Monday, January 21, 2013

Happy Belated New Year

Posing at the Amphitheater in El Gem.
Happy New Year or should I say Happy Belated New Year now that we are more than half-way through January. I meant to write this blog post on January one, but I was on vacation in Tunisia with Karim and told myself I would write an entry when I got back. Then I got back and I said at the end of the week. Needless to say I kept delaying the blog post until now. I just wasn't ready to write, but now I am. Throughout the blog I've decided to post some of my favorite pictures from my recent travels. Enjoy!!

Before I get into me on this blog, I want to take a moment to recognize this historic day. It is historic for many reasons. First, we honor and celebrate the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, a civil and human rights activist. While this holiday comes every year, it doesn't make it any less momentous. Dr. King galvanized a nation with his quest for equal rights through nonviolence. He was forward thinking and his efforts are still relevant today as his dream for our nation has not been realized. Many in our country are still working towards it, but America is still a nation in progress. There is no progress without struggle. W. E. B Du Bois said those famous words and his statement also rings true today.

A town in the north of Tunisia.
In addition to celebrating Dr. Martin Luther King's legacy, our nation will inaugurate President Barack Hussein Obama for a second time. Initially, I planned to travel to Washington D.C. for this. Back in December I wrote Representative John Larson for tickets, unfortunately to no avail. I didn't even get a response letter stating I didn't get tickets. A bummer, but I still planned to go, however, when I realized that my courses started the same weekend and one of my best friends was due to have her baby, I realized the best seats would be in my house. 

Today is definitely a day of celebration for me politically. Back in August, I wasn't sure if President Obama was going to clinch victory. My tune eventually changed after Mother Jones released the epic Romney fundraiser video. The video was definitely a political game changer, but the road to a second term in the White Souse was still not a slam dunk. It was a closely tightly knit strategy and the president's beat out the Romney team and other conservatives.

The Fort of El Ribat in Monistar, Tunisia.
While I will enjoy today, I realize that the president and his administration have much work to do for the nation. It won't be easier either with the Congress we have and the long list of problems this country faces. There are the topics of the economy, job creation, gun violence, immigration, and budget deficits to name a short few. The American public has made it clear they want a change from a dysfunctional Washington D.C's governing. How the president and Congress will achieve that remains to be seen. I will enjoy the inauguration and remember the words of Du Bois.

The Amphitheater in El Gem, Tunisia.
On a personal front I'm back into the swing of things and have hit the ground running. I'm back at work and my spring semester started this week. I'm taking a course on media literacy for the next eight weeks and then it will be an elective course. This will be my last semester of courses before I begin research on my thesis project. My time in this program has moved quickly, especially with accelerated eight week course.

My mom posing for a picture right before a tour.
On the screenwriting front I'm back to working on a feature script. It's a story ( I wanted to and should have finished in 2012), I let it get away from me. I haven't been able to stay focused on this front and that is one thing I want to change in 2013. My goal for this year is to write a page a day. I started this week and already find myself having to do catch-up pages but when I fall of the horse, I will get right back on. I also will shoot to read a script every two weeks. The falling off the horse rule applies here too. 

A national park in the north of Tunisia.
The ProduceHERS moves forward in 2013 with a couple of activities for the first quarter of this year. First up will be an invite-only read through and workshop of Quarter Year Dilemmas, a one-act stage play I wrote. The director and I are looking for feedback to tighten the story for a stage production later this year. There are also plans for a second Women's Artist Forum to be held on SWAN DAY in March. Planning these activities with everything else I have on my plate will be tough but it will get done with focus, determination and organization.

I believe I have you caught up on where I'm at and where I'm going. Happy belated New Year from me. Yes it's late, but better late than never. 

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