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Lietuva 7: The Case of the Laundered Passport

Posted May 24th, 2012
Lietuva 7: The Case of the Laundered Passport

It was an honest mistake. It was certainly not the fault of the washing machine. It was the kind of thing that happens when one is tired and hot and urgently wanting a change of clothes and needful of clean clothes as soon as possible. It was something of a trek from Balbieriškis to the…

I Could Sit and Rock Forever

Posted October 15th, 2011
I Could Sit and Rock Forever

Whitecaps foamed on brown Susquehanna waters and gusting winds snatched at tickets and threatened the frame tents sheltering crafts people and food vendors. It was only a little past noon and already Deesigns by Deena was packing up. Necklaces with cross-sections of nautilus fossils, freshwater pearls, crystals, and all kinds of stones—I snatched a business…

WWI: Memory Becomes Legacy

Posted November 3rd, 2011
WWI: Memory Becomes Legacy

The skies wept over Ypres and Passchendaele. This was the place that my Dear One felt most drawn to. On the drive up, he read me key passages from Leon Wolff’s In Flanders Fields. I had spent little time studying that corner of the Front. I had read The Danger Tree and The First Day on…

Texas Break 1: The River Runs Through It

Posted March 20th, 2017
Texas Break 1: The River Runs Through It

San Antonio is famed for two things: The Alamo and the Riverwalk. Decades ago My Dear One paused at San Antonio, while on route to California, to see them. He was disappointed. Apparently, the Alamo site was barely a building or two, including the chapel, and primarily intrusive hawkers of cheesy souvenirs. The Riverwalk was a short…

The Eternal City 5: Architecture of Visions

Posted April 25th, 2014
The Eternal City 5: Architecture of Visions

In 2005, Jake Morrissey published a book called The Genius in the Design: Bernini, Borromini, and the Rivalry that Transformed Rome. Haven’t read it? Do. It’s brief, fascinating, dense with information about the birth of the Baroque in Rome, and it makes you care about these extraordinary artists. Mostly it made me care about Borromini….

Summer Storm

Posted September 3rd, 2014
Summer Storm

The sun has all but set in the muggy torpor of early evening when the storm explodes almost without warning: the pure white of lightning, pandemonium of thunder, warm wind whipping, weighty drops crashing. The deer that had come for their apples disappear into the comparative shelter of the woods. Over the tattoo of the…

Itching To Get Back To Class

Posted September 2nd, 2010
Itching To Get Back To Class

My first class starts at nine o’clock tomorrow morning. That means I will rise at six, shower and dress to create a proper first impression, eat, scan the Baltimore Sun, and get on the road by seven. I-95 is a horror show during rush hour. It shouldn’t take more than fifty minutes from home base…

Paying to Eat

Posted August 22nd, 2015
Paying to Eat

The grocery store was the second-to-last stop. We had picked up a prescription at Walmart, had dinner at Lin’s Hibachi Grill and were headed to Bomboy’s for ice cream. A normal group of errands on a normal summer Friday evening. My Dear One said there was a worthy one-day sale on meats. Whole chickens were…

The Dallas-Austin Axis 3: Great Reading

Posted January 19th, 2015
The Dallas-Austin Axis 3: Great Reading

Museum labels—you know, those notes posted next to works of art? What’s not to dislike. More often than not they are written in that impenetrable artspeak (of which curators and critics are so enamored) and filled with “facts” and observations the writer believes are essential to every viewer’s experience of that work. Ironically, many curators…

The First Snow of Winter

Posted December 8th, 2013
The First Snow of Winter

Snow began to fall today sometime in later morning, near the end of Sunday Morning on CBS. Slate-gray skies and nippy air encouraged me to move briskly as I took my morning turn around the neighborhood. Newscasters solemnly itemized the cars wrecked, the trees and power lines snapped under the weight of ice, the flights…