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Connecting 72 Countries around the Globe

"The wise man does at once....
what the fool does finally."

~ Baltasar Gracián, Spanish Philosopher & Writer (1601–1658)

September 29, 2003


"The Time of My Life"


From the Inside Out...
Your Greatest Power

Yes You Can!...
Find Low Car
Rental Rates

Far Horizons...
Greetings from Guam

Links That Shine...
Augie's Doggies Rescue

Fascinating Facts...
Vital Home
Repairs (Part 1)

Laughing It Off...
Penguin Humor

Untangling the Web...
What a Site!
Computer Ease

Look at That!...
King Saves Strays

Joyful Lifestyles...
Lifting Our Own
Depression (2)


Uplifting World

BE the World
You Want to See!

So many people in this world have come to believe that they are locked into their life pattern ...yet, new perception choices can set us free.

~ Chelle ~

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From the Inside OutFresco by Brumidi-US Capitol Corridor

"Becoming aware of my character defects leads me naturally to the next step of blaming my parents," one woman quips. Benjamin Franklin didn't feel that way. Becoming aware of his character defects led him to something quite remarkable. He exercised what author J. Martin Kohe calls YOUR GREATEST POWER — your power to choose.

Franklin noticed that he had difficulty getting along with people. He tended to argue too much. He had trouble making and keeping friends. So he made a choice. He chose to examine his own personality and make a list of what he considered undesirable personality traits. (It's not known if other people helped him make this list.)

It was New Year's Day. Franklin finished his list of personality traits he wanted to change. He identified 13 character flaws and determined to work on each one for a week. He did this for an entire year and finally checked each trait off his list.

Benjamin Franklin developed one of the finest personalities in America. People looked up to him and admired him. When the colonies needed help from France, they sent Franklin. The French liked him and gave him what he wanted.

Suppose Franklin had chosen to go through life without using his greatest power — his power to choose. Suppose he reasoned that there was really nothing he could do about himself. Would France have supported the colonies? The history of the world may have been significantly different.

A good wish changes nothing. But one good decision changes everything. Your power to choose, to make a good decision, spells the difference between wishing and making those wishes come true.

One man quipped, "When it comes to believing in myself, I'm an agnostic." One of the greatest problems many people experience is lack of confidence. Some don't believe in their ability to speak in public, others to accomplish something they've never done before, and still others do not have the confidence to overcome their shyness.

Do you know that you can become more confident? One effective technique is to learn to do what you're afraid to do. I led a seminar a few years ago where I asked for three volunteers to speak to the group the next day. One young woman named Judy was the first to raise her hand. She explained to me later why she did so: "When you asked for three volunteers," Judy said, "I felt a knot of fear in my stomach. I've never done anything like this before and I've never really believed I could. But the fear was telling me something," she continued. "So...BECAUSE I felt so anxious, I decided that this was something I had to do. But I must to tell you, I'm terrified!"

She made up her mind to DO that which she was afraid to do. And the following day, Judy's five-minute talk was superb! She was honest and genuine, speaking right from her heart. Now she is more confident about her ability to speak in public.

People who are confident have choices. People who are fearful too often avoid much of life because they are afraid to venture into unknown territory. Jim Loehr said, "With confidence, you can reach truly amazing heights; without confidence, even the simplest accomplishments are beyond your grasp." When you make what you're afraid to do what you CHOOSE to do, you will soon have the confidence TO DO whatever you choose!

Do you need to exercise your greatest power? Your power to choose can never be taken from you. It can be neglected. It can be ignored. But if used, it can make all the difference. Use your greatest power and, whether or not you change history, you will certainly change your future.

~© 2002 Steve Goodier
Author and Publisher
Life Support



Sun Wave Yes You Can!

Large, worldwide chains maintain auto-rental outlets in virtually every city of size throughout the world, and also use both nationwide and worldwide computer networks — reached by dialing an "800" number — to service your reservations for a car. If you can make your booking at least 7 or 14 days in advance, you'll nearly always receive reduced rates that make the prices of these national car rental chains competitive with those of small, local firms.

But woe to the casual tourist who simply appears at an airport Avis, Hertz, Budget or National desk without a reservation booked several days in advance; the rates for such an on-the-spot rental are almost always considerably higher, not simply overseas but in the U.S. as well. Under those circumstances, you'll do better by seeking out the smaller local firms with unfamiliar names and no airport locations below; they thrive on the last-minute booking.

When it comes to shopping between car rental companies, the smart, Web-savvy traveler utilizes one or several of the Internet sites that automatically do the shopping for them. Sites such as or, which may be better known for searching for cheap airfares, also have the ability to shop and find the best price for car rentals. Many of the extras, such as insurance and tax, are often not included in the prices quoted by these sites, and such charges vary from company to company, so some additional research is required before finding the best deal.

International renters have a host of other issues to figure before finding the best price. Overseas, the cost of gasoline is so high (it often exceeds the equivalent of $3 or $3.50 for a gallon) that you are also well advised to book the smallest car consistent with your needs, and thus minimize your use of gas. But remember that such cars usually come with small luggage compartments; if you will need a roof rack for extra baggage, be sure to order one when making your reservation — they cannot usually be obtained on the spot. Also bear in mind that in some overseas locations, you can't secure unlimited mileage with on-the-spot booking. For those countries, book ahead with an international renter (or e-mail back and have a friend do it for you) to avoid racking up expensive per-mile (or per-kilometer) fees.

Outside the mainstream car rental agencies such as Hertz, Avis, Budget, Enterprise, Alamo, and National, there are smaller, lesser-known companies that offer discounted automobile rentals. The upsides to renting with such a discounter is obvious: it'll cost less money. The downsides vary. Some use older or second-hand cars. Other agencies are very small, perhaps with a single location, and services will be far less extensive than the major players (which is important should anything go wrong). But if you' re willing to take the slight risk with an older car or a smaller rental company, chances are you'll pay less than at a mainstream agency (but still look at the bigger companies too, to compare). Here are some sources for low cost auto rentals:

Rent-A-Wreck (800/944-7501, is the overly apologetic moniker for the company that discounts older cars through much of the U.S. Rest assured its automobiles are not "wrecks" by any means (not usually anyway), and its rates often come in well under Hertz, Avis, Alamo and the like. Be aware that some states have dozens of R-A-W branch locations, while others have one or none. (800/697-5908, is similar to Orbitz or Hotwire in that it searches a host of car rental agencies and then lists them in order from cheapest to most expensive for a given itinerary. But this site searches many of the smaller companies that other sites don't and that a visitor might not know about.

AutoEurope (888/223-5555, suffers none of the downsides listed above (it is a big operation and its cars are not old), yet it often undercuts the rates of worldwide operations like Hertz and Avis. It is a top option for short-term rentals all over Europe.

Renault Eurodrive (800/221-1052, is often a less expensive option for longer-term vacationers abroad, meaning people who are staying at least 17 days in Europe. Check out and compare both AutoEurope and Renault's rates to be sure.

Dan Dooley (800/331-9301, is a discount rental operation for Ireland only. It offers a wide array of cars models and sizes, and is able to quote rates in Euros, Stirling, or US dollars, which makes for easy price comparison.

~ Arthur Frommer's Budget Travel


Far Horizons

Photo: Guam Tropical Dive Station
Leopard Sharks in Guam

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"Hafa Adai!" That's the timeless greeting of the ancient Chamorro culture that you'll hear again and again as the people of Guam welcome you to their tropical island home. Since time immemorial, Agana has been the seat of government on Guam. Agana {or Hagåtña} means blood, meaning it is the lifeblood venue for government of a larger body called Guahan or Guam. With a rich history as inviting as its warm weather and golden beaches, Guam is a meeting ground of old and new, East and West. It is the westernmost territory of the U. S., as well as the gateway to idyllic isles of Micronesia. Guam has a variety of sights to see, from its geographic wonders, to its cultural and historic sites, and equally impressive, are its underwater treasures.

Travel ArchivesTravel Archives

Spiral LINKS

"Augie's Doggies Rescue"

There is a 13 year old girl near Pittsburgh who has started, on her own, a dog rescue. So far Augusta Delisi has saved over 25 dogs and puppies from euthanization. Happy & Healthy Pets is very proud of the tremendous efforts, passion, and courage Augusta has shown and are helping by hosting a special Web page for her work.

"Augie's Doggies"

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Fascinating FactsBetween rock and hard place!

Owning a house is expensive, which is why so many homeowners procrastinate on repairs. Real estate agents have a euphemism for this condition: It’s called “deferred maintenance.” Some fixes, however, should never be delayed. Ignoring these problems can result in much more expensive repairs later on — or even injury and death. Here’s what home inspectors around the country say you should be on the lookout for:

1. A water leak — anywhere: A stain on your ceiling. A toilet that rocks. White powdery stuff that grows on your bricks or foundation. A musty smell in your house. Whatever the source, the culprit is water, and the damage can be severe. Left unchecked, leaks can lead to rot, dry rot, mold and termite infestations. Water can cause roofs to collapse, foundations to buckle and all manner of expensive repairs. What’s more, water-related problems can get your home blackballed by insurance companies worried about the soaring number of mold-related claims nationwide. (See “Insurers keep a secret history of your home.”) The fix: Stop the leak by any means necessary, repair the damage and take the required steps to make sure the problem doesn’t reappear. Minor roof leaks, for example, can be patched with roof cement, but if your roof is aged and failing, you may need to have it replaced. That’s expensive, but not as bad as replacing the trusses and underlying roof structure that can rot away if not protected.

2. Flickering lights: Do your lights dim when the fridge switches on or you crank up the microwave? You may have bad wiring or too many appliances hooked to one circuit. Either one can cause a fire. A lot of older homes have only one or two circuits in the kitchen. It’s far safer to have at least four circuits: two for countertop appliances, one to run the dishwasher and garbage disposal and another, dedicated line for the microwave. Flickering lights also can be a sign of failing connections in aluminum wiring, a feature in homes built between 1965 and 1973. The fix: You can try to distribute power-hungry appliances more evenly, by not running more than one at a time or by plugging some into another circuit. But the best fix is a cure: Get an electrician to upgrade your wiring, add more circuits, or both. If you have aluminum wiring but can’t afford to upgrade, the US Consumer Product Safety Commission recommends making your wiring safer by using special crimp connectors rather than the usual twist-on style.

3. Rodent incursions: If you hear the pitter patter of little rodent feet, don’t turn up the stereo to drown them out. It’s not just that rodents can carry disease and make a mess nesting in the tax records you’ve stored in the attic. Rats, mice and other vermin love to chew through insulation and wiring, and are suspects in many house fires. The fix: Use traps and bait products or call in an exterminator. Mice droppings can carry the deadly Hantavirus, and rodents themselves can carry everything from salmonella to the plague, so professional help might be the wisest course.

4. Soaring fuel bills: If you’re paying a lot more for gas or oil and there hasn’t been a rate hike recently, the culprit could be problems with your furnace. This is more than a pocketbook issue, since poorly functioning systems can cause deadly carbon monoxide buildup in your home. The Consumer Product Safety Commission estimates about 200 people die annually from carbon monoxide exposure in the home, typically from malfunctioning heating systems. The fix: Have your furnace professionally cleaned and inspected annually, including the flue. The cost is usually less than $100. Install UL-approved carbon monoxide detectors, which cost $25 to $50 each. (Continued next week)

~Liz Pullman Weston,

What is quicksand and is it as dangerous as in the movies?

Click for Answer

"A Pat on the Back"

Laughing It Off

One day, a bus driver ran across a small delivery truck that was stranded on the side of the road.

The delivery man, who worked at the zoo, asked if the bus driver would do him a major favor.

He offered the bus driver $100 to deliver a truckload of penguins to the zoo which was only about a mile away.

The bus driver agreed and proceeded to load two dozen penguins onto his bus and away they went.

About an hour later, the delivery driver got his truck fixed and headed off to the zoo to catch up with his deliveries.

As he was driving down the road, he saw the bus driver and the busload of
penguins heading in the opposite direction.

What could be happening?

He turned his truck around and chased the bus, and then pulled the bus driver over onto the side of the road.

He said, "What happened? I gave you a $100 dollars to take the penguins to the zoo!"

The bus driver said, "Right. I took penguins to the zoo just like you said."

"But we had some money left over ...

so now we're going to the beach!"

~Penguin 'Movie' Contributed by Bob in St. Cloud, Florida
Humor Archives



Untangling the Web

Penguin Programmer


International Dialing Codes...
Find the correct dialing code for any country.


Msgsrv32 error messages...
fixes can be found at Msgsrv32.exe. Finding the correct fix hinges on the full, exact error message you get. Contributed by Jane at
The Cats

Look at THAT!

Bangkok, Thailand
Photo: Sukree Sukplang/ REUTERS
Click Here
Thai soldier plays with Som-O...
a female stray dog, after a group of Bangkok street dogs completed their training to stop wildlife smuggling, scare off illegal loggers, and detect suspicious substances. The kingdom has millions of homeless dogs, but unlike most countries, Thailand does not kill off its strays because Buddhists revere all forms of life. The project was started because of Thailand King Bhumibol Adulyadej's compassion for the homeless animals. ~REUTERS


JoyJoyful Lifestyles: Weekly Insights

Today we'll take a closer look at the healing aspects of yoga and stretching to enable us to process our own depression in a healthy fashion. The fluid movements and gentle stretches utilized in yoga offer a natural remedy for aching muscles. The rhythm of the movements regulates the heart rate and breathing, leading to an overall calming and strengthening of the circulatory and respiratory systems. Since increased heart rate and shallow breathing are often among the first reactions of physical stress, practicing certain yoga poses can lead to healing.

In "What Makes Flamingos Pink?" by Bill McLain, he asks, "Why does it feel good when you stretch? Stretching sends a signal to the brain, telling it to make your muscles relax. As your muscles relax, you feel less tense. That's why it feels so good to stretch. The muscles in your body are like springs. Imagine a spring that is very tight. You can't compress it much or produce much power with it. On the other hand, if a spring is very loose, it's quite easy to compress it. Once you let go of the compressed spring, it releases a great deal of force.

"If your muscles are tight, they can't be contracted very far and they don't produce much power. Also, a tight muscle can't absorb much shock and puts even more strain on your joints. Tight muscles not only limit your performance in whatever you're doing; they can also lead to injuries. If you spend just a few minutes a day stretching your chest, back, shoulders, and legs, you'll be more flexible and will feel a lot better. Stretching may not be the fountain of youth, but regular stretching will keep you limber and make it easier to get in and out of your car or pick something up off the ground. You won't be any younger, but you'll feel younger. After all, youth is a state of mind."

According to nutritional therapist and yoga expert Dianne Clark at, a simple morning stretch routine can actually make your skin more radiant and your attitude more uplifted. Follow these six easy steps:

1. Roll up a small towel. Grasp an end in each hand. Stretch your arms out in front of you.
2. Breathe in as you raise the towel above your head. Keep your arms straight and the towel stretched.
3. Breathe out as you lower the towel over the back of your head to shoulder level.
4. Breathe in again as you bring the towel back up above your head.
5. Breathe out as you return the towel to the starting position at the front of your body.
6. Repeat the action up to five times.

A simple morning stretch routine also has added benefits for arthritis sufferers whose joints and muscles tend to be at their stiffest and most painful, first thing in the morning. The above gentle stretching exercise will help loosen up aching joints, promote mobility and reduce physical stress that is stored in the body. The best part, of course, is that you can create your own 'joyful lifestyle' by warding off your own depression.

~ Chelle Thompson ~



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"The intent of Inspiration Line is to show What Is Possible By choosing new perspectives,
we can change ourselves from the inside out
and improve our relationships, our community and our planet."
Editor . Chelle Thompson ~~~ Associate Editor . Geri Merrill

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