Some interesting links on a Monday

As I look back to interesting articles I’ve come across this week, once again I seem to have tagged many articles about Syria, many painful articles about Syria. But today I want to be a little bit more cheery and share a few other culturtwining links from around the world that I have appreciated in the last month or so.

First up, just take a moment to ponder this title: Why breakfast should be banned in Sudan. Really? Ban breakfast, the so-called most important meal of the day? Why, yes. As I imagine any non-Sudanese who has ever lived and worked in Sudan will agree, Sudanese breakfast is a monumental cultural adaptation. It feels like we get less work done because breakfast is not eaten until 11 a.m. PROMPTLY. Breakfast is not ever to be late, and woe to those of us who facilitate workshops and go a few extra minutes (yes, that would be me). Of course, that means that all my Sudanese colleagues are operating on an empty stomach up until 11 a.m. I’m not sure that’s always ideal either. But it works for Sudan… maybe us Westerners should try it out? Anyway, the photo from the article is certainly appetising…

Next up: How the world lost its waistline, another rather cleverly-titled article. It talks about obesity around the world. It’s not just Americans who are fat! I particularly identified with the section on Egypt, where to sit in a comfortable seat, leaning back, sipping something very sweet or munching on something very sweet, or eating a greasy meal with lots of bread, is the ultimate sign of prestige. Even though Egypt is one of the world’s poorer countries, its women are, according to the article the 14th ‘biggest’ in the world, and its men come in at 27th.

And finally, I can’t resist sharing one story from Syria today. I don’t know whether to celebrate women’s empowerment or to mourn the demise of peacemaking. It’s certainly a very different take on what is going on in Syria these days. Women supporting the current government (usually referred to as ‘the regime’), by taking up arms, in addition to maintaining their day jobs and caring for their families. Inspiring? Heart breaking? Can a story be both? Take a look: Syrian Army’s Women Brigade: First All-Female Paramilitary Unit Part Of Assad’s National Defense Forces

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