By Doug Padilla STAFF WRITER CHICAGO – Once thought to be in danger of missing time in the playoffs, Gary Matthews Jr. now figures to return in time to get in some at-bats before the end of the regular season. Matthews’ dramatic improvement from a sprained right ankle continued Saturday as he moved around in the outfield during batting practice, but still played it safe. “He’s got a little more bounce in his step which is encouraging,” Manager Mike Scioscia said. “I think he’s relieved that that this thing, maybe it’s too early to say it’s turned a corner, but it’s moving rapidly in the right direction. “You never know with an ankle sprain, like a hamstring. They can look like they’re not much and they can linger for a month. Let’s hope it’s shorter term and in the back end of what these things can be.” Rotation up in the air Scioscia still would not say who will get the start for the Angels on Wednesday against the Tampa Devil Rays. It could go to Bartolo Colon, who did not look sharp Friday, or Ervin Santana, who threw three scoreless innings in relief Friday. “(Colon) threw over 100 pitches (99 actually), and he hasn’t done that in a long time and he’ll have some stiffness that he’s going to work through,” Scioscia said. “(Saturday) it’s all in the right areas. You’re certainly (going to) want to check for in the next couple days.” It might make more sense to have Colon start Wednesday and work Santana out of the bullpen, since that’s where he would likely pitch if he made the playoff roster. “Ervin throwing the ball well is important to us,” Scioscia said. “If it happens to be as a starter down the road – I’m talking about this year; long range there is no doubt he’s a starter – then certainly he will be a big force. If he can help us out from the pen, it’s obviously something that will add depth.” Guerrero staying as DH Vladimir Guerrero has stopped throwing and his return to right field remains undecided. Guerrero has been the designated hitter since Tuesday after coming down with inflammation in his right triceps. “I think it’s still just a little cranky,” Scioscia said. “There are no problems swinging the bat, just throwing it he feels a little stiff so we’re going to work that in at its own pace. You can’t force that.” No catching platoon Scioscia admitted that even when Mike Napoli is at full strength, he is still leaning toward one catcher working the bulk of the time instead of splitting the load 50-50 between Napoli and Jeff Mathis. “Right now its going to come down to what they’re doing behind the plate,” Scioscia said. “That’s why I think Jeff is catching a lot right now. He’s really brought a presence behind the plate.” [email protected] local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! Matthews has not yet been cleared to do as much as jog, but he made some throws to keep his arm in shape. “It’s a little swollen, but definitely not as swollen as before,” Matthews said. “It has gone down a lot since it first happened. We’re on our fourth day and compared to where I was it’s better.” Strengthening tests are well underway in the trainer’s room. “We started that probably two days ago and add more stuff to it every day,” Matthews said. “We’re doing probably two or three rounds of treatment a day. I do one before the game and I’ll do another during the game. Basically I’ll work out from the third inning on until about the eighth inning.” Saturday was the first day Matthews did not have his ankle taped. He felt the tape was only adding to the soreness. If and when he returns to action he will tape the ankle then.
Gardaí in Donegal have warned the public over the rising numbers of scamming reports in the county, urging them to remain vigilant to the threat. The warning comes following several threats of scamming through email, texts, phone calls and letter in recent weeks.A spokesperson for An Garda Siochana in Donegal, said: “We have been getting a large volume of reports of scam emails/ texts/ phone calls and letters that are being received by people in recent times. The best advice we can offer in relation to scams in whichever form they take is to never give out your personal information to anyone by phone, email, post or otherwise. “These scam artists will try and obtain your bank account information, credit card number or other information to identify you, such as your place of birth.“There are a vast amount of types of scams out there at the minute and they all want the same thing…. access to your money!“Never ever give out personal information. If you receive a call or an email etc. do not answer or respond.“Call the bank or whoever the caller was claiming to be making contact on behalf of and verify if they made the contact with you. “If you feel that your bank account has been compromised then contact your bank directly. If you have fallen victim to a scam please come and talk to us.”Gardaí warn of increase in scam-related incidents in Donegal was last modified: November 5th, 2019 by Shaun KeenanShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)
Three stories of interest to historians of the Holy Land were reported recently:A Is for Aleph: A stone abecedary, or alphabet tablet, has been unearthed in the hill country south of Jerusalem. It is dated to the 10th century BC, the time of David and Solomon. See MSNBC News for a summary. The New York Times says this indication of early writing will undoubtedly fire up the squabble over the minimalist interpretation of archaeology, which assumes David and Solomon were minor tribal chieftains rather than the glorious kings as described in the Bible. An alphabet from this time period would indicate that literacy was already well established. Scholars say the script is early Hebrew. See also a report in the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review. In addition, according to Biblical Archaeology Review, proof of writing from this period would also weigh in on debates over whether the Bible was passed on by oral tradition or through written records. Unlike Egypt, Palestine has a paucity of stone inscriptions. Perhaps official records were inscribed on less durable media; in King Josiah’s day, the priests rejoiced to find a lost scroll of the Law of Moses, and by Jeremiah’s time (6th century BC), King Jehoiakim cut up the prophet’s writings and burned them in the fire (Jeremiah 36). Few such ancient combustible manuscripts could be expected to survive the repeated conflagrations the Holy Land has suffered, but the Jewish scribes were masters at preserving their sacred texts, as evidenced by the Dead Sea Scrolls.The Early Church: A mosaic floor of a church dating from the third century was uncovered by surprise by prisoners working for the Israeli Antiquities Authority in an Israeli high-security prison at Megiddo, reported MSNBC, National Geographic News and the Biblical Archaeological Society. Dating from a period when Christians were persecuted, this marks one of the earliest known Christian churches. The mosaic clearly shows the fish symbol and some inscriptions, one crediting a Roman official for funding the mosaic. Another clearly establishes the belief of the worshipers in the deity of Christ. It says, “The God-loving Aketous has offered this table to the God Jesus Christ as a memorial.”Goliath Found: Sling my stones! An inscription similar to the name Goliath was discovered on pottery dating from the period of the Philistine giant David made famous (by killing him), according to MSNBC News. A definitive link to the giant cannot be established, but it shows the etymological equivalents of the name existed at the time Goliath lived. It was, moreover, discovered at the site believed to be his hometown – Gath. The Jerusalem Post has a picture, and explains that the inscription contains two names that are “remarkably similar” to Goliath.Destroying History: Tragically, the Muslims are destroying Jewish history in Jerusalem and getting away with it. Ryan Jones reported in Jerusalem NewsWire that Temple Mount destruction continues, as Muslims perform illegal construction work to turn the sacred site into a mega-mosque and remove all traces of Jewish history where their famed Temple once stood. “To date, 12,000 tons of earth and debris rich in Jewish artifacts has been removed from the Mount and dumped unceremoniously at garbage dumps outside Jerusalem’s Old City,” Jones writes. “Several historical treasures have been reclaimed from the dump sites. Untold others have been lost, possibly forever.” The Jewish authorities are fearful of intervening because of Muslim threats of violence if they try. See earlier entries from 08/23/2004 and 04/17/2005.Tourist Trap: Should the north shore of the Sea of Galilee become a theme park? The Christian Science Monitor has mixed feelings about it. Evangelicals are working with Israeli authorities on plans for a “sprawling Holy Land Christian Center” to accommodate the flood of pilgrims to the lands where Jesus walked. They want to prevent kitsch and commercialism from distracting from the seriousness of the subject. Facilities of the proposed “Galilee World Heritage Park” might include a large auditorium, amphitheater, a garden of Bible plants, and quiet sites for prayer and reflection.One of the backers of the Galilee Park is televangelist Pat Robertson who, incidentally, just warned Pennsylvania voters that God might judge them with a natural disaster for voting against intelligent design (see 11/09/2005 story). MSNBC News, as could be expected, had fun with that suggestion. Update 01/12/2006: Pat Robertson was cut out of the deal by the Israeli government due to statements he made on the air in January 2006 suggesting that Prime Minister Sharon’s stroke was punishment from God for dividing “His land.” See Pilot Online.Pat Robertson’s indiscretions aside, the archaeological findings listed here are tremendously interesting and important. They coincide with dates and times mentioned in the Old Testament and gird up confidence in the historicity of the Bible. That is the ongoing record of Biblical archaeology. How the Muslims can get away with their illegal and unconscionable actions on the Temple Mount in the most important religious site on earth is unbelievable. Where is the outrage by all the liberals, who are quick to condemn America any time there is destruction of artifacts in Iraq, even if not the military’s fault? Where is the United Nations, with their protection of World Heritage Sites? Why aren’t they bringing international pressure to bear against these criminals? Where are the academics? To see how asymmetric today’s virtue of “tolerance” is, just imagine world reaction if Jews destroyed Islamic holy sites. Remember the violence and death sparked by just a rumor that American soldiers had desecrated a copy of the Koran? Appeasement as a policy has a bad history. Dads used to teach their kids the correct way to deal with bullies. As to a theme park on the Sea of Galilee, bad idea. Galilee is too important historically for attempts at gilding the lily. The best experience for modern day pilgrims is to see it like Jesus and his disciples saw it, unvarnished with 21st century theatrics. Despite their claims that this will not become a Disneyland, just wait. You can visualize it already, can’t you? Contemporary music concerts blaring out from the amphitheater over the waves where Jesus commanded, Peace: be still. Vendors are sure to follow the dollar and line the tourist avenues with Jesus trinkets, souvenir fishnet stockings and boat rides where you can try your skill at walking on water. Ugh! Let’s bomb this idea (figuratively) before the Palestinians do (literally).(Visited 9 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0
The oldest visible meteor crater on earth. The island prison that held Nelson Mandela. The remains of an ancient African city state. Evidence of the earliest humans, and the richest and most beautiful collection of cave paintings south of the Sahara. South Africa is home to eight Unesco World Heritage Sites.The Game Pass Shelter in Kamberg Nature Reserve, just south of Giant’s Castle, has some of the best-preserved San Bushman rock paintings to be found in the Drakensberg range of mountains. (Photo: Qambathi Mountain Lodge)Compiled by Mary AlexanderUnesco, the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation, has identified these eight sites to be of “outstanding value to humanity”.Four of South Africa’s World Heritage Sites are classified as cultural, three as natural, and one as a mixed cultural and natural site.The three natural heritage sites are:iSimangaliso Greater St Lucia Wetland ParkCape Floral RegionVredefort DomeThe four cultural sites are:Mapungubwe Cultural LandscapeRobben IslandCradle of HumankindRichtersveld Cultural and Botanical LandscapeThe uKhahlamba Drakensberg Park is the eighth, a mixed natural and cultural World Heritage Site.uKhahlamba Drakensberg ParkYear inscribed: 2000Core zone: 242 813 hectaresLocation: KwaZulu-NatalCoordinates: 29º 23′ S 29º 32′ 26″ EType: Mixed cultural and natural heritageUnesco reference: 985Both the Zulu name uKhahlamba (barrier of spears) and the Afrikaans name Drakensberg (dragon mountains) fit the formidable horizon created by South Africa’s major mountain range. (Photo: South African Tourism)The Drakensberg is a vast mountain range that rises dramatically at the escarpment in the south of the country, snakes north to encompass the nation of Lesotho, and winds down into smaller ranges deep in the northeast of South Africa. Its dramatic volcanic peaks make it an obvious natural heritage site, but its value to human history is the wealth of ancient rock art painted on the walls of its caves and crevices. Created over 4 000 years, it is the richest collection of rock art south of the Sahara.The uKhahlamba Drakensberg Park lies in the west of KwaZulu-Natal on the Lesotho border. It is 242 813 hectares in size, stretching 150 kilometres from Royal Natal National Park in the north to Cobham Forest Station in the south.Both the Zulu name uKhahlamba (barrier of spears) and the Afrikaans name Drakensberg (dragon mountains) fit the formidable horizon created by the range.A massive basaltic cap set on a broad base of sedimentary rocks belonging to the Stormberg series of 150 million years ago, the mountains are South Africa’s main watershed.For more than 4 000 years they were home to the indigenous San Bushman people, who created a vast body of rock art – the largest collection in the world, south of the Sahara desert.Living in the sandstone caves and rock shelters of the Drakensberg’s valleys, the San made paintings described by the World Heritage Committee as “world famous and widely considered one of the supreme achievements of humankind … outstanding in quality and diversity of subject and in their depiction of animals and human beings … which throws much light on their way of life and their beliefs”.In describing the park’s natural heritage, the committee notes its “exceptional natural beauty in its soaring basaltic buttresses, incisive dramatic cutbacks and golden sandstone ramparts. Rolling high altitude grasslands, the pristine steep-sided river valleys and rocky gorges also contribute to the beauty of the site.“The site’s diversity of habitats protects a high level of endemic and globally threatened species, especially birds and plants.”iSimangaliso Greater St Lucia Wetland ParkYear inscribed: 1999Core zone: 239 566 hectaresLocation: KwaZulu-NatalCoordinates: 27º 50′ 20″ S 32º 33′ EType: Natural heritageUnesco reference: 914At dawn, storm clouds build up over the peaceful waterways of the iSimangaliso Greater St Lucia Wetland Park. (Photo: South African Tourism)The iSimangaliso Wetland Park – previously known as the Greater St Lucia Wetland Park – has both one of the largest estuary systems in Africa and the continent’s southernmost coral reefs. In granting it World Heritage status in 1999, Unesco’s World Heritage Committee noted the park’s “exceptional biodiversity, including some 521 bird species”.Lying on the central Zululand coast of KwaZulu-Natal, the park is made up of 13 adjoining protected areas with a total size of 239 566 hectares. Its remarkable biodiversity is a result of the park’s location between subtropical and tropical Africa, as well as its coastal setting.Shaped by the actions of river, sea and wind, iSimangaliso’s landscape offers critical habitats to a wide range of Africa’s marine, wetland and savannah species. Its varied landforms include wide submarine canyons, sandy beaches, forested dune cordon and a mosaic of wetlands, grasslands, forests, lakes and savannah.The iSimangaliso Wetland Park has its origins in the St Lucia Game Reserve, declared in 1895 and made up of the large lake and its islands. St Lucia Park was proclaimed in 1939, containing land around the estuary and a strip of about one kilometre around most of the lake shore. In 1971 St Lucia Lake and the turtle beaches and coral reefs of the Maputaland coast were listed by the Convention on Wetlands of International Importance.“The mosaic of landforms and habitat types creates breathtaking scenic vistas,” the Unesco committee notes in its assessment of the park.“Features include wide submarine canyons, sandy beaches, forested dune cordon and a mosaic of wetlands, grasslands, forests, lakes and savannah. The variety of morphology as well as major flood and storm events contribute to ongoing evolutionary processes in the area.“Natural phenomena include large numbers of nesting turtles on the beaches; the migration of whales, dolphins and whale-sharks offshore; and huge numbers of waterfowl including large breeding colonies of pelicans, storks, herons and terns.”Robben IslandYear inscribed: 1999Core zone: 507 hectaresLocation: Western CapeCoordinates: 33º 48′ S 18º 22′ EType: Cultural heritageUnesco reference: 916Robben Island, a barren two-kilometre-long piece of rock lying 11 kilometres off the coast in Table Bay, has held South Africa’s social outcasts for centuries. Today it is most famous as the place Nelson Mandela jailed for 18 of his 27 years as a political prisoner of the apartheid state. (Image: South African Tourism)Robben Island, a barren two-kilometre-long piece of rock in Table Bay off the coast of Cape Town, is famous as the place where Nelson Mandela was imprisoned for 18 of his 27 years in jail.Lying 11 kilometres offshore, the small, windswept island is now home to the Robben Island Museum, a favourite for many tourists to South Africa.Robben Island was not always a prison, nor was it originally cut off from the Cape Peninsula. Thousands of years ago it was an inhabited area connected by a spit of land to the Cape mainland.It was first made a jail by Dutch colonists at the Cape who, from their arrival in the mid-1600s, incarcerated opponents of colonial rule there, including African and Muslim leaders.Robben Island later became infamous as a maximum-security prison for anti-apartheid activists, including Nelson Mandela, the first democratically elected president of South Africa. From the mid-1960s the prison held many leaders of the African National Congress (ANC), including Walter Sisulu, Govan Mbeki and Ahmed Kathrada, as well as Robert Sobukwe, the founder of the Pan Africanist Congress.It was also used to confine people suffering from leprosy, as a mental hospital from 1846 to 1931, as well as a training and defence base in World War II.Following the unbanning of the ANC and other opponents of apartheid in 1990, political prisoners were released from the island, the last leaving in May 1991. The last common-law prisoners left in 1996, when it ceased to be a jail.In 1999 the World Heritage Committee declared Robben Island a World Heritage site of cultural significance.“The buildings of Robben Island bear eloquent testimony to its sombre history,” the Unesco committee noted, adding that the island “symbolises the triumph of the human spirit, of freedom, and of democracy over oppression.”Cradle of HumankindYear inscribed: 1999, extended 2005Core zone: 47 000 hectaresLocation: Gauteng and North West provincesCoordinates: 25º 55′ 45″ S 27º 47′ 20″ EType: Cultural heritageUnesco reference: 915A 3D reconstruction of the face of the Taung Child, the first ancient human fossil found at the Cradle of Humankind and the type specimen of the hominin species Australopithecus africanus.The region of Sterkfontein, Swartkrans, Kromdraai and environs has one of the world’s richest concentrations of hominin fossils, evidence of human evolution over the last 3.5-million years. It is known in South Africa as the Cradle of Humankind.Found in the provinces of Gauteng and North West, the cradle covers an area of 47 000 hectares. The remains of ancient forms of animals, plants and hominids – our early ancestors and their relatives – are captured in a bed of dolomite deposited 2.5-billion years ago. Although other sites in south and east Africa have similar remains, the cradle has produced more than 950 hominid fossil specimens.Sites in the area supply crucial information about members of one of the oldest hominins, the australopithecines – two-footed, small-brained primates that appeared about 5-million years ago.Excavations and research at the Sterkfontein Caves have so far yielded the nearly complete skeleton of a 3.3-million-year-old australopithecine, known as Little Foot, as well as about 500 specimens of Australopithecus africanus that date from about 2.8- to 2.6-million years ago.Other major finds in the area include the most complete skull yet found of Australopithecus africanus, an outstanding example of a female Paranthropus and known as Mrs Ples – a more robust australopithecine, also known as Australopithecus robustus – and fossils of an early species of the genus Homo with stone tools, the first evidence of cultural behaviour.In 2008 two skeletons were discovered at Gladysvale in the cradle and have been called Australopithecus sediba, an entirely new hominin species, and dating back 1.9 million years. The new species, revealed to the world in 2010, has long arms, like an ape, and short powerful hands, making it likely that it could have retained its ability to climb. A very advanced pelvis and long legs suggest that it was capable of striding and possibly running like a human. Sediba has been described as a transitional species between Australopithecus africanus and either Homo habilis or Homo erectus. The site is still rich in undiscovered finds.In granting the Cradle of Humankind World Heritage status for its cultural significance, the World Heritage Committee noted that the sites “throw light on the earliest ancestors of humankind. They constitute a vast reserve of scientific information, the potential of which is enormous.Mapungubwe Cultural LandscapeYear inscribed: 2003Core zone: 28 168 hectaresLocation: LimpopoCoordinates: 22º 11′ 33″ S 29º 14′ 20″ EType: Cultural heritageUnesco reference: 1099One of the tiny gold-foil rhino sculptures found in the ruins of the ancient kingdom of Mapungubwe, in South Africa’s Mpumalanga province. (Image: University of Pretoria)Mapungubwe – “place of the stone of wisdom” – was South Africa’s first kingdom, the subcontinent’s largest realm for 400 years before it was abandoned in the 14th century. Its highly sophisticated people traded gold and ivory with China, India and Egypt.The site lies on the open savannah of the Mapungubwe National Park, at the confluence of the Limpopo and Shashe Rivers in the province of Limpopo.It abuts the northern border of South Africa and the borders of Zimbabwe and Botswana, a crossroads location that helps explain its prosperous past as an important trading centre, particularly at the height of its powers between about 1220 and 1300 AD.A free-standing structure rising 30 metres above the surrounding grasslands, Mapungubwe is topped by impregnable cliffs all around.Since its discovery in 1932 this Iron Age site has been excavated by the University of Pretoria. But it was kept secret until 1993, just prior to South Africa’s first democratic elections, because evidence of a highly advanced indigenous society existing centuries before European colonialism spread across Africa ran contrary to the racist ideology of apartheid.“The remains in the Mapungubwe cultural landscape are a remarkably complete testimony to the growth and subsequent decline of the Mapungubwe state,” the World Heritage Committee says in its assessment.“What survives are the almost untouched remains of the palace sites and also the entire settlement area dependent upon them, as well as two earlier capital sites, the whole presenting an unrivalled picture of the development of social and political structures over some 400 years.”Cape Floral RegionYear inscribed: 2004Core zone: 553 000 hectaresBuffer zone: 1 315 000 hectaresLocation: Western Cape and Eastern CapeCoordinates: 34º 10′ S 18º 22′ 30″ EType: Natural heritageUnesco reference: 1007The flowers of the pincushion protea, on of the thousands of unique plant species found only in the Cape Floral Kingdom.The earth has only six major floristic kingdoms, most of which stretch over vast regions and continents. But one kingdom is confined to a small area of a single country: South Africa’s Cape Floral Region.The Cape Floral Region takes up only 0.04% of the world’s land area, yet contains an astonishing 3% percent of its plant species. This makes it one of the richest areas for plants in the world and one of the globe’s 18 biodiversity hot spots.A stretch of land and sea spanning 90 000 square kilometres, the 553 000-hectare Cape Floral Region comprises eight protected areas stretching from the Cape Peninsula to the Eastern Cape: Table Mountain, De Hoop Nature Reserve, the Boland mountain complex, the Groot Winterhoek wilderness area, the Swartberg mountains, the Boosmansbos wilderness area, the Cederberg wilderness area, and Baviaanskloof.Kirstenbosch Botanical Garden on the slopes of Table Mountain is part of the region, making it the first botanical garden ever included in a World Heritage site.The rich diversity of the Cape Floral Region contributes to South Africa having the third-highest level of biodiversity in the world. Table Mountain National Park, for example, has more plant species in its 22 000 hectares than the British Isles or New Zealand.The Cape Floral Region is not only remarkable for its diversity. The region’s endemism level, at 31.9%, is the highest on the planet. Of the 9 600 species of vascular plants (plants with vessels for bearing sap) found here, some 70% are endemic, occurring nowhere else on earth.The region is home to nearly 20% of Africa’s flora, though it makes up less than 0.5% percent of the continent’s land mass.It is also home to 11 000 marine animal species, 3 500 of which are endemic, and 560 vertebrate species, including 142 reptile species, of which 27 are endemic.In granting the Cape Floral Region World Heritage status in 2004, the World Heritage Committee noted: “Unique plant reproductive strategies, adaptive to fire, patterns of seed dispersal by insects, as well as patterns of endemism and adaptive radiation found in the flora are of outstanding value to science.”Vredefort DomeYear inscribed: 2005Core zone: 30 000 hectaresLocation: Free State and North WestCoordinates: 26º 51′ 36″ S 27º 15′ 36″ EType: Natural heritageUnesco reference: 1162Two billion years later the Vredefort Dome has been overrun with human activity – mines, factories, farms, cities and suburbs – but it’s still the oldest visible meteor impact crater on earth.Some 2-billion years ago a meteorite 10 kilometres in diameter hit the earth about 100km southwest of Johannesburg, creating an enormous impact crater. Found near the town of Vredefort in the Free State, the site is known as the Vredefort Dome.The meteorite, larger than Table Mountain, caused a thousand-megaton blast of energy, vaporising about 70 cubic kilometres of rock.“Vredefort Dome bears witness to the world’s greatest known single energy release event, which caused devastating global change, including, according to some scientists, major evolutionary changes,” Unesco says of the site.“It provides critical evidence of the earth’s geological history and is crucial to our understanding of the evolution of the planet. Despite their importance to the planet’s history, geological activity on the earth’s surface has led to the disappearance of evidence from most impact sites and Vredefort is the only example on earth to provide a full geological profile of an astrobleme below the crater floor.”The world has about 130 crater structures of possible impact origin. The Vredefort Dome is among the top three, and is the oldest and largest clearly visible meteorite impact site in the world.The original crater, now eroded away, was probably 250 to 300 kilometres in diameter. It was larger than the Sudbury impact structure in Canada, about 200km in diameter.At 2-billion years old, Vredefort is far older than the Chixculub structure in Mexico which, with an age of 65-million years, is the site of the impact that led to the extinction of the dinosaurs.Richtersveld Cultural and Botanical LandscapeYear inscribed: 2007Core zone: 160 000 hectaresBuffer zone: 398 425 hectaresLocation: Northern CapeCoordinates: 28º 36′ S 17º 12′ 14″ EType: Cultural heritageUnesco reference: 1265The dramatic, dry mountainous desert of the Richtersveld Community Conservancy is confined in the east by the deep canyons of the Orange River and Nababiep mountains, and to the north by the largely impenetrable Vandersterrberg Mountains. (Image: South African Tourism)The Richtersveld Community Conservancy covers 160 000 hectares of arid mountains in the northwest Northern Cape, South Africa’s vast desert province. In this harsh and dry region live the Nama people, who own and manage the land communally according to their semi-nomadic pastoral lifestyle.The Nama are descendants of the Khoi-Khoi people, the San Bushmen and Khoekhoen who were the original inhabitants of South Africa. The Nama’s pastoral way of life is thought to have lasted for some 2 000 years in the region. The Richtersveld is also the only area in which they still construct rush-covered domed houses, known in their language as |haru oms, portable dwellings appropriate to their nomadic existence.A remote wilderness, with few passable roads and sparsely populated by sheep and goat herders, the Richtersveld Cultural and Botanical Landscape was nominated as a cultural site shaped by the semi-nomadic Nama pastoralists, one of the last transhumance – or seasonally migrating pastoralist – cultures in Southern Africa.The dramatic, dry mountainous desert of the Richtersveld Community Conservancy is confined in the east by the deep canyons of the Orange River and Nababiep mountains, and to the north by the largely impenetrable Vandersterrberg Mountains. To the south and west it merges with grazing land.The Nama live in three small villages, established as mission settlements. Many of the men work as migrant labourers elsewhere in the country. Those that keep grazing animals tend to be the elderly and are few in number, no more than 300 people at certain times of year.Particular features of their cultural landscape that earned Unesco’s recognistion were the Nama’s seasonal migrations and grazing grounds, the stockposts or camps where their livestock are corralled, and the |haru oms rush-mat houses they erect at these camps.The houses are small hemispherical portable structures, consisting of a wooden frame of intersecting wooden hoops, covered over with fine mats of braided local rushes. Traditionally the houses were dismantled and moved with their owners from camp to camp.“In terms of the wider geo-cultural area, the Nama pastoralists are not unique,” the Unesco advisory body says in its report on the Richtersveld. “However … the Nama pastoralists in the Richtersveld are exceptional as the last practitioners of a form of transhumance developed by the Khoi-Khoi branch of the San, the indigenous people of the area and represent a distinctive culture that was once much more widespread.”The Richtersveld Community Conservancy was established in 2002, evolving out of the Richtersveld Community Heritage Area that was set up in 2000 to protect both the environment and culture of the area.
South African mountaineer Sibusiso Vilaneis pictured atop Mount Everest with RobertAnderson. Vilane hopes to become the first blackperson to complete the Three PolesChallenge.(Images: Sibusiso Vilane)MEDIA CONTACTS • Sibusiso VilaneExplorer+27 72 698 7600RELATED ARTICLES• Paddling for a good cause• Barefoot on the roof of Africa• Antarctic team did it for children• Sibusiso Vilane’s trek to the top• Parlotones to climb Kili for charityShamin ChibbaMountaineer and motivational speaker Sibusiso Vilane once told the assembly at a briefing in Parliament that when he reached the top of Mount Everest for the first time, he dropped to his knees and “thanked the Lord for taking me to the top of the mountain”.Then he wept, stood up and smiled.“I was grateful there was an African standing on top of the world,” he recalled.It was probably the best explanation he could conjure for a feeling that couldn’t be expressed in words.Now Vilane is looking to conquer nature again by crossing the flat sea ice of the Arctic Ocean.A trek to the North Pole – the last phase of the Three Poles Challenge – is the next adventure for the 41-year-old.He follows in the footsteps of Norwegian explorer Erling Kagge, who was the first person to complete the trio of challenges, and if he is successful, Vilane will be the first black person to achieve the feat.While most South Africans embark on Easter activities in the first week of April, Vilane is spending the period between 4 and 13 April traveling 120km across the Arctic Ocean, in a bid to reach the pole.He’s already completed the first two parts of the challenge: the South Pole in 2008 – which he reached with Team Extreme partner and fellow South African Alex Harris – and the daunting Mount Everest, which he summited twice in 2003 and 2005 using different routes.He was recognised as the first black African to complete each of those expeditions.“I have an inherent desire to inspire others and to share something positive with people. I also want to leave behind a lasting legacy,” he said of his feats.Vilane started his trek from the Norwegian village of Longyearbyen before setting off to a spot located a chilly 89 degrees north of the Arctic Circle.From there he’s crossing the ice on skis to the North Pole, accompanied by a team from Norway. Since the group is skiing in the summer, up to 8-10 hours a day, the sun is continuously above the horizon, providing them with 24 hours of daylight.Once they reach 90 degrees north, which is the North Pole, they will be picked up by helicopter and a charter flight will return them to Longyearbyen.Preparing for the gruelling ArcticVilane faces many potentially fatal dangers – he has to endure temperatures as low as -50 degrees C, be on the lookout for polar bears and avoid weak spots in the ice that he could fall through.He also has to be wary of the shifting sea ice that is thinning by the day.To prepare for these gruelling conditions, Vilane’s training programme included running and cycling. He also spent a lot of time pulling a car tyre, which he says is a standard training method for most explorers who embark on this expedition.“Your muscles take strain because you exert them on tough terrains while pulling a heavy load,” he explained.Full-fledged adventurerBorn in Mpumalanga province in 1970, Vilane began life as a cattle herder in Swaziland. His family relied on the money he earned and they forbade him from attending school until he was 10.In 1993, he started work as a game ranger at Malolotja Nature Reserve in Swaziland.His career as an explorer began when he met his first climbing mentor John Doble in 1996. In that same year Vilane and the former British High Commissioner to Swaziland climbed a number of peaks in the Drakensberg together.Besides the Three Poles Challenge, Vilane officially joined the exclusive Seven Summits Club in 2008 when he climbed Mount McKinley in Alaska.After reaching the top of Mount Kilimanjaro in 1999, it took him just nine years to conquer the six other peaks and be officially accepted into the club.Inspiring others through his featsIt is no wonder that the man who received the Order of Ikhamanga in 2006, for his contribution to mountaineering, would turn his achievements into something fellow South Africans can learn from.Vilane earns a living not from climbing, but from talking about it. He is a motivational speaker who thrives on inspiring others, especially young people, to achieve their goals.“They will learn to persevere, to have the will to succeed and give life a purpose. I would be looked at as a role model and an inspiration,” he said of his service to society.He abides by one line that he believes gives people determination: “Each and every one of us has got what it takes to be great.”For Vilane, mountaineering and exploring is for everyone, and whoever has the desire and a clear mind to take on the challenges will succeed.“It is my desire to inspire Africans who think they cannot do these things. Africans have been sitting back because of a lack of exposure and a lack of funds.”He relies on three traits that he says each mountaineer needs: self-belief, self-motivation and a strong desire to succeed, because “it’s important to have the ability to persevere, despite the difficulties that lay ahead of you.”Explorers key in tackling environmental crisesVilane is adamant that mountaineers and explorers do not interfere with nature and that they actually help in curbing some of the ecological issues we currently face.“We are sensible and responsible when we hike or climb. We take care of the mountain; we do not bring it down with us.”He said that he and other explorers are helping expose the issues that affect the world.He also said that without adventurers, life would be quite dull and that we would not have as much knowledge of the world.“How would we know if the Arctic ice was melting if people did not explore it?”Vilane the family manAsked about his family’s reaction to his latest expedition, Vilane said that Nomsa, his wife of 17 years, and his children were not surprised.Nomsa doesn’t mind him exploring as she knows Vilane can take care of himself.One of his children has also taken up climbing. In 2010, at the age of 17, his eldest daughter Setsabine climbed Mount Kilimanjaro with her dad. And according to Vilane, she is keen to do it again.“I will be happy if one my children wanted to climb Everest because I will be there for them. I have seen fathers and daughters, and fathers and sons climbing together and it is wonderful; a great bonding experience.”Exploration, he said, has made him a better person in all spheres of life and has helped him to appreciate nature, people and his family.For the love of adventureIn an interview with CNN reporter Nkepile Mabuse for the magazine programme African Voices, Vilane said that the reason there were few black mountaineers was not because they lacked the ability to do it, but they just did not understand it.“For the majority of black people, when I tell them I am going on an expedition, they ask, ‘What do you gain from it?’ They look at the material gain,” said Vilane.He added that South Africans failed to understand the idea of having to temporarily give up the comforts of home to go on a gruelling excursion up a mountain.Vilane, however, does it for the inner satisfaction and sense of achievement. He added that the feeling of being at the top of a mountain cannot be duplicated.“Even if I try to explain it to you, you will not grasp it until you do it yourself,” he said.
Share Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest Our forecast for this week is not as wet, and the biggest headline: significantly warmer (at least for a couple of days)!We have a pretty nice day today, and it will not feel quite as chilly, due to northwest winds not being as strong as yesterday. High pressure settles in, parking directly over north central to NW Ohio tomorrow morning and then moves off to the east. South winds up the backside of the high will allow for additional moderation in temps tomorrow. We will be dry both days, although clouds will start to build late tomorrow.Wednesday kicks off a period that features scattered precipitation over several days. There is a massive and powerful storm complex coming out of the plains and lifting northeast at midweek. The track is well away from us here, and as such, we only have to worry about rain. In addition, the storm is so powerful, that it likely draws in a big batch of dry air in its circulation, and that starves out some of the moisture that was originally headed towards us. So, here is our update. On Wednesday we have scattered showers over about 60% of the state, bringing a few hundredths to .4” of rain. Scattered showers are back for Thursday and can trigger a few hundredths to .25” over about 30% of the state. Then for overnight Thursday night through Friday can’t rule out showers over about half of the state. Right now, we think these will be relatively minor again, but there is the potential for thunderstorms in southern Indiana. For that reason, we will allow for a few hundredths to half an inch but will refrain from ramping up our totals too much just yet. The map above right shows potential rain totals through Friday evening. The main takeaway here is that we are looking for light on and off moisture through the second half of the week with decent combined coverage but nothing too dramatic on any given day. The biggest headline for the second half of the week will be temps…as we could see the warmest air in months coming across the region. 50s and 60s are possible Wednesday, and 70s Thursday thanks to strong south winds circulating around that strong, powerful storm. The map below right shows potential high temps on Thursday. Those temps fall off back closer to normal to close the week and for the weekend.For the weekend, we likely keep more clouds than sun in the forecast, at least on Saturday where we can’t rule out a few spits and sprinkles. Sunday has a better chance of some sun. Dry weather settles in for next Monday and Tuesday. We finish the 10 day window next Wednesday with some clouds in the north and east and perhaps a few hit and miss showers. But a large part of the state stays dry, and we have better sunshine potential the farther south and west across the state you go.
Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hosting The poll was from Harris Interactive in partnership with LinkedIn and surveyed more than 2000 people. Harris doesn’t know enough about RSS feeds to have an opinion about them on their own poll and press release pages, so it wasn’t until five days after publication that the LA Times tech blog discovered this latest gem.Look at these survey options, though. Would you be so presumptuous to say you think the service will grow exponentially? That it will remain limited to youth and media users? I use Twitter all day long, think about it even more than that and write about it for a living and I would check that last box saying I don’t know enough about it to have an opinion about its future.Short-form, multi-platform, hyper-public, data-minable, @ and DM-rich streaming conversation in both real time and asynchronously? That’s a new paradigm and anyone who thinks they can predict its future may be a bigger fool than the 69% of people who admitted they couldn’t.Obviously a substantial number of the 69% of respondents who don’t know enough to have an opinion said so because they simply don’t get Twitter at all. After all the media attention the service gets, does that mean that those people are stupid or that Twitter is stupid? To the degree to which either of those things are true, they don’t tell the whole story at all. The element of mystery (as opposed to cynicism) is the most exciting part of this situation. marshall kirkpatrick 69% of respondents to a new poll performed last month say they don’t know enough about Twitter to have an opinion about its future. That might sound pretty dismal after all the media attention the social network has received, but who amongst us could blame a person for not feeling qualified to comment on the future of an emerging communication paradigm? Twitter is complicated! It seems just as remarkable that 31% of people think they do know enough about Twitter to have an opinion about its future.Check out these survey options below and tell us which of those answers you’d have given if asked. Related Posts Tags:#Analysis#news#web A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai… Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic… 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Market
The Centre has decided to distribute around 600 flats in the Commonwealth Games Village among various government departments and PSUs while 100 flats will be sold off to the general public at market rates.Replying to a written question in Lok Sabha, Minister of State for Urban Development today said that out of the DDA’s share of 711 flats, around 100 flats will be auctioned while the remaining flats will be given to Government departments and PSU.A total of 1,168 flats were constructed at the Village under PPP mode by Emmar MGF and DDA’s share of 711 flats include 333 flats which were bought from the private developer by the government agency under a buy back arrangement.DDA had paid Rs 760 crore to Emaar-MGF under the buy back arrangement.Roy said DDA, at a meeting last month, had decided to allot over 600 flats to government departments and PSUs by issuing a circular.On auctioning the flats to the general public, he said a committee will be set up to ascertain the reserve price for the flats.Last month, the government had decided to confiscate Rs 183 crore bank guarantee furnished by the builder after DDA found “irregularities” and deficiencies in the Games Village.
Indian fans broke into wild celebration even as the Pakistanis were left heartbroken after their team lost the high-voltage semi-final of the World Cup to Mahendra Singh Dhoni’s men in Mohali on Wednesday night.Watched by the Prime Ministers of both countries and accompanied by top dignitaries, the semi-final had generated a lot of hype, and when India took the last Pakistani wicket, the capacity crowd at the PCA stadium erupted.”India deserved to win. This fact had been admitted by Afridi, who had yesterday said that India were the favourites,” said Anuj Gupta, an ardent fan.History repeated itself as India maintained their record of remaining unbeaten against Pakistan in World Cup.UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi, who was watching the final moments of the match with her son and party general secretary, Rahul Gandhi, looked delighted on India’s win and so did the Nehru-Gandhi scion, attired in a white kurta pyjama.The win also brought smiles on the faces of Bollywood star Aamir Khan, who was seated with Nita Ambani, wife of Reliance Industries chairman Mukesh Ambani, and UB Group chairman, Vijay Mallya.”After Kapil’s devils won the Cup in 1983, Dhoni’s men will bring this Cup back to India,” Gupta said.Even as the Indians basked in their team’s glory, the fans from across the border were shattered.”I was confident that Pakistan will win. We are disappointed and some in our group are heartbroken, but I think in the end it is cricket which has won and brought the two sides closer once again,” Waris Baig, Pakistan’s leading film singer, said.advertisementCricketing ties between the two nations had been suspended after the Mumbai terror attack in 2008.Meanwhile, outside the stadium, people burst crackers and did the traditional “Bhangra” to celebrate the victory.- With PTI inputs
Rohit Sharma continued to break records with his fourth hundred in T20 internationals which scripted India’s 71-run victory over the Windies in the second match of the series in Lucknow on Tuesday.Rohit became the first batsman in world cricket to smash four T20 centuries in international cricket and also overtook Virat Kohli to become the highest run-scorer for India in the format.India rode on his entertaining 111 not out to post a mammoth 195 for 2 after being put into bat.Rohit Sharma’s historic 111* sets up India’s 7th successive T20I series victoryThe bowlers then stepped up for the hosts and restricted West Indies to 124 for 9 in 20 overs. India thus, took a 2-0 lead in the 3-0match series by virtue of this win.”Whenever you get an opportunity you do your best. Today was a perfect platform. Everyone who came to watch the game will go home with a smile. This is what we play for, to see that smile on everyone’s face. Glad that we won this game and this series as well,” Rohit said at the post-match presentation.That moment when you become the first player to score FOUR T20I Centuries #INDvWI pic.twitter.com/F5TFxc3CQIBCCI (@BCCI) November 6, 2018India vs West Indies: Rohit Sharma blasts record 4th T20I hundred on Diwali eveHitman’s knock also saw him overtake Pakistan’s Shoaib Malik and New Zealand’s Brendon McCullum to grab the second spot on the list of batsmen with the most runs in T20 internationals.advertisementWith 2203 runs in 86 T20Is at an average of 33.89 and four tons, Rohit is just 68 runs behind New Zealand’s Martin Guptill, who heads the all-time list with 2271 runs in 75 matches.What a player @ImRo45 #INDvWI pic.twitter.com/Ig7UhubLxIBCCI (@BCCI) November 6, 2018READ – Rohit Sharma overtakes Virat Kohli to become India’s highest run-scorer in T20IsThe win helped India register its 7th successive T20I series win after the draw against Australia in 2017. Since then, they defeated New Zealand, Sri Lanka, South Africa, Ireland and England in bilateral series besides winning the Nidahas Trophy.The win also extended India’s unbeaten streak in T20I series to nine. Before the series win over New Zealand, India had drawn with Australia and defeated Sri Lanka in a one-off T20 International.India vs West Indies 2nd T20I: HighlightsRohit, who is leading the Indian team in the absence of regular skipper Virat Kohli, also praised his opening partner Shikhar Dhawan and the bowlers, especially Khaleel Ahmed and Jasprit Bumrah who took two wickets each in the match.”You know Dhawan’s natural instinct is to put pressure on the bowlers, but we decided to take our time. The partnership at the top was very important. 120-plus stand was crucial and KL finished off well.”Bumrah has been our premier bowler for us and the way we use him in T20s is different to ODIs. Khaleel wanted the new ball and he initially looks to swing it and he has taken up the challenge well. And when he bowls that kind of a spell upfront that helps us,” Rohit added.That’s that from Lucknow. #TeamIndia win by 71 runs and take an unassailable lead of 2-0 in the three match T20I series.#INDvWI pic.twitter.com/vceDTuMRX1BCCI (@BCCI) November 6, 2018And finally, the Hitman praised the 50,000-odd fans that turned up at the newly-built Bharat Ratna Atal Bihari Vajpayee International cricket stadium, which hosted its first international cricket match this evening.”Wonderful stadium. One of the best stadiums we’ve played at, the way the crowd supported, hope to get the same support in future. I hope we get many more games here and we continue to entertain them,” Rohit concluded.