1. Ever heard of Mt. Taranaki? Me neither. It’s a dormant volcano in the North Island of New Zealand, western side of the island. I absolutely love mythology, regardless of the origin.
According to Māori mythology, Taranaki once resided in the middle of the North Island, with all the other New Zealand volcanoes. The beautiful Pihanga was coveted by all the mountains, and a great battle broke out between them. Tongariro eventually won the day, inflicted great wounds on the side of Taranaki, and causing him to flee. Taranaki headed westwards, following Te Toka a Rahotu (the Rock of Rahotu) and forming the deep gorges of the Whanganui River, paused for a while, creating the depression that formed the Te Ngaere swamp, then heading north. Further progress was blocked by the Pouakai Ranges, and as the sun came up Taranaki became petrified in his current location. When Taranaki conceals himself with rainclouds, he is said to be crying for his lost love, and during spectacular sunsets, he is said to be displaying himself to her. In turn, Tongariro’s eruptions are said to be a warning to Taranaki not to return.
2. Via the BBC, two of Charles Darwin’s journals were returned to the Cambridge University Library in a pink gift bag.
3. Via Texas Monthly, the story of Elsik and their high school soccer team made up almost entirely of immigrants. I see so much of Yo in some of those faces (there is a student from the Democratic Republic of Congo on the team).
4. Via D Magazine, Iztok Franko is from Slovenia, the same place as Luka Doncic and he wrote about his visit to Dallas to see Luka. Iztok is an insanely talented writer and explainer of basketball.
5. The Oregon coast.