Top Reasons to Boost Your Style This Year

Fashion is not just about Victoria’s Secret models donning the latest clothing items on the runway. To put it simply, fashion is about looking good and feeling good about yourself regardless of what you’re wearing. If you want to enjoy the benefits of fashion, though, you need to find ways to improve your style each year. Your own fashion style can offer you tons of benefits. Here are some of them:

Boost Your Confidence. There’s something about knowing how to match clothes that fills you with confidence. Even if your clothes are not that expensive, as long as you know how to wear them and be confident in them, it will help boost your confidence in the long run.

Build Self-Image. Whether you like it or not, how you look from the outside has a huge impact to how you feel inside. If you look ugly from the outside, you will tend to feel ugly as well. By learning how to dress well and look your best, you will be able to feel better about yourself.

Attract the Opposite Sex. Most people may deny it, but the ultimate goal for fashion, at least for men, is to attract the opposite sex. The more attractive your style is, the more chances you have of attracting people. Women, in particular, can make a quick judgment about you within seconds of meeting and knowing you. By having a great sense of style, you will have a more favorable first impression from men and women you meet.

Get Hired Easily. Fashion is the difference between getting rejected and getting hired on the spot. If you want to land that dream job easily, you need more than the skills and the experience. First impressions last, so how you carry yourself on the first day of the interview will leave a lasting impression on the mind of the person who will interview you. Moreover, studies show that a person’s fashion style is associated to his salary and earnings in the long term. This shows that simply knowing how to dress well for a job can get you opportunities you won’t get the other way around.

Broaden Your Social Circle. Finally, fashion can also be used to broaden your social circle and get more prospects for your business. How you look from the outside can say a lot of things about your company and your products or services. If you want people to trust you and your products, you need to show them that you can be relied on by looking your best all the time.

Charging or Issues Systems in Special Libraries in Sierra Leone

Introduction

Special libraries are collections that exist to serve the specific needs of their clients. The libraries are varied as their needs. However, the libraries do have common elements in the service that they provide, their focused collections and their knowledgeable staff who are able to adapt to the changing needs of their clients base. The phrase “Special libraries” is a misnomer, because all libraries are special and have commonalities in their functions. This statement does not dispute the fact that some libraries have special concerns-be they of their clientele, their collections or their purpose. A standard definition of a special library would be the one that exist to serve the limited needs of a specific entity- a business, industry, government agency, non-profit group or professional organizations. Also included are subject oriented units of a public or academic library (Beenham and Harrison, 1990).

The collection of special libraries is smaller and tends to be more focused in comparison to public and academic libraries. Special libraries have the tools and the people necessary to make information available to the client because it is not just enough to collect and house information. It must be made accessible to users. A Special library in short is particularized information services which correlates, interprets and utilizes the materials at hand for the constant use and benefit of the organization it serves (Chirgwin and Oldfield, 1982).

The over-riding requirement of the Special library is that it should provide current information that enables research workers and other employers to carry out their duties effectively. Therefore, it provides not only a collection of materials for which is known demand, but also a network of services that make information readily available for a variety of outside sources.

Previously, the provision of books and other materials for purposes of research had been considered of paramount importance. With the dramatic increase in the number of post-war student in Sierra Leone, it came to be more generally accepted that a university library should aim to serve the needs of their main categories of readers; namely, the undergraduate research worker, and the academic staff.

Definition of Charging or Issues System

According to Berkett and Ritiche (1977), the recording of the loan of materials is called charging or issuing. The charging method selected by a particular library depends to a large extent on the library’s clientele, the size of the stock and the need to restrict the number of items which a library member may have on loan, and on whether the library has peak periods for the lending and returning of materials. The choice of methods will also be affected by the amount and type of information the library staff requires the issue to furnish.

The purpose of a circulation system is to give the library users as much access as possible to the stock. Unfortunately, a book loaned to one reader is not available to others and certain restrictions have to be made. For instance an Encyclopedia is a compendium of knowledge on a vast number of subjects and is designed for easy reference rather than for continuous reading. Allowing such a book on loan would inconvenience a great number of library users without benefiting the borrower.
Each library will use a system for recording the books and other items it lends to its readers. There have been many modern developments to record issues in the last thirty years, mainly due to high cost of staffing, increased usage, and in search of better all-round efficiency. There is no one all-purpose systems which will meet the demands of all kinds of library, although the latest computer charging system can cope with many aspects speedily.

A good system should enable the library staff to discover which reader has borrowed which book. It should show when books are due for return and which are overdue. Some systems can control the number of books issued, and particularly the number which each reader has borrowed. The better systems will permit the book is renewed without returning the book in person, and should allow readers to reserve books which are not immediately available.

Charging or Issues System in Libraries

The Circulation department is the area where most patrons are used to because it is here that library materials are loaned out and returned after use, and it is sometimes referred to as the leading or take home department. Records of patrons are kept here after they have completed a necessary form that provides personal information about them, that is, name, address, sex, status and guarantor. Some departments have different cards for different categories of users to complete. The following functions are however performed by circulation department:
• Registration of new users and keeping the records of library patrons;
• Keeping records of borrowed materials and those returned;
• Noting down when borrowed materials are due back in the library;
• Keeping statistics of the department;
• Sending overdue notices to patrons who fail to return their books when due (Nwogu, 1991).

Types of Charging or Issue Systems used in Libraries

As has been said, one of the principal services offered by libraries is the lending of books and others materials. Obviously, libraries need to keep some kind of record of such loan transactions and many methods have been devised to regulate this task. These methods are known as Charging or Issuing methods. The charging method selected by a particular library depends to a large extent on the library’s clientele, the size of stock and the need to restrict the number of items which a library member may have on loan and on whether the library has peak periods for the lending and returning of material. Here are some examples of charging methods used in varied types of libraries.

The Browne System: For many, many years the most commonly used charging method is the Browne system. With this system, a membership application form is filled in and the reader is given a number of tickets bearing his or her name and address. The reader presents the books to be borrowed at the issue desk, along with a reader’s ticket for each book. The date label in each book is stamped with the date of return; the book card is removed from each book and inserted into the reader’s tickets (one book card per ticket). The charge therefore is one book card inserted into one ticket. When the book is returned, the assistant will look inside it to ascertain from the date label, or pocket, the accession number/author/class number as well as the due date. The appropriate charge is then removed from the issue, the book card replaced in the book pocket and the ticket returned to the reader.

The Islington system: In this charging system, each reader is given one plastic ticket on which is embossed his or her name and address. The stationery inside the library books is the same as the Browne system. However, the difference lies in the fact that the reader must print an address slip (using an embossed ticket) for each book he or she wishes to borrow. Therefore the ‘charge’ is a book card plus a paper address slip inside a blank ticket.

Ticket book or Cheque book charging: In this method, each book has a book pocket permanently fixed inside the cover on which details of the book are given. Within this book pocket is a plain pocket, inside which is a book card bearing details of the book. The reader need only insert one of his or her ticket slip into the plain pocket and present the book for date stamping. The assistant removes the ‘charge’ and it is subsequently filed. The issue trays are usually kept in a separate ‘discharge room’ and not at the issue desk. There is a reception desk where the books are returned, the actual discharging being done later in the ‘discharging room’ when the charge is removed from the issue, the reader’s ticket destroyed and the plain pocket and book card returned to the book. An additional ‘cheque book’ is issued to the reader whenever the previous one is used up.

Token Charging: The book date label is stamped in the usual way, and the reader must surrender one token for each book being issued. On returning the books, the reader merely receives the appropriate number of tokens in exchange. At the end of each year the reader must be able to produce the full complement of tokens or pay a replacement cost for any which have been lost. A visible index (that is a list of reserved books which must be checked whenever books are returned) is used for reservations.

Punched card charging: when a book is borrowed, the assistant takes two punched cards, pre-dated with date due for return (both punched and dated stamped), places the two punched cards in an automatic key punched machine and punches on both cards the reader’s number and book accession number and class number. One card is retained as the library’s record of loans; the other card is inserted in the book pocket with the date of return clearly visible. The punched cards are removed from returned books, sorted into accession number order by machine, and then matched by machine with the duplicate cards kept as the library’s record of loans. Unmatched cards represents books still out on loan and these can be refilled mechanically, this time in date order to reveal overdue.

Computerized Issuing System: Computer systems now available in libraries are very advanced indeed. The issue terminal is equipped with a data pen to which may be attached a self-inking date stamp. There is a card holder into which the reader’s ticket is inserted. Charging is accomplished by running the data pen horizontally across the bar code on the reader’s ticket and the across the barcode labels on the books to be borrowed. The date labels in the book are stamped with the date of return and the ticket is returned to the reader. The discharge terminal is also equipped with another data pen and this is used to read the books’ bar code labels when they are returned. The reader’s ticket is not required at this stage as the reader’s name will be automatically deleted from the computer records when all books are have been returned (Beenham, and Harrison 1990).

Charging or Issue System at the College of Medicine and Allied Health Sciences Library

The College of Medicine and Allied Health Sciences (COMAHS) was founded on the 12th April, 1988 by the Government of Sierra Leone in Co-operation with the Nigerian government and the World Health Organization (WHO). With the enactment and coming into effect of the 2005 University Act, which led to the creation of two universities in Sierra Leone, College of Medicine and Allied Health Sciences as a constituent arm of the University of Sierra Leone, in cooperation with the National School of Nursing, which is now a faculty and the Pharmacy Technician School, also part of the Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences.

The College of Medicine and Allied Health Sciences library started a few months after the college was established in 1988. The library was first located at Bass Street, in Brookfields and later transferred to New England in Freetown, from where it was finally transferred to the Connaught Hospital, when the Ministry of Health gave up the building it used to occupy as a library.

The College of Medicine and Allied Health Sciences library was started by a Medical Librarian by the name of Nancy M’Jamtu-Sie in 1988. The library holds the main stock of Medical and Health Sciences materials in the University of Sierra Leone. The library depends solely on donations and it operates on three sites: the main Medical library at the Connaught Hospital which houses the library administrative office, short loan, reference, World Health Organization audio cassettes collection; the CD-ROM and Internet facilities, the multidisciplinary library at the National School of Nursing, houses the general collection and as well as short loan and reference books and the Medical Sciences library at the Kossoh Town Campus.

The mission of College of Medicine and Allied Health Sciences is: “to train community-oriented doctors, pharmacists, nurses, laboratory scientists, and the health personnel with sound professional and managerial skills suitably qualified to meet international standards and capable to undertake research and pursue training in specialized areas for health care delivery services.”

The College of Medicine and Allied Health Sciences practices the Browne Issue System mentioned above, which is practiced in most libraries especially Special libraries found in the University of Sierra Leone. With the Browne Charging or Issuing system at the College of Medicine and Allied Health Sciences library, each library book has a book card which is kept in a pocket inside each book. The card identifies each book by recording, usually the accession number, classification number, author and short title. Each reader has a ticket issued to him/her which indicates the name and address. This reader’s ticket holds the book card, which is taken from the pocket in the book, and this forms the record of the issue. Each book is stamped with the date for return and the issue is filed in trays under the date due for return, and within what date probably by accession number.

When the readers return the book, the date due for stamped on the date label locates the correct date among the issue trays and the accession number printed on the date label should find the correct position within that date. The book card is then returned to the book, which is now ready for shelving and the reader recovers his tickets. Overdue books are self-evident since the trays are in date order, and reservation are made searching the appropriate care in an obvious way. The Brown system is simply operated and easily understood by library staff and readers alike.
Clientele or Users of College of Medicine and Allied Health Sciences Library

A clientele in library is a body of customers or patrons that makes use of a library in order to get needed information. The clientele of a library are highly knowledgeable group. Consequently, the emphasis of the library is on maintaining considerable depth of subject material or supplying information to be in print.All members of the University of Sierra Leone who are allowed to use the College of Medicine and Allied Health Science library must register with the library and obtain a membership card. External readers are allowed to use the library for reference purposes but would not be given borrowing facilities.

At the College of Medicine and Allied Health Sciences library, most of the books are available to users for loan period and the number of books loaned varies. The book stock covers basic medical sciences, biology, physiology, biochemistry and all disciplines of medicine. Books are borrowed to both students and staff for specific period of time.

Challenges of Charging or Issue System used at the College of Medicine and Allied Health Sciences Library

Special Libraries in Sierra Leone, especially College of Medicine and Allied Health Sciences Library are not without challenges.

Space Challenge: The three sites where the College of Medicine and Allied Health Sciences library operates have been observed to be very small with reference to the building. The locations of these sites especially with ones at National School of Nursing which houses the general collection as well as short loan and reference books; and the Medical Sciences library at the Kossoh Town campus, are not seen as favorable in terms of their locations. They do not offer convenient access for all staff and clients. Shelving and storage has not been conveniently located.

Financial Status: The financial standing of the College of Medicine and Allied Health Sciences library has been very unsatisfactorily especially when the management cannot meet with its obligation of taking care of the library’s itinerary. This has led to the library not having updated collections. This has been seen in the area of salaries, which has been very poor, operational costs, subscriptions, acquisitions, training and professional development.

Insufficient Materials: Materials at College of Medicine and Allied Health Sciences are inadequate to meet the needs of its users. Materials are mainly acquired through donations as the library does not have enough funds to purchase materials in order to meet the needs of its users.

Inadequate computers and limited Internet Service: There are no adequate computers and strong internet connectivity sufficient enough to service the numerous clienteles. At the College of Medicine and Allied Health Sciences library, the inadequate number of available computers does not allow the library to operate the Computer charging or issuing system which is more advance and easier to operate than the Browne charging system which the library currently uses. The Internet service provided is also not sufficient to handle the high number of both their students, staff and other users.

Lack of adequate trained and qualified staff: The College of Medicine and Allied Health Sciences library is short of adequate trained and qualified Librarians which have rendered the library ineffective in the area of properly disseminating information to users. The library is only made up of two qualified librarians and additional staff consists of a technician, clerks, cleaners and messengers.

Conclusively, the College of Medicine and Allied Health Sciences library as a Special library in the University of Sierra Leone has been able to meet the information needs of the many users with the Browne Issue system that it operates on. However, the collection is not updated and the service is not excellent enough to satisfy the clientele that it caters for. The College library lacks enough funds to purchase updated materials. The services of the library have not been too satisfactorily and this is due to few trained personnel and limited facilities. In spite of these challenges at College of Medicine and Allied Health Sciences library, the Browne charging or Issue System has proven to be the therapy that has salvage the issue of delivery of services to their clients and the due preservation of their materials.

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Romantigoth – A Fun & Unique Fashion Style for Your Little One

Gothic clothing has often been referred to as an eclectic style. One of the reasons this assumption is made is that many styles are accumulated into the gothic clothing culture. One of the many styles that have been adopted is the look of the 19th Century, which often is referred to as the Romantic Goth or Romtanigoth look. Although this time period may refer to many different fashions, there are many aspects of each of these fashions that can be pulled from for your complete Romantigoth look. Many may think that this is strictly for the adult consumer, but there are many facets through which this style can relate to your little one.

There are several different styles of clothing, which can relate to this period and it’s inclusion into the gothic culture. Think vampire think romantic vampire and you will be moving in the right direction. For girls the dress is very maiden-like with straight skits that do not hug the frame, but are of an empire waist where they are fitted at the top. Throw in some ringlets and you have a complete look for you’re your young girl. For young boys you are including knickers with ties and jackets.

The staple coloring for this style is a very neutral palate, with prominence of black and gray. As with all dress in the gothic clothing line, take into account some bright reds, some lace and ruffles and you will have yourself a complete outfit for your little Romantigoth.

What is Your Fashion Style?

When it comes to clothing do you usually stick to one particular style or should you be called a fashion scientist due to the tremendous amount of attention you pay to trends. It can also be possible that you are not aware of your personal style. Whether you are aware of your style or not read this guide to learn a little bit more about it and what changes you can make (if desire).

1. Sexy Lexis- Lexis is all about wearing clothes that reveal skin such as cleavage and fit extra tight. She may feel that conservative or unrevealing clothing are only for older people. Lexis might need to learn when to tone down her sexy image. For example: She should avoid walking in to church wearing a blouse with a plunging neckline. Unless, she is ready to receive a few dirty looks.

2. Care-Lesley- She wonders: What is Fashion? Can I eat with cheese? She really does not know what the latest trend is and frankly can care less. Lesley should try something new once in a while just for fun and avoid getting stuck on a specific style.

3. Rebellious Chica-She makes her own rules when it comes to fashion. Avoids to all extends looking like everyone else. Just like sexy lexis some circumstances will require toning down her personal style. On a job interview she should conform to the expected attire standards. At least until she lands the job.

4. Fashion Diva-Her middle name is style. Always on top of her image and hates to be seen more than once wearing an outfit. Keeping up with fashion trends can get quite expensive. She needs to watch her finances closely in order to avoid overspending.

5. Sporty Lady- She loves her jeans and sneakers and will not go anywhere with out them. She should play dress up once in a while. This will help her look and feel better, even if the changes are temporary.

6. Comfy Carmen-Carmen is all about comfort. She chooses her attire based on the way it feels. She should steer away from bulky looking shoes that will make her feet look wider or bigger and clothing that fit too loosely. Clothes that are too big will make anyone look heavier and older.

7. Elegant Elenin- Elenin is always dress to impress. She will not allow anyone to see her dressed down. However, it will be beneficial for her to loosen up or dress comfortably once in a while. People can not look perfect all the time.

8. Stuck in time- This type of person does not remember the last time she bought a piece of clothing. She will not stop wearing her clothes until it has a hole in it. She should avoid using the same clothing for too many years until it comes back in style (20 years later).

9. Balanced Brianna- She probably has one of the other personal styles mentioned in this guide but, understands clearly the certain situations require she dresses up or down. She will not be hesitant to try a new style as long as it does not make her look like a fool.

How to Get Payday Loans Online – Get a Loan Right Now!

The ability to obtain instant payday loans online has become quite popular. It is quite easy to fill out the online form. Normally, it takes less than an hour for approval and approval is gained without a credit check. It is important to check each payday loans company for verification with the Better Business Bureau in one’s local area. If the company one has chosen is not registered, it is a good idea to continue his or her search till he or she has found a registered company in good standing.

Reputable companies understand that there is a need for financial services for those who cannot borrow traditional loans. However, many individuals seek out payday loans online in Ontario without first checking the background of the lending company. It is important to do a thorough search before settling on the company with which to do business.

The concept of payday loans is that an individual can obtain much-needed cash deposited instantly into his or her bank account that will enter repayment on his or her next payday. The interest rates will rise as the length of time till repayment is extended, that is why it is important to pay back these short-term loans as soon as possible. The application process is very simple and streamlined and states all terms and conditions in plain English.

For those individuals that do not know what a cash advance loan is, it is a short-term loan that is also known as a cash advance loan. These are great ways to borrow for those that cannot or do not want to borrow with a traditional lender, such as a bank or credit union. There are higher interest rates due to the convenience of this type of loan and a shorter repayment period. The term of the loan is normally seven to twenty-one days after receiving the funds.

If an individual has had credit problems in the past, there is also a payday loan just for them. For those who simply need help arranging their finances, credit counseling services could be just what they need.

Applying for payday loans online has never been simpler, with shorter forms and more online lenders to choose from. If one believes that this may be the right road for him or her to take, simply research the company before giving out any personal information.

The world is experiencing economic hardship right now. No jobs, housing market at a standstill and no end in sight makes it difficult to hold out hope for the future. North America seems to be worse off for those that live there, even is feeling the strain. With no end in sight to the economic plight, where does one go for extra funds when they are needed? For citizens, extra cash for unexpected expenditures comes in the form of payday loans online.

When a person’s paycheck is weeks away, but car repairs or emergency medical treatment is needed, having cash on hand really helps. If a person does not have extra cash for such items, then it can be disastrous. That is when a payday loan can pull a person through a rough time.

All a person has to do is go online and provide information like, citizenship, employment, checking account with bank, drivers’ license, and contact numbers. Once the information is verified, a person can have a loan in a matter of hours.

There are no hidden fees to worry about once a person accepts the loan. That can be frustrating to think that everything is all taken care of and then are slammed with another fee. Payday loans online is up front about fees when a person applies so there are no surprises later.

Some establishments may charge processing fees, not so with a cash advance loan. Applying is free and takes only a few minutes of a person’s time in the comfort of his or her home.

A person does not have to worry that unscrupulous people may get a hold of his or her personal information either. Payday loans online keeps a person’s information strictly confidential. They understand a person’s nervousness about giving out personal information and make sure it is much safeguarded.

One of the best parts about applying online is how simple and fast the approval process works. Once approved, the money is wired directly to a person’s account and ready to be used. Repayment works the same way, it is electronically deducted from a person’s account; no muss, no fuss. Payday loans online makes getting needed extra cash hassle-free. When a person needs cash, he or she should apply online with a payday loan facility in your town.

It used to be quite difficult to obtain a payday loan, but now, with the advent of the internet and payday loans, this is something that more and more people are checking into. This is not to say that more are experiencing financial troubles, even with the global economic crisis; it simply means that now that these loans are easier to obtain, more people are qualified to receive them.

Experts are saying that more individuals than ever before are choosing payday loans for the ease of the application process. This was not so even just a few years ago because of the length of time it took for approval, and many times, properly qualified people were still turned down. Also, back then, your credit had a lot to do with your acceptance, as well; but, all that has changed, and no longer do payday loan centers require a background or credit check.

Also, thanks to the Internet’s ability to put people in instant contact with various businesses, it is easier than ever before to obtain payday loans. In fact, the entire application procedure has been lessened to just a couple of hours. Imagine, in a little over two hours, you could have the money you need in hand. This is why obtaining payday loans online has become the new way to obtain the funding needed for your emergency.

Of course, there are still the skeptics out there who believe that payday loans may not be for them. Rightly so, as it does sound as if the lending agencies are just handing out free money; however, there are qualifications that one still has to possess and it is certainly not free money. Not only must it be paid back in a much shorter time frame than a traditional loan, but it also has loan fees attached to it for the right to borrow the money. These loans are quite efficient for those finding themselves in a financial debacle, but they do come with a certain price.

The greatest thing about payday loans is the fact that you do not have to suffer through a financial setback any longer. You do not have to look at life as though you need to worry what will happen with your next monetary emergency. Payday loans can help you get rid of your financial problems efficiently.

Travelling From Newark NJ to Orlando Florida Via Niagara Falls

The day finally arrived and it was time to set off on our journey to London Gatwick airport for our Month long trip to the US. We had booked to stay overnight at an Airport hotel so that we could be fresh for our trip the next day. I should point out that this trip was pre 9-11.

Our flights consisted of a flight to Newark NJ with Virgin Atlantic and a return flight from Orlando also with Virgin. We booked car hire in two parts, both with Alamo. Because car hire is more expensive in New York, the first leg would be for 7 days and then we would return the car at Orlando and take out another rental for the remainder of the trip.

Our planned itinerary was to stay overnight on landing at Newark in a Holiday Inn close to the airport. Then head off the next day to Niagara where we would spend 2 nights, then journey down to Florida, staying 2 nights on the way.

We took off on time from Gatwick for the almost 7 hour flight. Although we were regular travelers to Florida, we had never been to New York before and as our time would be a bit limited we had not planned on visiting the city across the water on this trip. We arrived mid afternoon after flying quite low along the Hudson River giving us a magnificent view of the New York skyline, to a very busy Newark airport. The airport itself was undergoing some major alterations and it was a bit chaotic to be honest. We eventually, cleared immigration and collected our luggage and at that time the Alamo car rental desk was off the airport so we had to wait for a bus to take us there. In fact from where we were waiting, we could see the rental depot outside the airport across the road. The bus arrived and took us to the depot. We had booked a one way rental and we knew we would have to pay a drop off fee of $300. The clerk tried to talk us into upgrading even though we had booked a seven seat minivan for the 4 of us and had prepaid all our fees and insurances. We paid the drop off fee and the airport collection fee (which she managed to get us to pay) she gave us the keys and told us where the vehicle was located.  Imagine our surprise when we found the vehicle was in fact an 8 seat GMC minivan, obviously the one she wanted us to pay the upgrade for and better yet it had Florida plates!! At that time we were keen to get going so it didn’t much bother us about that. We set off to find our hotel and after a short drive we came to the Holiday Inn. We got checked in and headed to our rooms to freshen up a little before having our dinner. We opted to stay in the hotel to eat and had a few drinks before retiring for the night.

The next morning with our body clocks still being on UK time enabled us to be up at 5am, fresh and ready for our drive to Niagara. We set off around 5:30am and decided we would get breakfast on the way. After a bit of a nightmare trying to get to the interstate we eventually left the Newark area. Daylight had come and we found a Perkins to have some breakfast en route. The rest of the drive was fairly uneventful and we remarked how similar the scenery was to where we lived in the UK. When were nearing Niagara Falls, probably about 30 minutes away, I could see what I thought was steam rising from a cooling tower in the distance. It turned out to be the falls.

We had decided to stay on the Canadian side of the falls and had booked 2 nights at the Sheraton. Once we got to the border we had to go through customs and immigration, we had no problems and were through in about 15 minutes. It was then that we got the first view of the falls, from the bridge, what a magnificent sight it was too. I can say that photos don’t do it justice. We went to our hotel and checked in then set off to discover Niagara. We decided to walk to down to the falls and it only took around 5-10 minutes. The first striking thing that occurred to me was that the spray rises so high, in fact the following morning when we left the hotel I thought it was raining, you know the fine drizzle type but it was in fact the spray from the falls. The wind direction was blowing towards our hotel. We did all the usual tourist things, went to where the whirlpools are along the river. I was surprised to see so many Armish people there, I don’t know if it was a holiday time for them or what but there certainly was a lot. We would see some more of them too later in the journey through Pennsylvania. We did the “Maid of the Mist”, well the men did and it was spectacular. We set off on the boat towards Horseshoe Falls, once the boat get close you hear the engine rev up as the skipper increases the power to get you in close, the only thing I can describe it as, is something like the Arctic, it was just white everywhere and you are being covered in a white spray. Even with the waterproof poncho’s you still find the water getting in somewhere. The trip over, you head back to the dock and take the elevator back up to the top, back on the main road. We also did a tour that takes you behind the falls. We found the Canadian people were fantastic and we felt we had good value for money. We never had to change our currency as you could pay for everything in US dollars. One thing to remember is that you can claim back the GST a sales tax for purchases in Canada. It is restricted to certain things though, so check to see what you can claim for. On our second day we went to Niagara on the Lake, a beautiful place with some lovely scenery. There is a jet boat that you can go for a ride on here which looked like fun. On a clear day you can see the CN tower of Toronto in the distance too. That night we crossed back over to the US side to visit the outlet mall where we got some great bargains.

The next day we checked out of our hotel and began the journey to Florida. We had a little bet to see who the first person was to spot a wild Palm tree but that would be a day or two away yet. We crossed back into the US and headed towards Buffalo where we took the interstate. After New York, the next state we entered was Pennsylvania and we passed through Harrisburg and onto the next State Maryland where spent our first night. We stayed in a motel and were surprised at the difference between, here and other places we stayed at. It was a Sunday and the hotel bar closed at 10:30pm. It just seemed that they were more religious than some of the other places we stayed.

Anyway next day we were off and I must say that the scenery in Pennsylvania and Maryland was starting to get so much better and passing by the towns of PA with their quaint churches and steeples was very picturesque along with the fall colours of the leaves. It is our intention to drive down the Blue Ridge parkway and travel through the Shenandoah national park for some of the journey so we head for Front Royal and in no time we enter the Park. As we enter and pay the small fee, we see a deer crossing the road ahead of us. We thought this was a taste of things to come but believe it or not that was the only one we saw! The speed limit on the twisty roads is only around 20mph so the journey can take some time. Every so often there are overlooks where you can stop and take some photos. This area is steeped in Civil War history and there were many plaques that commemorate the lives lost between soldiers of the North and South. Much of the scenery you are looking at won’t have changed that much over the years and you can just imagine what it was like when you look at the battlegrounds below. You can see how the name Blue Ridge came about as there is a blue tinge to the hills in the distance and this is caused by the trees putting the “blue” in Blue Ridge, from the isoprene released into the atmosphere,thereby contributing to the characteristic haze on the mountains and their distinctive colour. There are information stations along the route and places to buy refreshments. We traveled along the route for about 3 hours and then left to rejoin the interstate and on to our next stop passing by Roanoke, Charlotte and into South Carolina where we stayed overnight at a Howard Johnson. The girl on the reception desk had that southern drawl which we found so nice. Princess Diana had not long been killed and when she noticed we were from the UK she went to great pains to express her sorrow, which we thought was very nice.

The next day we wanted to get to Jacksonville in Florida for our last overnight stop and to visit some friends. We set off early and travelled south on the interstate towards Charleston where we joined the I-95. This interstate runs from the North of Maine all the way down to Miami Florida. We passed by Savannah and it was around here that I won the $10 for the spotting of a wild palm tree! Before long we were entering Florida and Jacksonville was in sight. When we got there we chose a beach hotel and checked in. It was early afternoon and we set off to meet our friends. We met up and we went back to their home for a while and arranged to meet later at the Mandarin ale house for a meal later. After a great night out we went back to our hotel, we had arranged to go to St Augustine the next day. This was a great day St. Augustine is reportedly the oldest US city and is steeped in history with a definite Spanish flavor. We had a look around the Fort and did some shopping. Later that afternoon we were going to go to Orlando. We said our goodbyes and headed off to the land of the mouse.

The temperature now was getting much warmer and we had changed into shorts in SC but as we neared Orlando it was getting very warm. When we got there, we decided to get the car sorted out and during the trip it had been needling away at us that we had paid $300 for the privilege of returning a Florida rental car to Florida! So when we went to the rental office in Orlando we complained to the clerk, she went to speak to a supervisor and came back to tell us that they will refund the $300 and gave us a brand new 7 seat Dodge Grand Caravan. So that was a good result.

We had pre booked our Orlando accommodation and during our stay we did the theme parks and all the other things that tourists do. We also set of for a few days down to Fort Myers, this has always been a favourite of ours. We stayed at Pointe Estero a condominium right on the beach. I can heartily recommend a road trip such as this and look forward to doing it again sometime. You can see so much more of the country this way.

Simplistic Timepieces – Fashionable Styles That Hooked Us

If you are in love with watches and believe that they are as essential to your grooming as much as smart shoes, then you must have a timepiece for every mood or occasion. If you are a teenager, the funky ‘big dial’ watches might seem really cool, but if you are working in a corporate or have a reputation to maintain, don’t you think you ought to wear something more practical? You would have heard of sports watches, fitness watches or even casual watches that may all have their own purposes. But you would surely need to buy the best of simplistic timepieces too for making a mark in your workplace. It is not true that you would need to spend a fortune to get a smart watch nowadays. There are brands and styles that are affordable and have enough of oomph to make you look suave and chic.

Styles and Features that won our hearts:

If you find the extended lugs, or the GMT displays and other features on modern day watches too much to bear, just go ahead with these sleek and smart minimalist watches. Let us look at the top watches that owned us with their simplicity, amazing features and of course, with their affordability too.

Névo: This is for those who cannot afford to miss out on any social network notifications from their smartphones. The simplistic design of eleven white LED indicators that are embedded on the dial would indicate the calories you are burning and the distance you walk or run. The dual batteries are really long lasting and you shall be able to tether it with your smartphone using the Bluetooth. This has found takers from men of all age groups.

Larrson & Jennings CM Black: The Swedish-British watchmaker has made telling time a really fancy and yet sophisticated affair. The Milanese watch-strap is winning hearts all the same and is quite affordable by the average young man.

Skagen: The Denmark based watch company has an array of simplistic designs that has wowed us. We are in love with their Ancher range of watches that have adopted a no-nonsense approach to telling time. Yes, these are quite affordable and cost less than $200 too.

Victorinox INOX: This is just right for those who love the stainless steel finish and would rather dump the leather straps any day. The watch is water-resistant, scratch-resistant and even vibration-resistant. Did we also say that this awesome timepiece can be all yours within $500 only?

Timex Waterbury Chronograph: Timex is a brand that has already got many takers worldwide. The stunning Scandi-blue dial with yellow and white color scheme on this Waterbury Chronograph is something that the young at heart would love to flaunt. The retro-styled watches are super-cool and stylish too.

Who said that fashion cannot be pocket-friendly and at the same time not be over-the-top too? Get your simplistic watches and have the time of your life!

Democrats and Republicans With a Fashion Style

Politics is usually something that Americans are willing to embrace with their heart because it represents a cause resulting in some type of change.

Democrats and republicans usually have a hard time agreeing on certain things. However, both parties do agree on one thing and that is to act in the present to promote something different leading up to the future. This is why you see individuals’ stand around who they believe should represent their country going forward and lead their dreams into the right direction.

Barrack Obama was the 44th president elected in the white house and he represented the democrats. When Obama was receiving vote’s people all over the world would wear fashion attire that expressed how much they believed in him. Individuals would wear things like “Change 2009” and even Democrat Donkey Cufflinks and guess what? Obama won the election with flying colors.

Now for the year 2012 we have new candidates running in the presidential election. However, one will only come out success in the very end. We are starting to see candidates winning individuals hearts state to state from what they express in their views from healthcare, retirement plans, and college education and even down to marriage status.

If you have an idea on who you want to vote for within this year’s election why not express it to the fullest from your shoes all the way to your ears.

Just image when was the last time you went to a presidential election and saw nobody wearing any type of attire that represented their views on the candidates? That is right NEVER!

The reason why these political fashion statements occur consistently is because people have a strong sense of respect in the candidates that they believe in. Why not promote something that is going to help change the future going forward? Your great grandparents promoted change for you to live within better conditions then what they had to live in, so why not do the same for the generation going forward?

Just like Barrack Obama always promotes “Change”, we can only change what we are willing to believe needs to be altered for the better of American going into the future. It is up to us to get together as a whole and promote of what we believe in is the better option going forward. Just remember before you make any decisions to think if that decision that you are making is going to promote you and your family going into the future.

Why the London Riots Created a Greater Business Travel Threat Than a Terrorist Attack

Introduction to the London riots threat

If you have business travel to London, you need to read this article. In this article you will discover why the London riots created a greater travel threat than a terrorist attack. We will examine the threat posed by the London riots and demonstrations, terrorist attacks and resulting travel delays, disruptions and changes. At the end of this article, you will have a specific understanding of the required business travel management response and awareness as to why this will happen again.

The London riots and demonstrations has resulted in one of the largest business travel disruptions of 2011.

London Riots and Demonstrations

The London riots and demonstrations have come as a complete surprise to many. It is not a unique event and certainly not unique to the UK. The scale, violence, fire and failure of the authorities is often something expected in other countries but the lack of preparedness for destinations like the UK is common and widespread. Therefore, the lack of preparedness and last-minute scramble to respond and the inability to avoid major business travel disruptions are widespread as a result.

Due to the footprint of disruption, many routes and modes of transport have been negatively affected. Simple commute from the airport, trains and ports to planned accommodation options have been altered and continuous review of hazard or threat assessment are required. Furthermore, travel support providers such as taxis, hotels, restaurants, emergency services an other basic amenities have also been affected, to varying degrees.

Travel and risk managers need to immediately identify:

  • Affected areas,
  • Degree of threat,
  • Affected and exposed (inbound and outbound) business travellers,
  • Arrival/departure points,
  • Safe and non-affected areas,
  • Mitigation or eradication options,
  • Cost of implementation,
  • Funds available,
  • Emergency support,
  • Accommodation options,
  • On-going or developing events,
  • Social or non-business activity,
  • Insurance claims and compliance requirements,
  • Cancellation criteria,
  • Resumption of travel criteria,
  • Extended event plans,
  • Travel alternatives (domestic and international)

The London riots have affected multiple support systems related to business and leisure travel. Any leisure travel disruptions will further compound business travel threats such as decreased accommodation options, airport congestion and increased public transport demand. Even simple actions like withdrawing money from an ATM will prove a challenge and compound the hazard/s.

The London riots have had a prolonged affect on UK business travel sector, far greater than the majority of terrorist attacks. Further affects such as planning and preparation for the 2012 Olympics will also contribute to the lingering affects.

A lack of planning and subsequent response capability by businesses could constitute a failure of duty of care, due diligence, corporate social responsibility, workplace health and safety or other related legislation.

Terrorist attacks less of a threat than London riots

With the exception of the Mumbai terrorist attacks, most have limited travel disruption and only affect a narrow band of travelers. Inclusive of the Mumbai terror attack, terrorist attacks typically have clearly defined threat elements (terrorist, bombings, gunfire, etc) whereas the London riots is a constantly changing and unclear threat. Most business travelers will be unprepared for such decision-making demands and lack sufficient experience to make consistent and safe decisions.

Most contemporary business risk management systems focus on location and plausible event threats, then seek to inform or prepare travelers for the best results to mitigate or eliminate the hazards and threats. Therefore, the bulk of business travelers will not be prepared or educated on how to respond in London, with such wide spread disruption and threats. Few will have residual knowledge from information and preparation for such events in other locations, considered more likely to be medium to high risk. Many of the supporting business travel management departments and managers will be equally unprepared and resourced.

A terrorist attack and other similar violent crimes would have a much smaller footprint of disruption, not affected such a wide business travel demographic, not affect business travel support providers so comprehensively or have such a prolonged impact on all exposed.

Routine travel delays, disruptions and changes represent one of the most persistent and probable travel risk management issues.

Travel delay, disruption and changes

Change management and the decision-making involved is one of the most commonly accepted workplace hazard concerns. This is equally relevant to business travel and business travel threats.

The instinctive and guided response of travelers to any delay, disruption or change can significantly affect the outcome of any spontaneous or new hazard as it presents. Particularly when this is the first level of response, before support options and resources can be activated or come into affect.

Travel delays have been triggered due to airport and airline workers unable to get to work, taxi drivers not able to refuel vehicles, hotels and staff overwhelmed, business travelers unprepared and convergence of business and leisure travelers upon all available exit travel nodes.

Access to information, at all levels, the ability to consume and process all the options and explore alternatives is imperative in this and similar travel disruption events. Crisis leadership will succeed more frequently than simple crisis management, to which are dependent upon timely and accurate information from all available resources.

Unfortunately, many will fail to fully understand the gravity of the events, the threats posed and respond or prepare accordingly. While many others exposed will chalk it up to another force majeure or random act that is just part of the rich experience of international travel. Courts, business travelers and peer review increasingly do not share this flippant view.

This scenario and lack of preparedness has been played out numerous times in recent history. Volcanos, volcanic ash affects, Japan’s tsunami, airport closures, airline failure and many others have caught business travelers and managers alike unprepared. This disturbing trend will continue.

Conclusion: London riots threat

You should now see why the London riots have a far greater impact and threat to travelers than you may have originally thought. We have examined the business travel threat posed by the London riots, terrorist attacks and resulting travel delays. You now have a specific plan for this and similar events and the required business travel management and response. This will happen again. Perhaps not in London, perhaps not a city wide demonstration but this kind and scale of business travel disruption event will happen more than once before the end of 2011. Review your plan and make the necessary enhancements now.

School Bus Safety – What To Teach Your Kids

Over 20 million children nationwide ride the school bus every day. While school buses are regulated to some extent by federal law, not all states have the same safety standards. For example, New York, New Jersey, and Florida all have state laws in place which require school buses to have lap belts installed for student use. No federal law exists, however, which makes this a national standard. In fact, the debate over seat belts in school buses has been going on for years.

That being said, school buses do not have a bad safety record. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, school buses have some of the best safety records on the road in terms of deaths per distance traveled – just 0.2 deaths per 100 million miles. Furthermore, while some 30,000 people died in passenger vehicles crashes during 2004 alone, only 71 school bus passengers have died in accidents in the past eleven years combined.

Of course, as scintillating as the statistics may be, no one can argue that they are perfect. Children are society’s most valued resource, and it only takes the death of one child to make a significant impact on a family and community. One must also consider that many more children die as a result of being hit by buses than do while passengers on a bus. Even though bus drivers are required to undergo safety training and to take extra precautions due to the nature of their job, accidents happen. Nearby drivers may also be at fault. Despite laws which require motorists to stop for school buses, thousands upon thousands of irresponsible drivers ignore these laws daily, creating a serious safety risk for children getting off the bus.

As a parent, one of the best things you can do is reinforce bus safety guidelines with your child. Even though such rules may already be communicated in school, children often look to their parents to give the final word on issues. Be ready to answer questions your child may have, and make sure he or she understands how to be safe around buses.

– When waiting for the bus, stand several feet away from the curb. Do not enter the street or attempt to board the bus until it has come to a complete stop and opened its doors.

– While riding the bus, do not distract or otherwise aggravate the driver. Keep backpacks, lunchboxes, and other objects out of the aisle, as these create tripping hazards.

– When getting off the bus, use the handrail and watch your step. Try not to cross in front of the bus. If you must do so, walk several feet ahead of the bus and wait for the driver to signal for you to cross. Watch out for passing motorists when crossing the street.

– Never, under any circumstances, crawl under the bus. Not even to retrieve lost property.

Teaching your child to respect these safety guidelines can reduce the chance of a devastating accident on the bus, at the bus stop, or at school.