Wednesday, September 28, 2005

Hello again! Thank you so much for reading all the blogs up to date. The deadline to reach our goal grows really near. The next two weeks will be decisive in whether I will be going to join the rest of the TrekAsia group on their expedition to Vietnam. But, am I worried? No. I may be disappointed if I am not joining, but my heart swells with pride at all the donations I have received from all of my friends---and I know I can say we accounted for SOMETHING---rather than sitting and watching the 6 o'clock news, stewing about how little has been done. I have received a tremendous influx of donations in the past week by a growing list of admirable people---and I want to bid them my respects (in chronological order): Harriett Perlis, Erin and David Krugh, Lee Josephson, Jean and Rich Josephson, Carmen King and Sara Weiner. Thank you so much for your kind words and support.
I am doing well---working a lot at West Elm, and I also led a huge presentation on South Asian arts (India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, etc) at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. It was a tremendous success---nearly 100 people came, and it was quite an adventure to navigate the corridors in the museum; but I was happy to turn the coldest part of the museum (strong A/C) into a toasty room, full of intellectual stimulation!
Please keep spreading the word, especially now that we are entering a critical time in this campaign....

Friday, September 16, 2005

I'm so thrilled! I finally got my headshot DVD, and was able to post it on this blog. I want to thank Jeremy Folmer for doing such a wonderful job at communicating with me and pulling out great moments and capturing them.
I'm doing better this week. Started working at West Elm---and its proving to be a great experience. I admit less time is available to emphasize the importance of this project...but I'm amazed at how time management works---I have been working out a lot, and preparing for the physical demands of this expedition. Three days climbing mountains, and three days of kayaking in Halong will be challenging, but so beautiful.

I will be honest with you. I REALLY, really want to go on this trip. I know in my heart, that I give tremendously, and want wonderful things for the world. But sometimes I really want to make a testimonial of that quality---and this is an opportunity to do so. If you know anyone who wants to come forward to make a substantial contribution to this project, please let me know. I am still at around 20% of my minimum goal that is set for the end of this month (two weeks left). Regardless of what happens in other parts of the world, the crisis in Vietnam will not go away if we just turn the other direction. Let's be proactive and bite this problem where the sun doesn't shine...

Speaking of shine...keep your inner light shining....

Tuesday, September 13, 2005

Ahem...its been two weeks since my last entry. I've been keeping a low profile while the whole mess associated with Hurricane Katrina has manifested itself. The event has come in a sensitive time during my campaign---so I've spent many days thinking about what to do, where to go, what is my next step, and so forth. Strategically speaking, its an additional challenge to be asking for funds for something that is happening in another country and with much less media focus.

I feel torn; I am warmly inspired that Americans are realizing this event with much generosity---offering living space, jobs, emotional support, and medicines on top of financial contributions. Yet, the potential tragedy in Vietnam will greatly shadow Katrina in terms of lives lost and economic fallout. Imagine the costs of maintaining HIV care for an additional 3/4 of a million people. Economically speaking, it is more feasible to attack the factors that contribute to the rapid spread in Vietnam, having the future benefit of saving money on HIV care.

I know and understand that it is challenging to have foresight in the years to come, when many are considering today's problems. I believe that even if the Big Easy has a different face than it did before, it's spirit is a beautiful one, and will definitely rebuild itself in a galvanizing way. New Orleans will be back, and with an ever richer saga in its young history.

Continue the giving...