Super Tuesday

This post has nothing to do with presidential elections, although I did spend the afternoon with a young man who might become the President of Liberia in nine years. I’ll get to that in a moment. Today was for me a most interesting of Tuesdays and one that could only be possible in a city like New York.

First up was an early morning adventure to the Asia Society for a breakfast panel discussing Sri Lanka at 60: The Failure of the Peace Process and its Implications. Afterwards I enjoyed a meal at Kalustyan’s—a mujaddra vegetarian platter with salad, pickles and olives—before venturing to the Chinese Mission to the UN, where folks were gathered to put pressure on China to put pressure on Sudan to end the killings in Darfur. Hamza Ibrahim of the Darfurian community of Brooklyn joined Mia Farrow and two Olympic swimmers, Shannon Shakespeare and Nikki Dryden, in their plea to China, as host of the summer Olympics, to not let this go down as the ‘Genocide Olympics.’ Steven Spielberg, has apparently dropped out as artistic adviser to the Olympics.

I spent the afternoon with the Lost Innocents crew filming an extraordinary gentleman named Kimmie Weeks. Kimmie was 9 when the Liberian civil war reached him. He talked about his family’s displacement and the hunger and disease that they were subject to. Emaciated, jaundiced and cholera-stricken, Kimmie was taken for dead, and placed in a pile of dead bodies at his IDP camp. But he survived, and made a promise that if he made it out of that camp, he would dedicate his life to child rights advocacy. No child should know this kind of suffering. With the courage and innocence of a young boy, he initiated a children’s disarmament campaign in Liberia, meeting with rebel leaders and Charles Taylor about the issue of child soldiers. His efforts were successful, but later jeopardized his life, and he had to flee the country. He continues his activism today with his organization Youth Action International trying to promote local, sustainable, grassroots initiatives empowering young people in post-conflict areas. In nine years, he hopes to run for President of Liberia. Go Kimmie!

I had a lovely dinner at Gobo with excellent company including a certain vegan dessert diva who blesses New York with her goodies every Tuesday.

The best part of the day though, was coming home to my Mookie and Wankie for a late night play session in a snow covered Prospect Park—our very own Winter Wonderland. Mookie, apparently, loves fetching snow balls and eating them.

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~ by sangamithra on February 13, 2008.

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