For kids of all ages, travel provides an education in history, other cultures, other ways of thinking and moving in the world. I knew Bella and Avery would learn a lot on our journey in Europe — but I didn’t realize how much traveling with them might be an education for me.
A trip to Italy would not be complete without a visit to the Vatican, St. Peter’s Basilica, and the Vatican’s amazing museums exhibiting art and artifacts from around the globe. Avery, Bella and I spent our last day together in this home of the Catholic Church and the smallest country in the world. Continue reading
Tuscany is something out of a dream — rolling hillsides of olive trees and sheep and vineyards surrounding ancient farmhouses, castle towns and Florence, the center of Tuscan culture and history. No bill boards, no strip malls, no fast food. Continue reading
We arrived in Rome after a second insanely bureaucratic, chaotic and expensive flight on RyanAir. But we arrived in Rome! The City of Eternal Love, historic, highly caloric — where Everything is Big. Our apartment is in the charming neighborhood called Monti, within walking distance of everything we want to see, and full of cafes, churches and shops. Continue reading
I wasn’t sure how I would feel being back in Athens. It is a place of such emotional contrasts for me — its wonderful history and the warmth of the Greeks alongside the tragedy that comes with a collapsed economy, not to mention the heat and pollution of summer. But arriving in Athens on Wednesday, I felt a sweet familiarity. Athens was a partner during the life-changing time I was here among a community of refugees. Continue reading
In 1963, President John F Kennedy expressed solidarity with the people of Berlin by stating “Ich bin ein Berliner.” Depending on how strictly you apply the rules of German grammar (which Germans apply quite strictly), this means either “I am a Berliner” or “I am a jelly donut.” In spite of this cute faux pas, no one ever confused JFK or any other American president with pastry. I know what you are thinking but Cheetos are not really pastry.
You should plan to get all the way through this posting because the ending is worth waiting for. But here is the beginning. I am in Paris, which would be heaven all by itself but I am in Paris with Avery and Bella. Who are Bella and Avery? If you don’t actually know them, you just need to know they are 12-year old girls with wildly different personalities who are nevertheless fully sync-ed with each other pretty much all the time. Continue reading
I have so far been pretty good about staying away from topics related to The Elephant in Every Room, no reflection on real elephants. Many others are presenting analysis, opinion and humor that is way better than anything I could write. But I need to pile on because, at this point, I am scared shitless about the evolving friendships of our Racist Narcissist Liar-in-Chief.