Rick and I visited China during the first three weeks of January this year. Our purpose was to visit our daughter and her husband, who teach at Nanjing International School, an independent, private school for children of multinational diplomats and businesspeople posted in Nanjing.
Impossible or absurd to compare a cross country trip in a U-Haul and the East Charlotte Tractor parade? Well, here it is.
A couple of weeks ago my daughter and I took a summer’s-end jaunt up to Montreal. It was a lovely, short trip. We discovered such a good restaurant, Jatoba, that we went to it both nights we were there, saw the Thierry Mugler exhibit (but only once) that a friend of mine had raved about, and wandered around the Plateau area, as well as Old Port. On one of the afternoons, my daughter opted to rest for a bit, and I (not one for resting much) headed out to (you guessed it) a nearby bookstore (Indigo, on Sainte-Catherine Street).
Last week was our annual family gathering on Martha’s Vineyard—family being four generations between ages six and 92. My wife’s family has owned a cottage in Oak Bluffs for 50 years, and once my father-in-law gave up farming and work for the State of Connecticut, he and my mother-in-law spent most summers there with visits from the rest of us and ultimately weeklong reunions of the clan. (My Scots relatives and Mel Gibson would have been proud.)
I recently walked the Portuguese Coastal Camino from Porto, Portugal, to Santiago de Compostela, in the Spanish region of Galicia. Slowed by the weight of my pack, I strolled at a stately pace for about 150 miles. Slow down with me now, for a few hundred words, to see what grows along the Camino.
My daughter, Coco and I did something kind of spontaneous last week. Weary from the persistent cold, tired from the many challenging circumstances of my life, I booked us a very short trip to Florida. Risky, I know, to attempt such a short getaway, but I didn’t think much could go wrong.
I took my college junior year in Aix-en-Provence, which meant I went quite literally from Velveeta, ever present in the refrigerator door, to Brie—and more.
My wife and I had just settled into our seats for a flight from Burlington. She had the window and I the aisle.
I just got back from Thanksgiving in Copenhagen where, while you were eating turkey, stuffing and cranberry sauce, I…
Recently I was fortunate enough to travel to Lake Tahoe, Nevada, to surprise my brother Sam for his 23rd birthday. When we arrived we found him in the library making a spreadsheet for one of his classes. We walked up to him, tapped him on his shoulder, and he turned around. He was stunned. Smiling from ear to ear, I gave him the biggest hug, and I just couldn’t believe I was with him once again.
I just returned from a week in London where I visited my daughter, who had a summer internship there. We got around quite a bit in seven days: saw two plays, went to the Tate, the National Gallery, took a boat trip up the Thames and, a few days later, a train out to Brighton Beach, which doesn’t have sand but, rather, small round stones.
Now that the graduations are behind us, school is out and most of us are well into our summer activities and ways of life, it becomes clearer just how diverse the opportunities of this season are.
Perhaps it was South Africa’s recent political history, or maybe it was the excitement of going to a place that I believed was the polar opposite of the small Vermont town I grew up in, but around Christmas of 2017, I found myself packing my bags to embark on a five-month study abroad program in Durban, South Africa.
It’s a curious thing to wake up in a city that’s quiet. Sure, it’s Saturday morning, but it happened on Friday, too. It could be that I’m used to the sounds of New York, which seems to be busy and loud at all hours of the day, and so I assume that all cities are noisy. San Francisco is quiet in the early morning.
I recently had a lovely vacation to Cat Island in the Bahamas. While ultimately my trip was wonderful, the getting there was not. Traveling now, as an adult, is not nearly as much fun or as carefree as when I was a kid. I remember back in the day when kids would actually dress up to go on the plane. Yes, most of the time I was going to Florida to see my grandparents, and I think it made them happy to see me in my flowered dress and Mary Janes. Oh, and let’s not forget the ubiquitous white tights, because, really, every girl needs to understand the laws of thermodynamics at six. What started out with me fresh as a daisy wound up with me looking much like a prom corsage the day after the dance. My grandparents always wiped the damp hair off my face and asked after my health.
Perhaps the title says it all about aging—both the interesting and the pesky things we must recognize and adjust…
A goal I had in visiting Cuba was to discover, as best one can in 11 days, how the Cuban people feel about Fidel and Raul Castro, whose socialist government has ruled Cuba for nearly 60 years. Much like Americans today, Cubans are deeply divided in their views and in whether and how they would like their government to change.
A month ago I boarded a Delta Airlines flight to Havana from Miami, excited to learn more about Cuba’s past, present and what we might expect to happen there in the near future. What I discovered in the 10 days I traveled with husband Vince, Charlotters Jim and Susan Hyde and 12 others on an Overseas Adventure Travel (OAT) expedition in Cuba expanded my understanding of Cuba’s strengths and weaknesses, successes and failures, sources of satisfaction and of frustration, as well as the Cuban people’s hopes and fears about the future. It was a remarkable adventure.
My Grandmother Hiles and Auntie Pasco, her companion of 50 years, were inveterate travelers in the early 1900s. A worn postcard recently surfaced, written to father in spidery handwriting from his mother: “Unable to attend your Yale graduation. We’re riding camels in the Gobi Desert. Hope to catch up eventually.”
My husband, John, and I paused on Park Avenue in front of Mr. Saitys’ store with its enticing American Indian and Tibetan jewelry. I pressed the buzzer and Mr. Saity unlocked the door. He welcomed us as if we were former friends, although we’d never met, and began sharing the history of his jewelry. He took a prominent piece from a case.