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Here’s What You Need To Know About The Spate Of Deadly Bombings In Austin, Texas




TWO people have been killed and four others injured after a series of four explosions across the same city in the past month.

Here’s everything you need to know about the attacks which have sparked fears a serial bomber is on the loose in Austin, Texas.

Four blasts leave Austin terrified

Four explosions in March have left two people dead and four more injured.

A 39-year-old man was killed in the first blast on March 2 after picking up a package outside his house in northern Austin.

The second and third bombings happened on March 12 in the eastern part of the city.

A teen was killed in the first blast that day at 6.44am when a package exploded in his kitchen, while an OAP was left fighting for her life after the second at 11.50am.

AP:Associated Press Cops and FBI agents cordoned off the scene of the latest blast today

And two men were were rushed to hospital after the latest explosion on Sunday which involved a package left on the side of the road.

Yesterday’s bomb may have been activated by a trip wire, a more advanced design that the previous explosions that were set off when victims handled packages that were left on doorsteps.

Austin Police Chief Brian Manley said today: “We are clearly dealing with what we expect to be a serial bomber at this point.

“We have seen similarities in the devices that exploded here last night and the other three devices.”

AP:Associated Press An FBI agent scans the ground for clues after a blast that injured two men

The tragic victims

Anthony Stephan House, 39, was killed in the first blast on March 2 after picking up a package outside his home.

Draylen Mason, 17, tragically lost his life when a package that was brought into his kitchen blew up on March 12, injuring his mum.

Both men were African-Americans.

And a Hispanic woman called Esperanza Herrera, 75, was injured in the third blast, also on March 12.

The two victims injured in the most recent blast were both white, but cops have not ruled out the possibility of the attacks being racially motivated.

The two men who died were both involved in activism in the black community and their families actually knew each other.

Austin police urge residents to stay in their homes after fourth explosion injures two more people

Cops appeal directly to the bomber

A reward of $115,000 (£82,000) has been set for any information leading to the arrest of the person or persons responsible.

Hours before the fourth explosion on Sunday Austin Police Chief Brian Manley said: “We believe that the recent explosive incidents that have occurred in the city of Austin were meant to send a message.

“The person or persons understands what that message is and are responsible for constructing or delivering the devices and we hope this person or persons is watching and will reach out to us before anyone else is injured or anyone else is killed out of this event.”

Manley then had a message just for the person behind the attacks.

Reuters FBI agents are seen at the site of an explosion in Austin, Texas, last night

He said: “These events in Austin have garnered worldwide attention and we assure you that we are listening.

“We want to understand what brought you to this point and we want to listen to you.”

There are 500 federal agents from agencies like the FBI helping the Austin Police and there have been 236 people interviewed.

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Eat Sweets, Don’t Stay Behind At Work And Embrace The Freezing Temperatures: How To Be Happy The Nordic Way




AFTER a long day at work, it’s easy to blame the cold weather and dingy afternoon sky for your lack of gym motivation and nagging bad mood.

And this year’s World Happiness Report, which ranks Britain as only the 19th happiest country in the world, seems to suggest that the lack of Vitamin D is getting to us a bit.

Getty – Contributor The cold weather is no excuse not to be happy, as countries like Iceland show

It may come as a surprise, then, that the happiest country in the world is Finland: one of the few places colder and darker than the UK, with zero sunlight hours in the winter and temperatures capable of dipping to the minus 20s and below.

And the other countries which round out the top four, Norway, Denmark and Iceland, aren’t exactly tropical themselves.

Besides the limited sunlight hours and sub-zero temperatures, the happiest countries all have something else in common: they’re Nordic.

So we spoke to Bronte Aurell, author of North: How to Live Scandinavian, and Joanna Nylund, author of SISU – The Finnish Art of Courage, to find out what our Viking friends are doing right and how we can learn how to live a bit more like them.

Supplied Bronte Aurell, author of North: How to Live Scandinavian, knows exactly what it means to live a more Nordic life

Live like a piece of IKEA furniture

Bronte reckons that the key to happy Nordic living can be summed up in one word: lagom.

“Lagom is a very important word in Scandinavia,” Bronte explains. “It means not too much and not too little – just right.”

If you need an example of what it means to be lagom, look no further than Scandinavia’s most iconic export.

Getty – Contributor Lagom can be applied to anything, but nowhere is it more prominent than in IKEA

“IKEA is an example of lagom,” Bronte says. “Everything in IKEA, although it’s quite price-conscious, has a function, and there are no gilded edges. Likewise, nothing we do in our society is ostentatious: there are no extremes.

“Lagom can be applied to everything: from your car to your job to how many cinnamon buns you eat at one time. It’s all about balance.”

Amazon North: How to Live Scandinavian is all about embracing principles like hygge and lagom

Get uncomfortable

There’s no place less Nordic than your comfort zone, and part of embracing a happier way of life has to involve leaving it every now and then.

Joanna says: “We need challenges in order to flourish. Start by doing everyday things differently – take a different route to work or read a new author. Take small steps – if you’re socially insecure don’t start by asking someone on a date, but start by saying hello instead.”

A great way to shake up your daily routine is by escaping to the country, something those happy Finns love to do every summer.

Joanna adds: “The more basic accommodation, the better. Foster some resilience by doing without your mod cons for a weekend of camping.”

Naomi Wilkinson Finnish author Joanna Nylund understands exactly why her country was ranked the happiest

Know your hygge from your sisu

Lagom isn’t the only Nordic buzzword to look out for.

You may have already heard of sisu and hygge, both trendy words which also describe the best bits of the Nordic way of life.

“Hygge is a really important word,” Bronte explains. “It’s about consciously enjoying the moment you’re in, while you’re in it.”

Sisu, the subject of Joanna’s book, is all about inner courage and resilience

Joanna adds: “Sisu is something we live by and, to me, it means finding your inner courage or resilience.

“When difficulty comes along, don’t let it get you down but instead think of a way through it.”

Keeping these key concepts in mind can help you Nord up your life without making any huge, unsustainable changes.

Your Nordic glossary

Hygge (hoo-ger): A Danish word which means acknowledging a feeling of comfort, warmth or togetherness. You can feel hygge when you slow down and focus on the present while doing something you enjoy.

Lagom (la-gom): A Swedish word which means not too little, not too much, just right. Nordic living is all about this balance.

Sisu (see-su): A Finnish concept which means courage, grit and determination to succeed, even when you’re up against the odds. Be gutsy, and draw on your sisu when times are tough.

Meet the coldest football club in the world

Make work work for you

Work-life balance is a key principle of Nordic living, and it’s something we often struggle with over here in the UK.

Bronte says: “A lot of it comes down to the way we run our countries, but in this part of the world everyone leaves work on time, when your day is finished.

“No Scandinavian stays behind.

“Working 12 hours a day may give your employer something, but it doesn’t give you anything. It’s important to have that balance and go home on time to be with the people you love.”

Getty – Contributor We may not have quite the same scenery as stunning Iceland, but we can still live a bit more Nordic in our own way

Get your sauna on

Where better to enjoy the cold winter weather than inside a sauna?

They’re a Finnish favourite, and if the world’s happiest people swear by them, they can’t be that bad.

Joanna says: “People outside of Finland think it’s something racy but actually it’s more about community.

“You go to a sauna with your friends and family, let the warmth thaw your bones and have a chat. Follow it up with a cold dip and a cold beer.”

Corbis – Getty Some Finns are unfazed by cold weather and can warm up in a sauna

Change the way you eat

Nothing is less Nordic than an extreme diet, so don’t think you have to cut out your favourite foods to live a more Skandi lifestyle.

Just embrace that key principle of lagom, or balance, and you’ll be there in no time.

“Scandinavians eat more sweets than anyone else,” Bronte says. “But we eat a lot of really healthy crisp bread as well.

“If you have a stuffed-crust pizza for lunch, then it doesn’t hurt to have salad for dinner. That may just sound like common sense, but it’s also lagom.”

Family is also important, and nowhere are bonds stronger than at the dinner table while scoffing a shared meal.

Time spent eating with your family can also be hygge, so make sure you slow down enough to enjoy the moment.

Getty – Contributor Family time is important if you want to really be more lagom

Work it all out

Exercise is something the Nordic people have got nailed down, despite the often-hostile outdoors environment.

Joanna says: “Finns regard the outdoors as an extension of their living room. 

“We are very blessed with having a lot of space and a small population, but there are so many places for Brits to enjoy, even if it’s just a local park.”

“We’re not necessarily all sporty,” Bronte adds. “But we are outside a lot.

“The Danes cycle everywhere. A Norwegian would not dream of not going for a long hike on a Sunday.

“Even in the winter when it’s minus 20, we are out and about. There’s no such thing as bad weather, only bad clothes.”

Getty – Contributor You can exercise no matter how bad the weather, so long as you reward yourself for it afterwards

Re-think your home

Look at how you can be more Nordic in your own home: both by changing how you interact with people and making subtle tweaks to the space itself.

One big thing is splitting the load between yourself and your partner when it comes to doing the chores – a must in any equal Nordic society.

Joanna says: “Don’t keep tabs on what your partner is or isn’t doing as that creates a toxic atmosphere. Instead, aim to be the first to volunteer for each job.”

Meanwhile, you can try some positive home decor by introducing some plants to your living room.

“Plants absorb carbon dioxide and release oxygen, so they help us to breathe,” Joanna explains.

“Research shows that working near plants helps concentration, memory and productivity.”

Getty – Contributor Finland was named the happiest country in this year’s World Happiness Rankings

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Has Nessie Washed Up In America? Loch Ness Monster-type Beast Found On Beach




SHOCKING pictures of a Loch Ness Monster-type beast found on a US beach have sparked talk Nessie could have moved stateside.

The mystery creature was reportedly found on Wolf Island in the state of Georgia by a father and son who were out on a boat trip.

This mystery ‘creature’ was spotted on a beach on Wolf Island, Georgia, USA

Dad Jeff Warren spotted what he said he thought was a dead seal lying in the surf, First Coast News reports.

But upon closer inspection, Jeff said it became clear he had no idea what the animal was.

Images show the supposed carcass – which Warren said was being eaten by birds when he arrived – lying in the sand.

It appears to have a long tail and two fins, as well as a long neck and a tiny head – features usually associated with Nessie in popular culture.

The ‘animal’ was spotted lying in the surf by a dad and son on a boat trip

Experts have so far been unable to positively identify the animal from the photos and video footage.

Director Dan Ash of the US Fish and Wildlife Service told Action News Jax that some sea animals have a way of decomposing where they can resemble a prehistoric creature.

He said a 30ft basking shark can end up looking like it had a long neck and tiny head.

Alternatively, the “creature” could also be a simple hoax.

Getty The famous ‘surgeon’s photograph’ hoax of Nessie

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