.
The same thing is true of people with power (an elite) running a country. It is why countries that are well-run, are well-run on multiple fronts.The ones which are mediocre are mediocre, and the ones which are poorly run, seem to be incapable of getting anything done right.
Because of this, an elite coalition who are incompetent at running a country are likely going to be incompetent at being an elite too (keeping hold to power). Maybe this is what causes them all the nervousness and worry about losing their power if they did attempt to pursue development?
A genuine elite (competent at holding onto power) does as people with power do: whatever the fuck they want. Why do the elite who do, ever work on development?
The same reason people who work on big, audacious goals ever do. For the same reason
Elon Musk took his exit from Paypal and plowed them into an electric car company and a space company.
So the true reason that the elite ever work on long-term development of their country is that: a taste for challenge, self-belief, and pining for self-satisfaction. Sheer... being absolutely the one who knocks. If the Rwandan government truly is competent, why are some people sceptical of them?
For the same reasons people seem to believe the Gambling on Development theory. Failing to examine the case closely enough on veritable facts, being distracted by poor theories about why things happen/happened, and struggling to develop better theories.
This has multiple downstream effects, including a poor conception of what the future might hold. People who misunderstand the Rwandan government and what it seeks to achieve consequently have only future predictions about it that reconcile with their current understanding of its existence.
If you think it is an autocracy which seeks to maintain an elite which is unwilling to 'gamble on development', or believe it to be no different than other governments running other countries in its environs, you may then predict that the transfer of power, eventually when it does happen, will be to a direct progeny of the current re-founder and leader.
— What is governing competence and why is it only how African countries can develop?
— How might one reform a flailing sub-Saharan African country?
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2023.05.29 11:34 Significant-Use-108 Tik Tokers peddling "weight loss hacks" are the scum of the earth.
My sister has bulimia and has been struggling with it for almost 9 years. Her weight fluctuates pretty drastically and it's clear that she's suffering. She's made many strong-willed efforts to change her behavior, but as is the case with most eating disorders, will power alone will rarely solve the problem.
Lately her weight has gone up and she's been scouring the internet to find weight loss "hacks" that don't involve purging. I've tried telling her that proper diet is the most reliable way to maintain a healthy weight, but sadly I think her relationship with food is too dysfunctional for that.
Tik Tok is a cesspool of bad ideas and many pea-brained users have been giving piss poor advice to my sister. Examples include vitamin infusions, grossly overdosing on one-a-day vitamin gummies, a "vibrating crystal machine" that supposedly disrupts radio waves that make you fat, and much more.
My sister isn't stupid, she's desperate and in the throes of an acute eating disorder (and likely a few other mental illnesses as well). She would do anything to get down to a size 2.
Honestly, fuck the people selling bullshit weight loss crap, fuck eating disorders, fuck the doctors that weren't willing to treat her, fuck the kids in high school that called her fat every day. I hope she gets better soon, I hate seeing her too preoccupied with food and her body to enjoy life.
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2023.05.29 11:30 AutoModerator Health and fitness through weight loss.
Health and fitness is most of the time associated with physical appearanceespecially weight. And why not? It is the weight of the person can tell whether he or she is living a healthy lifestyle due to the foods and habits that he or she has.
For those who think that their weight greatly affects their self-esteem because of physical appearance, health, emotional stability, physical abilities and the overall quality of their life in general, then it is about time that they contemplate on losing weight.
When does losing should start
People who have finally decided to lose weight should know where to begin. First, he or she must determine the real reason or reasons why they would want to lose weight. By determining and establishing the reason/s why one would want to lose weight, this can help him or her because they can these as motivations during the weight loss phases they are about to face.
Next, they must know it within themselves if they can truly and whole-heartedly commit in doing the things necessary for them to lose weight. By asking one’s self if he or she is ready to permanently change what they eat, how they eat, their behavior and their activity levels, the possibility is greater that they would lose weight faster and safes.
Third, they must look for a back up support system in case they can no longer manage weight control on their own. And last but not the least, they must make sure that they are strong enough to deal with possibility of failing if they do not achieve their desired weight or result.
One of the most important things to remember before losing weight is that the person should seek professional help. This is a must that one chooses a responsible and safe weight loss program or plan carefully. One must also make sure that he or she is willing to undergo for a trial period before investing time, money, and effort in enrolling to a specific weight loss class.
Tips in losing weight
Experts say that two of the most crucial factors that affect weight loss are foodor calorieintake and the frequency of physical activities such as exercise. Although it may seem easy to monitor calorie intake and exercise regularly, it is not always effective especially if the person doing it is not determined and disciplined enough. For a person to achieve their weight loss goals here are some tips that they can use:
- Dont ever skip regular meals. You must not forget that food nourishes the body. Although dieting or cutting down on food intake can help one lose weight, this cannot assure permanent weight loss because they will tend to eat more the next meal and the meals after that.
- Regulate the food intake. Eating in smaller amounts or food portions will help one cut down on calorie and fat intake.
- Monitor gradual weight loss of about 1 to 2 pounds weekly without irritability, fatigue, or weakness. This will allow your body to regain the loss water and fats.
- Selecting healthy food choices. Choosing the foods that a person can eat from the food pyramid would help him or her develop a well-balanced diet as well as good eating habits.
- Cut down on calories properly. If one is losing weight to achieve health and fitness, he or she must make sure that they know their bodys required calorie-intake because cutting too many calories can slow down metabolism. This will also make it difficult for the body to consume the necessary nutrients it needs to perform well.
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2023.05.29 11:19 matalaenergianainen Asymptomatic endo - struggling to stay motivated with treatment
First of all, I do realize how incredibly lucky I am to not have debilitating pain symptoms and I hope those who do experience pain do not take offense! I sympathize with everyone struggling to get through life with chronic pain and other disruptive symptoms.
My endo never caused excessive pain, just discomfort that I didn't realize would warrant medical attention. During an ultrasound, I was found to have endometriomas on both ovaries and a whole team of fibroids in my uterus. After four months on lynestrenol, I had a DaVinci-assisted laparoscopic hysterectomy, oophorectomy on the side with the larger endometrioma and general cleanup of endometriosis all around. It turns out there were a lot of filmy adhesions, some firm adhesions tugging on my bowel and the endo was surprisingly active considering my four months of hormonal treatment.
After surgery, I was told to continue the lynestrenol, and that's it. No further plans, no info on how long I should keep taking the hormones. I've got an appointment with a pelvic PT to check what the situation of my pelvic floor is, but that's more to do with avoiding prolapse after the hysterectomy.
Reading up on it, lynestrenol can cause fun stuff like cholesterol issues. I'm experiencing night sweats, some mild acne especially on my upper back and an unending appetite that's starting to result in weight gain when I really should be losing a few pounds.
So why am I taking this medication for seemingly the rest of my days? Please share if you have any words of wisdom or encouragement, or even better, peer-reviewed articles. I'm having trouble finding much evidence for post-op medication being effective when measured by anything other than pain symptoms reoccurring, which doesn't apply to me personally. The thought of taking medication until menopause without having a clear idea as to why is really not appealing.
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2023.05.29 11:17 alrahmahsa The Impact of Charity Projects in Society
play a vital role in addressing social issues and improving the well-being of communities around the world. These initiatives, driven by compassion and altruism, aim to tackle poverty, hunger, inequality, education gaps, healthcare disparities, and various other challenges. In this essay, we will explore the profound impact that charity projects have on society, discussing their contributions to social development, empowerment, and positive change. 1. Addressing Basic Needs
Charity projects make a significant impact by addressing the basic needs of vulnerable populations. Through initiatives like food banks, homeless shelters, and emergency relief programs, charities provide immediate assistance to those facing poverty and crisis situations. By ensuring access to food, shelter, clean water, and healthcare, these projects not only alleviate suffering but also contribute to the stability and dignity of individuals and families. 2. Education and Skill Development
Charity projects focused on education and skill development have a transformative effect on society. By providing access to quality education, scholarships, vocational training, and mentorship programs, charities empower individuals with knowledge and skills to break the cycle of poverty. Education equips people with the tools necessary to secure employment, contribute to economic growth, and make informed decisions, ultimately uplifting communities and reducing social disparities. 3. Health and Well-being
Charitable initiatives dedicated to healthcare significantly impact society by improving health outcomes and promoting well-being. Projects such as medical clinics, vaccination campaigns, disease prevention programs, and mental health support services enhance the quality of life for individuals and communities. By ensuring access to healthcare services, promoting healthy behaviors, and raising awareness about diseases, charities play a crucial role in preventing illness, reducing mortality rates, and enhancing overall community health. 4. Empowerment and Social Inclusion
Charity projects promote empowerment and social inclusion, enabling marginalised groups to participate fully in society. Initiatives focused on gender equality, rights advocacy, and community engagement provide platforms for marginalised individuals to voice their concerns, access resources, and participate in decision-making processes. Through these projects, charities foster social cohesion, break down barriers, and promote a more equitable and inclusive society. 5. Environmental Sustainability
Charitable projects are increasingly addressing environmental challenges and promoting sustainability. Initiatives such as reforestation efforts, waste management programs, and renewable energy projects contribute to a cleaner and greener future. By raising awareness about environmental issues and implementing practical solutions, charities inspire individuals and communities to adopt sustainable practices, mitigating the adverse effects of climate change and preserving natural resources for future generations.
Charity projects have a profound and multi-faceted impact on society. They address basic needs, provide education and skills, improve health and well-being, promote empowerment and social inclusion, and contribute to environmental sustainability. By creating positive change at both the individual and community levels, these projects play a crucial role in building a more compassionate, equitable, and sustainable world.
Visit the site : https://rahmah.sa
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2023.05.29 11:10 HuntingTheWumpus Batman Returns
Centuries had passed since the devastating nuclear war had scorched the Earth, reducing it to a desolate wasteland plagued by savage struggles for survival. Thomas, a desperate and starving scavenger, roamed the radioactive wastelands in search of any remnants of the past that could sustain him. His weary eyes scanned the sand-swept ruins, the shattered remnants of a once prosperous civilization.
It was in this state of abject hunger that Thomas stumbled across the ruins of an old mansion, its decaying walls battered by time and neglect. Though the place had been picked over countless times before, his desperation drove him to explore every nook and cranny, hoping to find something, anything to appease the gnawing emptiness within him.
As Thomas shifted an old, rusting grandfather clock, it creaked in protest, revealing a hidden staircase behind it. The dim light from his flickering torch illuminated the passageway, urging him to descend into the depths below. With trepidation, he stepped forward, his heart pounding in his chest.
As Thomas reached the bottom of the staircase, lights suddenly snapped on, casting a warm glow upon the cavernous space. His eyes widened in astonishment as he beheld the grandeur that lay before him—the Batcave, untouched by the ravages of time. It was as if this sanctuary had been preserved, waiting for a solitary soul to stumble upon it.
Every corner of the Batcave brimmed with ancient machinery, now coming to life. A giant penny dominated one corner, a testament to battles fought against crime. A colossal robot dinosaur stood as a silent sentinel, a remnant of a forgotten age. And there, gleaming in the spotlight, was the iconic Batmobile, its sleek curves a testament to power and justice.
Driven by a growing sense of wonder, Thomas explored the Batcave further, uncovering caches of untouched supplies. He found an abundance of food, water, and survival gear, sustaining him for months to come. Yet, it was not just the material sustenance that captivated him. Out of sheer boredom, he stumbled upon a private diary hidden within the depths of the cave, belonging to Bruce Wayne.
Through Bruce Wayne's words, Thomas discovered the truth about Batman—the masked vigilante who fought relentlessly against the darkness that plagued Gotham City. He read about Bruce's haunted past, the loss of his parents, and the relentless drive to make a difference in a world consumed by chaos.
As Thomas delved deeper into Bruce's diary, a profound realization began to dawn on him. He started to think about the horrors of the world that had unfolded over the centuries, the suffering endured by those left in its wake. And he pondered the immense resources available to him within the Batcave—the tools and knowledge that could be used to bring about change.
In the solitude of the Batcave, Thomas's thoughts evolved, transformed from the starkness of survival to the flicker of hope. He marveled at the notion that one man, armed with the ideals of justice and compassion, could truly make a difference in the world. The more he understood about Batman's mission, the more he felt a growing responsibility to honor that legacy.
One day, as the light cascaded through the Batcave, Thomas found himself standing before a glass case. Inside rested the cape and cowl of the Dark Knight, symbols of bravery and resilience. And as he looked into the glass, his own reflection superimposed upon it, it seemed as though fate had chosen him to carry on the legend.
The once-starving scavenger, now filled with renewed purpose, stared at his reflection, his eyes shining with determination. The world outside may have been ravaged and broken, but in the depths of the Batcave, Thomas glimpsed a glimmer of hope. The story of the Dark Knight might not be over; it could live on through him.
With a steady resolve, Thomas reached out and gently touched the glass, feeling the weight of the cape and cowl against his fingertips. The legacy of Batman had found an unexpected heir, and in the darkest of times, a new hero would rise to bring light and justice to a world that hungered for it once more.
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2023.05.29 11:07 Responsible-Ad-2758 [EU to anywhere][Sell/Swap][Perfume] BPAL, NAVA, Alkemia, Arcana, Nui Cobalt, Possets, PULP, etc.
Tracked shipping estimates are (depending on weight): EU $6, UK $7.50, US/Canada/Australia $12. 50% off tracked shipping over $60 (so $6 or less), free shipping over $120! Untracked (at your own risk) is $2 cheaper.
I'll ship within a week, usually within 2 days. Let me know if you want photos of fill levels. I have much more samples than listed, let me know if you're looking for anything specific. $12 minimum please. I'll hold for 24 hours. Open to swaps, I'll gladly take a look at your destash list!
Fill levels and notes in my destash list
- I'm always adding more Alkemia:
Alpha Musk: Arcana Wildcraft:
- Moroccan Tea - 50% - $7
- Ambre Caramélisé - $3
- In a Railway Carriage - $3
- Memoirs of a Woman of Pleasure - $4
- Old Books and Fresh Flowers - $3
- Snow Witch: Agaricum - FS - $20
- Chillum - $5
- Witches Befriend Unicorns - $5
- Yurt - $5
- Apples Crave Cake - FS - $15
- Pumpkins Crave Trees - FS - $15
- Blue Amber - $3
- Honey Craves Fairy Rings - $4
- Pumpkins Crave Samhain Fires - $3
- Aziraphale - FS - $24
- Elegy No. 1 S. 196 - 70% - $19
- Gaueko - FS - $15
- Hello, Salzburg! - FS - $18
- High School Orientation Day Glamour - FS - $23
- In Silvery Accents, Whispering Low - FS - $26
- Keichu Nyoetsu Warai Dogu - TOL - $18
- Matthew 25:34-36 - almost half - $10
- October 32 - almost shoulder - $15
- Poor Monkey 2016 - FS - swap
- Prosperous Flowers of the Elegant Twelve Seasons - FS - $20
- Schlafende Baigneuse - FS - $20
- Temple: Daoist - FS - $20
- The Fairy Lovers - almost half - $13
- Theodosius 2015 - sniffie - FWP
- Time's Infliction of Eternity - FS - $26
- Tis Thy Voice from the Kingdom of Souls - FS - $24
- Vampire Princess - FS - $40
- When the Frost is on the Punkin - near TOL - $17
- Winter: My Secret - FS - $20
- Witches Taking Off for the Sabbath - 2ml - $9
- Abalone and Peach Blossoms - $5
- All While Dreaming, Shakes Her Head - $3
- Apple II - $3
- Bedroom - $5
- Blackcurrant Sufganiyot - $15
- Buck Moon 2021 - $3
- Chasing Fireflies - $3
- Conception by the South Wind - $5
- Coral Snake - $4
- Dead Leaves, Blood Orange and Dried Apricot - $3
- Dead Leaves and Molasses Pumpkin Cookies - $3
- Dragon's Bone - $5
- Étienne de Boray Oak - $3
- Geisha in Orange Kimono Admiring a Samurai - $2.50
- Ghost Milk - sniffie FWP
- Hierophantes - $3
- Hot Speckled Gloom - $5
- Humanite - $3
- I Hear America Singing - $3
- Iced Apple Dumplings Plopped into a Sweet Potato Pie - $5
- Kimi Ga Dai Wa - $2.50
- L'essence du Chagrin - $3
- La Danse de la Sorcière - $4
- Margaret Magdalena Muffinhead - $3
- Men Will Fall to her Darkness - $3
- Mystery Powder Fizzy Candy - $3
- Orangeblossom and Driftwood - $3
- Pandemic Vanitas - $4
- Peasants Fleeing - $4
- PGAI17 - $2.50
- Philosopher Reading - $5
- Pine Needles, Frankincense, and Beeswax Absolute - $5
- Pink Silk Peony - $5
- Rosewater and Myrrh - $3
- Saw-Scaled Viper - $4
- Sentence First, Verdict Afterwards - $3
- Snooty Bat - $5
- Still Life with Dooting Skull - $3
- Sugar Cookie - $3
- Sugar Skull - $3
- Tea Leaves, Vanilla Bean, and Incense Smoke - $5
- The Butterfly - $3
- The Houses at the Back - Frosty Morning - $3
- The Magician's Hands - $2.50
- The Morning Star Among the Living - $5
- The Shepherd's Dream - $5
- Three Pairs of Shoes - $4
- Toy-Strewn Attic - $3
- White Oakmoss and Lavender - $3
- Why and What Art Thou Dreaming Here - $3
- Wild Rose and Dandelion Sap - $3
- Wrestlers - $2.50
Plus many GC imps on my destash list! D&F:
- Blueberry Lemon Cooler - $3
- Merry Christmas, Time Has No Meaning - $3
- Myrrh Scented Roses - $3
- Cross - FS - $20
- Lavender Amber - FS - $18
- Lavender Musk - FS - $30
- Oman - FS - $27
- OP Baba - FS - $23
- OP Sekhmet - almost shoulder - $20
- Orchid Garnet - 2.5ml - $10
- Pomegranate Aurora - 4ml - $15
- Purple Musk - FS - $32
- Vampire Wine: Lilac Blood Wine - FS - $20
- Banana's Flambe Ice Cream - $3
- Blood Rose - $3
- Butterfly Green - $3
- Ederra - $3
- Encens Bois - $6
- Encens Vanille - $6
- Eternal Necropolis - $5
- Gabriel - $8
- Glamour - $4
- Go Halainn - $4
- Koaliday - $3
- Konafa - $8
- Licorne à la Fontaine - $3
- London - $8
- Mina - $9
- Mr. Collins - $4
- Mr. Dandridge - $4
- My Heart Is Filled With Twisted Light - $3
- Neon Skull - $3
- Nibiru - $6
- Nocturnals Lustre of Moonlight - $3.50
- Orchid Crystal - $4
- Pfeffersneuse Chai - $3
- Poison Potion - $3
- Pumpkin #27 - $3
- Purple Claw Potion - $3
- Pyramid Honey Cake - $3
- Ra - $8
- Raguel - $8
- Renewal Elixir - $3
- Santalum - $5
- Satyr - $3
- Sommeil du Printemps - $3.50
- Svadhishthana (orange) Sacral Chakra - $5
- Velociraptor - $3
- Wisteria Musk - $7
- Xavier - $6
- The Conjure Man's Cabin - 1/3 - $8
- Aphrodite Chrysea - $3.50
- Balefire - $3.50
- Bee Kind To Yourself - $3.50
- Blarney - $3.50
- Bryophilia - $3.50
- Canoodling in a Crypt - $3.50
- Chionophilia - $3.50
- Cloak of Evergreens - $3
- Deus Ex Machina - $3.50
- Entombed - $3.50
- Ghost Cat - $3.50
- Guiding Star - $3
- Hobgoblin - $3.50
- House of the Frontier - $3.50
- Incense & Spidersilk - $3.50
- Kazzate - $3.50
- Li Hing Margarita - $3
- Melophilia - $3.50
- New Moon - $3
- Ominous Orchard - $3.50
- Peace - $3.50
- Scaredy Cat - $3.50
- Skeletal Birch - $3.50
- Sleep Elixir - $3
- Spectral Spidersilk - $3.50
- Sylvan Spidersilk - $3.50
- Tall Tales - $3
- Waipio Valley - $3.50
- Waltz of the Flowers - $3
- Mysterious Fossils - $5
- Rose Without Thorn - $3
- Adamus - $3
- Joan of Arc - $3
- Lavender Corset - $3
- Pink Corset - $3
- Ponder - $3
- The Kiss - $3
- And to All a Good Night - $3
- House on Widows Hill - $3
- Mark of the Moon - $3
- Moon Dust - $3
- New Snow Moon - $3
- Sonnet X - $3
- Dryad - $2
- The Princess Di of Reagan High - $2
- You Look Like a Doily - $4
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2023.05.29 10:41 Substantial_Turn_329 I've spent well over $15,000-$20,000 on dab pens from ages 16-21.
I started smoking at 16 because it made me lose my social anxiety, I could conversate with anyone etc. Another reason was due to it absolutely curing my chronic fatigue/brainfog and gave me mental clarity unlike when I was sober. I usually would have to feel like I'd want to take a nap every hour when I'm sober but once I was high I was full of energy and was so talkative unlike my sober self, hence I became addicted.
Started small, then turned into everyday. I started off with Dab pens, then onto bongs, then back to dab pens. I don't remember a single day where I wasn't high from the ages 16-20. I spent well over $15,000-$20,000 on dab pens throughout highschool. I seriously don't remember a moment I was sober, I used a dab pen like it was a literal vape.
After a while of usage, I was so affected mentally that I felt insanely sluggish and couldn't retain any information. I'd forget what I was doing within seconds, I'd think of a video I want to watch and then the second I click the search bar, I'd forget what I was about to look up.
That made me end up quitting for over a year. My mental clarity was SLIGHTLY back, but here's the thing.
The entire reason I started smoking was due to it helping ease 99% my social anxiety and it also tackled my unbearable daytime chronic fatigue/brainfog. I really wanted to relapse but I also didn't want to at the same time, so I tried trying to tackle my social anxiety and chronic fatigue manually by going to the doctor. *(I'm pretty sure my social anxiety is due to my chronic fatigue and the inability to have conversations during when I'm tired which is basically whenever I'm sober)* I got my bloodwork done, I had an MRI scan, I took medication that would strengthen my guts/bowels. And guess what? Absolutely nothing. They tell me I'm a clean boy with no problems. So then I try self diagnosing myself once more, I wanted to get tested for ADHD. Maybe I had ADHD and was causing me these problems.. Then.. As I'm about to try and get tested for ADHD, my Korean parents obviously tell me "You're a perfectly healthy boy, you really think you have ADHD yadada". So I end up not getting tested at all, so I'm still not sure whether or not I have ADHD.
So after continuous months of trying to figure out the problem by self diagnosing myself with various different conditions to why I may be experiencing such chronic fatigue/brainfog, I ended up relapsing on weed again. I quit for a year, and threw it all away because I didn't feel better. I felt better when I was on weed than when I was sober. This is my curse.
After another year of usage, I quit again in hopes of maybe trying some other alternative methods such as weight lifting and exercise. Throughout the months of working out and praying in hopes I'm able to reregulate my brains dopamine receptors back to normal from the heavy weed usage, nothing. Not even exercise helped with my chronic fatigue. And so I went to the doctors again to get another bloodwork done in hopes that something, maybe something would show. Then again, nothing. With all hope lost and on the verge of just wanting to end it, I relapsed again.
I smoked for another whole 8 months, and here I am where I'm writing this comment. I quit weed again few days ago and I'm back here at my sober chronically fatigued/brain fogged state. I feel hopeless, I don't know what else to do. I tried everything and when I say everything I mean everything. I am genuinely discouraged but I don't want to smoke weed anymore as I feel that my brain is permanently damaged and can't be reverted from this depersonalized and depressing state.
Anyways, quit while you can. If you're smoking because it "helps" a certain issue, don't. In the long run, not only will your tolerance rise so high that you're only high for 30 minutes at a time, you're going to ruin your brain, you're going to ruin your ability to articulate what you want to say. I don't feel like I'm going to be here for much longer. I have so much regret.
Lol if anyone thinks they can help me, you can try.. Though I doubt it.. I just wanted to rant my life's biggest stressor. Can't even talk to my parents about this as they'd disown me, Korean parents am I right.
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2023.05.29 09:30 bestdiabetes Endocrinologist: What It Is and Why Do We Need One
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The field of endocrinology is an important branch of medicine that deals with the study of endocrine glands and the hormones they produce. Endocrinologists are medical professionals who specialise in diagnosing and treating disorders related to the endocrine system. In this article, we will explore the role of an endocrinologist, common endocrine disorders, the importance of seeking their expertise, and how they diagnose and treat such conditions.
Definition of an Endocrinologist
An endocrinologist is a medical specialist who focuses on the endocrine system, which comprises various glands that produce hormones. These glands include the pituitary, thyroid, adrenal, pancreas, ovaries, testes, and others. Endocrinologists undergo extensive training to understand the complex functions of these glands and their corresponding hormones.
The Role of an Endocrinologist
Endocrinologists play a crucial role in maintaining the body's hormonal balance and overall well-being. They are responsible for diagnosing and treating conditions such as diabetes, thyroid disorders, growth disorders, hormonal imbalances, and reproductive disorders. Endocrinologists also work closely with other medical professionals, such as primary care physicians, to provide comprehensive care for their patients.
Common Endocrine Disorders
One of the most prevalent endocrine disorders is diabetes, which affects millions of people worldwide. Diabetes occurs when the body either doesn't produce enough insulin or cannot effectively use the insulin it produces. Endocrinologists help patients manage diabetes by providing personalised treatment plans, monitoring blood sugar levels, and guiding them on lifestyle modifications.
- Thyroid Disorders
Thyroid disorders, such as hypothyroidism and hyperthyroidism, are another set of commonly encountered endocrine disorders. These conditions affect the thyroid gland, leading to hormonal imbalances that can impact metabolism, energy levels, and overall health. Endocrinologists assess thyroid function through blood tests and prescribe appropriate medications to restore balance.
- Growth Disorders
Children and adults experiencing growth abnormalities often seek the expertise of an endocrinologist. These growth disorders can result from hormonal imbalances or genetic factors. Endocrinologists evaluate the individual's growth patterns, conduct diagnostic tests, and develop treatment plans to optimize growth and development.
Importance of Seeking an Endocrinologist
Consulting an endocrinologist is crucial for individuals experiencing symptoms associated with hormonal imbalances or endocrine disorders. These
professionals possess specialised knowledge and expertise in diagnosing and treating complex conditions related to the endocrine system. Seeking early intervention from an endocrinologist can prevent further complications and improve the overall quality of life.
Diagnosing and Treating Endocrine Disorders
Endocrinologists employ various diagnostic tools to identify endocrine disorders accurately. These include blood tests, hormone level assessments, imaging studies, and specialised procedures. Once a diagnosis is established, the endocrinologist develops an individualised treatment plan that may involve medications, hormone replacement therapy, lifestyle modifications, or surgical interventions.
Lifestyle Modifications and Treatment Options
In addition to medical interventions, endocrinologists emphasise the importance of lifestyle modifications in managing endocrine disorders. They educate patients about healthy eating habits, regular exercise, stress management, and medication adherence. By adopting a comprehensive approach, endocrinologists empower individuals to take control of their health and well-being.
Benefits of Regular Endocrinologist Visits
Regular visits to an endocrinologist offer several advantages. These include close monitoring of hormone levels, timely adjustments in treatment plans, early detection of potential complications, and personalised guidance for managing specific conditions. Endocrinologists serve as valuable partners in the ongoing management and maintenance of endocrine disorders.
Finding the Right Endocrinologist
Finding the right endocrinologist is essential for receiving optimal care. Consider factors such as board certification, experience, patient reviews, and proximity when selecting an endocrinologist. Collaborating with a knowledgeable and compassionate professional ensures the best possible outcomes and a positive healthcare experience.
Endocrinologists are medical specialists who play a vital role in diagnosing and treating endocrine disorders. By seeking their expertise, individuals can effectively manage conditions such as diabetes, thyroid disorders, and growth abnormalities. Regular visits to an endocrinologist, coupled with lifestyle modifications, can significantly improve overall health and well-being. Remember to consult a qualified endocrinologist for personalized guidance and care.
2023.05.29 09:16 MrShoos I don’t know what to do
I don’t think I’m an alcoholic. I don’t need it to function properly, and it does not interfere with my job or school. However, I love the way it makes me feel. I started drinking seriously when I had just turned 20 (just turned 22). Before drinking on a regular basis, I would smoke weed at the end of the day with my friends. I started becoming more social with my college friends and going out to bars. I loved how alcohol treated my anxiety in social moments. I felt extroverted, fun, and likable. I then started getting bottles of wine to drink at the end of a hard day. Then it became drinking those bottles to numb out any stress I had from that day. I would start drinking alone. I wouldn’t want to get super drunk at the start, but the more I drank the more “fun” I thought it would be to drink more and more. I started gaining weight. I had been 185lbs and super healthy since high school. I am now 215lbs. I feel this is becoming my journal at this point. …. I crashed my car two weeks ago from drinking and driving. I wasn’t paying attention and ran past a stop sign going 60mph in a residential area just to hit my undercarriage in someone’s yard. I thought I was doing better by not drinking before knowing I have to drive. …. I’m about to start my masters program at a university. I am moving into a new apartment by myself in a town I don’t know. I fear that I will use everyday to drink. … Every time I try to stop, I have that voice in my head telling me “hey you’re young! You can fix this later. Enjoy life while you can”.
I just want to know how to manage everything. This is all so new to me.
Has anyone experienced things like this? Where can I find help without going to AA? I don’t think it’s a serious problem, but I don’t know.
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2023.05.29 09:11 Ok-Tell8768 Your 2 week diet isn’t an eating disorder
I don’t know if this is the competitive part of my ed speaking or if i’m actually right, i’m interested to see what other people think. So many of my friends have done fad diets or tried eating in a calorie deficit/ counting calories, or had a “gym phase”. In most cases for these people they did these things for no more than 2 months. one of my friends was having lots of health issues and couldn’t eat much because of it, she was talking about that time with me and referred to it as her eating disorder. When i was in treatment one of the dieticians was talking about unhealthy eating/ exercise habits but she was making such blanket statements like “if you count calories you have an eating disorder”. I found it extremely triggering because I knew so many people that had success with counting calories that allowed them to get to a healthy weight or overall improve their quality of life. When she said that anyone that does that has an eating disorder it made me think that there were so many people that I now had competition with. It sounds bad I know, but every time I hear someone has an ED i find myself comparing me to them. When people talk about their failed diet that they tried for a month then continued living their life normally as their “eating disorder” it seems to undermine the reality of most ed’s. It’s hard to explain this without sounding like a judge for the anorexia olympics lol, can anyone kind of understand where I’m coming from though?
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2023.05.29 08:33 Zagaroth [No Need For A Core?] - CH 082: Girl's Day Out
Next >> As Moriko was ushered into the backroom, Princess Kagami asked “She has a curtained-off area, mind if we follow and continue to talk?”
“I have no problem with that, your highness.” Moriko had very little body shyness, so she’d have been only a little self-conscious about it even without the curtain, but she certainly appreciated the consideration of being asked. The curtained-off area in question contained a pair of magic circles inscribed onto the ceiling and floor, where she stripped down under mistress Ula’s instructions and stood in different poses while lights zipped about her. Ula said that this was taking her measurements, and Moriko believed her, she’d just never had this level of magic scanning before. It did take her a moment to understand what the poses were for, they made various muscles strain in different ways which in turn would allow measurements to take her movements into account.
The conversation from the princesses on the other side of the curtain was carried on mostly by them, and for the most part, it was just small talk that helped Moriko learn a bit about her … hosts? Maybe not technically yet, but it felt a lot like that’s how they were acting, and she was feeling obligated like a guest. She couldn’t think of a better word for it.
The rest of the afternoon and the early evening became quite the busy flurry of shopping, with the first part being a second dress to leave the shop in rather than her uniform. It seems that Mistress Ula kept a selection of ‘last minute’ dresses available in a near-ready state for the princesses’ convenience, requiring only a minimal amount of adjustment to fit one intended for Princess Tiriana to Moriko, as they were the most alike in stature.
This allowed Moriko to see why the royals were confident that Ula could pull a complete dress together in two days. Once the decisions were made, the chosen dress was dropped onto a wooden mannequin that adjusted itself to match the measurements taken of Moriko. Ula eyed the dress a moment then grabbed several spools of different color and weight threads to put onto a set of spindles built into a nearby table. With her preparations complete, Ula drew a flat tool kit from her dress to reveal several rune-etched needles of silvery metal, a small pair of scissors, and a stitch cutter. With a touch and murmured word these devices sprang to life and moved to her will. With expert swiftness she threaded each needle and set them to hovering, then went to work making her adjustments, drawing in or letting out where needed, switching out a couple of panels of the skirt to make it move better for Moriko’s needs, and other small adjustments as well as finishing up the edges. She was doing the work of at least a dozen normal skilled seamstresses with the added advantage of not getting in her own way.
In less than half an hour Moriko had a brand new dress ready for her to head out on the town with the princesses, and her normal soft boots would do well enough for this. Then it was time for accessories. The four princesses were definitely showing off, every place they brought Moriko to had deadly options, many of which were close enough to the weapons Moriko had trained in to be useful to her.
Fancy, delicate-looking fans had ribbing of adamantine with concealed sharp tips. Parasols and umbrellas had options ranging from a short blade you could draw from the bottom like a dagger to a blade that could pop out from the top to make it into a small spear. The embroidery on slender gloves hid tiny metal studs, which were backed by thin but surprisingly tough leather to protect the skin beneath. Hairpins that doubled as thin knives. Weighted handbags. The list went on, and many were selected for Moriko with little chance for her to say no.
Then there was jewelry. Everywhere they went the royals compared several pieces on Moriko, and always bought at least one expensive piece, ‘for the shop owner’s time and trouble’ if nothing else. They were talking around a subject, but it became clearer towards the end of the shopping spree when Moriko was instructed to not wear any of the jewelry on the night of the dinner, it seemed that she would be loaned a small selection of royal jewelry for the duration of the evening.
During all of this Moriko got a better feel for her hosts. Princess Kagami was the one she felt closest to in many ways, they were both the eldest sibling of large families, and it showed in the ways she guided and subtly manipulated conversations of her sisters to keep the peace and avoid topics wandering too far afield. Kagami was also only two years younger than Moriko herself, though she had been married several years now. Her husband was a younger son from a southern barony
Princess Kitiara was not quite as stern as her cool expression and northern coloration suggested, but her composure was due in part to her focus on military matters. She was married to the daughter of a Marquess from the northern border, who would have been the heir were it not for the issue of producing more heirs. Moriko hesitated a moment before making a suggestion when she learned about this. “Um, if she wants to inherit, the two of you might consider visiting the Azeria clan? The kitsune are shape changers, and might know some magic to help you fix that issue temporarily?”
Kitiara gave a slight smile. “Thank you, but we have already considered that. Neither one of us is particularly interested in the role of father or mother here, and we’d both prefer to be on the front line if anything happened, so we’ve decided to keep things as they are.” It had been almost two hundred years since there were any official conflicts with the Trionean Empire, but even if relations were superficially friendly the different cultures were a source of constant tension along the border, and even without proof many were convinced that many of the bandits in the northern territories were financed by the empire.
Princess Tiriana, the one whose dress had been co-opted for Moriko and who was engaged to an elven noble, was the most enthusiastic about the shopping, and on more than one occasion had to be restrained by her sisters from buying even more things for Moriko. She hoped that the princess’s husband-to-be was well off because it seemed that the twenty-eight-year-old had little care about spending money. At least she seemed to have an eye for quality rather than wanting to buy every sparkling trinket, though that could get expensive fast too.
While Tiriana had the most enthusiasm, Bridgette had the most energy. Scarcely a year older than Kazue, she burned with a passionate intensity that would not be out of place at Sakiya’s monastery though her talents were more towards the magical than the martial. She did not have the sort of excitable distractability that the kitsune did however, she was much more focused and could wax on about her studies in magic given the slightest encouragement. It seems that her magic was fueled by one of their older bloodlines awakening, and gave her magic more akin to that of a druid than a wizard, though with a focus on fire as a medium of renewal.
Lady Yuriko was more reserved and seemed amused as she shadowed the group, though she did occasionally offer a suggestion or bit of guidance. Moriko was fairly certain that the kitsune represented more security than the rest of their guards combined.
Physically Moriko could easily keep up with even Bridgette for energy, but this sort of new socialization was a touch overwhelming and emotionally exhausting, so she was quite glad when the other women declared the shopping finished and that it was time for supper. She was ushered into a restaurant with a discreet, unmarked entrance, where they were then led to a private dining room after passing through a slightly more public area. The guardsmen that remained after packages were sent off to be delivered to Moriko’s room at the monastery took up stations in an outer room to the one where the women would be eating. Once orders were placed, the six of them were briefly alone for the first time since she had been ambushed, and Yuriko brought out a small blue orb and placed it on the table where it began to glow. She stared at it for a moment, then nodded. “Speak freely.”
Princess Kagami sighed as she relaxed, which surprised Moriko as she had not realized that the other woman had not been relaxed until that moment. “I think that went well. Moriko, I need to apologize for something. While we did want to help you shop for everything, there was another purpose. Circumstances have already led to you and your spouses being drawn into some royal secrets, so you now get to enjoy another. Lady Yuriko here is also our current spymaster, as is tradition for the Azeria Clan advisor. Our unofficial public appearance with you has allowed her agents to watch the reactions of surprised folk, and are undoubtedly keeping track of the actions of anyone suspicious.” She gave Moriko a grin. “We may be a peaceful kingdom, but even with our advantages there is some internal dissent, and there are a few external threats. So it’s best to keep track of people who react the most to this sort of surprise information. We can’t keep your dungeon a secret, so we might as well take advantage of the situation.” Kagami then turned toward Yuriko with a lightly scolding tone. “As for you, you know very well that Mistress Ula hates it when you surprise her like that. This is why we do half our shopping when you are otherwise occupied.”
Yuriko made a small show of looking repentant, but Moriko rather doubted the sincerity of it. See, this was why she was nervous about dealing with nobility, none of this had even occurred to her as a layer of what was happening. It might not be as bad as she had been imagining for a public court, but she really hated not knowing or understanding what was going on around her with people that were supposed to be her allies.
Kitiara chuckled at Moriko’s expression. “You wear your thoughts on your face when you aren’t guarded. I understand and agree, that’s part of why my wife Catherine and I have decided to leave things be when it comes to potentially inheriting the position of Marquess. We’ll keep our focus on defending the northern border with our strength of arms, and let this lot deal with politics.”
Moriko blushed slightly at being caught out, and it did not help that she could hear Mordecai laughing in the back of her head. He was curious about something however, and Moriko decided to at least bring it up. “Ah, that brings up a topic. Maybe it would be best to cover it later, but I can let you know now. Our ‘open-mindedness’ when it comes to romance surprises him a touch, especially when it comes to nobility. He doesn’t think it was allowed so openly when he was around previously.”
Kagami held up a finger and the others all waited while she thought. After a few moments, she nodded as she made a decision. “I think it will take up more time than we have to go over such questions in detail. While we will answer what you need to know so that we can hopefully write up an official treaty, I’ll make sure we pull together a copy of the founding charter and subsequent changes to help give all of you a better understanding of how everything works in this kingdom.” She smiled slightly. “I take it you are not a history buff, and only really concerned yourself with rules that affected you? Don’t worry, that’s how most people in any nation deal with laws, but you have found yourself in a position where you need to know more.”
Moriko smiled at that. “Guilty. Oh, Mordecai is asking why you are being so generous with our shopping and with some of your secrets?” She gestured towards Yuriko, their recently revealed spymaster.
“Ah, that one is easy.” Lady Yuriko said. “Having a dungeon near our kingdom is unprecedented, and we want to get ahead of other people’s responses. You are technically situated inside the range set aside for all the various mountain tribes to maintain their own governments outside of our or Danuana’s political or legal systems, but you and your wife are citizens of Kuiccihan, so the situation is complicated. What we are hoping for in broad scope is to convince the three of you to sign an alliance treaty that would make your territory a sovereign vassal. This is not as constraining as a standard suzerain-vassal relationship, not only is control of your territory strictly your own but you have the freedom to work on your own foreign relations separately, given that they do not conflict with the security of Kuiccihan. So to be blunt, we are offering both wealth and access to some of our secrets to entice you to trust us, and we do so with the anticipation that this will be beneficial in the long term for our kingdom.”
So a bribe in other words. “And this is all to help warm us up to the idea?”
Bridgette pouted a little at Moriko’s tone. “Don’t be like that. You are effectively our peer, and we have good reason to consider you truly a friendly state. We normally have to be super careful about making people close friends, but you were thrust into this position and we have a lot of information about you from the temple, so we want to make you a real friend. We just have to also deal with all the other stuff at the same time.” Crap, the girl’s sad face was almost as effective as Kazue’s, she just didn’t have ears or tails that could droop.
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