Sirius (Labor Day, Padre Island)

By whispering waves with muted breaths we point out the night sky constellations to each other. Rare splendors for big-city folk. Under the comforting embrace of the firmament I realize we formed our own little constellation of black heads against the gray sand. A cluster of 3: my mom, my dad, and my little sister followed by a lone star: me. Like the Dog Star … Continue reading Sirius (Labor Day, Padre Island)

An Epilogue of Sorts (traveling to Los Angeles after a summer in France)

My last post for this category.  So there she is. Naive young girl, smart red dress, gray top, teal sneakers. Obstinately lugging her sewing machine through the airport. On her way to school in California and her senior year, supposedly full of stress and triumphs. But her head is still in the clouds. Golden ones floating above Paris from the Parc St. Cloud balastrade. Streaks … Continue reading An Epilogue of Sorts (traveling to Los Angeles after a summer in France)

Airline Kerfuffles (Paris to Barcelona)

I can’t remember his name now, but I do remember that he does lighting designs for music and dance spectacles, tourist entertainment, all around the Mediterranean. He moves to a new country every year, and he really loves it that way. He’s shy, but curious, and deep down, I think he’s an adventurer…why else would you live and love this nomadic life? However despite the … Continue reading Airline Kerfuffles (Paris to Barcelona)

Passing Mortals (random train stops in France)

She gets off the train in her smart blue overcoat matching the Städtische Verkehrsbetriebe Bern [Swiss train company] deep royal marine, one hand hides while the other coaxes the lighting of her cigarette. Black pumps stalk down the platform. Lazy, yet directed, each movement a slow, graceful conservation of energy. It’s on to the next train! For some reason this reminds me of the lanky … Continue reading Passing Mortals (random train stops in France)

Madara – from Reiga, Latvia.

I met her when we couchsurfed together in Prague. We spent the day traversing the city by foot, eating cheap hotdogs, sharing a pint, and celebrating her first ever journey outside of Latvia. Vivacious, talkative, strawberry blond inseparable from her black fedora. Karluv Most. The sea of tourists squiggles too slowly under the hot sun. Beautiful long cars, I’ve never seen before, the color of … Continue reading Madara – from Reiga, Latvia.


Sitting at the customs in Chicago we find out there’s a glitch in the computer system. All passports must now be hand verified. I couldn’t have asked for a worse end to this trip. I might literally spend this night / day (this befuddled, time-traveling brain can’t even tell what it is) on the floor, in the sterile holding space of O’Hare, with a bunch … Continue reading Home

Applause (Warsaw Airport)

Leaving Warsaw is like leaving a dream world, layers of gray cotton – batting clouds stretch out in endless rows. All the Polish passengers applauded when our plane landed. I’ve never heard that before. Were they glad we made it in one piece? Were they saluting God, or the pilots of the plane, or the crew for a safe journey? Was it all the pent up excitement of … Continue reading Applause (Warsaw Airport)

Un Signe d’Espoir (Paris to Prague by bus)

We’re passing the battlefields of Verdun under darkening skies and lowering night. As the light fades on the gray hills and fields, my heart lowers. Pathetic fallacy and history are outdoing me again! Is this where they fought? In now silent, peaceful, empty fields? By green trees and silver streams winding down valley? Is this where they breathed their last breath? Will the creases of … Continue reading Un Signe d’Espoir (Paris to Prague by bus)