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Weekly issues every Saturday morning and other special articles throughout the week — there's something for everyone. Check out our sister site KRL News & Reviews for even more articles every week.


Maria Ruiz

Leaky Hot Water Bottle

IN THE September 26 ISSUE

FROM THE 2020 Articles,
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by Maria Ruiz



INDIA. The name alone brings up ideas of exotic animals, women in colorful saris and men on elephants. Ever since I read any of Kipling’s books, I was hooked. Then I got there. It was nothing like I had imagined. A billion and a half people means that everything and every place is crowded. We didn’t even try using the metro system as each car was literally packed full. The line for the bus snaked around the block and even walking meant avoiding the children who lived in the cardboard boxes packed on the sidewalk tight up against the buildings, that were home to whole villages.

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Life in the Time of Covid 19

IN THE May 16 ISSUE

FROM THE 2020 Articles,
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by Maria Ruiz



I had never heard of it before March, 2020. First, the talk was all about coronavirus. I looked it up on Google and found that most influenzas were coronaviruses. Well, I don’t get any flu easily so I didn’t worry. Then, they found that this is a new virus, one that no one has any immunity for.

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Big Heads, Little Heads

IN THE April 11 ISSUE

FROM THE 2020 Articles,
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by Maria Ruiz



The train was slowing, and as I looked out the window, I couldn’t see why. There were no galloping giraffes, no wildebeest or gazelle, nothing. A few thin women with pitiful offerings of a tomato or a couple of potatoes on a hub cap or woven plate, a few thin and raggedly dressed children running along the side of the train. The train pulled into what seemed to us like the middle of the African Continent of NOTHING. A chain-like fence kept Africans away from the train and kept the tourists (like us) from leaving the train.

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The Day that Changed my World

IN THE March 21 ISSUE

FROM THE 2020 Articles,
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by Maria Ruiz



“Help! Help! Someone please.” I heard the screaming right outside my motel room. I had been napping when I heard the woman scream. I jumped up and ran to the door. Flinging it open, I saw the woman in the next door unit running back and forth. In her arms she held a little girl, about a year old.

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The Blue Sweater

IN THE December 7 ISSUE

FROM THE 2019 Articles,
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by Maria Ruiz



Knit, purl, knit, purl. I can do that, I thought to myself. My youngest son needed a sweater and I wanted to expand my skills, so I leafed through the knitting patterns in the book. There was a Norwegian pattern with white snowflakes and reindeer at the top. I had never knitted a pattern with two colors, but I was going to try.

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A Bee in the House In Costa Rica

IN THE October 26 ISSUE

FROM THE 2019 Articles,
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by Maria Ruiz



I noticed a bee in the house we were renting in Jaco, Costa Rica. I put it outdoors and gave it no more thought. Later that day, I saw another bee flying around the living room. Those were the first two bees I had ever seen inside the house. True, there wasn’t any glass in the windows, but generally bees don’t find the insides of houses have anything to offer them.

{ 4 comments }

Life in Costa Rica

IN THE August 10 ISSUE

FROM THE Maria Ruiz,
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by Maria Ruiz



“Do you know what street we’re on?” I asked Ted.
“Haven’t the slightest idea. I can’t see any signs either,” he replied.
We were driving through San Jose, the capital of Costa Rica, on a hunt for a laboratory to x-ray me for a dental problem. The dentist in Jaco had written down the address: 500 meters south from the cathedral.

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Crossing the Streets

IN THE June 8 ISSUE

FROM THE 2019 Articles,
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by Maria Ruiz



You would think that crossing a street would be the same in every country. But you would be wrong.
In Amsterdam, we were trying to cross a small street (only one car width) and all going one way, from my right to the left. I had our dog Sherman on a leash as I waited until there was a break in the flow and stepped out. Suddenly, I was flying back, landing on my butt on the sidewalk.

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Shatzie Sees the Light

IN THE March 30 ISSUE

FROM THE 2019 Articles,
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by Maria Ruiz



In some ways, dogs are like children. If you have more than one, one will become your favorite. I know parents try not to have favorites and won’t admit it, but it happens, usually to the one that is least able to fend for himself.

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First visit to Bangkok: Finding a Pet Friendly Hotel

IN THE February 2 ISSUE

FROM THE 2019 Articles,
andMaria Ruiz,
andPets,
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by Maria Ruiz



While traveling the world for 10 years, my husband and I stayed at low-end budget hotels to keep within our budget. As travelers living on Social Security, we didn’t have money to spend on luxury places. This meant we had a lot of experiences we would have missed if we had stayed only in better hotels. It also meant we met a lot of wonderful people, took local transit, ate from street vendors, and experienced some tummy troubles while traveling. Without these experiences, our 10 years of traveling would not have been as much fun or as educational.

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Borders

IN THE January 5 ISSUE

FROM THE 2019 Articles,
andMaria Ruiz,
andTravel
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by Maria Ruiz



Borders: lines, trucks, vendors, mud, cooking fires, stray dogs, and pieces of tortillas or rolls in the muddy road, men lounging against trucks, women either stirring pots over fires in hubcaps or slapping tortilla dough, children staring out through dirty truck windows, pigs squealing through the slats of wood of one trailer, cows lowing from another, and uniformed guards holding rifles as they walk between the vehicles.

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The Bridge

IN THE November 10 ISSUE

FROM THE 2018 Articles,
andMaria Ruiz,
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by Maria Ruiz



Bridges make crossing rivers, ravines, mountains, and crowded areas possible. We hope the bridge will last until we’re over it, but we’ve all seen pictures where it didn’t and dumped some vehicles down, down, down.

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Ten years of Traveling, India

IN THE July 14 ISSUE

FROM THE 2018 Articles,
andMaria Ruiz,
andTravel
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by Maria Ruiz



Where to go next? Asia is almost exactly on the other side of the world from California, our home and where all our relatives live. We had thought about what we would do if someone needed us at home, but decided not to start back yet, but rather we would travel to the southern hemisphere.

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Were You Ever Afraid?

IN THE June 9 ISSUE

FROM THE Contributors,
andMaria Ruiz,
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by Maria Ruiz



“Weren’t you ever afraid?” So many people have asked this question about our seventeen years traveling and living outside of the U.S. I always say ‘No’. We did visit a couple of dangerous places like South Africa and Brazil.

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