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Dublin: 11 °C Sunday 5 July, 2020

Sitdown Sunday: "She was awakened by a man with a knife - and then tied up"

The very best of the week’s writing from around the web.

IT’S A DAY of rest, and you may be in the mood for a quiet corner and a comfy chair.

We’ve hand-picked the week’s best reads for you to savour.

1. The veggie butcher

shutterstock_248213947 Source: Shutterstock/tab62

A new trend for ‘vegetarian butchers’ is seeing vegans and veggies take over the meat-heavy tradition. This article looks at that, but also those who strive to bring ‘humane’ forms of meat and animal products to consumers.

(Eater, approx 10 mins reading time)

The [Herbivorous Butcher] concept itself was born out of a joke at a vegan feast in their home, where her brother blurted at the table that they should start a vegan butchery. “Our first day at the farmer’s market, we didn’t expect to sell a single thing,” Aubry continued. “We thought we would get blacked out, but we wanted to try it anyway. We thought it was an incredibly worthwhile cause, and the first day, we sold out.”

2. The Deported

ny times deported Source: New York Times

Kelvin Villanueva is a Honduran who escaped to the United States after witnessing horrific violence. But one night he was stopped by the police, found to be an undocumented migrant, and deported. This is his story.

(New York Times Magazine, approx 43 mins reading time)

Villanueva was sent to Louisiana, where he was loaded onto a plane with more than a hundred other Hondurans. They wore manacles on their wrists and ankles, and their hands were shackled to chains around their waists. Armed guards accompanied them. Midway through the flight, bologna sandwiches and cookies were distributed. They were packaged individually, the sandwiches and cookies. Most of the handcuffed men and women found it easiest to tear the plastic with their teeth.

3. The mysterious story of the embalmed head 


A woman’s head was found in the woods in Beaver County. It looked alive – but that was because it was embalmed. Now the quest is on to find out the woman’s identity, and what happened to her.

(Washington Post, approx 11 mins reading time)

Despite days, perhaps weeks, in the underbrush, the woman’s skin was still smooth and unravaged by nature. Her gray hair was curled as if in preparation for church. Two moles could still be seen on her cheek. The only hints that something was awry — apart from her missing body, of course — was that her face had sagged slightly to the side on which it had rested.

4. A beating and claims of a cover-up

Afghanistan File photo Source: AP/Press Association Images

Navy SEALs were accused by US soldiers of abusing detainees (along with Afghan police). But the Seal command cleared the men – was this due to a cover-up?

(New York Times, approx 28 mins reading time)

What happened in Kalach involved just one death in a conflict that has taken thousands of lives, but it had broader consequences. Instead of winning over the local population, the goal of the mission, the reported abuse further alienated villagers. It drove some previously cooperative Afghans to leave for Taliban-controlled areas, residents said.

5. An unbelievable story of rape

propublica Source: ProPublica

An 18-year-old girl said she was raped at knife-point – and then said that she had lied. This incredible article delves into what really happened.

(Pro Publica, approx 60 mins reading time)

Marie, who had turned 18 three months before, told police she had been talking on the phone much of the night with her friend Jordan. After finally falling asleep, she was awakened by a man with a knife — and then tied up, blindfolded, gagged and raped. The man wore a condom, she believed. As for what her attacker looked like, Marie could offer few details. White man, gray sweater. The attack seemed to last a long time, Marie told police, but she couldn’t say for sure. It was all a blur.

6. The medical mountaineers

Travel Trip Nepal Family Trekking Source: Malcolm Foster

If you live in the Himalayas and you get sick, how do you get help? Rebecca Solnit visits the Nomads Clinic, a mobile clinic that uses horse and pack mules to get to those who need medical care. It being Solnit, it’s a fascinating read.

(The New Yorker, approx 30 mins reading time)

The first evening, a horseman brought in a comrade, who was too sick to walk. “He was such a beautiful man, and he was almost dead when I first saw him,” the doctor, who diagnosed a severe kidney infection and treated him with antibiotics, said. The man, who was in his early forties, had a drawn, sun-darkened face, a faint mustache, the high cheekbones of most of the Nepalis in the region, and a thick coil of crimson strands of wool around his braided black hair.


545961_ori Source: RottenTomatoes

It’s that time of year when people settle down to watch Love Actually… but this article might ruin it for you (or maybe not).

(Jezebel, approx 21 mins reading time)

The grief-stricken Liam Neeson calls up Emma Thompson, who I guess is just some woman he knows (relationship NEVER EXPLAINED), to talk about how sad he is. Emma Thompson is Love Actually‘s resident female-personality-haver, which means that she’s totally nice and bland 95% of the time and then every once in a while she’ll say something horribly caustic and inappropriate and out of character. You know, like normal regular human woman who is not robot!

More: The best reads from every previous Sitdown Sunday >

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