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|to Arline Feynman|
Added: 26.10.2020 21:31 | 2 views | 0 comments
Richard P. Feynman to Arline Feynman, April 3, 1945
Tuesday Morning, 10 AM
You will be interested in two things. First, yesterday I got everything going smoothly and so now I won't be working late hours anymore (I worked till 12 last night), and second, I took a shower. I slept late this morning just for fun and I'm beginning to take a more relaxed view of life (I even read a book for a 1/2 hour before I went to sleep). I think the worst is over and now I can take it easy.
There is a third thing you will be interested in. I love you. You are a strong and beautiful woman. You are not always as strong as other times but it rises and falls like the flow of a mountain stream. I feel I am a reservoir for your strength—without you I would be empty and weak like I was before I knew you—but your moments of strength make me strong and thus I am able to comfort you with your own strength when your stream is low.
I find it much harder these days to write these things to you—there isn't quite the personal intimate contact that I used to get out of letters. I will come Sunday and tell them to you—I will love you Sunday.
No news from here. Oh yes, we have a regular gestapo up here. They took a guy for over an hour in a smoke filled room with men sitting around in the dark—just like in the movies—firing questions at him to prove he was a Communist. They didn't succeed—because he wasn't. The poor guy couldn't work good the next day because they got him out of bed the night before. They claim they are trying to keep spies out of this place. It is dopey, because they leave the gates open at night often by mistake. Don't get scared tho they haven't found out that I am a relativist yet!
I love you sweetheart,
|Community Tourism on Floreana Island|
Added: 26.10.2020 21:31 | 6 views | 0 comments
Floreana has been a day tour destination from Santa Cruz for years. The residents of Floreana call it “lightning tourism” because big tour groups “strike” the island for an instant and then are gone. While visitors may eat lunch at a restaurant in town, the residents see little of the profits. Floreana residents don’t want the large-scale development and numbers of tourists that visit the other ports. Puerto Ayora may not seem hectic to you, but if you compare its throngs of souvenir shops, luxury hotels, spas, and touts to Floreana’s sleepy dirt roads and population of 130, it might as well be New York City. The challenge has been to maintain the uniqueness of Floreana’s slow pace of life while creating economic opportunities for the locals.
To that end, Floreana has worked with the national park and several conservation organizations to develop an entirely different model of tourism. The goal is to serve a limited number of tourists and ensure that the profits flow equitably into the community. Unlike Santa Cruz where multiple tour operators tout their services every time you walk down the street, Floreana has only one. The single community tourism operator (Centro Comunitario Floreana) directs the flow of group tours to hostels and restaurants and is the only company authorized to operate day tours to the beautiful Post Office Bay, Mirador de la Baronesa, and La Botella. As an independent traveler, consider yourself lucky; you can choose where to stay and eat. In contrast, when large tour groups arrive, people are assigned to stay in community-run guest houses and eat in community-run restaurants on a rotation schedule. A percentage of the proceeds goes back to CECFLOR for its operating costs, to support the local school and other projects to benefit the community.
A key difference you may notice is that all of CECFLOR’s tours are run by local community guides. There are no naturalist guides living on Floreana, so the national park has authorized CECFLOR to send tourists to protected areas with locals instead. Unlike naturalist guides, community guides are locals who have other jobs outside of tourism; these tours are a source of extra income. Their English may be quite limited and they don’t have the training that naturalist guides go through, but they do know the sites well and can point out animal species to you.
As an outsider, it may seem unfair that you aren’t allowed to walk on your own to Post Office Bay and Mirador de la Baronesa, but Floreana residents can go alone. Keep in mind, however, that many residents of Floreana are older; they lived on the island before the national park came into existence in 1959. For years the national park only allowed visits with a naturalist guide, but since no naturalist guides live on Floreana, it effectively prevented anyone from going unless they were on cruise ships. Under the new rules, residents can finally return to their favorite childhood haunts.
Floreana's Community Tourism Guesthouses
Floreana has seven mom-and-pop guesthouses that are affiliated with the community tourism project. These houses currently offer the same price of $35 per person, though there is a surprising variation in quality and amenities. The following list is ordered roughly in order of quality, best options first. Unless noted, these guesthouses do not include breakfast or air-conditioning. Note that there are plans to continue investing in renovating the guesthouses; prices may potentially increase.
None of these guesthouses use online booking platforms; make your reservation through the direct emails provided below or through CECFLOR with a special request for the guesthouse of your choice.
Casa Santa Maria (Ignacio Hernández, tel. 5/253-5022, email@example.com, $35 pp), run by the seasoned owners of the Floreana Lava Lodge, boasts six relatively modern rooms with mini-fridge, safe-deposit box, and hot water; it’s a block inland. Ask for a room on the third floor.
Casa de Emperatriz (12 de Febrero, tel. 5/253-5014, firstname.lastname@example.org, $35 pp) has three rather dingy rooms a couple blocks inland by the main road, but it is the only budget option on the island with air-conditioning. Some rooms also have mini-fridges.
Casa de Lelia (Ignacio Hernández and Oswaldo Rosero, tel. 5/253-5041, email@example.com, $35 pp), a block inland, has pleasant rooms with remodeled bathrooms, hammocks, and hot water; some rooms have mini-fridges.
Los Cactus (Oswaldo and La Baronesa, tel. 5/253-5011, firstname.lastname@example.org, $35 pp), is slightly inland near the dock. There are four basic, modern-style guest rooms; the two on the second floor have limited views of the bay. There is a kitchen that guests are sometimes allowed to use, but it’s best to ask.
Casa El Pajas (Wittmer at Zavala, tel. 5/253-5002, email@example.com, $35 pp) has an attractive tiki-style log cabin vibe but is located a little farther inland than the other options. There is also a breezy second-floor sitting area and a couple hammocks.
Cabañas Leocarpus (12 de Febrero, tel. 5/253-5054, firstname.lastname@example.org, $35 pp) on the main street has a similar rustic vibe. The guest rooms on the second floor have a very distant view to the sea. Each has one double bed and one single bed.
Casa de Huéspedes Hildita (12 de Febrero and Juan Salgado, tel. 5/253-5079, $35 pp) has five guest rooms built around an empty gravel courtyard. Be aware, however, that while water is a precious resource on the entire island, this hostal has the strictest water usage policy.
Related Travel Guide
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|to Gweneth Feynman|
Added: 26.10.2020 21:26 | 2 views | 0 comments
Richard P. Feynman to Gweneth Feynman, October 11, 1961
October 11, 1961
Hotel Amigo, Brussels
Hello, my sweetheart,
Murray and I kept each other awake arguing until we could stand it no longer. We woke up over Greenland which was even better than last time because we went right over part of it. In London we met other physicists and came to Brussels together. One of them was worried—in his guidebook the Hotel Amigo was not even mentioned. Another had a newer guide—five stars! and rumored to be the best hotel in Europe!
It is very nice indeed. All the furniture is dark red polished wood, in perfect condition; the bathroom is grand, etc. It is really too bad you didn't come to this conference instead of the other one.
At the meeting next day things started slowly. I was to talk in the afternoon. That is what I did, but I didn't really have enough time. We had to stop at 4 PM because of a reception scheduled for that night. I think my talk was OK tho—what I left out was in the written version anyway.
So that evening we went to the palace to meet the king and queen. Taxis waited for us at the hotel—long black ones—and off we went at 5 PM, arriving through the palace gates with a guard on each side, and driving under an arch where men in red coats and white stockings with a black band and gold tassel under each knee opened the doors. More guards at the entrance, in the hallway, along the stairs, and up into a ballroom, sort of. These guards stand very straight, dark grey Russian-type hats with a chin strap, dark coats, white pants, and shiny black leather boots, each holding a sword straight up.
In the "ballroom" we had to wait perhaps 20 minutes. It has inlaid parquet floors, and L in each square (Leopold—the present king's name is Baudoin, or something). The gilded walls are 18th century and on the ceiling are pictures of naked women riding chariots among the clouds or something. Lots of mirrors and gilded chairs with red cushions around the outside edge of the room—just like so many of the palaces we have seen, but this time it was alive, no museum, everything clean and shining and in perfect condition. Several palace officials were milling around among us. One had a list and told me where to stand but I didn't do it right and was out of place later.
The doors at the end of the hall open—guards are there, and the king and queen so we all enter slowly and are introduced one by one to the king and queen. The king has a young semi-dopey face and a strong handshake, the queen is very pretty. (I think her name is Fabriola—a Spanish countess she was.) We exit into another room on the left where there are lots of chairs arranged like in a theatre, with two in front, also facing forward, for K & Q later, and a table at the front with six seats is for illustrious scientists (Niels Bohr, J. Perrin (a Frenchman), J. R. Oppenheimer etc.).
It turns out the king wants to know what we are doing, so the old boys give a set of six dull lectures—all very solemn—no jokes. I had great difficulty sitting in my seat because I had a very stiff and uncomfortable back from sleeping on the plane.
That done, the K & Q pass thru the room where we met them and into a room on right (marked R). All these rooms are very big, gilded, Victorian, fancy, etc. In R are many kinds of uniforms, guards at door, red coats, white coat sort of waiters to serve drinks and hors d'oeuvres, military khaki and medals, black coat—undertaker's type (palace officials).
On the way out of L into R, I am last because I walk slowly from stiff back and find myself talking to a palace official—nice man—teaches math part time at Louvain University, but his main job is secretary to the queen. He had also tutored K when K was young and has been in palace work 23 years. At least I have somebody to talk to, some others are talking to K or to Q; everybody standing up. After a while the professor who is head of conference (Prof. Bragg) grabs me and says K wants to talk to me. I pull boner #1 by wanting to shake hands again when Bragg says, "K, this is Feynman"; apparently wrong—no hand reaches up, but after an embarrassed pause K saves day by shaking my hand. K makes polite remarks on how smart we all must be and how hard it must be to think. I answer, making jokes (having been instructed to do so by Bragg, but what does he know?)—apparently error #2. Anyway, strain is relieved when Bragg brings over some other professor—Heisenberg, I think. K forgets F and F slinks off to resume conversation with Sec'y of Q.
After considerable time—several orange juices and many very very good hors d'oeuvres later—a military uniform with medals comes over to me and says, "Talk to the queen!" Nothing I should like to do better (pretty girl, but don't worry, she's married). F arrives at scene: Q is sitting at table surrounded by three other occupied chairs—no room for F. There are several low coughs, slight confusion, etc. and lo! one of the chairs has been reluctantly vacated. Other two chairs contain one lady and one Priest in Full Regalia (who is also a physicist) named LeMaître.
We have quite a conversation (I listen, but hear no low coughs, and am not evacuated from seat) for perhaps 15 minutes. Sample:
Q: "It must be very hard work thinking about those difficult problems."
F: "No, we all do it for the fun of it."
Q: "It must be hard to learn to change all your ideas" (a thing she got from the six lectures).
F: "No, all those guys who gave you those lectures are old fogeys—all that stuff was in 1926, when I was only eight, so when I learned physics I only had to learn the new ideas. Big problem now is, will we have to change them again?"
Q: "You must feel good, working for peace like that."
F: "No, never enters my head, whether it is for peace or otherwise we don't know."
Q: "Things certainly change fast—many things have changed in the last hundred years."
F: "Not in this palace." (I thought it, but controlled myself.)
F: "Yes," and then launched into lecture on what was known in 1861 and what we found out since—adding at end, laughingly, "Can't help giving a lecture, I guess—I'm a professor, you see. Ha, ha."
Q in desperation, turns to lady on her other side and begins pleasant conversation with same.
After a few moments K comes over, whispers something to Q who stands up and they quietly go out. F returns to Sec'y of Q who personally escorts him out of palace past guards, etc.
I'm so terribly sorry you missed it. I don't know when we'll find another king for you to meet.
I was paged in the hotel this morning just before leaving with the others.
Phone call—I returned to the others and announced, "Gentlemen, that call was from the queen's secretary." All are awestruck, for it did not go unnoticed that F talked longer and harder to Q than seemed proper. I didn't tell them, however, that it was about a meeting we arranged—he was inviting me to his home to meet his wife and two (of four) of his daughters, and see his house. I had invited him to visit us in Pasadena when he came to America and this was his response.
His wife and daughters are very nice and his house was positively beautiful. You would have enjoyed that even more than visiting the palace. He planned and built his house in a Belgian style, somewhat after an old farmhouse style, but done just right. He has many old cabinets and tables inside, right beside newer stuff, very well combined. It is much easier for them to find antiques in Belgium than for you in Los Angeles as there are so many old farms, etc. He has large grounds and a vegetable garden—and a dog—from Washington—somebody gave the king and the K gave to him. The dog has a personality somewhat like Kiwi because I think he is equally loved. He even has a bench in his garden hidden under trees that he made for himself to go and sit on and look at the surrounding countryside. The house is slightly bigger than ours and the grounds are much bigger but not yet landscaped.
I told him I had a queen in a little castle in Pasadena I would like him to see—and he said he hoped he would be able to come to America and see us. He would come if the Q ever visits America again.
I am enclosing a picture of his house, and his card so I don't lose it.
I know you must feel terrible being left out this time—but I'll make it up someday somehow. Don't forget I love you very much and am proud of my family that is and my family that is to be. The secretary and his wife send their best wishes to you and our future.
I wish you were here, or next best thing, that I were there. Kiss SNORK and tell Mom all my adventures and I will be home sooner than you think.
Your husband loves you.
, Los Angeles
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