The Underground Railroad: miles and miles of railroad "lines" without so much as a track; "passengers" with a will of iron and steel, but little more than that; "station-masters", "agents", and "conductors" whose signs, secrets, and codes stake the trail to freedom.
A BackPax® Adventure to the Caribbean island nation of Trinidad and Tobago, land where the steel drum, "pan," was invented; where Jombies and spirits thrill the imagination, and Ananci - that mythical, magical spider - spins his wondrous story web.
In the frosty north country of upstate New York, once known as "stretching turtle," live today's Tonawanda Seneca people. Members of the indigenous "Six Nations," their government, the "Iroquois Confederacy," inspired America's Founding Founders in the formation of the United States. With this journey to Iroquois Country, BackPax takes listener/adventurers to the heart and soul of an old people and a new nation.
There's a spectacular show taking place in the northwestern section of Wyoming. Produced by Earth, directed by Nature, designed by Time, it is called Yellowstone, the world's first National Park. Open vats of mud bubble thick, puddles spurt water fountains 60 feet into the air revealing secret sounds of Earth's mighty subterranean world.
Travel to Cajun Country. It's like no other place in the world. Thick and lush, an overgrowth of green guards the rim of the waters, trees dredged in Spanish moss bowed to the whisper of creature gossip, and oh what stories they tell: tales of fish with whiskers, and fast flying feet; tales of pirates, buried treasure and ghosts on the lookout. Here is a spicy blend of Cajun food, festivals, music and lore.
Follow in the footsteps of the ancients along this labyrinth through time and Mexico's National Museum of Anthropology (Museo Nacional de Antropologia). Learn about the ancient Mexica (known today as the "Aztecs") who built Mexico City in the middle of a lake. Decode the pictographic writings of the Mixtecs and secrets of the giant stone tablet revered the world over as the "Aztec Calendar." Discover Mexican folklore, the mystical music of the conch shells, the pyramids of Tenochtitlan.
The Japanese have a tradition of sending postcards and a word for these friendly little holiday snapshots: Nengajo. Each greeting is a celebration of culture and of life, bridging the old ways and modern times.
From ancient times, people have cast their eyes skyward and dreamed of exploring outer space. It was an idea so fantastic there was nothing left to do but to make it happen. Now, you, too, can journey to the moon via actual NASA communications between the astronauts and Mission Control from launch to landing to the final splashdown.
America the Beautiful. It just may be the most exciting country in the world. There isn't a food or face, language or lifestyle that can't be found here. All you have to do is listen to this all-American family album: a Native American powwow, a New England family pilgrimage, a car-trip from South Dakota to Montana retracing the thousand-mile covered wagon route detailed in their "Grandma's Diary" a century earlier.
It's summertime; carefree barefoot days of mischief and fun. Steamboats glide the Mighty Mississippi, churning river waters in an endless splash and spill. The captain gives a sign. Whistles blare their hearty hoot. Packets bulge full of the goods: tales you wouldn't believe. Meet Sam Clemens, the young "printer's devil," who would soon be known the world over as writer Mark Twain.
Three celebrations of family across the generations from Emmy Award winner, columnist, and NPR commentator Janus Adams. Based on an article first published in Essence magazine, "Going Home" is a classic tale of immigrants in the promised land. Adams retraces her childhood roots in the Civil Rights movement in the U.S. back to the dreams of her great-grandparents in their ancestral Caribbean home.