SCOLA Travel Journal: Week Twenty

Have you accessed your free trial to www.scola.org yet? If so, you may have noticed all the material available from Pakistan on Foreign Text! There are over 1,900 newspaper publications and over 30 magazine issues! Wow! I could read this stuff all day, but what better way to learn about Pakistan than experience it myself? I know just the place I need to go to begin my quick adventure to Pakistan, but before I do that I better find out what I am getting myself into with World TV Online!

World TV Online plays international television programming 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. News from Islamabad in Urdu is available every weekday on Channel Six. I quickly discover all the news and current events that I missed when browsing papers and magazines on Foreign Text.

After reading Foreign Text and watching World TV Online, I am ready for my adventure with On the Street Videos! My first adventure in Pakistan is to chat with the Tribal Chief from the remote Balochistan Province. I discover how tribal chiefs in Balochistan are selected and how they govern their territory.

My next stop in Pakistan is to learn about Pakistan’s climate and explore what the weather is typically like this time of year. Where I live the weather has been cold with lots of snow, so if there’s is warmer I might consider taking a trip there for real! Unfortunately, I realize the winter weather in Pakistan is still cold, with snow falling, frozen lakes, and freezing lakes. Looks like I’ll have to choose a different destination to cure my winter blues!

My third and final stop in Pakistan is to talk with the locals about music in Pakistan. The locals and I both agree that music is important because it is a language that is understood throughout the world. In Pakistan, there are many forms and kinds of music, including classical, rock, pop, and more. Everyone has their own choice of what kind of music to listen to and Pakistani singers are famous for their command and understanding of the art of music.

Well, it’s time to head home. I’m back sitting on my couch in no time at all. I’ll be going on my next adventure soon, so don’t forget to log on to www.scola.org and access your free trial so you can join me next time!

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SCOLA Travel Journal: Week Four

You would think that after three weeks of traveling to three different countries would leave me tired and yearning for home, but traveling with the comfort and convenience of SCOLA On the Street Videos, my travels have only left me wanting more! In the past three weeks I have traveled to the Philippines, Peru, and Nepal. The time has come for me to log on to SCOLA and decide where I would like to go next!

To scope out my surroundings, I first like to log on to People and Places. The online photo gallery has over 29,000 original photos from SCOLA friends and providers from around the world! I scroll through the photos and land on scenic views from Band-e Amir National Park in Afghanistan. Looks like I have found my fourth destination…

Before I begin my travels, I want to know what’s going on in Afghanistan…are there any current events I should know about? I first log on to SCOLA Foreign Text, a global newsstand of newspapers, magazines, and books. Foreign Text has over 1,400 resources from Afghanistan, so I peruse some of the recurring newspapers such as Barkhleek Weekly and Sarnavesht Daily to catch up on Afghanistan’s current affairs.

PP-AF-Band-e Amir Natural Lakes

Band-e Amir Natural Lakes

Next, I head on over to World TV Online, where I tune in to SCOLA Channel Six for news from the Middle East. Did you know you can view evening and nightly newscasts in Dari and Pashto every day of the week? I check those out too, and watch some past news broadcasts just to make sure I didn’t miss anything. Finally, I am ready for my visit to Afghanistan!

I log on to SCOLA On the Street Videos to begin my journey. With a collection of over 340 videos from Afghanistan this should be quite the adventure! My first stop in Afghanistan is to experience an overview of Afghanistan, including information on Afghanistan’s native plants and animals, food and cuisine, cultures, and traditions and much more.

My second stop is Jame Mosque, the largest and most prominent mosque in Herat City. The tour guide Mohamad tells me about the architecture, art, the location of the mosque, and the people that gather there. He tells me Muslims gather at the Mosque every Friday to pray, and the mosque is open other days of the week as well for anyone who would like to enter and pray. The Mosque is considered very important to the Afghan people, even in the time of the Taliban regime which hated art and architecture.

Next, I go speak with another native Afghan about work and labor in his country. He says that there are major difference between the types of work done in villages and in cities, adding that there are more work opportunities in the cities than in the suburbs. He goes on to talk about work opportunities in the areas of agriculture, business, construction and so on. He also talks about terms and conditions of work in Afghanistan. He provides me with a lot of detailed and interesting information from a firsthand perspective of an Afghan laborer.

The long tour through the large mosque has made me hungry, so next I stop to learn about local produce, such as tomatoes, peppers, and cucumbers. I learn how the produce is grown and why they are good for my body.

During my time in Afghanistan I was able to take many photos, so my last stop in the country was a tutorial in Dari over Photoshop. I want to be able to edit my photos and this was also the perfect opportunity to brush up on my Dari. On the Street Videos offers many technical and instructional videos in foreign languages and I was able to easily follow along with the Photoshop tutorial. My pictures have been retouched, I have added another country to my adventures, and I am ready to go home and plan where I will go next…

Do you have a suggestion on what country I should travel to next? Let me know in the comment section below!

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