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Great batalay 2015-02-14 8:07

Hello Rosemary,

As a child I was a serious stamp collector, serious enough to begin the hobby by trading away a few of the most valuable stamps in a collection I had inherited from my grandfather. I certainly did not own it, one of the most important stamps in philatelic history came from Mauritius, "the 1-d Black," a unique stamp with the young Queen Victoria emblazoned on it. I've long had an interest in seeing Mauritius. But then, because of its isolation, just like Madagascar, Mauritius has been known for its gallery of strange animals and strange fauna populating the island. But now, thanks to your superb short essay, I've found is a third area of fascination. Recently, I read the book Niall Ferguson's "Civilization: the West and the Rest," where the author introduces the conditions prevailing in Europe 500 years ago that led to the ascent of the West over the immensely more powerful Empires, including the Chinese and the Ottoman. He calls these conditions, "Killer Apps," and first among them is the "Spice Race." Portugal and Holland, small sea faring nations launched the Age of Discovery, and after that, the Scientific Revolution. There are three other killer apps, but the first two are the most important.

In just six weeks, I am scheduled to give a talk at the Smithsonian in Washington. The talk is basically about Ataturk. With the Middle East teetering at the edge of the abyss, and some leaders scurrying to leapfrog over others, this is a timely talk and already sold out. But I will spice up my talk with what I've learned from you, the story of Peter Piper and the familiar tongue twister... In the unlikely event that you are in the East Coast of the US on March 31, it would be a pleasure to have you in the audience,. The Smithsonian is now considering moving the talk to a larger auditorium. Click on Looking West: Ataturk and the Creation of Modern Turkey.

I am grateful for the superb note you wrote to accompany an excellent photo of fauna.

Have a good weekend,


Old 02-18-2015, 10:37 AM
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SnapRJW SnapRJW is offline
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Default To batalay: Thank You Bulent

Hello Bulent - How I would love to attend your lecture, unfortunately I will be many miles away from the east coast of the USA so will not be able to attend!

I am pleased that you found my note interesting. I remember the 'tongue twister' from my childhood and when I was researching the botanical gardens and 'discovered' Pieter Poivre it immediately sprang to mind. I was thrilled to discover that he is thought to be the Peter Piper of the rhyme.

Thanks again for your interest.

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