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The hikers pile out of minivans on the side of a serpentine highway, climb a dusty hill, pass a Bedouin woman preparing morning bread in a tent, then turn the corner and find themselves embraced by the desert hills — a world apart.

There are about 20 of them, nearly all Palestinians, ranging in age from their late 20s to 60s, wearing backpacks and hats, some carrying trekking poles and large cameras. Among them is an alternative medicine practitioner, an occupational therapist, a retired United Nations worker and a Palestinian-American customer service professional.

Canadian singer-songwriter Simone Schmidt, who performs under the name Fiver, undertook an ambitious project with her latest album. Audible Songs From Rockwood is Schmidt's way of telling the stories of real people committed to Rockwood Asylum, a 19th-century institution near what's now Kingston, Ontario.

Until now, all the controversy over President Trump, his associates and their various connections with various Russians has been billows of smoke without a visible fire.

"I want you to study hard so that you can rescue our family from poverty. Your father and I are poor and the only gift we can give you is an education. You are intelligent. Rise up and make your lives meaningful. I gave birth to you and I know you have what it takes to make it in life. Work hard my children."

When I was a little girl in Kenya, hardly a day would pass without my mother repeating those words to my four siblings and me.

The performance by Salvador Sobral, this year's winner of the Eurovision Song Contest, was different than the others.

Most of the performances are noted for a lot of glitz and being pretty cheesy.

Twenty-five competitors carried on that tradition this year — performing on a wide stage backed by flashing lights, bursts of flames and other effects.

Sobral took a different take in his performance on Saturday — singing from a small elevated circle in the middle of the crowd.

Two years ago, when my children were 1 and 4, I "found" the following poem with the help of Google's autocomplete search function:

Today, with children now ages 3 and 6, I decided to repeat the experiment:

What I take away: First, motherhood is hard. That's just what the data suggest.

North Korea has launched a ballistic missile, the first launch since newly elected South Korean president Moon Jae-in has taken office.

Both Moon and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe immediately condemned the launch, with Moon expressing "deep regret" that it occurred shortly after the new government was sworn in.

President Trump has been briefed on the latest missile test by North Korea.

A White House statement from press secretary Sean Spicer reads:

There's a famous story about how Lana Turner was discovered: sitting in a Hollywood drugstore, sipping a soda. Next thing you know, she's one of the most sought after "It" girls of the 1940s.

There may be some key details left out of that account, but one can assume, at least in theory, that it makes sense.

What doesn't necessarily make sense? The recent fever pitch over 78-year-old Rep. Maxine Waters, D-Calif., who has been adopted by a new generation as "Auntie Maxine."

A case about school discipline might be heading to the Supreme Court — but the court's newest justice would likely recuse himself from the case. Neil Gorsuch wrote a cutting dissent when the case came before his appellate court, and his words are now being used by the plaintiff's lawyer.

In 2011, a seventh-grader (known as F.M. in court documents) was interrupting his gym class with fake burps. The antics were amusing his classmates, and his teacher was struggling to maintain control of the class. She called for back up, in the form of a police officer assigned to the school.

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