Saturday, February 27, 2016

Betty MacDonald, new friends and a mysterious couple

Beautiful World's photo.
Betty MacDonald in the living room at Vashon on the cover of The Saturday Evening Post.

Betty MacDonald fan club fans,

we are going to publish new Betty MacDonald essays on Betty MacDonald's gardens and nature in Washington State.

Betty MacDonald fan club newsletter February is one of the most popular ones with many Betty MacDonald fan club surprises.

Tell us the names of this mysterious couple please and you can win a very new Betty MacDonald documentary. 


You shouldn't miss our International Betty MacDonald fan club events  because you can make the most wonderful friends there.
Betty MacDonald fan club event in London was outstanding.

I think London would be the best place for next International Betty MacDonald fan club event because I'd like to return to this wonderful city. 
The Betty MacDonald fan club event DVDs are excellent and I already own a whole collection.

Wolfgang Hampel's new Vita Magica guest was a very famous TV lady, author and singer who is a new very popular Betty MacDonald fan club honor member.

Betty MacDonald fan club honor member Mr. Tigerl is beloved all over the World.

We are so happy that our 'Casanova'  is back.

Don't miss breakfast at the bookstore with Brad and Nick. 

I'd like to visit Betty MacDonald's paradise on Vashon Island.

Onions in the Stew is my favourite of Betty MacDonald's brilliant books. 

This song could be one of the ESC 2016 favourites.

Wishing you a very nice Saturday,


Don't miss this very special book, please.

Vita Magica
Betty MacDonald fan club

Betty MacDonald forum  

Wolfgang Hampel - Wikipedia ( English ) 

Wolfgang Hampel - Wikipedia ( English ) - The Egg and I 

Wolfgang Hampel - Wikipedia ( German )

Wolfgang Hampel - Monica Sone - Wikipedia ( English )

Wolfgang Hampel - Ma and Pa Kettle - Wikipedia ( English )

Wolfgang Hampel - Ma and Pa Kettle - Wikipedia ( French )

Wolfgang Hampel in Florida State University 

Betty MacDonald fan club founder Wolfgang Hampel 

Betty MacDonald fan club interviews on CD/DVD

Betty MacDonald fan club items 

Betty MacDonald fan club items  - comments

Betty MacDonald fan club - The Stove and I  

Betty MacDonald fan club groups 

Betty MacDonald fan club organizer Linde Lund 

Betty MacDonald, Letizia Mancino, Mary Holmes and the second paradise

Ein lyrisches Portrait von Hilde Domin

Betty MacDonald fan club fans, 

let's talk about great writers and poets Letizia Mancino, Hilde Domin and Betty MacDonald.

Betty MacDonald fan Club honor member, artist and writer Letizia Mancino shares her delightful story THE SECOND PARADISE. 

Betty MacDonald fan club honor member Mary Holmes did such a great job in translating THE SECOND PARADISE.
Thanks a million dearest Mary.
We are really very grateful.

I'm one of Letizia Maninco's many devoted fans.

Letizia Mancino sent this connecting piece to " The Second Paradise".


Copyright 2011/2016 by Letizia Mancino
translated by Mary Holmes 

All rights reserved

That was how my friend Hilde Domin was, dear Betty! You would have liked her so much. She had also been in America. At that time you were a famous author but she was still unknown.

-Did she love cats like you do?

-Yes Betty, she sure did!! Otherwise how do you think she could have been a friend of mine?

-Oh Letizia, don’t boast! Hilde was famous!

-It’s all the same to me, Betty, whether a person is famous or not but that person must love animals

-Why was she as defiant as a cock?

-Well Betty, she was simply so!

-Like a pregnant woman in my “Egg and I”?

-No not so! Betty, Hilde was a whole farm!

- A farm, how was that?

- No Betty, Hilde was more! Almost a zoo! Even more. She was all the animals in the world!

-You loved her very much.

-As I love all animals.

You Betty, if I had known you, I would have loved you exactly so because you loved animals.

-But as defiant as a cock from my Bob-farm!

-Yes and no! (Hilde really loved this double form of answer). Listen Betty , I’ll tell you a story about how Hilde was. You would certainly have loved her.
I’ll call my story “The Second Paradise”.


Copyright 2011/2016 by Letizia Mancino
translated by Mary Holmes

All rights reserved

The Lord God, one day, met Adam in Paradise and saw him lying under a palm.

And God spoke to him: Adam, my son, are you happy, are you content with Paradise ?

Adam answered: Oh Lord, it is wonderful!

And God said: But I will create a second Paradise and give you a wife.

Adam answered: Oh Lord, that is wonderful!

And God said: I will create the wife according to your wishes.

And Adam stood under the palm and thought hard.

And God said: Adam, are you ready?

Adam answered: My wife should be as lively as a bird but she should not fly. She should swim like a goldfish but not be a fish….. She should be as playful as a cat but not catch mice….. She should be as busy as an ant but not so small.

And God said: So shall she be: Like a bird, a goldfish, a cat, an ant…

Adam answered: Oh Lord, that is wonderful, but she should be as faithful as a dog.

And God asked: Adam, have you finished?

Oh Lord, cried Adam. She should also be as delightful and gentle as a lamb and as defiant as a cock!

….She should be as curious as a monkey and as pampered as a lapdog.

And God said: So shall she be.

And Adam said: My wife should be as courageous as a lion and as headstrong as a goat…

And God said: So, like a bird, a goldfish, a cat, an ant, a dog, a lamb, a cock, a monkey, a lapdog, a lion, a goat… and slowly and surely he wished to begin creating…

But Adam stretched himself under the palm and called:

Lord, Lord, she should be as adaptable as a chameleon but not creep on four feet.

She should have sparkling eyes like, like… real diamonds. She should be as fiery as a volcano

But … she should have crystal-clear thoughts like a mountain spring.

God, the Almighty, was speechless…

And Adam spoke: Also she should be as quick as lightening…

And God said: Man, have you finished????

No, said Adam! She should be as strong as a horse, as long living as an elephant but as light as a butterfly!

God found Adam’s thoughts were good and said: So, bird, goldfish, cat, ant, dog, lamb, cock, monkey, lapdog, lion, goat, chameleon, genuine diamonds, volcano, mountain spring, lightening, horse, elephant…. butterfly…

God wished at last to begin creating her…

Lord, called Adam… she should be as stable as steel, but as sweet as three graceful women in one…

And God asked: Should she also be a poet?

Yes, called Adam from under the palm…

And God said: Adam have you finished?

Lord, I wish that, in the second Paradise I shall be one and doubled:

So God according to Adams last words created:

Very best wishes

Letizia Mancino

Letizia Mancino is an outstanding writer and artist.

I know you will enjoy this very charming and witty story the same way I did! 

Thanks a Million, dear Letiza Mancino! You made my day!

As you know I'm very interested in pets and excellent literature.

Betty MacDonald Fan Club founder Wolfgang Hampel is working on a Eva Vargas biography. I'd love to know: Did Eva Vargas like pets and cats? 

Letizia Mancino is part of Wolfgang Hampel's new project 'Vita Magica'. 

We got so many requests from fans from all over the world and have great info for you. 

Wolfgang Hampel's stories and satirical poems will be published in several languages for his many fans from all over the world.  

Enjoy a sunny Sunday,



Opinion: Merkel's Humane Refugee Policies Have Failed

By Christiane Hoffmann
"We'll Never Manage It, Ms. Merkel," reads graffiti painted along a wall on a road on Rügen Island in northeastern Germany. Zoom

"We'll Never Manage It, Ms. Merkel," 
reads graffiti painted along a wall 
on a road on Rügen Island in 
northeastern Germany. 

Last September, Angela Merkel opened Germany's borders to hundreds of thousands of refugees, mostly from Syria. Her calculation that the rest of Europe would support her backfired. She now finds herself isolated at home and abroad as conditions worsen for asylum-seekers.

From today's perspective, Sept. 5, 2015, feels like an eternity ago. That was the day when the chancellor made the decision to allow refugees who had been detained in Hungary to come to Germany. It was the day when she decided to adopt a humanitarian refugee policy -- and the beginning of the erosion of Angela Merkel's power.
"The world views Germany as a country of hope and opportunity," she had said only a few days previously, as part of her annual summer press conference. She also evoked the universal civil liberties that are part of the founding principles of the European Union. It was the day when Angela Merkel decided to follow her convictions, to replace pragmatism with idealism and to emphasize the "Christian" in the name of her party, the Christian Democratic Union. It was the first time in a long while that she didn't think things through all the way to the end. Sept. 5 seems like an eternity ago and yet we are still confronted with the same images today as we were back then. In recent days, thousands of refugees have once again been stranded along the Balkan route, and this time they are being held back by border fences. Desperate men, women and children can be seen camping out in central Athens. And this time there are images that Merkel had hoped to avoid last September: images of a Europe that is placing its bet on partition and deterrence. They are images of defeat for the German chancellor. Merkel's humanitarian approach in the refugee crisis has failed.
Map: The Balkan Route Zoom
Map: The Balkan Route
Border controls have been reintroduced across large parts of Europe and fences are being erected. It turns out that Merkel deceived herself about the extent of European solidarity. There will be no harmonious distribution of refugees and it is unlikely that Turkey will reliably protect Europe from a further influx of refugees. That's a sad state of affairs. Indeed, nothing is as unseemly as the gloating comments over Merkel's failure one hears these days in Bavaria and Budapest. In Munich, Bavarian Governor Horst Seehofer has alleged that the chancellor's Willkommenskultur for refugees has radicalized the country, and, in Budapest, Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán this week accused Merkel of "importing terrorism, crime, anti-Semitism and homophobia" in an interview with the German mass-circulation daily Bild. But there hasn't been much progress with the plan to combat the root causes of flight, either. There are no prospects for peace in sight in Syria, Libya remains a failed state and Iraq is, despite some territorial gains against Islamic State, still far from establishing peace.
Relent or Relinquish
When a politician experiences a policy failure, their power is jeopardized. They must decide whether to jettison those policies or relinquish power. Merkel appeared ready to put her power at stake with her open arms approach to the refugee policy in much the same way her predecessor Gerhard Schröder did with his Agenda 2010 structural reforms and Helmut Schmidt did with his NATO Double-Track Decision, which allowed the deployment of American nuclear weapons in Western Europe.
But that no longer appears to be the case. The chancellor will relent; in fact, she has already begun. Her policy shift is by no means radical -- it is taking place in many smaller steps, making it more difficult to discern. But in the end, little will be left of the friendly face with which Merkel wanted to welcome migrants when they arrived.
Conditions for refugees are already rapidly deteriorating. Social benefits are being reduced, limits are being placed on family reunification in a way that will lead even more women and children to make the dangerous journey by boat to Europe. The number of countries designated as safe will be increased, allowing for the easier rejection and deportation of asylum applicants. And there will be a forced repatriation of Afghan nationals -- to the very country that Western troops were unable to pacify and is now sinking into civil war.
Currently, significantly fewer refugees are arriving in Germany. This, however, is not the product of Merkel's policies -- it is the result of her failure. Fewer people are coming because Merkel's opponents have closed the borders along the Balkan Route. Even back in the autumn when Hungary erected a border fence, the protest from Berlin was at best cautious. And when Turkey began erecting a wall along the Syrian border, officials expressed understanding behind the scenes.
Now that that Balkan Route is being sealed off, Berlin is declaring it to be the second-best solution. In a government declaration delivered in mid-February, Merkel soberly asked if it was worth while continuing "with our European-Turkish approach" or whether it might be better to just close the Greek-Macedonian border? What we are witnessing today no longer has anything to do with conviction -- it is the return of the ultra-pragmatic Chancellor Merkel, who is paving an escape route from her previous policies. European refugee policy has always been a mix of asylum and deterrent, principals and pragmatism, altruism and letting people drown. It's not a pretty mix. It never made Europe look very good and, as such, also stood no chance of transforming Angela Merkel into a saint. Still, she could have made an effort to put Europe into the loop before making such a solitary decision.
Now a new division of labor is taking shape: Germany is responsible for humanism and the others for severity. It couldn't be any more cynical: It allows Merkel to come across as ethical while Viktor Orbán is stuck with the dirty work.



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