Blood and Water

What is it about family that can be so frustrating, difficult, even infuriating? My mom sometimes reminiscences about how patient, how obedient, how “good” I used to be, wonders what changed. I tell her it’s because I’m not a child. I have thoughts and beliefs of my own, draw upon experiences and knowledge that I […]

Read More Blood and Water

The Whole Wide World

In the midst of my grandmother’s final days, I couldn’t help but think about how different her life had been from mine, how everything she had been through had made things possible for me, my sister, our cousins. I received the news of her passing in Porto, on New Year’s Day. It pained me to […]

Read More The Whole Wide World

By the Lake

I should experience the summer, I’m told. This in fact has been an almost universal refrain from denizens in Geneva, with the implicit – and sometimes not-so-implicit – suggestion that the other seasons are generally forgettable here. Quiet. Sleepy. Boring. It’s the general thrust of the city’s reputation. A colleague who has lived around the […]

Read More By the Lake

Where the Heart Is

I went on a run with a friend a few weeks ago. I don’t much go on runs. I loathe them – the awkward flailing, the sweat everywhere, including on my glasses, the gasping for breath if god forbid I tried to pick up my pace a bit or attack a slight incline. Worst of […]

Read More Where the Heart Is

Home and Away

It is home, but not anymore – not really. I’m an intruder, an interrupter. One friend flies down from San Francisco to see me for the weekend. Another sneaks in a dinner and chat at the beginning of her workweek. I take up a former professor’s lunch hour. And my mom – well, she asks […]

Read More Home and Away