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September 16, 2017 – 2:31 am

In this insightful gem, journalist and life coach Wanda Hennig writes wisely, hilariously and sometimes poignantly about sex and food; living for three-and-a-half years at the San Francisco Zen Center; moving solo from one continent to another; meditation; creative mindfulness strategies and more. Cravings: A Zen-inspired memoir about sensual pleasures, freedom from dark places, and living and eating with abandon (Say Yes Press). Edition Two (Mouth Orgasm edition) published August 2017 (ISBN 9780996820523 paperback; ISBN 9780996820523 eBook).

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South Africa launches ‘I Do Tourism’ at Indaba 2017

May 17, 2017 – 2:17 am
Indaba 2017 collage

South African Tourism launches ‘I Do Tourism’—a new responsible tourism initiative—at Indaba 2017 in Durban. The strategy is geared to showing South Africans the relevance of tourism in the greater scheme of things. How ‘everybody’ benefits from tourism.

Dwor Sierakow: for the wine, Polish vodka, history and Slow Food

April 27, 2017 – 7:35 am
Dwor Sierakow dining.

British-born Caroline Grabowska and her Pawła Gąsiorek (Paul) have turned Dwór Sieraków, near Krakow in Poland, into a four-star historic hotels listed establishment. Chef Janusz Fic is the man culinary travelers will seek out at the restaurant, recognized by Slow Food Poland. Paul’s wine cellar is one of Poland’s finest. And their Dwór Sieraków vodka is now a label of note.

Poland, France, German winners on European Film Fest 2017 Nouveau South Africa line-up

April 23, 2017 – 12:21 pm
EuroFilmFestSA Poster

The fourth European Film Festival (2017 edition) for South Africa will screen at Cinema Nouveau in Durban, Cape Town, Pretoria and Johannesburg beween May 5 and May 14. The films include award-winning entries from 12 countries: Austria, Belgium, Poland, Spain, Portugal, Germany, the United Kingdom, France, Italy, Netherlands, and Ireland and Croatia for the first time.

Portugal’s queen of tarts: where to eat them

April 22, 2017 – 9:59 pm
Pastéis de Belém

Portugal is known for its pastries. The most famous is the pastéis de nata. The original version of the famed pastéis de nata dessert was created more than 200 years ago. If you are in the Belem district of Lisbon and see a line of eager people as the author of this piece did, they’re likely waiting outside Café de Belém, better known as the Pastéis de Belém, home of the pastries and where 19,000 are sold on an average day.

Hare Krishna Festival of Chariots Durban

April 18, 2017 – 3:18 am
Goddess at Hare Krishna parade in Durban.

Singing and chanting Hare Krishna devotees of all ages—and the interested and curious—gather in Durban over Easter weekend to pull their three lofty chariots that sail along the beachfront festooned with thousands of flower garlands and billowing brilliantly colored fabric canopies. Travel blogger Wanda Hennig joins the devotees, who also prepare fresh vegetarian meals for the hungry. It’s a celebration.

Zen, mindfulness and overcoming depression

March 19, 2017 – 1:24 am
Buddha at San Francisco Zen Center

Current brain research and the discovery that neurons that fire together, wire together is producing concrete evidence for something Buddhist practitioners have maintained for centuries: the sustained practice of mindfulness can change the workings of the brain at a molecular level and allow people to achieve different levels of awareness. In light of this the San Francisco Zen Center has been offering mindfulness and depression workshops for the past ten years.

Travel to Poland: visit Wieliczka Salt Mine near Krakow

January 8, 2017 – 4:52 am
Wieliczka Salt Mine Poland

Entering Wieliczka Salt Mine is like being transported into another world. A unreal, mystical, subterranean nether-world. Salt mining started here in the 13th century. Not surprisingly if a little eerily, the adventures, the stories, the lives of men and women who have lived and worked (and sometimes died) here, deep in the bowels of the earth, infuse the place. You feel it, sense it — or at least I did — as you descend after entering. As you climb down, down, down the narrow wooden stairwell into a nether world of caverns and tunnel-paths and overhangs. Small wonder this UNESCO Heritage Site is one of Poland’s top tourist attractions.

Plentiful: The Big Book of Buddha Food launch notes

December 10, 2016 – 1:10 pm
Picture: Alan Wilson

Plentiful: The Big Book of Buddha Food (Jacana) is the Buddhist Retreat Center’s third cookbook. Plentiful was launched at Adams Bookstore in Durban by journalist and longtime Zen student Wanda Hennig. Plentiful’s chef is Paul Atkinson. Editor is Chrisi van Loon. Photographer is Angela Shaw.

Foodies and yogis head for South African Buddhist Retreat

December 9, 2016 – 1:23 pm
Paul Atkinson at the Buddhist Retreat

Pudding and Prana had us do a lot of yoga with Amy Best and cooking demos (followed by eating) with Paul Atkinson. Vegetarian curries and a Moroccan stew. A beet and feta salad. A “bejeweled’ cous cous. Poached pears in a yummy rich chocolate baked pie topped with whipped cream blended with double-cream yogurt. All were recipes he had perfected while working in the Buddhist Retreat Center kitchen and were destined for Plentiful: The Big Book of Buddha Food (Jacana).

Travel to Poland: Na zdrowie from Krakow

October 27, 2016 – 12:22 pm

On her “roots” and culinary travel trip to Poland, Wanda Hennig comes to appreciate her vodka-pouring hosts, learns about nalewka — a traditional vodka-like drink infused with herbs, fruit, and/or spices — first at Krakow’s legendary Cafe Jama Michalika and later at upscale seasonally-inspired Pod Baranem restaurant (among other places). Not surprisingly, she comes home with the T-shirt…