"Setting out on the voyage to Ithaca you must pray that the way be long, full of adventures and experiences."
- Constantine Peter Cavafy "Ithaca"
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©2008 W. Ruth Kozak


As early as 700 A.D., people began small settlements at the site that later became Cahokia Mounds. By the settlement’s peak in the late 11th and early 12th centuries, Cahokia is estimated to have contained 10,000-20,000 inhabitants.
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I could hear a familiar “Rat-a-tat-tat!” echo through the winter woods. Once I heard it, I stood stock still and listened, hoping to get a glimpse of the bird making the sound on a tree nearby. It was dead-still, no wind, and the landscape muffled by a deep carpet of snow.
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In the 17th century, gold, silver and other treasures flowed into Spain like water from its overseas empire. Other European powers like Britain and Holland took careful notice of this wealth and commissioned privateers to “occasionally interrupt” the stream of treasure-laden galleons. .
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When shrouded in mist, the Scottish Highlands evoke an image of living history, aging in slow motion, travelling forward with its past preserved by its traditionally wet cold weather, like ancient history preserved in a peat bog.
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The Caucasian mountains amaze with their greatness. The beauty of nature has inspired many poets and artists, but the mountains are not only about snow-capped peaks, but also dense forests, crystal clear lakes and rivers.
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Lake Atitlan, nestled within the fog-shrouded mountains of the Guatemalan highlands, is graced with twelve towns scattered around its periphery like the pearls of a necklace. Over 90% of the inhabitants in the area are indigenous people.
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I was standing at the edge of the bowl-shaped hill hypnotized by the beauty of the aquamarine lake that lay glittering in the basin below - low-lying hill, dense forest and a tranquil lake. I stood there in awe when suddenly my mind took me eons back.
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The chilly Atlantic pushed our ferry off the coast of Ireland towards the rocky Aran Islands in the distance, each wave colored a blue deeper than midnight. When we disembarked, the mist creeping down the rocky bluffs of the island and the sea spray caught in my hair.
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