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World AIDS Day (Dec 1st) 2021

National AIDS Trust is committed to stopping new cases of HIV, securing the rights of people living with HIV, and fighting HIV stigma and discrimination. People living with HIV are at the heart of what we do, and this year’s World AIDS Day campaign is no different. We’re celebrating the diverse group of people who make up this community and celebrating the HIV allies who stand shoulder to shoulder with them and fight for HIV rights.

As we mark 40 years since the first reported cases of HIV-related illnesses and deaths, we can see how far we’ve come since the times when being diagnosed with HIV was a death sentence. Now, 98% of people living with HIV in the UK are on effective treatment and 97% can’t pass the virus on.

Today an estimated 105,200 people live with HIV in the UK. Yet our recent research found 63% of the public do not remember seeing or hearing about HIV in the past six months. Only a third said they have sympathy for people living with HIV regardless of how they acquired it.

Our survey also found 1 in 5 think people think you can acquire HIV through kissing. Only 16% knew if someone is on effective treatment, they can’t pass HIV on and can expect to live a long and healthy life.

World AIDS Day is the perfect time for us to improve these stats and raise much needed awareness about HIV.

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Fresno

Christmas Tree Lane opens Wednesday, December 1

Fresno’s Christmas Tree Lane is a tradition going back 99 years. Each December, North Van Ness Boulevard in Fig Garden becomes a one-way street lined with hundreds of trees and homes all decked-out for the holidays. Visitors can drive the 2-mile stretch from Shields to Shaw all the way until Christmas Day.

2021 Walk-Only Nights

Due to COVID-19, there will be no Walk Nights in 2021.

Lane Hours

Sunday – Thursday
6:00pm to 10:00pm

Friday & Saturday
6:00pm to 11:00pm

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Fresno

Zoo Lights 2021 kicks off 11-26

For this annual event, the entire Zoo is transformed into a magical winter wonderland, fully decorated and strung with miles of holiday lights! Enjoy live entertainment along with festive treats and beverages, including spiked hot chocolate for the adults at Santa’s Spirits stations for additional purchase (21+).

Admission includes holographic glasses* and free socially distant photos with Santa Claus**. Free crafts offered in Simba Classroom in African Adventure.

Zoo Lights will be held on November 26-28 and December 3-5, 10-12, 17-23, and 26-30 from 5:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.

Weekends (Friday and Saturday)
Members
$14 Adult, $12 Child (ages 2-11)
Non-Members
$16 Adult, $14 Child (ages 2-11)

Weekdays (Sunday – Thursday)
Members
$12 Adult, $10 Child (ages 2-11)
Non-Members
$14 Adult, $12 Child (ages 2-11)

Children 1 and under are free.

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Fresno

The Ring Finger: Vena amoris

The ring finger is a finger we typically give little thought to, unless it concerns engagement/marriage. Even then, not much thought is given as to why the fourth digit on our hand is called the ring finger. The ring finger has a special significance to it, depending on the culture. It could be magical, medicinal, or victorious. Whatever its significance, there was a common belief (before the human anatomy was modeled) that a vein from the left ring finger ran directly to the heart, the vein of love (Vena amoris). As a part of that, rings too bore a significance depending on the culture. Early rings were made of hemp, leather, bone, or ivory, with metal eventually taking over.

Particularly notable is that rings made of precious materials (gold and silver) signified that a husband trusted his wife (wedding rings in Western culture was traditionally only worn by women. As you may note, both marital partners today wear their wedding ring). Whether or not the wedding ring was worn on the left or right hand also varied by culture; left hand is common because the vena amoris was considered to just be on the left ring finger. However, those that do it on the right (usually done by European countries). applied vena amoris to the right hand instead.

Romans’ decision to wear theirs on the right was because they saw the left hand as wicked, dirty, and impure; at least they have a clear reason for their decision. Because of tradition, if one wanted to signal that they’re engaged (in the US), it’s logical to just wear the ring where it’s been for the past centuries. As to how this all came about, alongside variations in where a wedding ring could be worn it was a mashing of many factors: legend, myth, and even marketing by the jewellery industry.

I thought all this was interesting, more so because of a special something that has happened to me…