29 September 2016

Eva en la Casa Rosada

I imagine Eva Perón was born with dreams and the drive to pursue them. Although her life was short, she made significant strides in her agenda to combat social injustice and to popularize the Peronist party. She was poised, hardworking, intelligent, and eloquent, qualities befitting her station of first lady. Eva was 26 years old when her husband Juan Perón, whom she had married the previous year (1945), accepted the Argentinian presidency. The fierceness she exhibited in her efforts of financially assisting the working class defined her residency at the Casa Rosada. In her 33 years of life, Evita inspired more Argentinians than there were flowers at her state funeral. I traveled to the site of the balcony where she conducted her moving speeches. I stood in the presence of greatness, and her energy lingered in the air as if she had just passed through the open door. 
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M.J.C.

27 September 2016

Spanish, My Second Language

Five years of studying Spanish in the classroom has laid my foundation for conversing with native speakers. The act of employing Spanish in real life is liberating; the pressures of upcoming exams are lifted. To be successful, I merely exert an honest effort. If I forget the name of a noun, I describe the person, place, or thing. If I am unable to conjugate a verb in the correct tense, I opt for the present. The goal of attempting a foreign language is to be understood. The skill of conveying a message in a language other than my native speech broadens my borders. I partake in all aspects of daily life in cities where Spanish is spoken without assistance from a translator.
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Passes for the Subte, Buenos Aires
M.J.C.

23 September 2016

Paid Time Away

If you are fortunate enough to be given paid time off from work, especially in the U.S., it is essential to your wellbeing that you utilize this luxury. It is ignorant to take pride in passing up days away. Refusing to accept offered time is wasteful. In many cases, vacation days cease to accrue after a specified amount has accumulated. You can attempt to provide exceptional excuses as to why you need to work every business day of the year. Unless you are a professor who summers all summer, it will be difficult to build a credible argument. If you die of exhaustion, your company and coworkers will have to find a way to carry on in your absence. They might as well learn to survive while you are traveling in a plane as opposed to a hearse.
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M.J.C.

20 September 2016

Selecting Wine at Berry Bros. & Rudd

Shopping for wine is an educational field trip. It is an opportunity to engage experts in the field. An endless variety of wine is produced around the world. Consequently, the wine master offers an unlimited scope of knowledge. Berry Bros. & Rudd, located at 3 St. James’s Street, is one of my favorite shops. The lessons I received upon my entrance into the 318-year-old business are based in history and fueled by passion. 
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M.J.C.

15 September 2016

The Presence of Paintings

Time spent in front of an extraordinary painting should not be limited. Step aside to allow others to look, but gaze as long as your heart desires. Paintings are powerful pieces of art. Exceptional brushwork conveys and evokes a range of sentiment. Connecting visually with a work is to converse with its artist. A good conversation does not deserve to be cut short.
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Up Close with The Thames below Westminster, The National Gallery
M.J.C.

13 September 2016

Parade on Piccadilly

Instead of going to the gym, I opt for long walks through London. From my starting gate along Bayswater Road, there are many directions up for consideration. My path most traveled is southeast through Kensington Gardens and Hyde Park to the Corner. Once I surface from the pedestrian underpass, I find myself on Piccadilly. Even after repeatedly following this course, I am invigorated each time I reach the top of the staircase. Being a bit claustrophobic, I am relieved that I managed to get through the passage safely. I find the sites accessed in the vicinity of Piccadilly majestic and thrilling to behold. I continue west in the direction of The Ritz, St. James’s, and Buckingham.
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M.J.C.

08 September 2016

Philanthropy Philosophy

We all have the capacity to contribute philanthropically to causes we deem worthy. Offering financial support or voluntary hours to a cherished institution or organization significantly impacts its ability to fulfill its mission. When we encounter a good cause that resonates with our principles, we should not hesitate to join in. If everyone gave in a small way, the amount of aid would surmount. There is strength in numbers. I have a desperate need for my foundations to prosper. The value they bring to my soul is immeasurable.
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The Adam Library at Kenwood, an English Heritage site  
M.J.C.

06 September 2016

Recalculating in Real Life

When a staircase leads to nothing, it is compulsory to descend and opt for another. To ascend and descend in rapid succession is tiring but imperative to persevering. Finding the proper path in life is only possible with a bit of recalculating. Setting a goal is the first stage of achieving a desired objective. The subsequent stages of chasing a dream are testing, amounting to one long journey of life. 
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M.J.C.

01 September 2016

Physical Photographs

A camera or computer is not an acceptable place of residence for a photograph. It should be framed atop a piano or in a leather bound album. I am serene and lifted up when surrounded by photographs from life's moments and of the people who have captured my heart. Images cannot be enjoyed to their fullest extent from the confines of an electronic device. They are meant to be cherished and tangible.
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M.J.C.

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