I adore the warmer months and like nothing better than to dive into and float around the swimming pool. Although I enjoy the beach, I am a always a little wary of the tides and general unpredictability of swimming in the sea.Continue reading
I love exploring new places in the USA, and regular readers will know of my secret desire to eventually visit all the states in the USA. Last month we headed to Austin, Texas.Continue reading
June is definitely one of my favorite months, mainly for its long warm summer days for the pool, grilling out, beaches and boating. It is also the month of my wedding anniversary, our 23rd this year, and we always take time to celebrate that.Continue reading
Lesley muses about about the history of glass, which has been used for centuries to store beverages, food, chemicals and cosmetics. The widespread use of glass as a storage vessel throughout history highlights the material’s resilience and functionality.Continue reading
England is getting very excited about the coronation of King Charles III, which will take place on Saturday May 6th.Continue reading
I love living in beautiful Coastal Georgia. I am lucky enough to have my office in Richmond Hill and my home not far away in a wonderful corner of Bryan County. However, sometimes I just crave a big city for its anonymity, hustle and bustle, extensive dining and leisure options and frankly some really great shopping opportunities!Continue reading
I have long wanted to visit and learn more about Daufuskie Island, the southern-most inhabited island in South Carolina and sometimes known as the “island with no bridge”.Continue reading
I was eleven years old and living on the other side of the Atlantic when Jimmy Carter became the 39th President of the United States. At that time, America seemed impossibly far away and glamorous, and my interest in US politics did not really begin until the Reagan years in the 1980s. I don’t think I had even heard of the State of Georgia until Carter was elected since the few American TV shows and movies we had in Britain at that time seemed to focus on Hawaii, Hollywood and New York. The fact that Carter was a peanut farmer also seemed a long way away from my reality as a schoolgirl in London, England. Little did I know that three decades later I would make Georgia my home, albeit on the coast and 220 miles away from where Jimmy Carter was raised in Plains.
I try to avoid politics in this column, even 40 or 50 year old political issues, so I will not talk about Carter’s sole term as President other than to say that he was elected on a platform of being a Washington “outsider” in post-Watergate America that was facing many challenges. As the oldest living US president in history, he has survived metastatic brain cancer and faced a number of other health scares, including brain surgery following a fall in 2019. At the time of writing this column, 98-year-old Jimmy Carter is under hospice care at his beloved home in Plains surrounded by family.
However, on a personal level, Jimmy Carter strikes me as a man driven by a sense of duty and a deep religious faith. His commitment to doing his duty and what he believes to be the right thing began early as he chose a military life, graduating from the U.S. Naval Academy in 1946. That year he married Rosalynn who also came from the small town of Plains, Georgia, and he began a seven-year career in the U.S. Navy. He was preparing to become an engineering officer for the submarine Seawolf in 1953 when his father died. Carter resigned his commission and returned to Georgia to manage the day-to-day operations of the family peanut farm, fulfilling what he considered his duty as the eldest son. He became involved in local politics, serving on his local school board, and then lost badly when he ran for Governor in 1966. It was about this time that he became a born-again Baptist, and his faith remains very important to him to this day. He famously taught Sunday school at Maranatha Baptist Church in his hometown from the 1980s until his health and the pandemic forced him to stop in 2020. Carter was of course successful in becoming the 76th governor of Georgia from 1971-1975, just before his election to the White House the following year, serving as President and Commander in Chief from 1977-1981.
As everyone knows, after Carter was voted out of office in the 1980 general election, he returned to Plains and dedicated himself to humanitarian work through founding the Carter Presidential Center in Atlanta which included a presidential library and museum. He founded this nonpartisan organization, which focuses on human rights and disease prevention, with his wife Rosalynn who has been a force in her own right. She advocated for mental health, wrote several books and working closely with her husband, contributed greatly to the expansion of the nonprofit housing organization, Habitat for Humanity. This organization works in local communities across all 50 states in the U.S. and in approximately 70 countries to realize the vision of a world where everyone has a decent place to live.
Carter has also served as a volunteer diplomat without portfolio on behalf of international peace in various conflicts across the world. In the 1990s he negotiated with North Korea to end their nuclear weapons program, in Haiti to transfer power peacefully, and with Bosnian Serbs and Muslims to broker a short-lived cease-fire. For his work in diplomacy and advocacy, Jimmy Carter was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 2002.
There is more information at www.britannica.com.
I will leave you with a quote from Jimmy Carter himself: “You can do what you have to do, and sometimes you can do it even better than you think you can.”
God Bless America!
– ENDS –
I knew that the Harry Potter Exhibition had been touring around the USA, and when the editor of this newspaper pointed out to me that it would be closing in Georgia at the end of February, I decided to prioritize a visit to Atlanta.Continue reading
I am a devoted fan of 1980s rock music and find it interesting to see how much the UK and USA have in common during this musical era. I was therefore very excited when my husband surprised me at Christmas with the gift of tickets for last week’s concert – Journey and Toto on tour!Continue reading