Hollydolly Books

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Location: Gatineau, Quebec, Canada

I am an avid book reader. I prefer to read books by Indian authors or books set in India. I am also very interested in the Hindu religion/philosophy, so I do quite a bit of reading in that area. I also enjoy attending my local Hindu temple. It is so beautiful there, and the people are so gracious. They also serve delicious food. It is served with such love it is a joy to partake. I also am a real armchair traveller, so travel literature is a real favorite . I have also become a practising Buddhist, so I do a tremendous amount of studying, which I love. I enjoy going to my local Buddhist temple for study and meditation. Just to walk into the shrine room and see the beautiful serene statue of Buddha is very calming. I am also attending Yoga classes regularly, which I enjoy very much.I am also trying to improve my meditation.

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Magic Bus

I really enjoyed this book. I had heard a lot about this author but this is the first of his books that I have read. I just loved it.

“Rudy, a 60-something Englishman with a pierced ear and a bandana, bought his first vehicle in 1966 - a second-hand Barnstable school bus with no suspension and dodgy brakes. It took him as far as Maidstone before the engine caught fire. The recovery mechanic enquired how far he intended to go: Rudy told him Lahore. The mechanic replied he'd be lucky to reach Southend”

Well, that had me hooked. In fact, the bus eventually limped into Istanbul before shuddering to a halt. But having made it so far along the trail, there was no shortage of hippies, dropouts and fellow travelers eager to hitch a ride, even if it meant pushing the bus to Pakistan.

Today, such overland drifting is no longer possible. Iran closed its borders to travelers after the revolution in 1979. Afghanistan became a lawless battleground for the world's superpowers. Where the first wave of hippies might be welcomed into the homes of Kurdish tribesmen as honored guests, Islamic terror groups now identify tourists as a legitimate target. Yet perhaps the biggest blow to the hippy ideal was the realization that there really was no Shangri-La - or at least there wasn't until the Chinese authorities recently designated the anonymous Himalayan town of Zhongdian as an official tourist paradise.

However, none of this deterred Rory, he leads us on a rambling fun filled trip. I could smell the “hash” taste the dust, and feel the thrill of a trip I would love to have made.

Rory, transported me back to the 60’s 70’s a time which to me was “the best” for that I say “Thank you”

Iran Awakening

I had long wanted to read this book, and I was certainly not dissapointed. This is a very moving memoir of what I believe to be one of the great women of our times. Shirin Ebadi, winner of the 2003 Nobel Peace Prize. She is well known for her work as a lawyer, on the case of Zara Kazemi, who was raped, tortured and murdered in Iran.

Shirin beacame the first women Judge in Iran. She was forced out after the 1979 revolution. The religious authorities declared women unfit to serve as judges, she was demoted to work as a clerk in the courtroom she had once so proudly presided over. She eventually fought back to become a Human Rights lawyer, defending women and children in political cases that other lawyers refused to take on. It is a very simply told memoir, she describes how she remained in Iran as many members of the so called elite class fled. She describes how she was motivated to struggle for justice and civil rights. One part made me smile, she describes how the Islamic Republic was more concerned with her refusal to wear a headscarf, (which she had never done)than with all her legal reasoning abilities.

This is a wonderful moving yet inspiring memoir, I urge anyone who has not done so to read it. I know it made me realize how very lucky I am to be living in Beautiful Canada.

Thank you Lotus and Sanjay for bringing this book into my life. I will be forever grateful.