TWA at JFK: A Glimpse at Travel in the 1960s

by Dr. Denise R. Ames

My visit with my daughter’s family, including my three grandchildren, was coming to an end! But one more adventure before taking-off on a Jet Blue flight from JFK in New York City to Albuquerque, a visit to the renovated old TWA terminal at JFK.

Many of you may not recognize the acronym TWA, it stands for Trans World Airlines. It was a major American airline that operated from 1930 until 2001.

The infamous and fascinating Howard Hughes acquired control of TWA in 1939, and after World War II led the expansion of the airline to serve Europe, the Middle East, and Asia. Although headquarters of TWA was located in St. Louis, MO, its transatlantic hub was the TWA Flight Center at JFK Airport. Named after the charismatic president John Fitzgerald Kennedy on December 24, 1963, the former Idlewild Airport in New York City commemorated the slain president just a little over a month after his assassination.

In the 1960s, TWA was in its heyday, and traveling was glamorous. I remember taking my first airplane flight in September 1963 from Chicago to Dallas (I think on TWA). For the occasion, my mother made sure I had a new outfit (blue plaid pleated skirt and color-coordinated blue sweater). 

To showcase TWA’s prominence and the New York airport’s significance in the world, renowned architect Eero Saarinen and Associates were commissioned to design a new Flight Center for TWA. It was erected between 1959 and 1962. Saarinen is also known for designing the soaring Gateway Arch in St. Louis.

During the deregulation frenzy of the late 1970s, TWA experienced many troubles and several bankruptcies. It was ultimately bought by American Airlines and sadly the legendary airline ceased its operations in 2003.

The NY terminal closed in 2001—along with its namesake Trans World Airlines—because it could no longer support the size of modern airplanes. Nearly two decades later, the once abandoned landmark building reopened on May 15, 2019 as the TWA Hotel, JFK’s first on-airport hotel.

Midcentury modern best describes the style of the renovated Flight Center in all its nostalgic splendor. The sweeping lines and suspended overhangs scream the 1950s and 1960s architecture.

My family and I were excited about seeing the old TWA Flight Center. Since my Jet Blue flight and the Flight Center both operated out of Terminal 5, it made for a convenient and leisurely time before taking off. The kids loved the swivel stools, spinning around until dizzy. The classic red color of TWA adorned the seating and carpet. After touring the lobby, we headed to the bar to order some snacks and drinks.

Out of high school, I applied to be a stewardess (the name back then for flight attendant) with American and TWA Airlines. I was interviewed in Chicago, but alas I didn’t make the cut. Although my waitressing skills were a plus, I measured 5’8” tall and the cut-off was 5’5”. They also had weight restrictions, but at 18 years old I easily slipped under that number. I sat in the terminal imagining my life if I had become a stewardess. Perhaps I would have made a career out of it and not gone to college. Perhaps I would have traveled the world rather than have read about it. Alas, that path did not open to me. Instead, I finished college, got married, had a family, and pursued at career in education (grade7-university).

Watching my rambunctious grandchildren race about the bright red carpeted lounge area, I felt happy about the path I had chosen. My dear daughter and sweet grandchildren would not be tearing around if I had chosen differently.

Finally it was time to say good-bye. My grandchildren accompanied me through the renovated tunnel to the Jet Blue terminal. Lots of kisses and hugs as I waved good-bye. I reminisced about my short walk through memory lane inspired by the TWA renovation.

The 1960s were a long time ago, but I remember them vividly. Much has happened since then, some good and some bad. One thing I do realize is that even though many choices are made through one’s life, it does little good to second guess them. What is important is living each moment with what one has and being grateful for it. I felt a sense of contentment realizing that being a stewardess probably wasn’t as glamorous as it seemed, and I would have probably become bored with it after a while and quit.

At least now I can say that I was happy seeing my grandchildren run through the tunnel back to the red-carpeted lounge and their loving parents. I turned the corner to pass through security and board my flight.

About the Author: Dr. Denise R. Ames

Dr. Denise R. Ames’ varied life experiences—teaching, scholarly research, personal experiences, extensive travels, and thoughtful reflections—have contributed to her balanced views and global perspectives. Earning a doctorate in world history education, she has taught secondary schools, universities, a community college, professional development, and lifelong learners. In 2003, Dr. Ames founded Center for Global Awareness, an educational non-profit that develops globally-focused books and educational resources for educators and students grade 9-university. She has written eight books, plus numerous blogs, lesson plans, articles, newsletters, teaching units.

Along with CGA’s Gather program, Global Awareness Through Engaged Reflection, a study and conversation program for self-organizing groups of lifelong learners and, Global Awareness for Educators, Dr. Ames is developing a new program: Turn, Transformation, Understanding, & Reflection Network. Turn encourages life-long learners to see with new eyes, learn from the past, understand others, and recognize the relationship of all things. She teaches workshops/classes and writes about Turn’s five topics: learning from the past, cross-cultural awareness, five worldviews, elder wisdom, and transformative travel.

Dr. Ames has written 9 books for the Center for Global Awareness, check out their offerings! Global Awareness Books 

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Salt, a Part of Us, a Part of Nature: A Visit to the Salt Flats in New Mexico

by Dr. Denise R. Ames

We don’t think much about salt but it is a vital mineral essential for humans and other life forms. As I was driving to and from my visit to the Salinas (salt) Spanish Pueblos and Missions south of Albuquerque, New Mexico, I decided to take a brief detour to see the salt flats stretching across the barren New Mexico landscape.

I had learned in my research about the early Salinas pueblos that they gained wealth and built their pueblos in the area in part because of the salt trade. Even before the Spanish arrived, salt was carried across the arid flats of New Mexico for trade, and the Salinas people were part of the trading network.

Once the Spanish arrived and set up missions at Abo, Quarai, and Gran Quivira (see earlier posts), they too engaged in the trade. The Spanish aided the salt trade by introducing previously unknown pack animals to the Western hemisphere—horse, mules, donkeys—to transport the salt. Because of its weight, it is hard to imagine a more difficult trade item to transport across vast distances than salt. But donkeys were loaded with salt bags destined for nearby trading partners.

It seems counterintuitive, but salt is scarce and the universal need for it has played a role in wars, politics, and to raise tax revenues. In fact, it is essential for life in general. Salt is a mineral composed primarily of sodium chloride, a chemical compound belonging to the larger class of salts. Saltiness is one of the basic human tastes. It is one of the oldest and most ubiquitous food seasonings, and salting is an important method of food preservation. Salt is used in religious ceremonies and has other cultural and traditional significance.

Central New Mexico is not the only area to engage in the salt trade. Through human history, salt became an important article of trade and was transported by boat across the Mediterranean Sea, along specially built salt roads, and across the Sahara on camel caravans.

Many tourists to New Mexico find the salt trade to be of interest. Now the salt trade route is memorialized in the Salt Missions Trail Scenic Byway. It is a 150-mile byway in Central New Mexico that celebrates the cultures of native American, Spanish, and Anglo peoples in 13 communities and numerous historical and archaeological sites along the Byway.

I was eager to see where all the salt was located. I had visited the salt flats many years ago, but I wanted to see the area with “new eyes.” Traveling south on highway 337, I came to the junction of Highway 60.  I headed east on the two-lane highway for about 20 miles, to the town of Willard. Just east of Willard, I saw the first glimpse of the salt flats. It was breathtaking. I had to stop the car and get out!

It was a slightly windy day, and it must have been enough wind to stir the dry salt particles into a misty cloud that hovered over the land. It gave an ethereal look to the landscape, which is already stark. It was hard to imagine that a large portion of this area of New Mexico was underwater millions of years ago. These ancient lake salt beds provided critical salt supplies to residents and their trading partners until well into the 20th century.

I drove eastward for several more miles, stopping alongside the road to get a closer look at the ancient beds of salt. I searched the horizon, and all I saw were hills of salt. The scene gave me a surreal feeling, like nature was playing tricks on me. For a mineral that is essential for human and other forms of life, paradoxically, nothing grew on the salt flats, except for some scraggly brush that seemed to be merely passing through rather than digging in deep roots for the long haul.

What I like about New Mexico is that even though I am sheltered and secure within the urban morass of the city, just step outside these secure confines and I am confronted with nature unbound, stripped of any human attempts at civilizing. The salt flats were like this. Salt, stretching across the semi-desert, was raw and similar to what it would have been like millions of years ago. Salt is part of us and salt is part of nature.

I got in my car and drove back to Albuquerque, to my secure confines of hearth and home. But the feeling that swept over me as I gazed onto the salt flats always gives me pause, it said to me to stop and contemplate that not only are we part of nature, but nature is part of us. The salt flats reminded me of that truth.

About the Author: Dr. Denise R. Ames

Dr. Denise R. Ames’ varied life experiences—teaching, scholarly research, personal experiences, extensive travels, and thoughtful reflections—have contributed to her balanced views and global perspectives. Earning a doctorate in world history education, she has taught secondary schools, universities, a community college, professional development, and lifelong learners. In 2003, Dr. Ames founded Center for Global Awareness, an educational non-profit that develops globally-focused books and educational resources for educators and students grade 9-university. She has written eight books, plus numerous blogs, lesson plans, articles, newsletters, teaching units.

Along with CGA’s Gather program, Global Awareness Through Engaged Reflection, a study and conversation program for self-organizing groups of lifelong learners and, Global Awareness for Educators, Dr. Ames is developing a new program: Turn, Transformation, Understanding, & Reflection Network. Turn encourages life-long learners to see with new eyes, learn from the past, understand others, and recognize the relationship of all things. She teaches workshops/classes and writes about Turn’s five topics: learning from the past, cross-cultural awareness, five worldviews, elder wisdom, and transformative travel.

Dr. Ames has written 9 books for the Center for Global Awareness, check out their offerings! Global Awareness Books 

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An Island of Tranquility Amidst the Fray: A Stroll Through the Brooklyn Botanic Gardens

by Dr. Denise R. Ames

My trip to Brooklyn, New York to visit my daughter and her family was ending soon. I would be taking off on a Jet Blue flight from JFK Airport to Albuquerque that evening. But one last adventure awaited me: a trip to the Brooklyn Botanic Gardens.

It is one of my favorite places to visit in New York, even more than a show on Broadway or a trip to one of the bazillion museums. My daughter and her family love it as well, they are members and go frequently. It is also a great place to take my grandchildren—an 8-year-old girl and 4-year-old twins, a boy and girl. They love to race across the lawns, dart behind trees, climb rock formations, and anything else that involves movement.

Rather than race across the grounds, my daughter and I were intent on smelling practically every rose in the gardens and marveling at the various specimens the gardens has collected.

One site that intrigued me was The Shelby White and Leon Levy Water Garden. It is small wetland and riparian environment with a meandering path that leads visitors past a babbling brook and tranquil pond surrounded by resilient plants that flourish at the water’s edge.

The pond and stream, known as Belle’s Brook, are part of the Garden’s Water Conservation Project which allows the Garden to filter and recirculate fresh rainwater and groundwater throughout its 52-acre watershed, reducing water consumption and easing the burden on the city storm drains.

It is the first project of its scale and complexity in North America and a model for reducing use of freshwater and lessening overflow into the city’s sewer system. This new project allows the Garden to filter and recirculate fresh rainwater and groundwater collected throughout a significant portion of the grounds and channel it through the Water Garden pond, the Japanese Hill-and-Pond Garden pond, and catchment sites along the brook system. The project will reduce BBG’s outdoor freshwater consumption in its water features by almost 96% from 22 million gallons to less than a million gallons per year.

I love this type of innovative approach to water conservation and returning our natural landscape into what nature had intended all along.

Another beautiful spot was the Japanese Hill-and-Pond Garden. I was surprised to find that it is one of the oldest and most visited Japanese-inspired gardens outside Japan. It is a blend of the ancient hill-and-pond style and the more recent stroll-garden style, in which various landscape features are gradually revealed along winding paths. It was fun to stroll along the paths, seeing many delightful formations along the way. Although the children saw very little as they raced through the twisty turns as if they were racing in Monte Carlo.

The garden features artificial hills contoured around a pond, a waterfall, and an island, along with carefully placed rocks. Architectural elements include wooden bridges, stone lanterns, a viewing pavilion, a Shinto shrine, and a dramatic vermilion-colored wooden torii.

The pond was the big attraction for the kids. They found numerous turtles sunning themselves in the pond and promptly named them all. Robin just swam over to visit Elsa, while Rosie dove underwater to see Vera. It seemed as though nature inspired their imaginations to run wild.

Although the visit wasn’t quite long enough, it was time to head to the airport. I said good-bye to the island of tranquility nestled amidst the bustle and concrete of Brooklyn. Nature has a way of soothing nerves, sparking imagination, and putting life’s daily trials into perspective. I am lucky to have visited such an inspiring place and the experience was all that much better with my fun daughter and my three spirited grandchildren along on the adventure.

About the Author: Dr. Denise R. Ames

Dr. Denise R. Ames’ varied life experiences—teaching, scholarly research, personal experiences, extensive travels, and thoughtful reflections—have contributed to her balanced views and global perspectives. Earning a doctorate in world history education, she has taught secondary schools, universities, a community college, professional development, and lifelong learners. In 2003, Dr. Ames founded Center for Global Awareness, an educational non-profit that develops globally-focused books and educational resources for educators and students grade 9-university. She has written eight books, plus numerous blogs, lesson plans, articles, newsletters, teaching units.

Along with CGA’s Gather program, Global Awareness Through Engaged Reflection, a study and conversation program for self-organizing groups of lifelong learners and, Global Awareness for Educators, Dr. Ames is developing a new program: Turn, Transformation, Understanding, & Reflection Network. Turn encourages life-long learners to see with new eyes, learn from the past, understand others, and recognize the relationship of all things. She teaches workshops/classes and writes about Turn’s five topics: learning from the past, cross-cultural awareness, five worldviews, elder wisdom, and transformative travel.

Dr. Ames has written 9 books for the Center for Global Awareness, check out their offerings! Global Awareness Books 

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A Day at Hidden Hill: A Retreat from the Frenetic and into the Ordinary

by Dr. Denise R. Ames

photo Denise Ames

Hidden Hill is the name of my daughter and her family’s second home in upstate New York. Before I say home, I should clarify: their remodeling of an early 19th century cottage is not complete. After two years of work and many frustrating setbacks, including COVID-19, it is not quite finished. But, I may add, they are making progress.

Remodeling an early 19th century cottage, photo Denise Ames

My daughter and her husband and their three children, my adorable grandchildren, love to head up north from Brooklyn for a long weekend in the country. But, alas, where to stay since the house is a construction site. They have to be creative.

First, they erected a big tent that they furnished with a bed, a makeshift sink, and a table and chairs for dining. They use it frequently for themselves and guests. I’ve slept in it and it is quite comfortable. A short walk away is an outhouse, painted an unobtrusive gray and nestled into the trees. Not bad, I will admit.

Once their first winter set in, the tent was too cold, so they emptied the tent and deliberated on where to sleep. Feeling pity for them, their building contractor hauled an old 20-foot camper (no title or license) to the building site for them to use. My daughter set to cleaning the mess, running a hose for water, and hooking up electricity, but alas, still no indoor plumbing, the outhouse would have to do. At least, with their space heaters, it was warm enough to sleep in on cold winter nights.

Barn at Hidden Hill, upstate New York, photo Denise Ames

With a move-in date to the house still in the uncertain future, I was surprised to find on my last visit in May that they had carved out another living space: the barn. The barn is really a great structure, with huge wooden beams, a stone foundation, and an elevated hay mow. They ran electricity to the barn and set up a makeshift kitchen, a wood stove, and living area with a couch. How cozy. They are planning to sleep in the barn as well when the temperatures rise in the summer and the camper is too hot.

My grandchildren playing in the dirt at Hidden Hill, photo Denise Ames

The kids love Hidden Hill. They have plenty of room to run, roll down a hill, catch all kinds of bugs, and get as dirty as they want. In fact, I notice a difference in their behavior when at Hidden Hill. They seem happier! Although I certainly wouldn’t say they are unhappy in Brooklyn, I notice they are more independent, relaxed, and engaged.

I drove up with my family Friday night and we all slept in the camper. Saturday dawned bright and sunny, a perfect spring day. We headed to head to a delicious bakery not far from Hidden Hill for breakfast. Their display of artisanal baked goods, lead me to exclaim that all of eastern upstate New York was being gentrified. We chowed down at a picnic table overlooking a green meadow. I couldn’t imagine the construction crew at Hidden Hill partaking in expensive, hand-made doughnuts. In fact, to support my intuition empty bags of Dunkin Doughnuts and containers of coffee were piled up in trash bag at the not-quite-finished house.

Natural spring, upstate New York, photo Denise Ames

After our culinary breakfast extravaganza, we trekked to a nearby natural spring to fetch water. The newly drilled well for the house needed some adjustments and they had to haul in their own water. So, with two ten-gallon containers in tow, we clamored down the short trail to the spring. The owners of the spring graciously provided a pipe that directed some of the spring water out of the hillside so users could easily fill their containers. I was worried about contaminates in the water but I was assured that they had been drinking it for several weeks with no ill effects. My eight-years-old granddaughter said it was the best water she ever tasted. I agreed.

Filling containers with spring water, upstate New York,
photo Denise Ames

We weren’t the only ones to discover the pristine spring water, a car pulled up after us and filled their galloon containers. I hope some of the big spring bottling companies don’t “discover” this truly amazing spring.

Next stop was a farmer’s market in Hudson. It was about ready to close up but we were able to snare a trout for dinner and some greens and potatoes to go with it.

It was early afternoon and chores awaited us at Hidden Hill, also my cousin who lives in western New York was joining us for the weekend. My daughter had her sites set on planting the garden. They had a fairly successful garden last year and she was bent on expanding it. I looked out over the fenced plot and saw the weeds had overtaken every inch of the space and they seemed well-entrenched. I thought no way are we going to get this done. But I was ready to dig in, so to speak.

Garden weeded and planted, photo Denise Ames

Actually, everyone pitched in, the kids for shorter spans of time. My cousin arrived and was enlisted as well. How she managed to keep her white linen blouse pristine was beyond me. By the end of the afternoon, the weeding was about done! It looked promising that the next day we would get the planting completed! After all that exertion, everyone was starved.

The barn, photo Denise Ames

The dinner was underway, with trout and local greens on the menu and my son-in-law manning the grill. A sumptuous carrot cake, baked by my cousin, finished off the culinary delights. The chocolates I brought from Buffet’s Candies in Albuquerque put the crowning touch on the sumptuous evening. We even adorned the table with freshly picked lilacs, snagged from a fragrant roadside bush.

After a fun day, the youngsters were tired. If one person goes to bed everyone has to go to bed, since sleeping arrangements are staged in the camper. Two people slept in the tent, while five of us piled into the camper. Cramped, but comfortable enough.

Bedtime in the camper, photo Denise Ames

After washing up with fresh spring water, I slid into bed. I reflected on the day at Hidden Hill and felt a sense of joy wash over me. It was a rather simple day, nothing flashy or noteworthy, but filled with interacting with each other, and building fond memories and strong relationships with people you love. In the end, that is what life is all about. I quickly fell into a deep and comforting sleep, knowing the next day would be about the same.

About the Author: Dr. Denise R. Ames

Dr. Denise R. Ames’ varied life experiences—teaching, scholarly research, personal experiences, extensive travels, and thoughtful reflections—have contributed to her balanced views and global perspectives. Earning a doctorate in world history education, she has taught secondary schools, universities, a community college, professional development, and lifelong learners. In 2003, Dr. Ames founded Center for Global Awareness, an educational non-profit that develops globally-focused books and educational resources for educators and students grade 9-university. She has written eight books, plus numerous blogs, lesson plans, articles, newsletters, teaching units.

Along with CGA’s Gather program, Global Awareness Through Engaged Reflection, a study and conversation program for self-organizing groups of lifelong learners and, Global Awareness for Educators, Dr. Ames is developing a new program: Turn, Transformation, Understanding, & Reflection Network. Turn encourages life-long learners to see with new eyes, learn from the past, understand others, and recognize the relationship of all things. She teaches workshops/classes and writes about Turn’s five topics: learning from the past, cross-cultural awareness, five worldviews, elder wisdom, and transformative travel.

Dr. Ames has written 9 books for the Center for Global Awareness, check out their offerings! Global Awareness Books 

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Cosmic Nature at the New York City Botanical Gardens: Stepping out of the Mundane

by Dr. Denise R. Ames

photo Denise Ames

Spring in New York City is a magical time. Trees outfit themselves in their spring green garb, accentuated by blossoming flowers just for added splendor. Flowering shrubs, such as azaleas and rhododendrons, display their delicate flowers in dazzling pinks or ruby reds. It is hard not to notice.

photo Denise Ames

And notice I did on my recent trip to New York City to visit my daughter and her husband, and my three energetic and adorable grandchildren. It was a long overdue trip, stymied by COVID-19 restrictions and fears. One of the things we love to do when I visit is to go to the New York Botanical Gardens (NYBG) located in the Bronx. Then, to add to the delight, we follow up with a sumptuous culinary visit to one of the many Italian restaurants that line nearby Arthur Street.  

We were especially excited to see at NYBG the works of renowned Japanese artist Yayoi Kusama (草間 彌生). Her exhibit,Cosmic Nature, included nine sculpture pieces dotting the manicured botanic landscape. It was especially fun for the children, since the sculptures were big, colorful, and playful, what could be more enticing for 4-year old twins and two 8-year old girls.

“I Want to Fly to the Universe” photo Denise Ames

Kusama, born in Japan in 1929, was trained in a traditional Japanese painting style called nihonga. However, she was drawn to American Abstract impressionism and moved to New York City in 1958. She was a part of the New York pop-art movement throughout the 1960s and embraced the hippie counterculture scene. I remember, and some of you may as well, when she first came to public attention. In a controversial and unorthodox artistic expression, she organized a series of happenings in which naked participants were painted with brightly colored polka dots. They scampered about in playful dance. I was not one of them.

“Ascension of Polka Dots on the Trees” photo Denise Ames

Since the 1970s, Kusama has continued to create art, most notably installations in various museums around the world.

We slide into a parking place at the NYBG and all six of us spilled out of the SUV. Just as we entered the gardens we were confronted head on with one of her sculptures: “I Want to Fly to the Universe.” We looked at it from every angle, enjoying her spirit. Its cheerfulness seemed to replicate the day. I was in heaven: Strolling outside in the warm May sun with my daughter and my three grandchildren (and one friend). The children scurried across the expanse of green lawn, screeching with delight.

We made our way to the next outdoor exhibit: “Ascension of Polka Dots on the Trees.” Clearly, she still had a red polka dot fetish at the age of 92. I particularly liked this exhibit, the red polka dot clad tree trunks had such a visually discombobulating effect on me, it didn’t seem like I was in “this natural world,” but in a cosmic netherworld. I finally appreciated her exhibit title: “Cosmic Nature.”

“Life” photo Denise Ames

The kids took a breather from their physical exertions tearing across the grass to cool themselves next to the spraying water fountain. We next went into the indoor exhibit that had assembled some of her work. One of our favorites was a surreal exhibit that looked as if it was sprouting from the floor, appropriately called “Life.”

Renewed, the troops were still in full vigor as we made our way to another exhibit that my four-year old granddaughter kept pointing to on the brochure: “Dancing Pumpkin.” You could actually go into this sculpture, and we waited patiently in line to enter this foreboding looking exhibit.

“Dancing Pumpkin” photo Denise Ames

Once inside, it was fun to run around the shadowy underworld, imagining that you were underneath a giant dancing pumpkin. It was a hit with the younger set, and it also transported me to an imaginary garden where I was a mere bug navigating the ins and outs of a huge pumpkin growing in a garden. 

photo Denise Ames

By now the children were beginning to tire, all they could think of was a cool drink. By chance, we wandered into the conservancy entrance where we enjoyed more Kusama sculptures that were displayed in pools of water, as if they were sprouting from organic material underwater.

Our last Kusama siting was inside the conservancy where the “Starry Pumpkin” nestled in amongst the indoor plants.

By now the wee ones were spent. The afternoon heat and hours of sprinting across wide open spaces had left them dehydrated and ready to move on to the next attraction: food and drink. I was ready as well.

Starry Pumpkin photo Denise Ames

As we made our way to the car, we took turns describing our favorite sculpture. Each one of us had a different one with different reasons as to our selection, as it should be. But one thing we did agree on: it was a fun day.

As I glanced back at the NYBG, I reflected on my experience viewing the Kusama sculptures. She certainly had a knack for taking me out of my ordinary world, where trees had bark on their trunks, and transport me to another dimension, where instead of brown bark there were red polka dots. It is so easy for me to get bogged down in what I consider the “real world,” it was fun to take on the mind of a four-year old—or “beginner’s mind” as the Buddhist say—and allow myself to experience another dimension. And I could do so without painting red polka dots on my naked, writhing body.

About the Author: Dr. Denise R. Ames

Dr. Denise R. Ames’ varied life experiences—teaching, scholarly research, personal experiences, extensive travels, and thoughtful reflections—have contributed to her balanced views and global perspectives. Earning a doctorate in world history education, she has taught secondary schools, universities, a community college, professional development, and lifelong learners. In 2003, Dr. Ames founded Center for Global Awareness, an educational non-profit that develops globally-focused books and educational resources for educators and students grade 9-university. She has written eight books, plus numerous blogs, lesson plans, articles, newsletters, teaching units.

Along with CGA’s Gather program, Global Awareness Through Engaged Reflection, a study and conversation program for self-organizing groups of lifelong learners and, Global Awareness for Educators, Dr. Ames is developing a new program: Turn, Transformation, Understanding, & Reflection Network. Turn encourages life-long learners to see with new eyes, learn from the past, understand others, and recognize the relationship of all things. She teaches workshops/classes and writes about Turn’s five topics: learning from the past, cross-cultural awareness, five worldviews, elder wisdom, and transformative travel.

Dr. Ames has written 9 books for the Center for Global Awareness, check out their offerings! Global Awareness Books 

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A Stroll Along Malcolm X Blvd. in Brooklyn, NY: Diversity at its Best

by Dr. Denise R. Ames

I just visited Brooklyn New York. My adorable three grandchildren live in Brooklyn and I love to visit as much as possible. Although I spend most of my time with my grandchildren, Brooklyn and the surrounding area is also a source for interesting blog material.

Malcolm X street sign, photo Denise Ames

While my daughter was at a meeting, I was tasked with picking up my four-year old twin grandchildren—a boy and girl—from their pre-K school. Since their school, Jesse Owens, is located at the corner of Lafayette and Malcolm X, I decided to take a leisurely stroll from Decatur Street along Malcolm X to Lafayette Street. I found it to be a fascinating experience that I would like to share with you.

Street scene, Malcolm X, Brooklyn, NY, photo Denise Ames

Since Malcolm X Street is a conglomeration of many different sights and people, I had to decide what I would take pictures of and what I would highlight. Would I highlight the row of well-maintained brownstones stretching along one tree-lined block or the deserted homeless encampment littering the corner just off Malcolm X. To me, the street represented both—and everything in-between.

Malcolm X

The street named for Malcolm X is located in the Bedford Stuyvesant or Bed-Stuy neighborhood in Brooklyn. Malcom X lived here before his death in 1964. First a word about Malcolm X before delving into the street scene.

Malcolm X was an African-American Muslim minister and human rights activist who was a popular and controversial figure during the 1960s civil rights movement. He is best known for his time spent as a vocal spokesman for the Nation of Islam. He condemned whites, whom he referred to as the “white devil,” for the historical oppression of Blacks. He argued for Black power, Black self-defense and Black economic autonomy, and encouraged racial pride.

It was a beautiful spring day with clear blue skies as I strolled along Malcom X. A slight breeze made it cool enough for a sweatshirt, but warm enough to feel comfortable. The weather and the fact I would shortly see my grandchildren put me in a happy frame of mind. I was happy and everyone around me seemed to replicate my mood.

Malcolm X Blvd. Bedford Stuyvesant Neighborhood, Brooklyn, NY photo Denise Ames

One of Malcom X’s major teachings was that Blacks should have their own businesses in their own neighborhood, and not frequent white owned businesses. This philosophy was counter to the Martin Luther King’s philosophy that Blacks should be treated as equal and integrate into white society without discrimination.

Street scene along Malcolm X, photo Denise Ames

One thing I observed along the street is that the number of Black owned or operated businesses seemed to be few and far between. As I peeked into different businesses, I didn’t see many that seemed to be Black owned, mostly Hispanic or other minorities were the personnel in the stores. However, my daughter said that there were many Black owned businesses in Bed-Stuy. Also, the city crews doing maintenance work were largely Hispanic men, I wondered why Black people were not working in the construction crews.

One of my favorite businesses is a Black-owned restaurant called Peaches (actually on Lewis St. 2 blocks from Malcolm X). Peaches doles out modern American fare with a focus on Southern specialties like shrimp and grits and fried catfish. I love going to this lively restaurant since it reminds me of the ubiquitous cuisine served while I was living in Mississippi and Georgia for a few years.

Malcolm X Blvd. business, photo Denise Ames

I continued my stroll along Malcolm X until I reached Jessie Owens School. The crossing guard happily escorted me to the right entrance, and the security personnel graciously made sure I got to the right room to pick up my enthusiastic charges. The twins gleefully showed me their sprawling classroom and I chatted with their teacher, a delightful young woman. They were eager to pose for me on the cute love seat custom made for youngsters.

My grandchildren at school,
photo Denise Ames

We made our way out of the bustling school and into the sunlight. I fondly glanced down a stretch of Malcolm X but decided to forego another stroll down the teeming street, choosing instead, a less busy street for our trek home. Taking their little hands in mine, we crossed Malcolm X and started to make our way home.

Elegant brownstones along Malcolm X, photo Denise Ames

I wonder what Malcolm X would have thought seeing a middle-class grandmother walking her white grandchildren across a street named after him, in his old neighborhood, and making their way to a partially-renovated, comfortable brownstone on a nearby, integrated street. Probably, integration would not be at the top of his list for ways to “improve” his community.

But never mind what I imagined Malcom X thoughts to be, I was in heaven walking with my grandchildren along tree-shaded streets. The twins were in heaven as well, hugging flowering bushes, tottering on iron fences pretending they were make-believe balance beams, and marveling at four Hispanic construction workers climbing a ladder to the roof of a three-story brownstone.  This, to me, was a neighborhood of diverse people, that we fondly read about, and, for the moment, everyone we encountered seemed happy to be alive, including me.

About the Author: Dr. Denise R. Ames

Dr. Denise R. Ames’ varied life experiences—teaching, scholarly research, personal experiences, extensive travels, and thoughtful reflections—have contributed to her balanced views and global perspectives. Earning a doctorate in world history education, she has taught secondary schools, universities, a community college, professional development, and lifelong learners. In 2003, Dr. Ames founded Center for Global Awareness, an educational non-profit that develops globally-focused books and educational resources for educators and students grade 9-university. She has written eight books, plus numerous blogs, lesson plans, articles, newsletters, teaching units.

Along with CGA’s Gather program, Global Awareness Through Engaged Reflection, a study and conversation program for self-organizing groups of lifelong learners and, Global Awareness for Educators, Dr. Ames is developing a new program: Turn, Transformation, Understanding, & Reflection Network. Turn encourages life-long learners to see with new eyes, learn from the past, understand others, and recognize the relationship of all things. She teaches workshops/classes and writes about Turn’s five topics: learning from the past, cross-cultural awareness, five worldviews, elder wisdom, and transformative travel.

Dr. Ames has written 9 books for the Center for Global Awareness, check out their offerings! Global Awareness Books 

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Otero Canyon Trail: A Trail of Softness in the Cibola National Forest

by Dr. Denise R. Ames

Otero Trail, Cibola National Forest, NM, photo Denise Ames

Another scenic trail in the labyrinth of Cibola National Forest trails is the Otero Canyon Trail. Traveling a few short miles east of Albuquerque, New Mexico on Interstate I-40, swinging around the Sandia Mountain, I exit at the village of Tijeras. Taking the well-paved highway 337 south, it is just a few miles to the trailhead. The total trip from my front door to the trailhead is 17.2 miles, about 20 minutes. What could be easier. It takes that amount of time to get to the west side of Albuquerque.

The road weaves through creosote and pinyon stunted forests as it descends southward, eventually reaching the barren, scrub brush landscape of the high desert plateau. But before the stark environ, the landscape is an enchanting one. The Otero Canyon Trail is one of the very popular trails offering its hikers a spectacular array of sights and sounds.

The well-marked trailhead is easy to find, located right off the main highway 337. It is a 4.2 mile out and back trail, and rated as moderate, just my speed.

Otero Trail, photo Denise Ames

Some hikers don’t like out and back trails because they think they are just seeing the same sights over again. However, I like out and back trails since each direction offers different views of the same landscape, and surprisingly different perspectives on the same sights. I think this offers a valuable lesson for us. It is a reminder that different facts, events, and people can be seen from multiple angles and perspectives. Each perspective offers a surprisingly different view.

The ascent from the trailhead was gradual but it was still obvious that we were gaining elevation. The scrubby, dry brush gradually gave way to fresh-looking ponderosa pine and green underbrush. A dry creek bed followed us along the trail, its boulder-strewn washes reminded us that in a downpour the raging water could be deadly. Luckily, the sky was that clear, piercing blue that makes me love looking skyward in New Mexico.  

It was a Saturday, and mountain bikers were out in full force. I could see why they would love this winding and rocky trail, just enough to challenge them. However, as a hiker, it can be annoying at times to have to constantly step aside for the more powerful metal contraptions colonizing the trail. I always think that their flamboyant and slick garb and expensive and garish paraphernalia seem out of place in nature. But most bikers are exceeding polite and appreciative of hikers’ accommodation to their claim of king of the trails. So, I try to reserve my judgment and smile when they pass and wish them a good ride.

Otero Trail, Ponderosa Pine forest, photo Denise Ames

Towards the end of the trail, the pine forests dominated and their lush needles cushioned the forest floor. It felt like I was gliding along the trail instead of hiking. I loved the feeling of softness that the pine forest emitted. The needles seemed to be telling me that I should not get to bogged down in the harshness of life, there is always softness. The softness of a lover’s touch, the hug of a friend, the shout of joy coming from a child eager to see you. All are soft and we need more softness in our lives, there is too much harshness. 

Otero Trail, photo Denise Ames

I was reluctant to leave the softness of the forest, but the end of the trail was clearly marked. We turned to retrace our steps and enjoy the trail from a different angle. On the way down the trail, I tried to keep my softness feeling as I encountered a mountain biker trio. My soft feeling must have flowed to them as well, they dismounted their bikes and let us pass with a smile and sincere greeting.

Wow! Perhaps this softness could be transmitted. The only hard part was keeping it myself. At least I could try.

About the Author: Dr. Denise R. Ames

Dr. Denise R. Ames’ varied life experiences—teaching, scholarly research, personal experiences, extensive travels, and thoughtful reflections—have contributed to her balanced views and global perspectives. Earning a doctorate in world history education, she has taught secondary schools, universities, a community college, professional development, and lifelong learners. In 2003, Dr. Ames founded Center for Global Awareness, an educational non-profit that develops globally-focused books and educational resources for educators and students grade 9-university. She has written eight books, plus numerous blogs, lesson plans, articles, newsletters, teaching units.

Along with CGA’s Gather program, Global Awareness Through Engaged Reflection, a study and conversation program for self-organizing groups of lifelong learners and, Global Awareness for Educators, Dr. Ames is developing a new program: Turn, Transformation, Understanding, & Reflection Network. Turn encourages life-long learners to see with new eyes, learn from the past, understand others, and recognize the relationship of all things. She teaches workshops/classes and writes about Turn’s five topics: learning from the past, cross-cultural awareness, five worldviews, elder wisdom, and transformative travel.

Dr. Ames has written 9 books for the Center for Global Awareness, check out their offerings! Global Awareness Books 

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Feeling Lucky: Hiking the Tunnel Canyon Trail in the Cibola National Forest in NM

by Dr. Denise R. Ames

Tunnel Canyon Trail, Cibola National Forest, New Mexico,
photo Denise Ames

I am lucky! Different people have different ways in which they feel lucky. I am lucky in many ways, my beautiful grandchildren come immediately to mind, but today I feel lucky in a different way. There are miles and miles of nature trails within a short drive of my house in Albuquerque, New Mexico. That is lucky.

Luring me from my comfortable hikes along the bosque (forest) paths along the Rio Grande in the middle of Albuquerque, is the Tunnel Canyon Trail. Located in the Cibola National Forest east of the Sandia Mountains that form the eastern border of my city, the trail is rated as moderate with some elevation gain. My old knees don’t like a lot of up and down hiking, so I try to avoid it if possible.

View from the Tunnel Canyon Trail, photo Denise Ames

The Cibola (pronounced SEE-bo-lah) National Forest is a 1,633,783 acre United States National Forest that lies mostly in New Mexico. The name Cibola is thought to be the original Zuni Indian name for their pueblos or tribal lands. The name was later interpreted by the Spanish to mean “buffalo.” The forest is disjointed with lands spread across central and northern New Mexico, west Texas and even into Oklahoma. 

My partner, Jim, and I arrived mid-morning and easily found a parking spot. Just emerging from the trailhead was a bedraggled-looking young man who was just finishing a 700-mile hike from Arizona to New Mexico. His final leg was a hike up to Sandia Peak, about another ascent of 20 miles. The crest of the Sandia Mountains stands at 10,679′, so he had a way to go. I admired his stamina and determination; Jim and I were thinking a 4-mile round trip would be just enough.

Tunnel Canyon Trail, NM, photo Denise Ames

The Tunnel Canyon Trail makes up only a slice of the enormous Cibola National Forest, but it represents nature’s beauty at its best—New Mexico style. We immediately loved the trail. The elevation gains were noticeable, but certainly within our ability level. We laugh when a trail description says it is for beginners, we classify ourselves as enders not beginners. We have reached our peak of strength and athletic abilities, now we are on a downhill trend. We work hard to stem the steep decline, but it is inevitable, the decline does come.

But today we are not worried about the decline of our physical abilities, the air is clear and fresh and the sun casts its warming rays our way. A slight breeze rustles through the pines telling us they enjoy our trek through their forest. They also tell us that physical decline is part of nature, it happens. They point to their old trees that are beginning to bend from the wind or crack from the constant shifting of the sandy soil. No need to fret and worry, change is part of nature and we, too, are part of nature.

The road from Tunnel Canyon Trail, photo Denise Ames

We indeed feel part of nature as we make our way to a spectacular overlook of the forest valley below. Reaching in every direction the forest looks endless. We decide that this is a good place to turn back and enjoy the same trail again, but from a different angle.

We safely arrive back at our car and drive the short distance back to Albuquerque. Feeling lucky all over again that we had another wonderful few hours beholding nature’s beauty.

About the Author: Dr. Denise R. Ames

Dr. Denise R. Ames’ varied life experiences—teaching, scholarly research, personal experiences, extensive travels, and thoughtful reflections—have contributed to her balanced views and global perspectives. Earning a doctorate in world history education, she has taught secondary schools, universities, a community college, professional development, and lifelong learners. In 2003, Dr. Ames founded Center for Global Awareness, an educational non-profit that develops globally-focused books and educational resources for educators and students grade 9-university. She has written eight books, plus numerous blogs, lesson plans, articles, newsletters, teaching units.

Along with CGA’s Gather program, Global Awareness Through Engaged Reflection, a study and conversation program for self-organizing groups of lifelong learners and, Global Awareness for Educators, Dr. Ames is developing a new program: Turn, Transformation, Understanding, & Reflection Network. Turn encourages life-long learners to see with new eyes, learn from the past, understand others, and recognize the relationship of all things. She teaches workshops/classes and writes about Turn’s five topics: learning from the past, cross-cultural awareness, five worldviews, elder wisdom, and transformative travel.

Dr. Ames has written 9 books for the Center for Global Awareness, check out their offerings! Global Awareness Books 

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The Gran Quivira: A Spanish Mission and Pueblo in New Mexico

by Dr. Denise R. Ames

Aerial map of Gran Quivira Mission and Pueblo ruins, New Mexico

It was a dry, hot, spring day in New Mexico, thankfully without the wind, as I pulled into the parking lot of the Gran Quivira, the largest of the three Salinas Missions (see earlier posts). Encompassing about 600 acres, it is situated in a remote area of New Mexico about 90 miles south of Albuquerque. The aerial map shows the extent of the structures, stretching across the arid and forlorn landscape.

I wondered if I would see any visitors venturing out to this remote site. But I was happy to see that there were about a dozen vehicles in the parking lot, ready to brave the elements to see what the past had to offer them. The glass-enclosed visitor center was closed, due to COVID, but the site was open and ready for sightseers.

Gran Quivira

Although I remember visiting the site over 25 years ago, when my mother and I traipsed through every imaginable archaeological site that existed in New Mexico, I didn’t remember how large it was. This was a formidable pueblo and mission.

Remains of pit houses, photo Denise Ames

Gran Quivira’s history began in about 800 CE (common era). A sedentary native population lived in pit houses that were dug into the earth for protection from the elements. Archeological evidence indicates that by 1300 CE, the area overlooking the southern Estancia Basin was inhabited by Tompiro-speaking peoples who built the culturally distinct pueblo masonry architecture.

From about 1000 AD to the 1600s, three villages at the site served as major regional centers of trade with Indians from the Plains, the Pacific Coast, and the Great Basin. The Puebloan people were both producers and middlemen between the Rio Grande villages and plains tribes to the east. They traded maize, pinon nuts, beans, squash, salt, and cotton goods for dried buffalo meat, hides, flints, and shells.

Gran Quivira, photo Denise Ames

San Buenaventura de Las Humanas, the largest of Gran Quivera villages, grew into a bustling community of 3,000 inhabitants with multiple pueblos and kivas. Living in a land with scarce water, these early peoples subsisted from hunting, gathering, and agricultural activities, and trade relationships.

I looked for a nearby stream that would provide water for the residents but there was none that I could locate. In fact, the village cleverly managed to derive their water from catch basins and cisterns located on the site.

Grand Kiva at Gran Quivira, New Mexico, photo Denise Ames

The pueblo people practiced an animistic religion in which dances and other rituals were intended to take the people’s prayers to the gods in hope of ensuring sufficient rain, good harvests and hunting, and universal harmony. Many of the rituals and prayers were performed in sacred kivas. These underground, circular structures were the heart of native religious beliefs and culture.

The Spanish missions were charged with converting the Puebloan people to Catholicism. This was not an easy task. Although kivas were allowed to remain at many of the missions, eventually, this conflict between the two religious beliefs led the Franciscan friars to destroy the kivas. Ultimately, attempts to suppress the Pueblo peoples’ ancient religious beliefs failed.

Gran Quivira ruins, photo Denise Ames

Recurring epidemics decimated the population, which had little resistance to European diseases. Along with deadly disease, in September 1670, the Apache raided Las Humanas and destroyed the mission and pueblo, leaving 11 dead and taking 30 inhabitants as captives. By 1672, the once thriving community of 10,000 inhabitants was reduced to 500 people. By 1678, the Spanish and Pueblo peoples had completely abandoned the Salinas Valley.

Mission church, Gran Quivira, New Mexico, photo Denise Ames

As I drove out of the historic site and into the barren lands of New Mexico, I reflected upon my experience walking through the site. For one, I was amazed at their resourcefulness in securing enough water to supply all their needs.

I was also struck by the fact that the cultural beliefs of a people are hard to change. A lesson for those who are eager to “reeducate” a group of people. Often, we hold on to our beliefs even though they may be against our best interests; they are part of us and deeply entrenched. Today, cultural and religious beliefs of many native people in New Mexico continue their traditional ways, even amidst our modern society. A true testament to the endurance of tradition. 

About the Author: Dr. Denise R. Ames

Dr. Denise R. Ames’ varied life experiences—teaching, scholarly research, personal experiences, extensive travels, and thoughtful reflections—have contributed to her balanced views and global perspectives. Earning a doctorate in world history education, she has taught secondary schools, universities, a community college, professional development, and lifelong learners. In 2003, Dr. Ames founded Center for Global Awareness, an educational non-profit that develops globally-focused books and educational resources for educators and students grade 9-university. She has written eight books, plus numerous blogs, lesson plans, articles, newsletters, teaching units.

Along with CGA’s Gather program, Global Awareness Through Engaged Reflection, a study and conversation program for self-organizing groups of lifelong learners and, Global Awareness for Educators, Dr. Ames is developing a new program: Turn, Transformation, Understanding, & Reflection Network. Turn encourages life-long learners to see with new eyes, learn from the past, understand others, and recognize the relationship of all things. She teaches workshops/classes and writes about Turn’s five topics: learning from the past, cross-cultural awareness, five worldviews, elder wisdom, and transformative travel.

Dr. Ames has written 9 books for the Center for Global Awareness, check out their offerings! Global Awareness Books 

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The Impermanence of Quarai: A Story of a Salinas Mission and Pueblo

by Dr. Denise R. Ames

Quarai Mission, New Mexico, photo Denise Ames

The Quarai mission ruins sat stoically under a brilliant, New Mexico-blue sky in early spring. Unlike the Abo ruins, about 10 miles away, Quarai had a softer feel. Perhaps it was because of the just-budding cottonwood trees lining a nearby stream bed that lent the space a more mystical atmosphere. Whatever the reason, I enjoyed the ambience.

There wasn’t as much excavation at Quarai, as the Abo site or the larger Gran Quivera complex that I would visit next. Nonetheless, it was fascinating to read a bit of the history about the relationship of the Catholic missionaries and the native Pueblo people.

Towering wall of the Quarai Mission, New Mexico, photo Denise Ames

Soon after Spain had conquered and colonized Mexico, tales of great wealth to the North drew explorers to New Mexico. In 1598 a party led by Juan de Onate came to New Mexico to plant a permeant colony. Onate does not have a good reputation in New Mexico, and deservedly so. The Acoma people (a pueblo people) killed 15 of Onate’s men during a raid, including his favorite nephew. In retaliation, Onate killed an estimated 800-1,000 Acoma. The Acoma still remember and tell this story.

Quarai Mission, New Mexico, photo Denise Ames

Onate called salt, which was abundant in the Salinas area, one of the four riches of New Mexico, but the other riches, especially minerals, were elusive. Agriculture too proved difficult in the harsh climate. Although Spain concluded that New Mexico would never be profitable, the Pope had charged the Spanish Crown with Christianizing the indigenous people. Therefore, the Spanish sent Franciscan missionaries with that task. Hence, the three missions in the area.

To defray some of the high costs of setting up the missions, the Salinas Puebloan people were saddled with heavy tribute payments to be paid to Spanish political officials and also the Franciscans placed demands on the pueblos to support the missions. But the pueblos considered some changes brought by the Franciscans to be beneficial. Wheat and wheat bread, fruit trees, and grapes were introduced. Also, cattle, goats, and sheep became a fixed part of the economy. Metal was also introduced.

Quarai Mission, perimeter path, photo Denise Ames

In the end cultural conflict and natural disaster devastated Salinas pueblos. The Apaches to the west were formerly trading partners but in the 1600s they raided the pueblos for food. The Apaches also sought revenge for Spanish slave raids on their people in which Pueblo Indians had participated. Interestingly and sadly, slavery was part of native people’s society before Europeans introduced African slaves to the Western hemisphere.  

After snapping some pictures of the main mission structure, I decided to enjoy the springtime air and hike around the perimeter of the main area. Well-marked trails wove through the dense cottonwood forest. When summertime rolled around and all the trees and bushes leafed out, the paths would be nearly impassable. Birds chirped to show their pleasure that spring was here and the next generation of their species was around the corner.

Stream by Salinas Pueblo Mission, photo Denise Ames

It was too cool for a picnic, but under a canopy of cottonwoods an ideal spot welcomed visitors to sit and reflect. As I sat in the shade of the towering cottonwoods, I wondered what they would have seen over 300 years ago. Would they have witnessed native children skipping to the creek to fetch water? Or would they see women pummeling their garments with stones in the creek bed as they performed their spring washing ritual. Or did they take in a scene of pueblo men venturing out in a hunting party to snag a deer to augment their daily intake of squash, seeds, and tubers.  

The missions had large gardens themselves and corrals of animals that were new to the Western hemisphere—goats, sheep, cattle, and horses. I imagine the missionaries would not have been able to completely rely on native people to tend the plants and animals alone, but they would need to do these chores as well.

Quarai Mission, New Mexico, photo Denise Ames

Despite the permanent looking stone and adobe mission structures, this way of life did not last many years. Recurring epidemics decimated native populations, which had little resistance to introduced diseases from Europe. Along with Spanish misrule and recurring drought, the Salinas and pueblos and missions were abandoned in the 1670s and the surviving Indians went to live with cultural relatives in other pueblos.

The scenario is another reminder of the impermanence of life and of human societies. History is strewn with societies and civilizations that grow and decline. We are more a part of nature and her cycles of birth, life, and death than we realize.

About the Author: Dr. Denise R. Ames

Dr. Denise R. Ames’ varied life experiences—teaching, scholarly research, personal experiences, extensive travels, and thoughtful reflections—have contributed to her balanced views and global perspectives. Earning a doctorate in world history education, she has taught secondary schools, universities, a community college, professional development, and lifelong learners. In 2003, Dr. Ames founded Center for Global Awareness, an educational non-profit that develops globally-focused books and educational resources for educators and students grade 9-university. She has written eight books, plus numerous blogs, lesson plans, articles, newsletters, teaching units.

Along with CGA’s Gather program, Global Awareness Through Engaged Reflection, a study and conversation program for self-organizing groups of lifelong learners and, Global Awareness for Educators, Dr. Ames is developing a new program: Turn, Transformation, Understanding, & Reflection Network. Turn encourages life-long learners to see with new eyes, learn from the past, understand others, and recognize the relationship of all things. She teaches workshops/classes and writes about Turn’s five topics: learning from the past, cross-cultural awareness, five worldviews, elder wisdom, and transformative travel.

Dr. Ames has written 9 books for the Center for Global Awareness, check out their offerings! Global Awareness Books 

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