Piantini Pleasures…Good Eats in Santo Domingo

We must have a pie. Stress cannot exist in the presence of a pie.–David Mamet I am not a glutton.  I am an explorer of food.–Erma Bombeck Santo Domingo has surprised me with its wealth of food choices– from mega groceries full of imports to familiar chains and international cuisine.  While many coworkers have cooks…

Salsa in the City: Santo Domingo Rises from Ruins

Dance first. Think later. It’s the natural order. – Samuel Beckett For those wanting the ultimate Dominican experience, check out Las Ruinas in Santo Domingo where every Sunday night locals gather to dance merengue, bachata (both invented here) and salsa—the world dance popular from Asia to Africa to Australia. I love hearing Latin music played…

Farewell Brunch at The Selman

Leaving Marrakech was like leaving Oz– a technicolor, over-the-rainbow dream that brought together traveling companions from faraway places who became lifelong friends. Like me, Kate from Australia, Jasna from Canada, and Synovve from Norway discovered within us unexpected courage, wisdom, and heart.  I learned so much from these three Baby Boomer single ladies about reinvention,…

Moments and Memories of International Teaching

“What will be your moment this summer?” asked Jodie as eighteen coworkers sat Indian style on our apartment complex rooftop under a full moon. A packed school year had ended with high energy and emotion— Moroccan Heritage Day, ASM’s 20th Anniversary Celebration, Graduation, our final faculty meeting sending some of us off for summer…others for…

Branson, Beldi, and a Birthday

Before moving abroad, my friend, Dana, told me how important–how vital–my expat community would be.  She and I were part of the same school family  in the US, and she had a network of close friends at church.  Still, having already taught in Morocco and having lived in France, she said the way friends live…

St. John’s Eve in Vigo: Midsummer Night’s Dream

He will give a crown of beauty for ashes, a joyous blessing instead of mourning, festive praise instead of despair.–Isaiah 61:3 Trust your heart if the seas catch fire; live by love though the stars walk backward.—E. E. Cummings Someday, after mastering the winds, the waves, the tides and gravity, we shall harness for God…

Finding Friends in Fes

Frazzled, frustrated, fearful in Fes. I left not a fan. To be fair, the seven- hour bus ride on CTM with no bathroom break began the trip badly. At 10 AM as Monica and I tried to board behind other passengers allowed on the coach at the station, we were yelled at angrily and herded…

Sunny Sunday with Marrakech Trekkers

Today marked the first hike of a new group and I’m so glad I joined.  It was the maiden voyage of the Marrakech Trekkers—almost literally— given the rain -swollen river that gushed across the road we needed to cross.  On the other side were mountain villages we’d hike around and through, lookouts over green valleys…

Past, Present, Future Dickens of a Christmas

I will honour Christmas in my heart, and try to keep it all the year. I will live in the Past, the Present, and the Future. The Spirits of all Three shall strive within me. I will not shut out the lessons that they teach. –A Christmas Carol, Charles Dickens

Happy Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving, made a US federal holiday by Abraham Lincoln in the midst of the Civil War, is still a day set aside to stop the striving, shopping, doing (unless volunteering to feed the hungry and shelter the cold) in order to JUST BE…with family, with friends, with our Creator from whom all blessings flow.  The…