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November 15, 2017

I keep a large jar on my dining room table, along with a small box filled with blank strips of paper. Whenever something good happens to me I write down a few words describing it, then fold the paper and stick it in my jar. Sometimes they’re big events, but most often...

October 16, 2017

I have an interesting assortment of friends. One woman I knew in Nepal now paints murals on the walls of underserved communities in Eastern Europe. Another couple, who once lived in Beijing, bought property in northern Maine where they learned to keep bees and raise ch...

October 7, 2017

I raised my family while living abroad in seven different countries. That doesn’t include the countries I lived in or visited before having kids, or places my children and I traveled to during their childhood, it’s only the places we called home. That can have a peculi...

October 3, 2017

Yesterday’s horrific and senseless mass-shooting in Las Vegas, the deadliest in American history, has left people shaken and questioning. Sometimes it seems as if tragedy stalks us all. News networks broadcast a never-ending stream of sinister events: frightening terro...

October 2, 2017

Can you time travel? I can. I can’t control it, of course - though I certainly wish I could - but it happens on a fairly regular basis. Without warning, a scent takes me captive, hurtling me back across miles and years, and I momentarily find myself in another time, an...

September 5, 2017

It's the way we learn...

He was big for his age, with chubby cheeks and bright blue glasses. He summoned all his four-year-old courage and entered the classroom in a mixture of excitement and trepidation. He readily warmed to the Chinese teaching assistants but his lip...

August 26, 2017

Some time ago I met a young boy who was very angry.  He sat among the other children in the activity room at the tumor hospital, but unlike the other kids he wasn’t playing. He brushed aside any attempts to interest him in toys or involve him in games, and loudly let i...

August 24, 2017

Friends and family who’ve known me always suspected me of being a serial killer, as least when it comes to plants.  They routinely ended up dead in my care, for, unlike my cat, they didn’t put up a loud and persistent fuss when I neglected them. My cactus managed to en...

August 22, 2017

If you prefer to only handle life as it unfolds without any heads-up whatsoever, perhaps reading this warrants a spoiler alert. Collective wisdom, however, can be a useful thing. We may not always heed it beforehand, but afterwards, when we’re painfully alone in our co...

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November 15, 2017

October 16, 2017