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The Magical Touch

"The idea that we could have a child who escapes from the confines of the adult world and goes somewhere where he has power, both literally and metaphorically, really appealed to me." J.K. Rowling's life, like that of her character, Harry Potter, has the lustre of a fairy tale. She has made her fortune, yet it isn't all plain sailing...

Bleak Tragedy

It's been a tough year for Blair's Britain, especially in the English Lakes, where the tourist industry, the farmers and the sheep alike have had little say in their survival.

England may be famous for its beautiful seashores and undulating hills, but it is not that well known for its mountains. Indeed, the country's highest mountain, Scafell Pike, in the scenic northern Lake District in the county of Cumbria, is only 3,184 feet (978 metres) high - probably not very impressive to anyone from the Alps or Carpathians.

Education in the European Union:

Finding employment is becoming increasingly difficult in Europe. Employers are very demanding and look for staff with good qualifications and sound experience. The European Union is aware of the problem and offers training and education programmes to improve your skills, make your CV more attractive and better equip you for the labour market. In 1997 the Treaty of Amsterdam gave the Union the responsibility to" promote the development of the highest-possible level of knowledge" for the peoples of the Union" through a wide access to education and its continuous updating" .

Big project for small Polish farms

The World of English spoke with Prof. Louis Moore from Penn State University about agriculture and the extension service program in Poland.

WOE: Whose idea was it that Penn State's extension service should come to Poland?

Ireland and the European Union

Ireland is no longer just the Emerald Isle in name - it has become the jewel in the crown of the European Union.

A Polish student at an English school.

Karolina (right) is currently in her second year of study at Newlands Manor School in the south of England. She tells us about her experiences in the Sixth Form of a co- educational private school.

In recent years studying abroad has become increasingly popular among Polish students. I chose to do this after I went on a language course in London during the summer of 1998. I began my education that September at Newlands Manor School in Seaford, East Sussex, where I intend to complete my 'A' Levels.

Working Capital

London offers the best of what can be expected of any European capital: excellent galleries and museums, fantastic bars and clubs - and a top quality education. It's difficult to resist the pull of London when making your choice of where to study abroad, so Jan Majdecki opted for it. Here he describes briefly how to get into a British university. But be warned: it doesn't come cheap!

Honesty in the Classroom?

British students are among the least likely to cheat in exams, claims Dr Ron McLone, Chief Executive of the Cambridge, Oxford and RSA Examination Boards. "From evidence gathered from other parts of the world, I think we can safely say that we are on top of the league." said Dr McLone.

Names and Nuances

British, French or Spanish? Puritan or Cavalier? The distinct differences in flavor of American culture from region to region go all the way back to their original settlement by different groups of Europeans. Since then, they' ve been spiced up by immigration from all over the world.

Four Men and a Zebra.

On a quiet street in north London there's a zebra crossing that attracts almost as many tourists as Buckingham Palace.

Bloomsday - a day like no other

Dublin and the Irish diaspora celebrate 16th June in honour of James Joyce, his masterpiece Ulysses and its most famous hero, one Leopold Bloom... It's an excuse for grub and a trip to the pub.

A City that doesn't Sleep

The summer holidays are here again and it' s time to see the world. What better place to start than New York City?

Not so long ago, to young people in our part of the world, the very thought of visiting America seemed like an impossible dream. There was the huge cost and the problem of getting a passport. Since then much has changed. With the zloty now convertible, the relative price of a flight ticket has come down. And airlines often offer special rates for students.

INSETT Faces New Challenges

INSETT faces new challenges

Contemporary Country

Most people associate country music with Dolly Parton and cowboy boots. But a new generation of country stars, such as Shania Twain and the Dixie Chicks, have given this form of music a new, fashionable image, and put it back at the top of the charts.

On the Catwalk

A truly international man, South African Kevin Oakes lives and works in Germany as a producer of fashion shows. His job takes him all over the world to such places as Paris, Milan, Istanbul, Las Vegas, Budapest, Morocco and Cuba. Heinrich Feuerbach caught up with him in Berlin and discovered some fascinating things about the fashion industry.

Wings 1999

2nd Annual Polish Youth Honors Music Camp

With last year' s success feeding her optimism, Peace Corps volunteer Rebecca Wileman once again organized the Polish Youth Honors Music Camp as a summer project in addition to her teaching work in the village of Błażowa - but this year with a new title symbolizing the chance it truly gives youth musicians:" WINGS 1999."

Letters to the Editors

"I always read your magazine with great interest and curiosity. I think the idea of translating difficult words is really perfect, because reading in English now makes sense. You have an ideal way of connecting pleasure with purpose" Katarzyna Surowiec, Lublin

Dance, Billy, Dance!

Forget Brad, Ronan and Becks. There's a new kid on the block and he's got talent in bucketfuls. Discovered by British film director Stephen Daldry at the tender age of 13, he has already achieved what others can only dream of.

The whirl surrounding the boy from Billingham, England, started when he was cast as the eponymous hero of the film Billy Elliot. Since then Jamie Bell has managed - with his adolescent charm and superb skills - to thrill millions of viewers all around the world and turn the British production into a smash hit.

The Children of Lir

Don't love too deeply,and be mindful of how you display your affections! Wise advice,for jealousy lies in the heartof many and jealousy's victimsare often the innocent.

The Pavement Robbers.

Theft is a word associated with things like bank robberies, burglary, muggings and even fraud, but what would you think if you woke up one day, looked out of the window and found that someone had stolen the entire pavement of your street? That' s what residents of London and other large cities across Britain wake up to with increasing frequency and the reason, believe it or not, is the ever-growing popularity of gardening. See the connection? Or are you completely confused? Let me explain.