Don’t get me wrong. Over the last two years, as a foreign affairs portfolio holder in the Gillard Government, my work has been rewarding and exciting. It has been easily the best professional experience of my life.
But the extensive travel makes me miss my family… a lot.
In those same two years (and not by choice), airports and aeroplanes have become a lonely home. My aim is to get in and out of them as quickly as possible and mitigate the number of hours they take away from life.
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At a California university right now, you’ll find find one poor soul standing at a kitchen bench, peeling a ton of onions.
Well it may not be onions; it could just as easily be root vegetables, a cheap cut of meat and probably a whole lot of curry paste.
But whatever it is, it must be enough to feed 400 hungry mouths as part of a new university co-op- initiative that gets students cooking, cleaning and generally sharing the load, in exchange for cheaper weekly rent.
And the whole idea fills me with dread.
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Rise up, parents, and rub your kids’ faces in a bit of dirt.
Let them eat snails, and snot, and have their cheese sandwiches without washing their hands.
Because your hyper-vigilant cleanliness could, literally, be killing them.
Will 2010 be the year that the prime issue facing most women and girls in developing countries earns the recognition and action it deserves?
Water, toilets and hygiene - there can be nothing more basic than this.
And yet these issues continually slide from the political priority list and lack the funds and action required to change this awful reality, mostly borne by poor women around the globe.
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