Share This!After a week of rain and some SNOW in Minnesota, Daisy Lauren’s Instagram photos were just what I needed to lift me up. If you need something shiny and bright to start your week off, check out this Best of Instagram post!If you’re new to this series, I post highlights from our Instagram page, along with a top comment featuring YOU, our subscriber.Enjoy!October 8, 2018October 9, 2018October 11, 2018October 12, 2018October 13, 2018Top Comment of the Week!Where most rainy days bring an “aww man!” attitude, many people find joy at Walt Disney World. If you have a rainy day Disney story, share it below!Should this post inspire you to give our Instagram page a follow, I’ll leave the link right here: http://www.instagram.com/touringplans
Cape Town’s Greenpoint stadium, a WorldCup venue, in the construction phase.(Image: City of Cape Town.Janine ErasmusSouth Africans are lining up in their thousands to buy tickets to the long-awaited 2010 Fifa World Cup, with around a third of 1 635 136 ticket applications originating from the host country. The first phase of ticket sales ended at midnight on 31 March 2009, with the six-week first phase attracting intense interest and excitement from all over the world.The 1.6-million-plus applications have come from 205 countries, all wanting their share of the 743 000 available tickets. South Africans make up the largest group of applicants, followed by the US, the UK, Germany, Italy and Australia. According to Fifa there were no problems experienced with the online or paper application system, and all indications point to the follow-up sales phases being even more hotly contested internationally.Tickets for the opening game and the final, both taking place at Soccer City in Johannesburg on 11 June and 11 July respectively, were the most in demand. Category 3 tickets, which are the cheapest tickets available to overseas fans as Category 4 is reserved for South Africans, were the most popular.Applications for team specific tickets – that is, tickets that allow fans to closely follow the progress of their favourite team – make up more than half the total number of applications received. “We are delighted that the team specific series is in such big demand, even before the actual fixtures for the tournament are known,” said Fifa honorary vice-president David Will, who also chairs the ticketing sub-committee.Since the number of applications far exceeds the number of available tickets, all applications will be placed into a random draw to be held on 15 April 2009. This ensures that everybody has an equal chance of getting a ticket. Applications may be viewed on the Fifa website and applicants will be informed via SMS or e-mail at the end of April of the success or failure of their bid.Still plenty of chancesThe unlucky ones need not despair, as there are a further four sales phases in store.Phase Two runs from 4 May to 16 November 2009. Applications are processed on a first come, first serve basis, so time is of the essence.Phase Three runs from 5 December 2009 to 22 January 2010. Tickets will be allocated through a random draw that will take place on 1 February 2010. By this time the 32 finalists will be known and the draw for the group stages will have been settled.Phase Four runs from 9 February to 7 April 2010. As in Phase Two, tickets will be allocated in the order in which applications are received – so the earlier the better.Phase Five runs from 15 April to 11 June 2010 and is the last-minute sales phase. Application forms will be done away with in this phase and tickets may be purchased in real time – subject to availability – on the Fifa website and at First National Bank (FNB) branches.Optimism and hopeFifa reported that within the first 24 hours of ticket sales, 216 975 applications from 128 countries had been received online, which excludes the hard copies handed in by South African residents at branches of FNB. Local fans put in the biggest order during the initial period, followed by the UK, the US, Germany, Brazil, Australia, Japan, Mexico, Canada, Switzerland, Ireland, Netherlands, Spain and Argentina.“It is the end of doubt and the beginning of optimism and hope – it is a wonderful time of celebration,” commented Local Organising Committee CEO Danny Jordaan on hearing the news.“I feel as if we are at a high-point on this 15 year rollercoaster journey,” added Jordaan, referring to the moment during the 1994 Fifa Congress in Chicago when he and then South African Football Association president, the late Sticks Morewa, first talked about South Africa bidding to host the World Cup.Good responseInitial fears of a half-hearted response to ticket sales have been totally swept away by the overwhelming number of applications received for the 2010 event.“It is very pleasing to see the huge global interest in the first African Fifa World Cup,” said Jordaan, who has repeatedly advised South Africans to avoid their habit of waiting until the last minute, and get their applications in early. “We want to encourage even more South Africans and Africans to apply for their Fifa World Cup tickets during the next sales phase, so they do not miss out on this unique once-in-a-lifetime experience.”Do you have queries or comments about this article? Contact Janine Erasmus at email@example.com.Related articles2010 World Cup tickets on saleUefa praises SA’s 2010 readinessUseful links2010 Fifa World Cup ticketingSA 2010Shine 2010FNB – 2010
A top Chinese brain scientist wonders how he ended up on the U.S. visa blacklist Rao Yi By Dennis NormileJul. 18, 2018 , 12:10 PM “The U.S. embassy is not afraid of offending people and making enemies,” says Rao Yi of Peking University in Beijing. SHANGHAI, CHINA—Frustrated with a string of unexplained U.S. visa denials, a top Chinese brain scientist has decided to go public, copying numerous journalists on a 17 July email to officials at the U.S. Embassy in Beijing pleading his case.”Most embassies try to make more friends for their countries; the U.S. embassy is not afraid of offending people and making enemies,” says Rao Yi, a high-profile neuroscientist at Peking University in Beijing who studied and worked in the United States for 22 years. His difficulty obtaining a visa is particularly ironic, given that he has been invited to attend a workshop by the U.S. National Science Foundation (NSF), a government agency based in Alexandria, Virginia.Rao, 56, earned his Ph.D. in neuroscience in 1991 from University of California, San Francisco (UCSF), and did a postdoc at Harvard University. He was on the faculty at Washington University in St. Louis, Missouri for 10 years and later joined Northwestern University’s Feinberg School of Medicine in Chicago, Illinois, where he rose to be a full professor. Along the way, he acquired U.S. citizenship. He returned to China in 2007 to become dean of Peking University’s School of Life Sciences. 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Since then, he has failed to get visas to join a conference at the McGovern Institute for Brain Research at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Cambridge, to attend a memorial service for U.S. banker David Rockefeller, and even to visit his daughter, a U.S. citizen.In addition to his position at Peking University, he is now director of the Chinese Institute for Brain Research in Beijing. NSF invited him to a workshop in Washington, D.C., on 23 and 24 July that aims to develop a Global Inventory of Brain Initiatives to facilitate international coordination.Rao says he had an interview at the U.S. embassy on Monday, during which he was asked to provide an updated CV and travel schedule. He says he has not made flight reservations because his recent experiences leave him doubtful about getting a visa. He says he is puzzled about the visa denials and cannot think of anything he might have done to get blacklisted. He did appear on Chinese TV criticizing U.S. President Donald Trump after the 2016 election, but his first visa rejection predated the election. He says he was once told that the decision was made in Washington, D.C., but was given no further details.The U.S. government began applying tougher restrictions on some Chinese graduate students last month, but the new policy does not apply to senior scientists and does not include the neurosciences.The U.S. embassy in Beijing does not comment on individual visa cases, a spokesperson wrote in an email to ScienceInsider. “I certainly hope that the U.S. will not go down in history as the country which arbitrarily blocks international cooperation in the natural sciences,” Rao wrote in his email plea to embassy officials.
Saina NehwalOlympic bronze-medallist Saina Nehwal on Sunday said the triumph at the China Open Super Series Premier was one of her “toughest” and it showed that the hard work was paying off.World No. 5 Saina had to draw from her reservoir of experience to stave off the challenge of the Akane Yamaguchi of Japan 21-12 22-20 to clinch the women’s singles title of the USD 700,000 China Open.”I m very happy to win this title, my third in the season. It is one of the toughest. I have been working really hard for the last few months and I am extremely happy that my efforts bore fruit,” Saina said .”It has not been easy for me. Vimal sir (Kumar) helped me a lot and it is a huge victory and a great feeling to win the title in China,” she said.Talking about her opponent Akane Yamaguchi of Japan, Saina said: “The Japanese girl is very good. She is young and she played very well. She did trouble me in the second game especially but I am happy I could prevail over her. She is extremely talented and will be a force to reckon in future.”About her future tournaments, Saina said: “I am focused to do well in Hong Kong Open (Nov 18-23) next. I have won the tournament in 2010 and I am in good shape now. The confidence of this win will help me to do well.”I am also looking forward to the BWF World Super Series Final in Dubai. That is my ultimate target now.”advertisement