February 23, 2015 |
When I told my Norwegian friend Lise that we were going to Iceland for New Year's Eve, she questioned my sanity. In contrast to its nearly unlimited daylight in the summer, in the midst of winter, Iceland relishes about four hours of sunlight a day. Its skies change from rain to sleet to snow in a blink, and the ground is frequently so icy that you need to add metal tracks to your boots. But even in winter, Iceland provides extraordinary vistas of ice-covered lava fields; natural hot springs as prevalent as community swimming pools; seafood so fresh it may have been caught that morning; breathtaking geysers that entertain every few minutes; tap water so clean it makes bottled water feel, well, foreign; waterfalls so majestic as to be humbling; and the piece de resistance: a New Year's Eve display of bonfires and fireworks like nowhere else in the world.
September 3, 2014 |
Symphony orchestras draw great cachet from their geographical homes: Any group with Vienna, Berlin, or Amsterdam in its name is going to command immediate attention from audiences, even if those cities' third-tier orchestras would be lucky to match Scranton's Northeastern Pennsylvania Philharmonic. So can an orchestra from Turkey, Iceland, or Lapland hope to be noticed at the world's busiest orchestra festival, the summertime BBC Proms at London's Royal Albert Hall? Actually, it can. One of this year's Proms winners seems to be the Borusan Istanbul Philharmonic Orchestra.
July 2, 2014 |
I went to the land of the ice and snow with the midnight sun where the hot springs flow. Touching down in Reykjavik, Iceland, days before the summer solstice, I couldn't but echo Led Zeppelin's "Immigrant Song," with Robert Plant's ululations accompanied by images of animated kittens on a Viking ship from a viral video etched in my Internet-addled brain. I was in the northernmost capital in the world along with a WXPN World Café Live Travel Adventure. XPN's cultural trips have previously gone to Cuba, Brazil, New Orleans, and other locales, bringing members along for the recording of the David Dye-hosted World Café "Sense of Place" series.
July 6, 2013 |
REYKJAVIK, Iceland - Icelandic lawmakers introduced a proposal in Parliament on Thursday to grant immediate citizenship to National Security Agency leaker Edward Snowden, but the proposal received limited support. Ogmundur Jonasson, whose liberal Left-Green Party is backing the proposal along with the Pirate Party and Brighter Future Party, put the issue before the Judicial Affairs Committee. Six members of minority parties were in favor out of Parliament's 63 members Thursday - the last day before summer recess.
July 5, 2013
M ELISSA LEE, 23, of Center City, is co-founder and program development director for the Global Renewable Energy Education Network (GREEN). Based at 17th and Arch streets, it's a study-abroad program that accelerates careers in renewable industries. Lee and co-founder Mikhail Naumov started the company in 2009 when they were students at Rutgers University in New Brunswick, N.J. I spoke with Lee. Q: How'd you get the idea? A: We went to Costa Rica and found one of the few places where you could travel and experience all types of renewable-power plants.
March 25, 2013 |
MIAMI - Two skydivers died during weekend jumps at a popular Florida, and the co-owner of the facility said Sunday that they did not deploy their main parachutes. Deputies found the bodies of the skydiving instructor and a student, both from Iceland, on Saturday after the two didn't return from a jump with a group, setting off an hours-long air and ground search around the site in Zephyrhills, about 30 miles northeast of Tampa. Pasco County sheriff's authorities identified the victims as instructor Orvar Arnarson, 41, and student Andrimar Pordarson, 25. The men jumped separately, not in tandem.
March 13, 2013 |
CHICAGO - American midfielder Carli Lloyd will be sidelined 6 to 8 weeks after breaking a bone in her left shoulder during the Algarve Cup. After initially saying the injury was minor, the U.S. Soccer Federation announced Tuesday that an MRI showed the fracture. Lloyd, who is from Delran, N.J., was injured March 6 against Iceland and missed matches against China and Sweden. She also will miss Wednesday's Algarve final against Germany at Faro, Portugal Lloyd has 43 goals in 154 international appearances, including the gold-medal game-winners for the United States in the 2008 and 2012 Olympics.
March 10, 2013 |
REYKJAVIK, Iceland - In the age of instant information, globe-spanning viral videos, and the World Wide Web, can a thoroughly wired country become a porn-free zone? Authorities in Iceland want to find out. The government of the tiny North Atlantic nation is drafting plans to ban pornography, in print and online, in an attempt to protect children from a tide of violent sexual imagery. The proposal by Interior Minister Ogmundur Jonasson has caused an uproar. Opponents say the move will censor the Web, encourage authoritarian regimes, and undermine Iceland's reputation as a Scandinavian bastion of free speech.
July 21, 2012 |
PRINCETON - Police are searching for a beloved resident who has gone missing - a 100-pound stuffed bighorn sheep that has sat in front of a wool shop for decades. Princeton Borough police said Lindi, the mascot that had guarded the entrance to Landau's, a family-owned wool shop, for nearly 40 years, has been missing since Monday, the Trenton Times reported. The Nassau Street landmark is a popular subject for tourist photos. Store owner Robert Landau told the newspaper that he spent $10,000 in the 1970s to ship the award-winning specimen from its native Iceland as a representative of the business Landau's was doing with that country.
July 3, 2012 |
FOR A NUMBER of years, I have been having regular discussions about the world's economic situation with a very close friend. To keep him in proper perspective, I should note that while he is not in the top 1 percent of America's wealthiest, he is certainly in the top 20 percent and possibly 10 percent. He is now retired. Most of our disagreements concern the best way to get out of our economic doldrums. He is firmly convinced that the only way to restore substantial growth is to have an austerity program with a key provision of sharp cuts in government spending at all levels of government.