Here's a moving account of a woman's motorcycle tour of the abandoned area around Chernobyl. The Clue Train honesty of this story shines through. Only a few years ago, I would never have heard stories like these. Not only were government censors suppressing the news, but also a Russian motorcycle mama had no way to publish her observations.

"The word CHERNOBYL scares holly bijesus out of people here. If I tell someone that I am heading in "dead zone"... you know, what I hear.. In best case- "are you nuts?" My dad used to say that people afraid of a things which they don't know. Dad is nuclear physicist and he also says that of all dangerous things he can only think about one, which is riding on fifth or sixth gear on my bike. In any way, dad and their team work in "dead zone" for last 18 years. They doing researches from the day when nuclear disaster happened. The rest of guys in a team are microbiologists, doctors, botanists.. etc. I was 7 years old back then and in a few hours after accident happened dad sent us with sister off with the train to Grandmother. Granny lives 800 kms from here and dad wasn't sure if it was far enough for us to stay away of troubles. We had communists at power those days and they kept silence about this accident and then people start learning by themselves and real panic began in 7-10 days after disaster. Dad says, that in those first 10 days exposure to radiation was so powerful that one day of staying in Kiev those first days was equal of 1 year of living in Chernobyl now."

"People had to leave everything, from photos of their grandparents to cars. Their clothes, cash and passports has been changed by state authorities. This is incredible, people lived, had homes, country houses, garages, motorcyles, cars, money, friends and relatives, people had their life, each in own niche and then in a matter of hours this world fall in pieces and everything goes to dogs and after few hours trip with some army vehicle one stands under some shower, washing away radiation and then step in a new life, naked with no home, no friends, no money, no past and with very doubtful future."

Houses open and everything as people left it 18 years ago.

I'm not a religious person, so my prayers don't mean a lot. Nonetheless, I pray that sharing our thoughts and images with one another leads to understanding, empathy, and friendship throughout the world.

This morning, when separating the e-wheat from the e-chaff in my mailbox, something compelled me to click open a mass mailing from ASTD. The first article, A Positive Approach to Performance Improvement, caught my eye.

Richard Gerson, the author, had been drawing on the same sources as I: Martin Seligman's Positive Psychology, Csikszentmihaly's Flow, and sports psychology. I lump Daivd Cooperrider's Appreciatve Inquiry, the positive reinforcement described in Don't Beat the Dog, and even Richard Eyre's Spiritual Serendipity into the same category. Build from the positive. Don't always seek "a balanced perspective." Accentuate the positive.

Geoffrey Moore (Crossing the Chasm, Living on the Fault Line, The Gorilla Game, etc.) exorts companies to focus on core strengths and hand off everything else (usually to someone who considers your leavings to be their core strength.) "Do what you're good at" and "Leverage your opportunities" are nearly synonymous.

Years ago an author I was listening to at Black Oak Books in Berkeley, had described dozens of ways we've screwed up the world. Someone in the audience asked him, given that his book was filled with doom and gloom, how could he be so sunny? How could he be optimistic?

He replied, "I'm an optimist because it works better."

That works for me.

Без перевода.

Posted by Jay Cross at March 5, 2004 11:38 PM | TrackBack

Interesting sites, both of them.

Elena's photojournal evoked mental image pictures right out of a sci-fi apocalypse.
Her use of slang even brings to mind some passages from Clockwork Orange. All in all, a disturbing reminder of things best not forgotten.

By the way, was that picture of you in the "about us" section take when you first started work?

Posted by: David St Lawrence at March 17, 2004 10:40 AM

30 Poppy Lane
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