Satellite tv stations seem to come and go and change hands with some frequency. On my Bell Communications system, the former BOLD network is now Cottage TV and I am enjoying a couple of months of free previews.
This afternoon I watched an hour documentary on the long established refugee camps in Lebanon as well as a tour of Beirut, explaining various aspects of the local economy, culture and how the camps have effected the area. One of the interesting aspects of the economy is how many women have taken to sewing and embroidering the most beautiful wall hangings, clothing, linens and what have you. So many of the men cannot seem to find meaningful or sufficient employment for a number of reasons, so the women are using their considerable skills at handiwork to create income for their families.
I watched the most beautiful children smiling and "hamming it up" for the television cameras and laughed at how kids are just kids in most every country around the world...predictable in their ability to find joy in the smallest and most insignificant events, to be excited beyond sensibility when a camera is turned their way.
A group of wealthy American yacht owners went as a group to visit some of the local Muslims and watch what goes on in their weekly worship services. Some of them were terrified to go and wondered if the worst would happen to them. Some of their Muslim hosts were equally afraid that the day together would end in disaster at the hands of the frightening westerners. In the end they all seemed happy to be able to dispel some of their worst fears and stereotypes. Seeing everyone learning about their differences in culture and world views was of great interest; watching them laughing together as they feasted on wonderful Lebanese foods while the cooks stood by giggling with relief at the good reception to their delicious dishes reminded me of our own church ladies serving up a banquet and watching for a positive response from the guests. The way the programme was filmed made me feel as if I was part of that amazing day.
I am going to spend more time watching Cottage TV while I am in recovery mode. Another enjoyable station is Travel. It appears I will not be taking any more travels out of the country, at least not any time in the foreseeable future, so have decided that arm chair travelling ( or in this case couch potato travelling) will suffice. The quality of travel documentaries has risen dramatically in the past few years.
Of course, as soon as I am over this round of illness and can get outside and busy again the tv will cease to exist other than for a couple of weekly programmes I enjoy....if they have even been renewed for this season....I have become leery of starting any new series on NBC as they seem to wait until people are really enjoying their more intelligent programming before deciding we are too small an audience and cancelling our favourites mid season. If they would give more of their series a longer chance to be televised I suspect they would find it worthwhile and the Money God would eventually be appeased, arise and bless them.
For now I will enjoy my afternoons of world travels onscreen.