One Fine Lady: The World’s Oldest Grape Vine in Slovenia!!

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At possibly 450 plus years old, she has seen more changes than the relatively young former Yugoslav country. Tended regularly by Tone Zafosnik for more than 30 years, the vine flourishes today and is a major tourist attraction in this town of 110,000. The vine produces about 60 kilos of grapes per year which is a enough for a few hundred 250 dcl. of souvenir bottles of the red wine (but it is only given to dignitaries like the Pope).

I was met by the Director of Tourism for the town and we shared a few minutes of the vine’s incredible history for CNN.

http://ireport.cnn.com/docs/DOC-616884

Slovenia is a tiny European Union country situated just below Austria about half the size of Switzerland with a population of about 2 million. Wine growing is a major industry there.

Produced and Hosted by: Percy von Lipinski

Associate Producer and Editor: Tracy Bymoen

Special thanks to Maribor Tourism, Old Vine House and Slovenia Tourism

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Flying like Superman (almost) in Switzerland

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http://ireport.cnn.com/docs/DOC-614923

Body Flying in an inverted wind tunnel is an American Idea dating back to 1964 when Jack Tiffany tried it for the first time at Wright Patterson Air Force Base located in Greene and Montgomery County, Ohio. It took another 15 years before a fully recreational closed system was first opened in Las Vegas where it continues operating today.

If you do try body flying anywhere you’ll be learning these important 5 techniques. Trust me, you don’t want to forget them, especially in an open air body flying system!

5 Top Tips for Open Air Body Flying:

1) RELAX but enjoy and have fun (it’s hard work at first but remember you’re having fun, unlike you, your body flying instructor has likely spent hundreds of hours to learn those fancy moves so don’t be intimidated)
2) Position with your chin up and hands and feet arched backwards
3) Land on your back which is notably the exact opposite of your natural instincts
4) Do not look down….ever or you’ll take off in an open air system and who know where you’ll land : > )
5) Watch your instructor. They’ll be communication visually with you at all times.

If you find you really love body flying, there’s even a name for you: “Tunnel Rat”

Most wind tunnels are of the enclosed type, that is, the wind recirculates back down. Subsequently the air temperature is easier to control for year round use and the energy required is significantly less. The downside though is that you don’t get quite the feeling of freedom that you do with an open system such as this one.

This one in Zurich, Switzerland operated by bodyflying.ch is very unusual because it is an open air system which provides a dramatically different experience as my video package clearly shows. The cost of operating this system along with the skills are much greater so, sadly this unique system will likely switch over to a closed system in about 3 years as the operating costs are far too high.

If you’ve ever wondered what it’s like to body fly in the wide open you’ve got less than 3 years to pack your bags, head to Switzerland, don a flight suite and prepare for the Adrenalin rush of your life as you float high above the world, skydiving in reverse!

It’s no wonder that “Tunnel Rats” from around the world seek this facility out for it’s unique body flying experience, here in the heart of Switzerland.

“Bodyflying” in Switzerland!

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Percy’s at the high adrenalin adventures again — this time in Switzerland:

http://ireport.cnn.com/docs/DOC-614923

The 007 of hotel towels?

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Pilfered hotel towels with built in tracking devices??

Apparently, hotels in Manhattan, Miami and Honolulu are sewing chips into their towels, bathrobes and sheets to curb nearly $16,000 in monthly linen losses!

Britian’s newest “Crown Jewels”: Official Royal Wedding CONDOM Souvenirs?

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REALLY???

These “condoms of distinction” apparently contain this disclaimer: “a novelty product and may not be suitable as a contraceptive or barrier against sexually transmitted diseases.”

Just read the CNN article

Man dies after falling into pasta machine?

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Not much more I can say other than that this is a sad, sad freak accident. Poor guy.

Note to self: Don’t do a story on pasta making. Dangerous!!

A 26-year-old man is dead after he fell into a machine while working at a Toronto pasta factory on Monday.Source:http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/story/2011/04/11/pasta-machine-accident.htmlRead More

via Anacristina79’s Blog

Good food, smiles (maybe), dancing and…a RAT?

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Yes, you read right! This place is AWESOME!

I had all that and more when I dined recently at “Lutherstube” or “Luther’s Cellar” in Erfurt, Germany!

It’s a medieval dining experience straight from the times of Martin Luther. And the experience, at wood tables, on straw floors (as you’ll see in these photos) was extraordinary. And I really mean that, I’m not just throwing that term around. I mean, the waiter had a pet rat!! And he brought it to the table!! And to make the experience more entertaining, the night had a fun challenge to it…the waiter — the one with that incredible pet rat  — played the part of a miserable medieval man and, well, if we could get him to smile, drinks were on the house! Well, needless to say, we weren’t successful despite out best efforts! Apparently, he hasn’t smiled for 4 years! But we sure had a blast trying, and petting that crazy little rat!!

For a dining experience and a half, I highly encourage you to check this place out next time you’re in that neck of Germany! Yeah, the place may be a bit “ratty” — haha — but that’s it’s whole charm! (For the record, it’s just the one, clean, well-kept pet rat you’ll ever see.) ; > )

Here’s a few of the videos I produced while in the area:
Martin Luther King Jr’s German origin?
Bach’s 326th Birthday
World’s First Automobile

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