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Oasis of the Americas

Yet another place I’d like to visit at least once in my lifetime.

Sadly I might not get the opportunity, and not because I may not be able to reach it, but just because it may not be there for long. This extraordinary place is in danger, the underground river that supplies the water for Huacachina Oasis is now being plundered by the people of the neighboring city of Ika. It’s not specifically their fault, global warming is affecting water supplies everywhere, so it’s humanity’s fault, shame on us!

It’s a shame that a place that over the centuries has sheltered countless travelers, preventing them from finding their end in the sun-scorched desert dunes that surrounds it. Quite an unfitting end for such a unique location, that is just beginning to attract tourists from all over the world.

So if you have the chance, go to Peru and visit Huacachina Oasis, who knows if you’ll ever get the chance again…

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Real upside-down house

With an upside-down interior and everything!

If you’re ever in Poland, you might want to go see one of the country’s most popular tourist attractions, in the village of Szymbark. Designedby Polish businessman and philanthropist Daniel Czapiewski, the house manages to draw in huge crowds every day. This project was meant to be a statement about the Comunist era and also about the current stet of the world. everything is upside-down and it’s up to mankind to fix it.

What’s even more unusual is that all of the interior is also upside-down and it took the workers 114 days to complete it, instead of the normal three weeks, because they needed frequent breaks to recover from getting disoriented by the weird angles of the house. Visitors also often complain about mild sickness and dizziness after just a few minutes spent in the house.

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The Boy and the Python

Would make a nice book title wouldn’t it?

Oeun Sambat is a six-year old boy from Cambodia, who has a very unusual best friend, a huge python called Chamerun (Lucky). If you ask me that should be the boy’s name, he’s lucky that thing hasn’t eaten him yet. Anyway he’s become really popular in the surrounding area, people from the neighboring villagers flock to see this miracle and say he has supernatural powers because he was the son of a dragon in a previous life.

It’s a pretty cool situation, still if was one of the boy’s parents I wouldn’t let him keep that thing as a pet…snakes are very unpredictable creatures, especially if they aren’t tamed in any way.

 

The Giants of the North

Or Gigantes do Norte, in their native Portuguese tongue are a very…special soccer team

What makes them so special is the fact that they are all vertically challenged people, playing against under-13 soccer teams in their native Brazilian town of Belem. What’s even more amazing is that they are attracting huge crowds at their matches, because they’re apparently quite the entertainers.

They’re not just a freak-show doing this to earn money, as some people might think, they are coached by professional coach Carlos Luchena and they were put together “in an effort to raise the profile of dwarves in Brazilian society and challenge ‘sizeist’ attitudes.

That’s commendable!

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Swamp Soccer

If you’re not one of those people who thinks soccer is for pussies, you’re going to love this.

Believe it or not, this sport really exists, there are even organized championships in European countries like Finland and the United Kingdom. It originates from Finland, where it was first played by cross-country skiers who were training in swamps in the summer time. Now annual tournaments take place in Finland, Sweden, Iceland and the UK. There are three types of teams in swamp soccer, man teams, women teams and mixed teams and all consist of 6 players.

Although you have to get down and dirty, I have a feeling this sport is extremely fun to play and there aren’t many teams that play it for the competition’s sake. That trophy would look pretty sweet in my personal collection though…

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Wacky Austrian museum

Ever been afraid that a house might fall on you and squash you?

I know what it looks like, but no, that house did not just fall out of the sky. It’s an artistic project of sculptor Erwin Wurm and it was set up especially to look like a house just fell out of the sky and landed on the Viennese Museum of Modern Art. Actually it took two large cranes to get that house in its place and secure it properly.

Wurm says his work of art is a statement against over-development, here are his thoughts on the matter: “There are hundreds of thousands of houses and they are spreading like a plague, like a cancer across our land.”

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Matchsticks-made Minas Tirith

Who knew something made of matchsticks could be so impressive!

Patrick Acton is an artist from Iowa and apparently a big fan of The Lord of The Rings universe, who uses matchsticks to create his masterpieces. What you see in these photos is just a work in progress, an incomplete model of Minas Tirith, the famous fortress city, as seen in LOTR3: The Return of the King. The details are remarkable and I can only imagine what it will look like when it’s finished, sometime in 2009.

Anton has become famous through his work and has been featured on ABC’s Extreme Makeover, Home Edition, Home and Garden TV and in magazines like AAA Travel wood, The Iowan and others. I admire him for his patience!

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Retro laptop

I’d love to get this thing as a birthday present.

This cool music-box looking thing is Datamancer’s Steampunk laptop. Don’t be fooled by its retro look, there’s a perfect running HP ZT1000 laptop, underneath all that wood and metal gears, it’s even capable of running both Windows and Linux. But nobody really cares about how good a laptop it is now do they? It’s all about that Victorian look, the elaborate clockwork under that glass screen, the brass key operated on/off switch, the claw legs…it’s simply gorgeous, and don’t tell me you don’t like it, you’re just jealous you don’t own one.

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World’s smallest girl

She may be little but I’m sure she has a great spirit!

This it Jyoti Amge, a 15 year old girl from India, that’s about the size of your typical 3 year old. Jyoti suffers from a form of dwarfism called achondroplasia which prevents her body from fully developing; doctors say she’s going to look like a little girl even when she’s 30.

The little girl learned to accept her condition and even said she enjoys her celebrity status. She is no different than your average 15 year old, she loves listening to music, watching DVDs and hopes she’ll one day become a popular Bollywood actress. She has recently recorded a music album with her favorite singer, Mika Singh.

Not bad for someone who’s 58cm tall and weighs a mere 5 kilograms…not bad at all.

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Japanese Rock’n-Rollers

Here’s what watching movies like Grease too many times can do to a man.

I haven’t been able to dig up too much on these silly looking guys, I just know they are some kind of entertainers in Yoyogi Park, Harajuku in Japan. Please, if you know more, don’t hesitate to let everybody know through a comment. I don’t what else to say but: LONG LIVE ROCK’N-ROLL!

 

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Real elf ears

How far would you go just to look as your favorite fantasy creature?

Well I don’t know if this lady is a big World of Warcraft fan or not, but she definitely has a thing for elves and especially their pointy ears. She even went ahead and surgically modified them just so she could look more as an elf. I can’t believe I’m saying this but I thing those things look great on her, and hey if you don’t go as far as Catman did, it’s all good.

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Not your usual children’s camp

Welcome to Stavropol children’s military camp, where Russian kids lose…no not their virginity you pervert, their childhood!

As the title suggests, this is not your typical summer camp, where people play games, have fun and learn cool stuff, this is the army baby, the Russian army. About 40 children, between 12 and 17 years old go through a rough training here and learn the basics martial arts and weaponry. Just like the Ansan civilian camp in South Korea, Stavropol run by former Russian servicemen and I bet they’re pretty tough.

I may seem soft but I wouldn’t send my kid there no matter what he did, I really think places like these rob kids of their childhood much too soon…

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Cool PC command stations

I didn’t know what else to call these babies and I thought the kinda looked like command stations.

I’d be willing to bet the farm that the people who built these bad boys only did it so they can prove they could and to show them off. I mean I can’t imagine what you could use one of these for, they don’t look built for surveillance, that would have made more sense. Some of these seem designed for gaming, but why not use one big plasma screen rather than all these monitors? I’m not that good with computers so the real answer may be alluding me.

Whatever purpose they may serve, they look smokin’ and that’s what matters!

Incredible soap art

Who says soap can only be used for cleansing?

As you can see it makes for great material when you have an artistic sense. Some of you may not be impressed by all these pieces, but I for one never looked at soap as anything but something to help me get squeaky clean, so I’m genuinely impressed to see art in something so common.

I wonder how much one of these babies costs and if anyone really uses them when they bathe? I doubt it.

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Great use of a used plane

This is El Avion, a famous plane now turned into a bar.

El Avion is a model C-123 Fairchild and it can be found in Costa Rica and it has quite an unusual story. I for one really didn’t get much of it, but the bottom line is that it was abandoned by the USA at the San Jose airport, in 1986, after its identical sister plane was shot down over Nicaragua, leading to the capture of a one Eugene Hasenfus by the Sandinista army. Apparently there was a huge scandal regarding this incident at the time, but right now El Avion remains just a place where you can come and get a really expensive drink.

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