Moving to Europe for work – enlist the help of international removal experts

Big businesses operate in a truly global capacity these days. So if you work for a big multi-national, chances are you might end up taking a placement overseas for at least a year or two. Despite more uncertain trading conditions, key European economies continue to remain strong and thrive. So if you’re a high flying executive, you may well find yourself moving to Germany or moving to Switzerland.

Moving to continental Europe is a great adventure, whether you’re from the UK, the USA or maybe down under. Wherever you end up, you’ll find an expat community and support network, but you need to gear yourself up for a big change. Moving by itself can be stressful and unsettling, never mind taking on the challenge of an entirely new country with its language barriers and strange customs and traditions. However don’t be put off. Once you’ve made the initial adjustment, you’ll have a great experience that you will remember forever.

If your employer has an office in Europe and they want you to relocate by moving to Germany or moving to Switzerland, there are plenty of different options for your living arrangements. If you don’t have family ties, you might want to be in the heart of a thriving city like Berlin or Geneva. If you’re brining your family, then the suburbs or the countryside might suit you better.

Moving your belongings and possessions to a new country can seem daunting and if you don’t shop around for the best deal, it might turn out to be pretty costly. Do your research and try to find a company that offers their services at a reasonable rate and can help you with the whole move from start to finish. Otherwise you might have to find several companies to help you with each stage of our move, which is bound to be expensive. Specialist international removal companies are experts in transportation, packing and customs regulations. Stick with the experts and your move will be smooth and hassle free.

The Article is written by providing Moving To Germany and Moving To Switzerland Services. Visit for more information on Products & Services

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For Jet Fans Who Left Early, Regrets and Recriminations

It was utter euphoria for New York Jets fans after Mark Sanchez drove the team downfield with less than a minute remaining and pulled out a miraculous victory over the Houston Texans at the new Meadowlands Stadium on Sunday.

But when cameras showed the cheering crowd, it seemed that most of the fans had already given up on the team. After all, the Jets had blown a big lead in the fourth quarter before snatching back victory with seconds remaining.

“We had this feeling that, if we stayed till the end of the game, we’ll only have our hearts broken, not to mention that it’ll take us forever to get out of the stadium,” recounted one fan who left early, Richard Giraud, 49, of Hazlet, N.J. “We said, ‘Yeah, it’s not worth it,’ and we decided to leave.”

Mr. Giraud and his friend, who had seats that cost $120 each, did not get out unscathed. One fan used obscenities in essentially calling them “fair-weather fans,” he said.

The whole issue of fans leaving early struck a nerve among Jets fans after the game, and was a hot topic on fan sites such as and

On, threads appeared devoted to the topic, such as the one named, “I have never – nor will I ever – leave a Jet game early.”

One commenter composed the following stanzas:
“Why have you spent thousands – tens of thousands on seats?

To beat the traffic home?


Another commenter wrote: “Those fans that left, SHOULD NOT BE ALLOWED BACK IN. In fact, they should be ESCORTED OUT by Security. … ”

One commenter on The Fifth Down. a New York Times blog, reacted to such criticism by writing that, “to accuse me of not being a true Jets fan because I left early is disgusting.”

“I left that game because I could not bear the misery of those final two minutes,” the commenter wrote. “Yes they won, yes it was amazing, but 99 times out of 100, that doesn’t happen especially to the same old jets.”

Same Old Jets: This is an expression among Jets fans that refers to the team’s propensity to fold. It is often simply referred to as S.O.J., a shorthand for that deep-seated feeling of doom in many Jets fans that somehow, the team in green will find a way to blow the game and the season.

The phrase keeps cropping up, even though the Jets are 8-2 this season and have had a string of thrilling, last-minute victories. It surfaced on Sunday after Sanchez threw a late interception and the team trailed by four points with little time left. Many of the 78,843 ticket holders left at this point and never saw Sanchez hit Santonio Holmes to put the Jets ahead for a final 30-27 score over the Texans.

Even fans watching on television turned away. Joe Ford, viewing the game at Charlie Meaney’s pub in Valley Stream, N.Y., grew frustrated at the Jets and walked out of the bar after Houston scored to make it 27-23, because he was “certain that there was no chance of a comeback,” he wrote in an e-mail message on Monday.

Another fan, Christian Budiarjo, 27, an electrical engineer from Patchogue, N.Y. had come to the game with his father, Luhur, who has a habit of turning away from Jets games because he cannot bear to watch.

During the legendary “Monday Night Miracle” game in which the Jets staged an incredible comeback to beat the Miami Dolphins on Oct. 23, 2000, the father turned off the game and went to sleep. And on Sunday, Luhur Budiarjo insisted upon leaving in the final minutes, his son said.

“He didn’t want to see the Texans celebrate on the field,” said Christian Budiarjo.

As they stood to leave, a group of Texans fans mocked them, the son recounted.

“I convinced him to stay, and he wound up thanking me all the way home,” Christian Budiarjo recalled.

Many fans on message boards blamed the new stadium for the decision to leave early, which they said clogs easily with large crowds trying to exit.

Sean Deegan, the founder of, said that leaving a couple of minutes before the game ends can save a 45-minute bottleneck walking out of the stadium and trying to drive out of the parking lot.

Mr. Giraud said the walk out of the stadium was slow, but it allowed them to watch the final play live on a monitor while descending to the exit.

“We still wound up watching it with a bunch of Jets fans, jumping up and down,” he said. “We still felt that sense of camaraderie.”

“And I was home by 5:10,” he added.

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Plan to Bring Ship to West Side Hits Snag

New York City might not be the next home port for the S.S. United States, a historic luxury liner, if a casino development plan unveiled Monday in Philadelphia comes to pass.

A group that has been raising money to restore the 58-year-old ship had considered moving it from Philadelphia to Manhattan and converting it into a hotel and tourist attraction. But on Monday, the group proposed making the ship part of a plan to open a casino complex along the Delaware River.

The first casino in Philadelphia opened in September, but no progress has been made on a waterfront site where another casino was supposed to be developed. The ship, affectionately known as the “Big U,” has been tied to a pier near that site for years, while the members of the S.S. United States Conservancy sought a way to pay for its rehabilitation.

Incorporating the ship into a casino complex could simultaneously solve the riddle of how to save what once was the world’s fastest ocean liner. But the ship’s most ardent fans have not yet abandoned the idea that the United States could wind up at a pier on the West Side.

Dan McSweeney, the executive director of the S.S. United States Conservancy, said Monday that he was still seeking private investors who might help pay for a move to New York.

“We are enthusiastic about discussing possible plans for the ship with potential stakeholders in New York, as well as Philadelphia.” Mr. McSweeney said.

The ship, which at 990 feet is longer than the Titanic was, made 400 ocean crossings before it was retired. It was saved from the scrapyard this year when a Philadelphia philanthropist, Gerry Lenfest, donated $5.8 million. The conservancy used that money to buy the ship from Norwegian Cruise Lines, which had decided to sell it for scrap, and to keep it afloat long enough to devise a big idea for reviving the Big U.

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On a School Rooftop, Hydroponic Greens for Little Gardeners

Shakira Castronovo stood in a classroom at the Manhattan School for Children on West 93rd Street on a recent afternoon and hushed a squirming group of kindergartners perched around a blue carpet.

“Where do you think I picked this?” she asked, pinching a leafy-looking thing between her index finger and thumb. “It was picked fresh just few minutes ago.”

Someone wondered if it had come from the recess yard. Maybe from a farmers market? A minute later, a little girl in pink came up with the answer. “Greenhouse!” she shrieked as her hand shot into the air.

“This is called mizuna,” Ms. Castronovo said, enunciating the new word. “And we are finally ready to harvest some of our lettuces.”

Mizuna? “It’s the kind of thing that adults put with other lettuces when they have a salad,” she explained. “But you can still take a nibble.”

The grown-up lettuce came from what its founders say is the first hydroponic laboratory greenhouse on a New York City public school roof. The garden will officially open Dec. 6. But plants are already sprouting, making their way into classrooms.

There’s no soil in a hydroponic greenhouse, which captures and recirculates rainwater to the roots of plants. In capable hands — though maybe not in 5-year-old hands — the 1,400-square-foot structure can produce up to 8,000 pounds of vegetables every year. It is an experiment in environmental education its founders hope will be replicated in schools citywide.

Two mothers at the school, Sidsel Robards and Manuela Zamora, founded the greenhouse, inspired in 2008 by a trip to the Science Barge, a floating urban farm docked in Yonkers. They got New York Sun Works, the nonprofit green-design group that built the barge, interested enough to execute the greenhouse, a bright, open and wheelchair-accessible space, covered by glass and entered from the school’s third floor, that is essentially the Barge on a roof.

It includes a rainwater catchment system, a weather station, a sustainable air conditioner made of cardboard, a worm-composting center and solar panels. In the center of the room is a system resembling  a plant-filled hot tub: an aquaponics system home to a community of tilapia, whose waste is converted into nitrate. The system loses water only when it evaporates to help cool plants, consuming only a tiny fraction of the water that a field of conventional dirt does.

“You basically can have this closed system, this symbiotic thing going on, where plants are eating food, creating waste, you’re converting it and then the plants are taking it up,” said Zak Adams, director of ecological design at BrightFarm Systems, which designed the greenhouse and the barge. 

Including everything from permits to teacher training, the project cost about $800,000, most of which came from outside the school community. City Councilwoman Gale A. Brewer and the Manhattan borough president, Scott M. Stringer, provided grants.

Ms. Robards and Ms. Zamora, working in partnership with New York Sun Works, hope to spread the gospel of hydroponic farming to other city schools and are working to build a greenhouse at Public School 89 in Cypress Hills, Brooklyn.

The food produced at the Manhattan School will probably go to a farm stand in the lobby, a nearby shelter or to cooking projects in the classroom and cafeteria. But its founders are careful not to think of it as a bona fide food production system.

“It’s important to remember that it’s a science lab and we want the kids to be able to fail, too,” Mr. Robards said.

At its heart, the project is about making science both accessible and exciting “in a natural way,” said Ms. Castronovo, the school’s science teacher. Explosions always grab attention. But how many kids voluntarily eat something weird and green and leafy? (“We really, really, really loved the leaf,” one kindergartner said near the end of the mizuna lesson.)

In the summer, the center will be used for teacher training programs. But during the school year, it is Ms. Castronovo’s classroom. When the kids get inside, she said, she plans to lead scavenger hunts to help familiarize them with the room.

“I want it to be a place that they respect,” Ms. Castronovo said, “but I also want it to be their home.”

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Legislator Says Panel Member Should Be Removed

State Senator Eric Adams on Monday called for the removal of a member of the education panel evaluating Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg’s choice for the next city schools chancellor.

Mr. Adams, a Democrat, called on the panel member, Louise Mirrer, to recuse herself from the deliberations because of her many close ties to Mr. Bloomberg, which she did not appear to have disclosed.

“She should not sit on the panel,” said Mr. Adams, who represents Brooklyn. “The mayor has great influence on her vote.”

Ms. Mirrer did not immediately respond to an e-mail message on Monday seeking comment.

Ms. Mirrer was appointed last week to an eight-member panel that will weigh whether the mayor’s nominee for chancellor, Cathleen P. Black, should be exempted from a state law requiring that the leader of the city’s school system have certain educational credentials. Ms. Black, a magazine executive, lacks those credentials.

However, Ms. Mirrer has close ties to Mr. Bloomberg, who is lobbying for Ms. Black to obtain the exemption. Among other things, she runs the New-York Historical Society, a museum to which Mr. Bloomberg has personally donated nearly $500,000, and she has lobbied the Bloomberg administration on behalf of the museum. She also won an award from Mr. Bloomberg two years ago and was honored at Gracie Mansion.

Mr. Adams is a longtime critic of mayoral control of schools in New York City —and at times a mayoral foe — but he said his worries about Ms. Mirrer are unrelated to those objections.

He faulted Ms. Mirrer for not disclosing her close ties to Mr. Bloomberg, and the state’s education commissioner, David M. Steiner, for not asking about them.

Mr. Adams has introduced legislation that would allow the State Legislature to reject a New York City schools chancellor nominee who lacks the educational background required by state law.

The bill’s prospects are unknown — it would have to pass in the Senate and the Assembly and be signed by the governor — but Mr. Adams said that at least 10 of his Senate colleagues have asked to become co-sponsors.

A spokesman for Dr. Steiner could not be reached for comment.

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Similar welding parts and specifications

Part material is a major factor in how clean a part can be. Some materials will naturally produce particles, and if the specification does not take this into account it will be tough to meet the specification. For instance, cast aluminum is a popular material for stamping parts in the automotive industry. Due to a variety of factors that occur during the production process and because of the nature of cast aluminum, the machining parts will continue to generate particles once they have been produced. These small aluminum particles are impossible to eliminate. If a specification calls for these particles to be eliminated, it will be virtually impossible to properly meet it.

The type of contaminants on the part is important. In some cases, a company may want to limit the size of a particle on the part, but neglect to determine if they want to limit all types of particles or just certain ones. A part may fail if a big enough particle of metal is not removed, but it may be unaffected if an even larger particle of another material is present. Before creating the specification, the manufacturer must know which types of particles will be present on their part and how they will affect the performance of the part. If 250 micron metal machining parts will make the machine fail, then that should be included in the specification. However, if on the same part, a 250 micron piece of silicone or another material will not cause the part to fail, then the manufacturer needs to make sure that the specification states that no metal particles of over 250 microns can be present, as opposed to no particles at all of over 250 microns. It may seem logical to eliminate all particles over that size, but different materials react differently and it may be unnecessarily wasteful and time-consuming to focus on eliminating all the particles if they are irrelevant to the performance of the part.

Finally, the cleaning specification must look at the process and setting of the cleaning. stamping parts are often tested in a laboratory, under lab conditions. The result is highly accurate testing, but it is not repeatable under factory conditions usually. The laboratory test is vital to the design of the specification and should not be ignored- but keep in mind real world conditions when implementing the results. In a factory setting, the welding parts cleaning machine will not be as well maintained as the one used for testing. It will be subject to the workers, who will not perform maintenance as regularly or thoroughly as the laboratory will. The general air conditions of the plant will also be much dirtier than the lab where the part was originally tested. When designing the specification, these unavoidable facts must be taken into account. If a specification can only be met in the sterile conditions of the laboratory, it is of no practical value in the production process. The specification, if implemented before being refined for the true production process, will be a sticking point in production and result in inefficiency.

Manufacturers that have their welding parts tested by an experienced welding parts cleaning laboratory can avoid many of the pitfalls that are along the road to creating a cleaning specification. By using a laboratory with a wealth of experience, the manufacturer can draw upon the cleaner’s experience with similar welding parts and specifications. They can work together to craft a specification that addresses the key issues affecting the part and is practical in the production phase. The co-operation between the two will result in a better, more efficient cleaning process and the best possible quality part.

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Asbestos Poisoning and Asbestos Injuries

Before we discuss the term ‘asbestos poisoning’, let’s have a look at some basics surrounding the material itself. Asbestos is a fibrous mineral that is discovered in nature. It has been employed liberally and widely in buildings and other constructions for more than 100 years. The fibers of asbestos are durable and sturdy, yet, flexible and very resistant to heat. Asbestos can be found in a broad variety of items, this kind of as flooring and ceiling tiles, home siding, roof shingles, pipe insulations, and so on. To give you some numbers: a study that was performed not too lengthy ago, indicated that in the Unites States alone, asbestos has been utilised an estimated 30 million tons and can be discovered in around 3,000 goods in industries like automotive, textile, electronics and construction.

However, the materials was proven to be risky because a clear link in between asbestos subjection and serious health effects was established. When we talk about asbestos poisoning, we refer to any sickness or injury that was triggered by the subjection to asbestos. It is critical to note that if asbestos remains unhampered and undisturbed, no well being risk is imminent. Asbestos is friable which signifies that it can be broken up underneath only a pretty modest amount of pressure. As a result, the minerals separate into microscopically tiny dust particles. As these particles get airborne, they may possibly be inhaled by any person onsite or in close proximity, which can trigger a quantity of serious well being circumstances, such as mesothelioma, lung cancer and asbestosis. A high chance of asbestos poisoning is posed to individuals with occupational exposure to the hazardous materials.

In the early 1900s, researchers and the medical community reported an emerging trend of newly diagnosed patients and fatalities in workers holding jobs in asbestos mines and the asbestos manufacturing industries. Due to the fact of the extended latency time of asbestos induced diseases, it took one more few decades until the dilemma manifested itself in its entirety. Thousands of folks got diagnosed and frequently died inside a matter of months thereafter.

As mentioned earlier, there are 3 main wellness problems that are immediately linked to

Asbestosis is comparable to an inflammation. It happens when asbestos fibers are ingested or inhaled and get trapped inside the lungs. As the body’s personal defense mechanism kicks in, an acidy substance is being produced with the objective to dissolve the fibers. Nonetheless, the acid does unfortunately have no impact on the asbestos, but straight impacts the lung tissue which more than course of time, outcomes in scarring. The scarring impairs the normal functionality of the lungs.

Mesothelioma is cancerous and fatal. It is the only sickness that is solely linked to asbestos subjection.

Lung cancer is ranked amount 1 worldwide among the most lethal cancers. Smokers who are exposed to asbestos are at a substantially increased danger of developing the illness.More info of pvc decking

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A Permanent Souvenir of Your Hotel Stay

Good warmish morning (clouds giving way to sun, high 60). Here’s what we’re reading:

To heck with chocolate mints on the pillow and super-fluffy bathrobes. The Marcel at Gramercy, an upscale hotel on Gramercy Park, has engaged a celebrated Los Angeles tattoo artist to help distinguish it from the pack. As part of the hotel’s artist-in-residence series, Mister Cartoon — whose clients include Eminem, Beyoncé and Mena Suvari — is offering his services out of a two-bedroom suite. [NYT]


For its 100th birthday, Tau Epsilon Phi, the fraternity founded at Columbia University, got a bitterly divisive lawsuit alleging, among other things, that the brotherhood’s longtime director is operating it for personal gain. [NYT]

As the longtime executive pay czar on Coca-Cola’s board of directors, Cathleen P. Black rarely met a perk she did not like or a hefty compensation package she did not approve. Those free-spending ways could be a detriment for the would-be schools boss in a system where her patron, Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg, just ordered 4,300 teacher layoffs. [Daily News]

Meanwhile, state legislators from the Bronx and Brooklyn will introduce a new bill to give them the power to block non-educators like Ms. Black from being appointed chancellor. [Daily News]

Government & Politics

The City Council is releasing an 86-page report on every aspect of the food industry in New York City, from farming to distribution to the compost pile. [NYT] The report recommends changes aimed at creating jobs and protecting the environment. [Daily News]

Former Mayor David A. Dinkins and other elected officials, members of the clergy and business leaders announced plans to lobby Congress to support a more lenient punishment for Representative Charles B. Rangel, who faces the prospect of censure on the floor of the House. “He’s never faced anything like this,” Mr. Dinkins said outside a Harlem church. [Daily News]

Crime & Public Safety

Even as New York City’s overall crime rate drops for the 22nd straight year, murders, rapes and robberies are all on pace to show increases. [Wall Street Journal]

Two teenagers were arrested after arranging 28 folding chairs into the shape of a giant swastika in front of a Long Island temple, the police said. [Daily News]

A well-dressed woman on a purple scooter has been stealing the organic vegan cookies at Chelsea Market. [New York Post]

Four Midtown hot-dog vendors collectively owe more than $700,000 in unpaid summonses for a slew of safety violations, and they tell The Post they have no intention of ever paying up.

Housing & Economy

As tenants at Stuyvesant Town hold meetings to deal with a succession of fiscal crises, a former tenant looks back at another tenant-led effort 60 years ago, to force the vast apartment complex to drop its No Negroes Allowed policy. The effort failed, but it helped pave the way for fair housing laws nationwide. [NYT]

Designer turkeys are flying off store shelves, even at prices as high as $14 a pound. [Daily News]


A Moscow-bound Delta flight was forced to return to Kennedy International Airport Sunday afternoon after reports of a fire and engine problems, but the authorities determined that there was no fire. [NYT]

The 2.3-mile train ride to the New Meadowlands Stadium offers a tour of old landfills, mud flats, inflated and deflated dreams, poor decision-making and, most of all, enormous spending — a fair amount of it from taxpayers, and a fair amount that will never be recouped. [NYT]

New York has found that remodeling streets and increasing ridership is the easy part of building a bicycle-friendly town. The greater challenge: changing habits of drivers, bikers and pedestrians. [Wall Street Journal]

Nearly 900 times a day, MetroCard vending machines break down, and it is taking longer to fix them, the Metropolitan Transportation Authority’s statistics show. [Daily News]

People & Neighborhoods

Neediest Cases: A 77-year-old woman struggles to deal with her husband’s multiple sclerosis. [NYT]

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In the Footsteps of the Museum’s Gorillas

Stephen C. Quinn has spent 34 years as a wildlife artist and curator for the American Museum of Natural History, and has led field expeditions to places as wild and varied as The Galapagos Islands, Antarctica, Egypt and the Bering Sea. But Mr. Quinn believes his greatest adventure lies ahead of him in the footsteps of another noted naturalist.

On Sunday, Mr. Quinn is to depart on a three-week journey that will take him to the Virunga Mountains, a volcanic range straddling the borders of Rwanda, Uganda and the Democratic Republic of Congo. Along the verdant, cloud-forested slopes of these mountains, which are among the highest in Africa, live almost all of the world’s remaining mountain gorillas.

It was here, on a 12,000-foot saddle between the Virunga’s Mount Mikeno and Mount Karisimbi, that a Natural History Museum expedition first led in 1921 by the renowned naturalist and taxidermist, Carl Akeley, captured the scene for one of the museum’s most well-known dioramas – an open meadow filled with lush Hagenia trees and wild celery, sweeping views of distant volcanoes and a group of five mountain gorillas.

Using a copy of an original field sketch made of the area, and with the aid of a Rwandan-based veterinarian group that treats mountain gorillas, Mr. Quinn hopes to find the exact site used to create the diorama.

Brandishing a French easel, pig-bristle brushes and set of acrylic paints, he plans to document the changes the area has undergone in the last 90 years.

“The whole purpose of this expedition is to use art to tell an environmental story,” said Mr. Quinn last week, as he stood before the mountain gorilla diorama in the Akeley Hall of African Mammals. He had taken a short break from packing for his trip.

Next to him, a group of children pressed their faces to the smudged glass of the diorama and peered wide-eyed at the great apes. Some parents snapped photographs. A little boy squealed.

Mr. Quinn smiled. The museum estimates that nearly five million people will visit the museum this year, and almost all of them will walk through the Hall of African Mammals. Yet Mr. Quinn was quick to point out that few museumgoers would realize that the Hall’s dioramas depict real places in the natural world, many of them once visited by Carl Akeley, after whom the Hall is named. The Hall of African Mammals opened in 1936, a decade after Mr. Akeley died.

“His goal was to recreate that epiphany, that wonder of encountering the beauty of African wildlife,” said Mr. Quinn.

Mr. Quinn said that the dioramas in the museum should be used to nurture environmental awareness. He said that a great portion of the mountain gorilla’s story and survival is because of Mr. Akeley’s work.

While Mr. Akeley is perhaps best known for being the father of modern taxidermy and for dreaming up the museum’s Hall of African Mammals in the early 20th century, Mr. Quinn said, he also became a dedicated conservationist later in life.

After returning from his expedition of the Virunga Mountains in 1921, Mr. Akeley fought for the preservation of mountain gorillas. In large part because of his work, King Albert of Belgium would go on to create Africa’s first national park in 1925, which is now known as Virunga National Park.

Mr. Akeley traveled back to the site of his 1921 expedition in 1926. Suffering from malaria and dysentery, he died and was buried there. Mr. Quinn said he planned to find Mr. Akeley’s gravesite and create a painting depicting it.

“Akeley elevated taxidermy to a scientific, objective form,” said Mr. Quinn. “That was his great gift to the world. But his greater legacy was his gift to Africa.”

However, political instability, deforestation and illegal poaching leaves much of Mr. Akeley’s legacy threatened. There remain only about 740 mountain gorillas living in the region today, according to Artists for Conservation, the organization that is sponsoring Mr. Quinn’s expedition.

Mr. Quinn also acknowledges that the dangers he may encounter out there are many. Torrential downpours and hailstorms are common this time of year, making the ascent up mountain slopes with 45 degree inclines a particular challenge. Bad weather could also affect the quality of Mr. Quinn’s paintings.

Mr. Quinn has also been told that there is lots of rebel activity in the Democratic Republic of Congo about 100 miles north of where he’ll be. The park rangers who will escort him along the way will be armed.

“I just hope that it’s going to be a safe journey,” said Michael Walker, a spokesman for museum, who had joined Mr. Quinn at the diorama. “I wish it was a little more stable than it is now.”

Mr. Quinn didn’t take much notice of the remark.

“The greatest terror would be to not find Akeley’s site,” he said. “That would be my ultimate nightmare.”

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Sweat | Bulging Biceps, Fractured Limbs

Work it Out

Sweat is a biweekly series about sports. Post a Comment »

Every Thursday night at a single-family house in Bellerose, Queens, they file in the side door and down the stairs, men with ham-hock forearms, and a few sturdy women, too. They duck into a cramped basement room and gather around padded platforms equipped with handles for waging hand-to-hand combat.

They greet by clapping together chalked-up palms, sending up little white clouds, and then face off across the tables. Often the hands are bound together in tight straps to avoid slipping. They joust for a powerful hand-clasp — gripping, re-gripping — and then position their elbows and shoulders for maximum power-pulling leverage.

These are the weekly arm-wrestling practices held for more than two decades at the home of Jason Vale, 42, a legend in New York City arm-wrestling.

“We get borough champs, citywide champs, state champs, national and even world champs here,” Mr. Vale said. “We also have total beginners. There’s no fancy facility for us to use, because there’s no money in the sport.”

Arm-wrestlers learn about the sport by word of mouth. Newcomers are invited by participants whom they often meet at tournaments. Anyone, at any level, is welcome, Mr. Vale said.

The practices, which usually draw a couple dozen a week, are rigorous and not for the weak of arm or will. Many participants are regulars, who belong to the New York Arm Wrestling Association or take part in its events. And some are first-timers who never return because of the soreness afterward. Arms have been fractured here, a reality in this sport, said a longtime regular and top arm-wrestler, Bobby Buttafuoco.

“But some other guys — I guess guys who are missing a certain gene — come back,” said Mr. Buttafuoco, brother of Joey Buttafuoco.

They talk technique: how to wrestle “from the hook,” by wrenching the opponent’s wrist into a weakened crook, or simply going “over the top,” by forcing back the opponent’s hand and fingers.

Practice match-ups are made, placing beginners with seasoned competitors and setting up left-handed matches, a common tournament category. Soon the place is a montage of bulging biceps, grimaces, groans, cheers and laughter. Some practicing pairs heat up into fierce standoffs, with everyone crowding around, hooting and cheering.

Many of the participants have hands-on jobs that keep their arms in shape. Vin Basile, 24, a pizza maker from Manhattan, developed his thick hands and arms by kneading dough. Bobby Buttafuoco, 56, has hands like vises, from his job as an auto body worker on Long Island. Daniel DeSoto, 21, of Fresh Meadows, Queens, works as a deli man, constantly handling heavy cheeses and meats. Then there is Roy Ramsland, whose power comes from making his living raking for clams on Long Island. He won national titles in August and is competing in the World Armwrestling Championships near Las Vegas in December.

One of the best female arm-wrestlers in the city, Joyce Boone, 43, a home health care aide from Brooklyn, trains daily against her longtime boyfriend, Harry Wilson, 48, who does 1,000 chin-ups and 1,000 push-ups a day.

On a recent evening, the veterans became impressed with Mr. Basile, the pizza maker. He had recently won the first tournament he ever entered. Mr. Vale struggled against him and came away rubbing his shoulder and saying, “That’s a dangerous arm.”

Frank Malis, 58, a marine welder with powerful hands and forearms, shook his head in admiration and said, “It’s always the pizza guys.”

On the floor and shelves were dozens of trophies, medals and plaques won by Mr. Vale, who captured city, state, national and world titles throughout the 1980s and ’90s. In 1999, he became the smallest arm-wrestler to win the world title as a super heavyweight.

He paced around the session munching on apricot seeds. He considers the seeds an alternative treatment for cancer; they contain laetrile, which some people consider a cancer-fighting agent. He has a tumor in his kidney and is refusing standard medical treatment. He has long called the seeds “the answer to cancer,” despite warnings from the Food and Drug Administration that they are not an effective treatment.

As a young man, Mr. Vale survived two critical cancerous tumors and began selling the seeds online as a cure despite a federal injunction. He was arrested and, in 2003, convicted of criminal contempt for ignoring the injunction, for which he served five years in federal prison. While in solitary confinement, he kept in arm-wrestling shape with a regimen of push-ups and pull-ups.

Because of a puncture in his lung, he has an open hole in his left torso through which he can exhale. Never morose, Mr. Vale calls himself “the only human with a blowhole.”

The hole began wheezing during a recent practice, while Mr. Vale struggled against a strong opponent.

“You’re whistling, Jason,” said one of the wrestlers and they all cracked up laughing.

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