The Lost Tribes of Tierra del Fuego: Selk’nam, Yamana, Kawesqar

The Lost TribesThe Lost Tribes of Tierra del Fuego by Martin Gusinde

The German missionary Martin Gusinde arrived in Tierra del Fuego in 1919. Although his initial mission was to convert the Indians among whom he lived, Gusinde in fact ended up doing the very opposite: he was to become one of the first Westerners to be initiated into the Indians sacred rites. Over the course of five years, he studied the Alakaluf, Yamana, and Selknam peoples, travelling from the canals of western Patagonia to the great island of Tierra del Fuego. Gradually, the missionary became an anthropologist. Lost Tribes 3Gusinde’s isolation on this land at the end of the earth made his approach highly unique. Fascinated by what he saw, he took over a thousand photographs, all produced using a portable darkroom. The portraits he captured constitute a kind of genealogical and social tree. This book presents Gusinde’s photographs and research

Lost TribesFascinated by what he saw, Gusinde took more than one thousand photographs, all produced using a portable darkroom. Gusinde captured some truly extraordinary images that his contemporaries were unable to: feather-clad bodies sporting high headdresses made of bark, wrapped up in guanaco furs, or entirely covered with ritual paint, populating a landscape battered by wind, rain, and snow the heart of a natural world that Darwin had celebrated, not long before, for its wildness. A dazzling visual experience, Gusinde s photographs are a monument to the memory of the Tierra del Fuego people as well as an exceptional anthropological document. ”

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Passage to Cuba: An Up-Close Look at the World’s Most Colorful Culture

Passage to Cuba

Passage to Cuba by Cynthia Carris Alonso

To stroll the streets of Cubato hear the rumbling engines of its 1950s automobiles, the jazz, and the rumbais to travel back in time, to see jaw-dropping natural beauty and the artists, musicians, and folklore of legends.

Passage to Cuba 2
Cynthia Carris Alonso

With access few others have had, Cynthia Carris Alonso has spent twenty years capturing Havana s crumbling, baroque splendor. Her photographs celebrate the dreamy palette of Cubasalmon pink, sky blue, apricot, aqua greenand reveal the contrast between patina homes; peeling stucco apartments; and the great Capitol Building, Havana Cathedral, and Hotel Nacional.
With “Passage to Cuba,” Alonso opens the doors to an exquisite but rarely seen place. So take a stroll along the Malecon seawall; marvel at the dancers with their colorful, ornate costumes; lose yourself in Jose Fuster s spellbinding mosaic designs; or simply relax in the warm sun of the countryside, where the calm, aging fishermen spend their days and where Ernest Hemingway wrote “The Old Man and the Sea.”

Passage to Cuba 3
Cynthia Carris Alonso

 This keepsake volume is a breathtaking tribute to a land with a complex history. It s a lush, vibrant collection of photographs and a road map to use to embark on a remarkable odyssey.

Passage to Cuba 4
Cynthia Carris Alonso

Armed with a camera and access that few Americans have, Cynthia Carris Alonso has spent 20 years capturing Havana’s crumbling, baroque splendor. Her photographs celebrate the dreamy palette of Cuba (salmon pink, sky blue, apricot, aqua green), and reveal the contrast between patina homes;peeling stucco apartments;and the great National Capitol Building, Havana Cathedral, and National Art Schools – where budding artists rival those the world over.

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Wide-Open World: How Volunteering Around the Globe Changed One Family’s Lives Forever

Wide Open WorldWide – Open World by John Marshall

John Marshall needed a change. His twenty-year marriage was falling apart, his seventeen-year-old son was about to leave home, and his fourteen-year-old daughter was lost in cyberspace. Desperate to get out of a rut and reconnect with his family, John dreamed of a trip around the world, a chance to leave behind, if only just for a while, routines and responsibilities. He didn’t have the money for resorts or luxury tours, but he did have an idea that would make traveling the globe more affordable and more meaningful than he’d ever imagined: The family would volunteer their time and energy to others in far-flung locales.

“Wide-Open World” is the inspiring true story of the six months that changed the Marshall family forever. Once they’d made the pivotal decision to go, John and his wife, Traca, quit their jobs, pulled their kids out of school, and embarked on a journey that would take them far off the beaten path, and far out of their comfort zones.
Here is the totally engaging, bluntly honest chronicle of the Marshalls’ life-altering adventure from Central America to East Asia. It was no fairy tale. The trip offered little rest, even less relaxation, and virtually no certainty of what was to come. But it did give the Marshalls something far more valuable: a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to conquer personal fears, strengthen family bonds, and find their true selves by helping those in need. In the end, as John discovered, he and his family did not change the world. It was the world that changed them.

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A Field Guide to Getting Lost by Rebecca Solnit

Field Guide to Getting LostA Field Guide to Getting Lost by Rebecca Solnit

Whether she is contemplating the history of walking as a cultural and political experience over the past two hundred years (Wanderlust), or using the life of photographer Eadweard Muybridge as a lens to discuss the transformations of space and time in late nineteenth-century America (River of Shadows), Rebecca Solnit has emerged as an inventive and original writer whose mind is daring in the connections it makes. A Field Guide to Getting Lost draws on emblematic moments and relationships in Solnit’s own life to explore issues of wandering, being lost, and the uses of the unknown. The result is a distinctive, stimulating, and poignant voyage of discovery.

The Kindness Diaries: One Man’s Quest to Ignite Goodwill and Transform Lives Around the World

The Kindness DiariesThe Kindness Diaries by Leon Logothetis

The incredible journey of one man who sets out to circumnavigate the globe on a vintage motorbike fueled by kindness.
Follow the inspirational journey of a former stockbroker who leaves his unfulfilling desk job in search of a meaningful life. He sets out from Los Angeles on a vintage motorbike, determined to circumnavigate the globe surviving only on the kindness of strangers. Incredibly, he makes his way across the U.S., through Europe, India, Cambodia, and Vietnam, and finally to Canada and back to the Hollywood sign, by asking strangers for shelter, food, and gas. Again and again, he’s won over by the generosity of humanity, from the homeless man who shares his blanket to the poor farmer who helps him with his broken down bike, and the HIV-positive mother who takes him in and feeds him. At each stop, he finds a way to give back to these unsuspecting Good Samaritans in life-changing ways, by rebuilding their homes, paying for their schooling, and leaving behind gifts big and small. The Kindness Diaries will introduce you to a world of adventure, renew your faith in the bonds that connect people, and inspire you to accept and generate kindness in your own life.

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Leon Logothetis will be at Distant Lands on June 15, at 7:30pm

Italian Ways: On and Off the Rails from Milan to Palermo

Italian WaysItalian Ways by Tim Parks

Tim Parks s books on Italy have been hailed as “so vivid, so packed with delectable details, [they] serve as a more than decent substitute for the real thing” (Los Angeles Times Book Review). Now, in his first Italian travelogue in a decade, he delivers a charming and funny portrait of Italian ways by riding its trains from Verona to Milan, Rome to Palermo, and right down to the heel of Italy.

Parks begins as any traveler might: “A train is a train is a train, isn t it?” But soon he turns his novelist s eye to the details, and as he journeys through majestic Milano Centrale station or on the newest high-speed rail line, he delivers a uniquely insightful portrait of Italy. Through memorable encounters with ordinary Italians conductors and ticket collectors, priests and prostitutes, scholars and lovers, gypsies and immigrants Parks captures what makes Italian life distinctive: an obsession with speed but an acceptance of slower, older ways; a blind eye toward brutal architecture amid grand monuments; and an undying love of a good argument and the perfect cappuccino.

Italian Ways also explores how trains helped build Italy and how their development reflects Italians sense of themselves from Garibaldi to Mussolini to Berlusconi and beyond. Most of all, Italian Ways is an entertaining attempt to capture the essence of modern Italy. As Parks writes, “To see the country by train is to consider the crux of the essential Italian dilemma: Is Italy part of the modern world, or not?””

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6 Fun (yes fun) Airline Safety Videos

For those who love Middle-Earth, we have Air New Zealand

Virgin Airlines gives us the safety dance.

Delta is all about the internet with their safety video

Air France is all style.

Air New Zealand embraces the All-Blacks.

Safety in Paradise again by the one and only Air New Zealand


Midnight in Siberia: A Train Journey Into the Heart of Russia

Midnight in SiberiaMidnight in Siberia by David Greene

Far away from the trendy cafes, designer boutiques, and political protests and crackdowns in Moscow, the real Russia exists.

Midnight in Siberia chronicles David Greene s journey on the Trans-Siberian Railway, a 6,000-mile cross-country trip from Moscow to the Pacific port of Vladivostok. In quadruple-bunked cabins and stopover towns sprinkled across the country s snowy landscape, Greene speaks with ordinary Russians about how their lives have changed in the post-Soviet years.

These travels offer a glimpse of the new Russia a nation that boasts open elections and new found prosperity but continues to endure oppression, corruption, a dwindling population, and stark inequality.

We follow Greene as he finds opportunity and hardship embodied in his fellow train travelers and in conversations with residents of towns throughout Siberia.

We meet Nadezhda, an entrepreneur who runs a small hotel in Ishim, fighting through corrupt layers of bureaucracy every day. Greene spends a joyous evening with a group of babushkas who made international headlines as runners-up at the Eurovision singing competition. They sing Beatles covers, alongside their traditional songs, finding that music and companionship can heal wounds from the past. In Novosibirsk, Greene has tea with Alexei, who runs the carpet company his mother began after the Soviet collapse and has mixed feelings about a government in which his family has done quite well. And in Chelyabinsk, a hunt for space debris after a meteorite landing leads Greene to a young man orphaned as a teenager, forced into military service, and now figuring out if any of his dreams are possible.

Midnight in Siberia is a lively travel narrative filled with humor, adventure, and insight. It opens a window onto that country s complicated relationship with democracy and offers a rare look into the soul of twenty-first-century Russia.”