Tag Archives: Raleigh

I Donated A Vintage Raleigh Bike To ‘Goodwill’ in Concord (NH) Today — And It Felt Good.

by Anura Guruge

I just wished I had room in our Nissan Quest ‘van’ for another. I would have taken a second one too.

We have a large storage space above our ‘triple’ garage (and it must be a triple since it houses three British cars). I went up there around Thanksgiving to start bringing down Christmas stuff and was horrified to discover that we had five or six unused bikes up there. I realized that there must be plenty around, locally, who would love to have one of them, I wasn’t going to keep them any longer on the vague assumption that one of us will, someday, get around to using them. There is another bike in the garage that I very occasionally ride just for the fun.

So, I set about trying to find out how I could donate bikes. Wasn’t easy! Finally it transpired that ‘Goodwill‘, in Concord, was the best bet. They even have a program that they ‘restore’ the bikes and give them to deserving adults who need transport. Bingo. I was all in favor.

I just did not have the chance to take a bike down to Goodwill till today. Once it was loaded into the Quest somebody checked its price on eBay. Heck, no! Nope. I was not going to be swayed. It is Christmas.

It felt good. The lady who picked it up at Goodwill said: “somebody will be very happy with this”. Well, probably not as happy I was to donate.

Related Posts:
Check Category ‘Holidays’.

by Anura Guruge

Expedia: A CONFIRMED Hotel ‘Reservation’ From Expedia Is MEANINGLESS! Not Worth A Damn.

.Anura Guruge December 2014 thumbnail
by Anura Guruge

Related posts:
>> Omni
(Philadelphia) & Amtrak crash …

++++ Search on ‘reservations‘ & ‘hotel‘ for other related posts >>>>


Click to ENLARGE and study. Actual Expedia hotel conformation.

A CONFIRMED hotel reservation from Expedia means NOTHING.


All it means is that Expedia ‘accepted’ your reservation. It has NOTHING to do with whether the actual hotel accepted and CONFIRMED that reservation.

Got that?

Let me explain that to you again, and use the above as a real-life example.

Though I had the above Expedia hotel confirmation, with a confirmation number, the hotel, i.e., the Wyndham Philadelphia Historic District, had NEVER received my reservation let alone confirmed it.


Click to ENLARGE.

The Expedia reservation number has NOTHING to do with the Wyndham. It is BUT an Expedia reservation number.

Wyndham confirmation numbers are much shorter, such as this.


Though I do not travel that much anymore I used to travel much, much more than most. For about 15 years of my life I used to travel, out-of-town, 3 to 4 nights a week. So I am no stranger to travel. Unless it is a hotel that knows me by name (and that used to be the case with many of the major hotels in Raleigh, N.C., since I was there every week) I never arrive at a hotel BEFORE reconfirming my reservation. As I have stated before I have contingency plans for my contingency plans. So …

This trip, to Philadelphia, blighted by the Brandon Bostian Amtrak 188 crash, was the first time, ever, that I personally have used Expedia. Never again.

Though I had the Expedia conformation, I was NOT going to arrive at a Hotel, with the two kids, until I knew that everything was OK.

So, I called up the hotel. They did NOT have the reservation. Never heard of it.

I called back again about 4 hours later. Same result. The Wyndham Philadelphia did NOT have a reservation for me.

I called Expedia.

I got to the bottom of it — BUT NOT thanks to Expedia.

The Wyndham was outstanding. I was very impressed.

Expedia, from what I can see, based on this experience, sucks.


A confirmed hotel reservation from Expedia could have YOU sleeping on the streets.

Dr. Assad Meymandi’s May 2, 2015 Commencement Address At William Peace University, Raleigh, NC.

Dr. Assad Meymandi: Scientist, Philosopher and Philanthropist.

Anura Guruge December 2014 thumbnail. . .


by Anura Guruge

Related posts:
>> Valentine’s Day.


Click to access Commencement Address at Dr. Meymandi’s treasure trove of a blog.

‘Big Chief Elizabeth’ by Giles Milton: The Earliest British Colonies In America, Roanoke Island etc.

Anura Guruge, laughing, picture November 16, 2011.


..by Anura Guruge

I didn’t buy this book. I must have picked it up for free somewhere. I am glad I did. I just finished reading it. It enlightened me, gloriously, on a whole new chapter of U.S. history that I knew nothing about — the earliest British attempts at American colonization, predating Jamestown, Va. I am not sure how many Americans actually know this or remember it from a history book or class. Where did ‘Virginia‘, U.S.A., get its name from? Though those religious might claim that it must be in honor of ‘Mary‘, that is not the case. It is a different virgin, or one that claimed that she was (though as is inevitably the case doubts have been raised): Queen Elizabeth I [1558 – 160], ‘The Virgin Queen‘, ‘Gloriana‘, ‘Good Queen Bess‘ or as she was introduced to the (Red) Indians, ‘Weroanza Elizabeth‘ (‘Big Chief’ Elizabeth, the title of the book).

It is a compelling tale, well told by a gifted, adroit British writer, Giles Milton. I never studied history in school or college after the age of 12. So all of the history that I learned in school was limited to Ceylon history, which I knew quite well; my father, a history buff, inordinately proud of Ceylon’s culture, making sure that I knew Ceylon’s place in world history. My interest in history is thus quite new, not even a decade old, much of it devoted to papal history. So, I had no idea who ‘John Cabot’ was and what he had done in 1497. Do you know who John Cabot was and if so what was his nationality? [I will have to find out if the cheese is related to him.]

I, a good Brit, of course knew of Sir Walter Raleigh, but mainly the story of his cloak and his exploits as a ‘pirate’. I will confess, that though ‘Raleigh‘, N.C. was kind of my second home for many years, I had never put the two together. My bad. But, in those days history wasn’t my thing.

What I knew of ‘Pocahontas‘ I had learned from Walt Disney! Well it appears that they took some poetic licenses and sugarcoated much. I have seen the movie a few times and I am sure that they never showed Pocahontas, as a 12 year old doing cartwheels, naked, to entertain the British colonist — apparently her favorite party trick, that she delighted in undertaking whenever she visited the colony, which was quite often. Yes, she indeed did intercede and save the life of ‘John Smith‘ multiple times. But, there was a big age difference between the two. When she first met John she was probably only around 10, her naked cartwheeling starting a couple of years later, after Smith had left. She did end up marrying a Brit, a ‘John Rolfe‘. She even visited England and met the King. All this and more I learned from the book. It also has contemporaneous illustrations and maps made by some of those early colonist. If you are interested in this period of U.S. history you might want to check out this book.

Pocahontas, a British engraving done during a visit to England, 1616 to 1617.