- “My Eyes” is Fayray’s 6th single. It was released on March 23, 2000 and peaked at #66. It was her first time self-producing a title track. The song was used in an “APLUS” commercial.
- My Eyes was the third single released by Travis from their fifth studio album The Boy With No Name. The song was released on 17 September 2007. The track was also given away free in the Mail on Sunday.
- Everything that you see with these are 100% fact; stats, charts, graphs, and second opinions be damned.
- A qualified dentist or veterinary surgeon
- A person who gives advice or makes improvements
- give medical treatment to
- a licensed medical practitioner; “I felt so bad I went to see my doctor”
- A qualified practitioner of medicine; a physician
- sophisticate: alter and make impure, as with the intention to deceive; “Sophisticate rose water with geraniol”
- A group of (typically three or more) notes sounded together, as a basis of harmony
- (chord) play chords on (a string instrument)
- (chord) a straight line connecting two points on a curve
- (chord) a combination of three or more notes that blend harmoniously when sounded together
Her Notes Calm the Passing Commotion
But something else accompanies the busy scene – a calming counterpoint to the roomful of motion and emotion.
On this day, as with many, the lobby pulses with its own musical soundtrack. The air is filled with soothing melodies from a nearby grand piano and the young woman who, at this particular moment, is playing it with such feeling. She is Jessica Tomlinson, one of an array of talented pianists who give their time each week for the popular Volunteer Services program.
Swaying at the keys, she plays a steady flow of instrumentals you would expect to find more in family room than the hospital’s main thoroughfare – a blend of Disney’s "Beauty and The Beast," Crystal Gayle’s "Don’t It Make My Brown Eyes Blue," Celine Dion’s "The Prayer," Jerry Lee Lewis’ "Great Balls of Fire," and more.
Many passersby new to the noon-time scene glance over and smile as they walk past, pleasantly surprised by the serenade. Others who have grown accustomed to the music take a few minutes to sit in the cushy leather seats, enjoying the welcome diversion before getting on with the day.
"Phenomenal!" a man, who has come to visit his nephew, calls out to her after taking in a tune.
A little girl who has just been released after a five-day stay sidles over during a bouncy rendition of "Under the Sea" from the Little Mermaid. In moments, she’s banging on keys alongside Jessica, who engages her new fan in conversation.
"Would you like to try it out?" she asks. The girl nods, and plunks on the keys as Jessica switches to "Twinkle Twinkle Little Star" – eliciting a grin from the young visitor and her delighted mother.
Unless you take a second look, you might miss that there is something special about the pianist beyond the engaging background tunes she performs.
Though Jessica can coax beautiful music from the keys, she can barely see them.
She was born 28 years ago with a condition called optic nerve hyperplasia. In essence, that meant her optic nerve was under-developed, leaving her only able to make out hazy images or large type held a few inches from her face.
"My nerves didn’t develop all their fibers but my eyes themselves are normally developed," she says on a break from her two-hour playing session. "I always explain it to people like this: It’s like having a good CD player and a good receiver, but a bad set of cables to connect them."
It makes sense that Jessica would use a music production metaphor to describe her visual impairment. Growing up in St. Petersburg, she was always drawn to the electronic side of sound. Mainstreamed in regular public school, she wasn’t interested in the social activities that occupied many of her classmates. But sound engineering always intrigued her.
"I’m very fortunate – I wasn’t teased or picked on growing up, mostly just people left me alone," she says. "I’ve always had trouble relating to people my own age, for some reason. I’m just not into most of what they’re into. But I loved music from the start. I used to daydream about it, not playing it but producing it for other people. I’d draw pictures of mixing boards and patch bays."
At St. Petersburg High, she mixed the sound for the news announcements on the school intercom. And after graduating in 2004, her passion led her to Full Sail University in Orlando, where she began working on her degree in sound engineering and technical arts. She was having a blast learning the ins and outs of production, and her visual limitations didn’t hold her back. She used a special magnifier to see the equipment and a program called Zoom Tech that allowed her to read type on the computer screen.
There was only one thing missing. Jessica discovered that she wanted to make music herself. So many of her production classmates played one instrument or another and she could tell how much enjoyment they got from it. The music theory class she was taking only served to fuel her desire to learn to play something.
So one day in 2005, she walked from her apartment complex next to the school to a Radio Shack a few blocks away. And she purchased a small Casio keyboard. It wasn’t much of an instrument – more toy than actual keyboard – but it would change her life.
"I started playing only because I couldn’t stand not to anymore," she says.
Jessica made small strides while completing her one-year degree at Full Sail, but a whole new world opened up to her when she moved back home to live with her parents, Jim and Yvonne. Their neighbor, a man named Jim Page, was
an experienced pianist. While he was raking leaves in
Enclos des Fusillés – Ereperk der Gefusilleerden; Dr Arthur Verdurmen 1
P.S. 4 Croix Rouge de Belgique au Docteur A. Verdurmen
Leur chef regretté
From Red Cross of Belgium PS 4 to Doctor A. Verdurmen
Their dearly-missed chief
The ‘Park of Honour of Those Who Were Shot’
Memorial and graves of resistance heroes and martyrs – brave Jews, brave Christians, dissidents, anti-fascists, socialists, rebels, samizdat journalists and organisers – those who dared to question and fight oppression, and the evil Powers That Be.
Here you see the faces of my brothers, my own dear family, my partners in fighting sheer political evil – resting in their graves here, in perhaps the most poignant place in all of Brussels, Belgium. Here lie those in Belgium who were shot fighting the Nazis of the 1940s – as I myself have nearly been killed fighting the more recent fascists, some of the ‘new Nazis’ of the 21st century.
Shortly after I arrived in Brussels as a political refugee from the US, under threat of murder by far-right political figures, this is one of the first places I visited. I came here to weep some tears amid the companionship of my anti-fascist comrades, who also looked death in the eye as they tried to speak and act for what is right.
The camera used here, and the chance to make these photos, are gifts of the brave dissident US Jewish physician, Dr Moshe ‘Moss’ David Posner, who risked and gambled his own life, to support me and help keep me alive in the face of threats by neo-Nazi assassins.
These are photos from the daily life of writer and political refugee from the US, Dr Les (Leslie) Sachs – photos documenting my new beloved home city of Brussels, Belgium, my life among the people and Kingdom who have given me safety in the face of the threats to destroy me. Brussels has a noble history of providing a safe haven to other dissident refugee writers, such as Victor Hugo, Karl Marx, Charles Baudelaire, and Alexandre Dumas, and I shall forever be grateful that Brussels and Belgium have helped to protect my own life as well.
(To read about the efforts to silence me and my journalism, the attacks on me, the smears and the threats, see the website by European journalists "About Les Sachs" linked in my Flickr profile, and press articles such as "Two EU Writers Under Threat of Murder: Roberto Saviano and Dr Les Sachs".)
This extremely moving memorial and gravesite, is known locally as the Enclos des Fusillés – Ereperk der Gefusillerden (Brussels is bi-lingual French- and Dutch-speaking, so place names are given in both languages here.) – In English, the name is perhaps best rendered as the "Park of Honour of Those Who Were Shot".
The Enclos des Fusillés – Ereperk der Gefusilleerden includes many martyrs of the Belgian resistance of World War II, being both their gravesite and also the place where many of them were shot to death by a Nazi firing squad. – And it is also a memorial and the place of death, of other heroic figures who were shot to death in the previous German occupation of Belgium during World War I. One heroine from the First World War who was shot by the Germans and is now commemorated here, is the famous British nurse Edith Cavell.
The reason that this was a convenient place of execution by firing squad, is that it was originally part of a Belgian military training area and rifle range that existed here once upon a time, and you still see here the tall hillside that served as an earthen ‘backstop’ to safely absorb high-powered rifle bullets. The hillside was thus ready-made for the German commandants who occupied Brussels in both wars, to carry out their firing-squad executions.
Nowadays, the Enclos des Fusillés – Ereperk der Gefusilleerden appears quite ‘central’ in urban Brussels, as it lies in the Schaerbeek – Schaarbeek commune, directly in the path from the EU institution area toward the roads that lead to the airport, and very near to the 90-metre high VRT-RTBF communications tower that has long been a major Brussels landmark.
The Enclos des Fusillés – Ereperk der Gefusilleerden is walking distance from the eastern Brussels ‘prémétro’, which is a grouping of tram lines that run underground for several stops on both the eastern and western sides of the Brussels city centre, supplementing the regular métro underground system with a similarly high frequency of service and also underground. If you continue along the prémétro lines south from the Diamant stop which is near the Enclos des Fusillés – Ereperk der Gefusilleerden, you shortly arrive at the elaborate 19th-century military barracks buildings which once housed the soldiers who used the rifle range and parade grounds, which later become the place of martyrdom for members of the anti-Nazi resistance.
This is a place of great emotion for me personally, because the resistance martyrs who lie in these graves – a number of them socialists, journalists and with Jewish-heritage, critics of corruption just like myself – are my comrades in my own ordeal. I barely escap