tourism bureau

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The hamlet of Sevnica, population 5,000, sits right in the middle of the small, alpine nation of Slovenia, in a green valley along the Sava River, surrounded by pine-forested hills.

“It’s really an amazing climate,” chirps Lidija Ogorevc, a cheerleader-peppy tour guide here. “You should try our wine, our salami.”

She stops in front of a fenced-in building — not unattractive, but clearly closed.

“A cultural monument,” she declares.

This used to be the factory where Amalija Knavs, the mother of Melania Trump, designed children’s clothes decades ago, when Slovenia was still part of Yugoslavia.

The first lady, born Melanija Knavs, is a native of Slovenia — which, to many Slovenians’ frustration, is often confused with Slovakia, another tiny European country.

In Sevnica, where the first lady was raised, Ogorevc leads a tour that includes the first lady’s elementary school, the Communist-era apartment block where she first lived and the neighborhood where her parents still own a handsome, two-story, black-roofed white house. (Viktor and Amalija Knavs are often in the U.S.)

The five-hour walking tour, which costs about $90 for two, is one of several Melania-themed tours offered by the Sevnica municipality

For Melania Trump’s Slovenian Hometown, First Lady’s Fame Is Good For Business

Photos: Joanna Kakissis for NPR

vimeo

Always fun to get to play tourism bureau. Here’s the original caption for this video - note Aoraki sitting in the opening shot background.

One of my best decision in life was to go on a 15,000 km journey across New Zealand. So, I put a little video together to convince you to do the same!

172706 Tweet : Leeteuk

..Returned back safe from #Switzerland this is my third time visiting Switzerland and because I am the honorary ambassador for Switzerland so I felt even more of a sense of familiarity and I was pretty excited even before the filming started. All the staff members and the chief of the Switzerland Tourism Board did the filming well enjoyably but an unexpected situation happened before we left for the airport and everyone was taken aback and shocked by the situation. We don’t wish for this to happen again but perhaps if we were to experience this again, it seems like we will be able to handle it better and I will give a detailed explanation next time for the tourists. Nobody was injured and everyone ate and slept well and came back. Seems like everyone will be able to see Switzerland’s beautiful sceneries and tasty food through “One Night Food Trip” which will be broadcasting in July. I’m, as expected, looking forward to it. Sorry for worrying everyone. I heard it also became a big news in Switzerland. No matter where you go and when, safety is the most important. To SHINee’s Minho who did the filming on my behalf and the production crew of “Your Delivery Is Here”, sorry and thank you. I will work even harder to show you a more hardworking side of me..

..Je suis revenu sain et sauf de #Suisse ceci est la troisième fois que je visite la Suisse et parce que je suis ambassadeur honoraire de Suisse alors j’ai encore plus senti une certaine familiarité et j’étais plutôt excité même avant que le tournage commence. Tous les membres de l’équipe et le chef de du Bureau de Tourisme de Suisse ont bien profité du tournage mais une situation inattendue est arrivée avant que nous partions pour l’aéroport et tout le monde était pris de cours et choqué par la situation. Ne ne souhaitons pas que ceci se reproduise, mais peut-être que si nous devions l’expérimenter de nouveau, il semble que nous serons en mesure de mieux la gérer et je donnerai une explication détaillée la prochaine fois pour les touristes. Personne n’a été blessé et tout le monde a bien mangé, dormi et est revenu. Il semble que tout le monde sera en mesure de voir les beaux paysages de Suisse et la délicieuse nourriture à travers “One Night Food Trip” qui sera diffusé en Juillet. J’en ai, comme attendu, hâte. Désolé d’avoir inquiété tout le monde. J’ai entendu que c’est aussi devenu une actualité importante en Suisse. Peu importe où que vous alliez et quand, la sécurité est le plus important. Pour Minho des SHINee qui a fait le tournage à ma place et l’équipe de production de “Your Delivery Is Here”, je suis désolé et merci. Je vais travailler encore plus dur pour vous montrer un côté encore plus travailleur..

We tried rp walking in Ironforge and were killed by guards and eventually a Hunter

We visited Stormwind, paid our respects by kneeling in front of Varian Wrynn’s grave and monument AND THEN AN ALLY WARLOCK ATTACKED US

We will be writing strongly worded letters to the Alliance Bureau of Tourism, we are very disappointed with the hospitality of our sightseeing.

Demon Day

And it dawned like
a bloody yolk cracked
unexpected eclipse
and the Earth shuddered–

they came in twos or threes,
confused from the long trip
up, and blinded by the
moondark sun.

They spent a day here,
eating of the green things
that do not grow beneath.
And visiting the mall.

Beneath the crescent moon,
they slipped back into
the earth, back home.
Leaving a trace of brimstone.

The tourism bureau was pleased
that their ritual worked.

– S. E. De Haven (SnuffyArt)

What did you think?

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Jesus in Ancient Japan? 

In a small town called Shingo, located in the Sannohe District of Aomori Province, Japan, the local people have a maintained a very unusual and interesting tradition for generations.  According to the people of Shingo, their small town is the final resting place of Jesus Christ, the holy savior of mankind in Christian theology.  According to the legend, during Jesus’ younger days, a period of time which is little mentioned in the Gospels, Jesus moved to Japan in order to study religion and theology.  At the age of 33, Jesus moved back to Judea to preach to his people.  As we all know, his religious and spiritual message was not well received, and he was condemned to be executed by Crucifixion.  However, instead of being crucified and resurrected, his younger brother Isukiri took his place on the cross while Jesus escaped back to Japan.  Once in Japan, Jesus settled down as a garlic and rice farmer, married and raised three children, then died at the age of 106.  He was then interred in a small tomb at a local hillside, a site which today is maintained and managed by a local yogurt factory.

Every year in spring, an annual Christ Festival is held where a religious ritual is performed to “console the spirit of Jesus”, a ritual that has been staged by the local tourism bureau since 1964. There is also a museum called the “Legend of Christ Museum”, which houses relics of the Japanese Jesus and sells souvenirs such as coffee mugs and coasters. Entrance fee to the museum is 100 Yen (about 85 cents). It is interesting to note that only one resident of Shingo is a Christian, and most of the 20,000 yearly visitors of the grave are non-Christians as well.  However the people of Shingo passionately maintain that their grave is the real deal.  Local scholars claim that the village was founded by a group of diaspora Hebrews, and cite as evidence cultural attributes of ancient residents during the time, and a handful of words in the local dialect which kinda sort of somewhat sound like Hebrew.  

However the ultimate proof is in a set of scrolls, memoirs and the last will and testament of Jesus himself.  Unfortunately the scrolls were destroyed in a firebombing raid during World War II, however the Legend of Jesus Christ Museum houses a translated replica.  The replica scrolls are signed, “Jesus Christ; Father of Christmas”.  

October 2nd, 2014

ARTIST: owyn

AUTHOR: qichi

2nd of October, 2014

The city only looks as it claims to in the middle of the night. The advertisements the tourism bureaus pump endlessly into the feed of the screen mounted to his forearm, arriving with a faint jolt of vibration, the natural evolution of the text message, all blare high-urban neon, endless points of multicolored light ringing out progress, progress, progress. Now, at grey afternoon, the streets crowded with smog and the general public, it feels like a facsimile, a model photographed in bad light.

He hates to come here when he can avoid it. The sidewalk suffocates him from all sides, people jostling his shoulder at nearly every turn and his suburb-boy paranoia makes him check his pockets over and over. If he loses what he’s carrying…

A hovercab zips much-too-close overhead, skidding above the pedestrian stream until it finds a platform at which to let its occupants disembark. Arthur isn’t above the thoughts you’re supposed to have, seeing a hovercab: wish I was in it, wish I could ride through the city, wish I could afford it, wish I was one of them.

At least he’s smart enough to damn himself for the thoughts: too easy, too simple to aspire to affording public transportation. It just means no one spends enough time asking themselves why they can’t all afford it. Why it isn’t a given.

Which is why he’s here, of course, pockets stuffed with infected memory cards.

Finally Arthur slips out of the river of the sidewalk, down an unlit alley, cast with shadow from the skyscraper-apartments to either side. He maneuvers past shattered glass sprinkling the concrete and slips between buildings, down a crevice intentionally built so small no one would give it a second thought. A third of the way through there’s a steep sudden staircase. Arthur descends; the door now in front has no knob or handle but slides, seamless, into the ground as soon as he nears it.

Thanks, he thinks. The computer in his arm reads the thought-pattern and relays it miles away in a nanosecond so that less than a heartbeat later Arthur’s ears ring with the clear staticless response: “No prob, Arthur. So you’re in?”

It’s not lit here. His eyes shift to nightvision; a click-whirr of change and everything’s visible, though green-tinted. I’m in. It’s dark. The floor’s metallic. My steps are loud.

“Shit, okay. How dark? Would I be able to see?”

Arthur imagines Alfred adjusting his glasses. He would smile at the memory if he had the time to waste on sentiment. No.

A moment’s pause, during which Arthur stays absolutely still.

“Okaaaay… I pulled up the security report and there’s no guards posted down there. Not even robo-patrols, so no one’s gonna see or hear you.”

Cameras still offline?

Alfred tsks. “Who do you think I am? Move out, Art.”

Immediately he’s hurrying forward, exactly aware where he is and where he needs to be, though his arm nonetheless projects a map for him. He’s a blinking green dot moving through sharp right angles and straight hallways, tracing the same path in reality and simulation. Each time he reaches a steel plate covering hardware he tears it straight off its screws and gets on his knees, working at a feverish pace to click the memory cards into the exposed computers.

He’s flooding the systems. Perhaps one plate covers the part of the urban infrastructure that governs water allotment to the poor tenements, perhaps another determines how much electricity goes to a district populated mainly by immigrants. The computers measure out the lives of the scattered neglected underclass. And all that budgeting to fund the excesses of downtown: the neon signs, the sodium glow, all that glittering greed and corruption.

They’re not destroying anything. They’re fixing it. They, he and Alfred, are shutting down the evil that siphons livelihood only to those who can afford it. The memory cards are revolution.

As soon as everything’s in place Arthur slips back into the city shuffle, trudging his way block by block until he reaches the train station sitting waiting, its rust-brown tracks reaching into the horizon. It’s late. The city burns on behind him.

Arthur’s so tired, running on empty by the time he gets back home. Their apartment is four station stops away, getting closer by the day to the outward growth of the city. For now, though, it stands apart, a distant multicolor glowing skyline seen from their windows.

He catches Alfred staring out at it with that sunshine smile until Arthur clears his throat and makes his presence known.

“Arthur!”

I’m home.

He catches sight of himself in the reflection off Alfred’s glasses, eyes burning brilliant electric green.

“Sheesh, you look so ragged, c'mere and let me plug you in…” Alfred’s voice, the voice of the man who programmed him, swirls around him, a faraway comforting rumble, as Alfred opens ports and connects wire after wire, weaving Arthur into the power lines of the apartment. All his insides begin to thrum, charging. “It’s gonna make the news. They can’t cover something like this up! People are gonna know. People will know!”

I’m glad you’re happy.

“We finally did something… I couldn’t have done it without you…” Alfred’s lips slant against his, for a second, for a heartbeat. “Arthur.”

I’m glad.

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North Korea is one of the most isolated nations in the world, so what’s it really like to be a tourist there?

You might be surprised to learn that outsiders can visit North Korea. In fact, Kim Jong-un is pushing tourism, hoping to increase visits from the current 100,000 tourists a year to two million by 2020. As you might expect, tourism in North Korea is a unique experience and certainly not for everyone.

At present, the only way to officially tour North Korea is via one of the state-run tourism bureaus. Only guided tours are permitted (tourists do not wander on their own) and only certain cities can be visited. Visitors, like North Koreans, are constantly monitored while in the country and any photography or record of the stay will be tightly controlled. There is no right to privacy. There are occasional opportunities to mingle with some locals, which is a big reason why some people visit North Korea. Beyond learning about life there, some tourists hope their presence can help spread some word about the world beyond.

(via Seeker Stories)