By Jay Boyar and Jay Boyar,ORLANDO SENTINEL | July 23, 2004
This month's prize for least-glitzy title goes to The Story of the Weeping Camel. In case you were thinking the title is some sort of metaphor, please be advised that the movie actually does tell the story of a camel - two of them, in fact. I can't reveal whether they weep; that would spoil the ending. Set in modern times in the Gobi Desert of South Mongolia, the film looks in on a pregnant brown-haired, two-hump camel that brings forth a snow-white colt in a difficult birth. As camel lovers well know, a mother camel will sometimes reject her baby after such a birth.
By Christian Ewell and Mike Klingaman and Christian Ewell and Mike Klingaman,SUN STAFF | March 17, 2004
Tom Sullivan's resignation as men's basketball coach at UMBC last week was triggered by a prolonged post-game tirade aimed at a senior player, according to the parent of a scholarship athlete at the school. That blowup, which lasted several hours after a defeat at the University of Hartford on Feb. 29, launched a team-wide revolt against the coach, said the parent, who spoke on condition of anonymity. Sullivan, known for his quick temper and expletive-laced outbursts, was stripped of his post and placed on administrative leave two days later.
By Russell Working and Russell Working,SPECIAL TO THE SUN | November 21, 2002
BIRQASH, Egypt - It is 113 degrees in the shade on the edge of the Western Desert, and the animals of the Birqash camel market are not especially inspired by a heap of dry alfalfa. In the blazing heat, camels become sluggish and lose their appetites. They sit placidly, eating little and drinking less than is wise. Camel trader Abdel Razia Bekhet, 52, wearing a blue robe and a turban, lounges in the shade, feeding alfalfa by hand to one of his 11 cud-chewing beasts of burden. Afterward, he will set a plastic tub full of water in front of the animal and urge it to wet its lips.
By John W. Kropf and John W. Kropf,SPECIAL TO THE SUN | October 13, 2002
With the wave of a meat ax and a smile, a young man in a bloody butcher's apron tries to entice me into buying a skinned sheep carcass. Careful not to offend, I smile and move briskly to the next stall. This is the start of my Saturday morning shopping grocery shop at the Mir Market Bazaar in Ashgabat, Turkmenistan. Two years ago, I might have complained about the long lines in American supermarkets or the paralyzing number of choices of cereal. But after two years as a State Department official in the central Asian country of Turkmenistan, bordered on the south by Iran and the west by Afghanistan, I've decided when I return to the United States, I'll stop complaining.
By Nancy Taylor Robson and Nancy Taylor Robson,Special to the Sun | September 15, 2002
Only the strong survive summers like the one we've just had. Even some drought-resistant native plants flagged once water restrictions went into effect. But the sedum, a succulent whose leaves store water, came through beautifully. No wonder it's been cultivated in the Middle East for a thousand years. Years ago, sedum was also an end-of-summer staple in our grandmothers' gardens, but trendier arrivals gradually elbowed it out. Now sedum is gaining a new generation of fans -- thanks in part to its toughness.
By Special to the Sun | August 4, 2002
A Memorable Place Lessons in life from a desert nomad By Elizabeth Atalay SPECIAL TO THE SUN Life lessons can come from the most surprising people and places. I learned this with my mother, who was perched atop a camel like the Queen of Sheba. She bobbed and wobbled with each of the camels' lurching steps, letting out squeals of delight and fear as we progressed deeper into the Negev desert in Israel. Our camel-trek leader, a local Bedouin named Razi, told me that my mother reminded him of his own mother.
July 4, 2002
TAKE THE D.C. Metro in from New Carrollton from now through Sunday, and if you get off at the Smithsonian stop you'll ride the up escalator into Samarkand. It'll be packed, hot, dusty, bustling -- just like the real thing. Musicians from Kabul might be playing their urban, courtly ballads, maybe the romantic one of Layla and Majnun. Or, nearby, Almas Almatov might be singing his songs from the windswept Kazakh steppes, songs of lonely horseriders, laments that echo the eerie throat-singing of the Altai Mountains.
By BLOOMBERG NEWS | December 12, 2001
WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. - R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Holdings Inc., the second-biggest U.S. cigarette maker, agreed yesterday to buy Santa Fe Natural Tobacco Co., a week after raising its offer to $340 million in cash to counter bids from Toronto-based Rothmans Inc. Rothmans said last week that Santa Fe's board likely would approve the R.J. Reynolds bid and that it wouldn't submit another offer. The purchase gives R.J. Reynolds, maker of Camel and Winston cigarettes, its first international brand since selling its overseas business to Japan Tobacco Inc. two years ago. Santa Fe's Natural American Spirit organic cigarettes provide R.J. Reynolds with a premium-priced brand whose sales are rising at a time when tobacco companies are fighting for fewer smokers in North America.
HAVANA -- It is a stifling Sunday morning, and thousands of city dwellers are scrambling to get to the public beach 10 miles east of downtown.Because private cars are rare, most Cubans rely on public transportation. But, in this capital of 2 million, buses can seem as infrequent as oases in the desert. And so the government's unique solution: mechanical camels.And here one comes, its hulking, 35-foot frame a menace among Old Havana's bicycle taxis and classic land-shark American cars. This camel's humps are faded pink steel, its snort a sooty black exhaust, its innards a mangle of passengers, its head a Ford L-9000 tractor-trailer rig. It is hip-to-hip humanity on wheels, packed so tightly that conductors at times must shove newcomers aboard.
NAZILI, Turkey -- Bells clang rhythmically, drawing closer as men with berets, stout guts and leathered skin lead their camels into the ring of combat. Zeybek music -- a squeaky, kazoolike sound made by a wooden flute accompanied by a drum -- carries on the wind.It's the music, they say, that makes the camels dance.Darkening clouds threaten rain. Yet thousands of villagers assemble in makeshift bleachers or lounge on truck beds surrounding the ring. They have come from throughout rural western Turkey to see this winter spectacle.
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