Burgeoning lilac tree Deep purple blooms Lace of my grandmother’s heart Deep sweet scent of spring Floating above the sun-drenched veranda Saturating my childhood dreams This poem is dedicated to my grandmother and all grandmothers on this Mother’s Day weekend.
We had read parts of the Holy Quran before we went to Pakistan, so we had some idea of what to expect. We knew there would be no alcohol available locally. Imagine our surprise when we were informed of the booze allotment provided by the UN. Apparently, there was a UN Commissary in Rawalpindi, twin … More Excerpt from Geckos & Guns – A Trip to the Commissary
My friend, Simone wrote this review which I would like to share with all of you. A true account of what it was like to move to Asia in the 90s Sharon and I met in Thailand, a few years after she moved to Pakistan in 1991. I, myself, moved to Thailand in 1990, and … More An Excellent Review of Geckos & Guns
A few days ago I hosted a Zoom Book Launch party for my latest memoir, Geckos & Guns: The Pakistan Years. It was a successful, enjoyable afternoon of sharing memories and answering questions about the book. One of those questions still resonates, not because it was an unusual question, but rather because I didn’t provide … More Perspectives and Opinions
Yesterday I came down with what I have dubbed ‘the COVID blues’. This ailment presented itself as a kind of hopeless melancholy coupled with floating anxiety and restlessness. At the same time, I was riddled with guilt. What was the matter with me? My husband and I have the basic necessities of life. We are … More The COVID Blues
This morning I watched a clip of the President of the United States bullying his way through another public diatribe. A crowd of his supporters was jeering, chanting, and risking their health during the COVID pandemic just to be a part of his blood sport. It’s one thing to be a bully. We have all … More Are We Being Seduced by Bullies?
(I wrote this story almost exactly a year ago. It seems appropriate to share it on my blog as the leaves once again start to fall. The boys are in Grade Three now and thriving.) My two oldest grandsons started Grade Two this autumn, photographed on that first day of school resplendent in their new … More The Perils of Second Grade
The world went quiet. Everything stopped. We isolated. No friends, no neighbours, no dancing, no grandchildren, no meetings, no appointments. Only groceries and pharmacies. Twenty-four hours a day, 7 days a week—just here. I wrote and wrote and wrote and wrote every day. Watched TV at night. Masked outings. Sanitized and washed again and again. … More Six Months and Counting
See no evil, hear no evil, speak no evil is a proverb taken from a 17th Century carving above the door of a Japanese shrine. The Buddhist depiction of monkeys covering their eyes, ears, and mouth was meant to impart the lesson that we shouldn’t dwell on evil thoughts. Nowadays this proverb is sometimes used … More See no Evil
Having all events, appointments and social gatherings cancelled for the last month or so has meant that I’ve had more time to spend writing my next book. I’ve gone further back in time to the years we spent in Pakistan, before Nine Years in Bangkok: Lessons Learned. At the same time, I’ve been watching the … More Pakistan: The Prequel