Living in Europe: Precursors to “The Sendai Test”

I can’t believe I’m here, I thought to myself as I walked through a German university campus. The side of one old stone building caught my eye: it was covered in vines that were brilliant green and red on that late October day. As I continued walking towards my bus from a building that had … More Living in Europe: Precursors to “The Sendai Test”

Panov’s Wreaths: A Christmas Story

In our local writer’s group this year, it was decided that everyone would write a holiday story, in 1,000 words or less, to read at our Christmas party. Here’s mine. It’s 998 words, a modern interpretation of Tolstoy’s short story ‘Papa Panov’s Special Christmas,’ and my first attempt at fiction in many, many years. Based … More Panov’s Wreaths: A Christmas Story

Hygge Me: Design & Wellbeing in Denmark

I first encountered a Danish design interior in Romania, strangely enough. While volunteering there, I met a Dane working for the Danish embassy in Bucharest, and was absolutely amazed by how I felt after walking into her beautifully designed apartment. The environment was clean and modern, with Scandinavian furniture and lighting of higher quality and … More Hygge Me: Design & Wellbeing in Denmark

Book Review: Transatlantic by Colum McCann

One of the current literary greats of Ireland is Colum McCann. Having written seven novels and three collections of short stories, his work is thoughtful, expansive, and poetic. Currently living in New York, McCann has made a name for himself by writing for international publications such as the New York Times, The New Yorker, Esquire, … More Book Review: Transatlantic by Colum McCann

Book Review: I Must Betray You by Ruta Sepetys

Many years ago I lived in Romania for 16 months as a young American volunteer. It was in the mid-nineties; communism (as it only shortly before existed in Romania) was a thing of the past, but its shadows still loomed large. Huge, half-built ‘hunger domes’ — that had been intended as neighborhood mess halls — … More Book Review: I Must Betray You by Ruta Sepetys

A Walk Around Mont Blanc

“Beauty is not a Luxury”                        -John O’Donohue The Irish poet and philosopher John O’ Donohue, (God rest his soul) eloquently spoke and wrote about the need for Beauty that our human souls have to feel complete, to be whole. The experience of Beauty, whether it be music or poetry; liturgy and scripture; a caring relationship … More A Walk Around Mont Blanc