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Publisher Richard Loller's  Journal
For Year 2021
Index to All Journal Years

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Scroll down for the most recent stories
Alice and the Tea Party



Elliot Wilner





 
© Copyright 2022 by Elliot Wilner


Photo courtesy of Ebay.
Photo courtesy of Ebay.

It was a few minutes after seven o’clock when Simon drove up the driveway of the Bethesda Country Club, heading toward the clubhouse where the Woodrow Wilson High School reunion was already underway. The parking lot closest to the clubhouse was by now nearly full, and it pleased Simon to see that the parked cars were mostly mid-size SUVs, or aging Volvos like his, unpretentious cars, utilitarian cars, none of them gas-guzzlers. . . .

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In Like A Lion...Out Like Two Lions




Karen Radford Treanor 

 


© Copyright 2022  by Karen Radford Treanor

Before the storm. Photos by the author.
The java-cloth curtains before the storm. Photos by the author.                    

Give me a home among the gum trees” said the theme song of a now-defunct gardening show. Gum trees—genus eucalyptus—come in many varieties, and quite a few of the larger ones marched along the fence line of our home in the hills above Perth, Western Australia. Eucalyptus tend to drop their branches suddenly, especially if stressed or ill, with only a loud cra-a-a-ck! to warn those beneath. . . .

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I Don't Know How She Does It





Marcia McGreevy Lewis

 





Photo courtesy of Connie Niva.
Photo courtesy of Connie Niva.

 
Connie Niva returned to graduate school at mid-life for a Master of Public Policy. Why this consummate professional pursued a different direction in life says everything about her inquisitive mind. In her early years, she had lectured in microbiology to medical students and then taught Palestinian nurses in East Jerusalem for two years. She embraced the opportunity to live in a variety of countries and was also raising four children while globetrotting. . . .

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Endangered Folks, Chimps, and Funa on the Brinks



Ikyereve Denen


 
© Copyright 2022 by Ikyegeve Denen



Photo courtesy of Pixabay.
Photo courtesy of Pixabay.

More than a decade ago, fate took Haruna Bawa to his lifelong ambition. The 56 year old longed for a more serene life that offered hope for survival away from the fake fancies of Abuja, Nigeria the capital city and centre of beureacracy. . . .

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If That's How Winning Feels, I'd Rather Lose





Israa Abdelfatah



 
© Copyright 2022 by Israa  Abdelfatah

Photo by Iva Rajović on Unsplash
Photo by Iva Rajović on Unsplash

He was so lonely. That was what the pig always thought of and how he always felt. Utter loneliness and unavoidable solitude. It was not his fault though, he thought to himself. It was not anybody’s fault. It was what it was. He was born as ugly as a sin; his face was deformed, and his hair was all dishevelled. . . .

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The Foxes with Doggy-ears





Meenakshi Bhatt



 
© Copyright 2022 by Meenakshi Bhatt



Photo courtesy of Pexels.
Photo courtesy of Pexels.

In 1959, in the Institute of Cytology and Genetics, Novosibirsk, Russia, the Russian geneticist Dmitri Belyaev started an experiment to observe domestication in animals. Belyaev had worked with domestic animals for many years and was interested in the process by which wild animals could be tamed. . . .

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Wawa's Divine Sign





Alexi Dinerstein


 
© Copyright 2022 by Alexi Dinerstein



Photo by Artturi Jalli on Unsplash
Photo by Artturi Jalli on Unsplash
September 17th, 2018: my first day teaching at a Catholic High School. While for some this occasion may have been a rudimentary occupational exercise, I found myself in the midst of yet another professional predicament. . . .

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The Friendly Neighborhood Doctor



Habib Zreik


 
© Copyright 2022 by Habib Zreik



Photo courtesy of Pexels.
Photo courtesy of Pexels.

When I think of our late neighbor Dr. Loshkajian, or Dr. Arteen as we knew him, the first image that comes to my mind is of him in a white cotton loose undershirt, which manages to stretch even wider than his round belly. . . .

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Ha



Fredrick Hudgin


 
© Copyright 2022 by Fredrick Hudgin





Photo of a Christmas tree orniment.
Photo courtesy of Pixabay.

This was a tough one to write. When I came home from Vietnam, I put all the unhappy memories in a box at the back of my mind and sealed it with mental tape, never to be opened again. But this story has escaped many times. I still see Ha being driven away in that jeep. . . .

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Dirt Roads and Calloused Hands



Robert Flournoy



 
© Copyright 2022 by Robert Flournoy   
 

Photo courtesy of Pixabay.
                                       Photo courtesy of Pixabay.

When I was young, dirt roads were a silent witness to my life, their dusty presence taken for granted, as were crawdads, mules, may pops, BB guns and the whistle of a Bob White Quail.  Where I came from there were also gators, cotton mouths, bull frogs and dragon flies as wide as a farmer's hand. . . .

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Welcome Home



Robert Flournoy



 
© Copyright 2022 by Robert Flournoy   
 

Photo by Suzy Turbenson on Unsplash
                                       Photo by Suzy Turbenson on Unsplash

I find it awkward when someone says "thank you for your service".  I usually mumble some thanks back, and with averted eyes, move on.  These words almost always come from people who did not serve, and while respectfully rendered, they make me squirm a little bit. I do not know why. . . .

A Tragedy and a Blessing



Ohanya K'Otengo


 
© Copyright 2022 by Ohaya K'Otengo



Photo by David Clode on Unsplash
Photo by David Clode on Unsplash

I was dead. That is the best way to describe the experience or non-experience, now that I am writing after death or better, when back to life.

When I came to, and that's for lack of a better word, the best I could remember was that I went somewhere but not on earth. I am sure that for quite some time I was not around. Certainly not here. . . .

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Gringos Estupidos



Edward Bogdan




 
© Copyright 2022 by Edward Bogdan



Photo courtesy of the author.
Photo courtesy of the author.

Thirty, single, and unhappy in San Francisco’s hippy society of the ‘70s, I set my sights on Latin America. My search for life’s meaning led me to problems with La Policia south of the border. As a ‘gringo’ (derogatory Latino term for North Americans), I was among those labeled both as ‘estupido’ (stupid), and as easy marijuana-carrying targets. . . .

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Moving Day






Darien Greene



 
© Copyright 2022 by Darien Greene



Photo courtesy of Pixabay.
Photo courtesy of Pixabay.

Shackled and chained to another human being, inside a prisoner transport bus, I can’t help but to notice the hushed talking of other prisoners. Remembering the loud voices and tones of bravado about finally leaving jail to go to prison, the night before. The night before: is when the jail’s correctional officers let you know that you’re being moved to state prison to commence your sentence, so you have to pack up. . . .

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How I learned the joys, wonder and misadventures of traveling from my parents




Leslee W. Kahler

 
© Copyright 2022 by Leslee W. Kahler




Leslee's backyard in Norway.  Photo by the author.
Leslee's backyard in Norway.  Photo by the author.

When I was a little my father, who was an engineer took a job in Mobile, Alabama building oil rigs a few months before hurricane Camille hit on August 17, 1969. My parents decided to listen to the weather man about the severity of the storm and to evacuate inland. We packed up both family cars with our pets, clothes, photo albums, bedding and a few select toys for my brother and I and we headed inland at a crawl. By the time we had packed up and hit the road it was dark and it was pouring rain as the first bands of rain hit the Gulf Coast. . . .

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Get Your Comeuppance Here




Katharine Valentino


 
© Copyright 2022 by Katharine Valentino



Photo courtesy of Pexels.

Photo courtesy of Pexels.

In first grade, I read the entire first chapter of Fun with Dick and Jane during the first reading session on the first day. Within a week, I was up to "'See the big horses,' said Jane" on page 50. Meanwhile, the other kids were stumbling through “See it go up” on page 6. By the time they got to “This is not fun” on page 9 the following week, I had decided that what was not fun was reading in school. Reading in school was boring. I had already learned to read by being read to every night before being tucked into bed. . . .

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An Ode to Przemsyl
A Lyrical Prose Poem





Carl Winderl

 
© Copyright 2022 by Carl Winderl




Photo courtesy of the author.
Photo courtesy of the author.

When Humanity’s at Its Worst . . . . . . what evil can entail.

So, I’m standing just outside the train station in the little town of Przemsyl, Poland. ( pronounced: shemma-shuh )

Today. March 25th, 2022. One month and one day since Russia invaded Ukraine, while atrocious and horrifying unimaginable acts of the invaders continue to be too too fresh in the hearts and minds and on the retinas of people all around the world. . . .

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Getting to Know the Canon




Pamella Laird



 
© Copyright 2022 by Pamella Laird

Photo by Josè Maria Sava on Unsplash
 Photo by Josè Maria Sava on Unsplash

Way back in the Fifties, it was commonplace to hitchhike when on a working holiday. In our case, my nurse friend Zala and I were in England for more than two years, far from our native New Zealand. . . .

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Scary Tale of a Lone Black Kid




Paul Onuh


 
© Copyright 20221 by Paul Onuh


 Photo courtesy of Pixabay.

Photo courtesy of Pixabay.
Photo courtesy of Pixabay.

While I walked down the sandy road from elementary school, all alone like a stone cold loner at age seven. I looked straight in front of me, dressed in a checkered brown and white shirt, pink short and white socks. Still I could recall my brown rubber sandals and colorful bag, right then. . . .

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They Were Never Mine



Subhiksha Parthiban


 
© Copyright 2022 by Subhiksha Parthiban





Photo by Akram Huseyn on Unsplash
Photo by Akram Huseyn on Unsplash

I feed them daily, they are there for my arrival. No such bond exists between me and any human soul including my family. I am worried if they are not there. Scared when they don’t be there for me. . . .

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Devils of Speechless Creatures



Muthulakshmi Muthukrishnan



 
© Copyright 2022 by 
Muthulakshmi Muthukrishnan



Photo by Roger-Johansen on Pexels.
Photo by Roger-Johansen on Pexels.

Could  anyone of you give a think about nights without  sleep for several years of your life, always put under the grip of a damaged kidney(kidneys?) due to improper schedule of sleep? Yes,I have been experiencing this phobia for the past ten years, fearing to meet the dawn past five hours! . . .

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Encounters of the Wild Kind






Eleanor Dorst


 
© Copyright 2020 by Eleanor Dorst



Photo by Zac Durant on Unsplash
                              Photo by Zac Durant on Unsplash
This happened some time ago when technology was not at its peak and social media had yet to be invented.

As the saying goes, ‘ I wish I had a camera to capture this moment.’  This little tale goes out to you. . . .

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Surrounded by Swirling Swallows:
The Animal Encounter of a Lifetime



Gavin Greenfield



 
© Copyright 2022 by Gavin Greenfield




Photo by Julian on Unsplash
Photo by Julian on Unsplash


The era of discovery is mostly over in the field of zoology. Long gone are the days when intrepid adventurers could discover large and colorful animals every day simply by walking through distant and remote lands previously unexplored by Western scientists. . . .

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My Terrifying Encounter 
With a Black Cat at Night



Ikyereve Denen


 
© Copyright 2022 by Ikyegeve Denen



Photo courtesy of Pixabay.
Photo courtesy of Pixabay.

On the first day of January every year was my birthday and I had a yearly ritual of celebrating this day at my village which was 400 kilometers from the city center were I was working at, but unfortunately I forgot about this ritual for the 2021 due majorly to the fact that I had a visitor who was my childhood friend who was based in the united states of America but had to come briefly for his mothers funeral. . . .

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"Fairy" Beetles



Janice Rider


 
© Copyright 2022 by Janice Rider



Photo courtesy of Pixabay.
Photo courtesy of Pixabay.

My background is in zoology, conservation, and education. As a result, I have spent a lot of time working with and being with animals. I have worked at veterinary clinics and at the Calgary Zoo during spring and summer breaks while attending university. . . .

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Fierce Love



Lauren Stoker


 
© Copyright 2022 byLauren StokerE



Photo courtesy of Pixabay.
Photo courtesy of Pixabay.


The last of the summer is ebbing, but it’s still warm, moist and green. A new storm is coming, they say. Sunshine passes in and out of clouds, now illuminating, now veiling in shadow. The contrasts are glorious.

And here I sit at my desk, looking out instead of being there. . . .

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The Sadistic Mega-Beast



Irene Joseph


 
© Copyright 2022 by Irene Joseph





Photo by Faris Mohammed on Unsplash
Photo by Faris Mohammed on Unsplash

Why are you sat there crying again?” my parents would turn to me and ask. It was the eighties and I was four or five, sat watching the dreaded programmes involving animals. Lassie, Littlest Hobo, Benji, etc, or even my Dad's avid watching of animal documentaries, would just set me off into floods of tears – even though nothing terrible had happened to the animals!...

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Casting Shadows




Marc Revere


 
© Copyright 2022 by Marc Revere


 

Photo by Pablo Heimplatz on Unsplash
Photo by Pablo Heimplatz on Unsplash

We were paralleling history, slicing through placid ebony waters under a moonless sky at seven knots just off the coast of Santa Barbara County. But, not near the City of Santa Barbara, or its pier, or the gaudy tee shirt tourist traps or bars, nor the University or the offshore scourge, the brightly lit oil platforms, but miles away in pitch darkness. We are on the very western edge of the county. It is so remote here there are no inhabitants and no lights, albeit a rotating beam every 30 seconds of Point Conception Light. . . .

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Animal Control Took Care Of It





Barry Purcell

 
© Copyright 2022 by Barry Purcell




Photo by Wilson Chen on Unsplash
 Photo by Wilson Chen on Unsplash

In 2007, I moved from Ireland to California in an attempt to save a marriage. I suddenly found myself transplanted from a land of permanent dampness and rolling green hills to a land of constantly blaring sunshine, capricious earthquakes and dusty rocks as far as the eye can see in every direction. . . .

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Our Hideaway



Wanda Nelson


 
© Copyright 2022 by Wanda Nelson





Photo by Boris Smokrovic on Unsplash
Photo by Boris Smokrovic on Unsplash

I discovered him gnawing on a bright green blade of grass underneath Mama’s white rose bush. Mama’s rose bush was my very own special retreat from the scorching sun of sizzling summer days and the place I carried my library books selected from the Bookmobile. Sometimes I carried the paper dolls Mama cut from the grocery paper sacks or I wore the nurses cap she made for me out of leftover school notebook paper. Whether I became a princess from one of my library books or pretended to be a nurse to my paper dolls given names and colored hurriedly with broken crayons; this place was my domain.

I was lying flat on my stomach as my blonde hair cascaded across my freckled cheeks. Immediately, I became quite still as I had never been this close to a grasshopper. . . .

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The OnÇa


Penelope Maclachlan


 
© Copyright 2022 by Penelope Maclachlan





Photo courtesy of Pixabay.

Rosa’s eyes blazed. Somebody probably warned me against putting my hand between the bars of her cage. She was the first onça I ever saw during my childhood in Brazil. She was nothing like our cat at home, as she was twenty times bigger with huge jaws and feet. . . .

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A Spectacular Fight





Samantha Pinazza


 
© Copyright 2022 by Samantha Pinazza



Photo by Michael Mogensen on Unsplash
Photo by Michael Mogensen on Unsplash
It was a beautiful late spring evening, the fresh air freely entering the living room window, while my husband Simon and I were getting ready for bed. I had just closed my book and was about to get up from the sofa, stretching and yawning, when I saw the dog immobilizing, his ears straight and his eyes attentive. . . .

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In Kite Nation



Caroline Fynn




 
© Copyright 2022 by Caroline Fynn



Photo of Yogi.
Photo of Yogi.

I watched part of a documentary on reincarnation while sitting in a waiting room in Colombo, Sri Lanka. I followed the English subtitles and noticed how the subject was not presented as a possibility, but as a given, portrayed as fact. Until the year 2016, I had lived for three years in the south of the teardrop island. In this land, devotees to Buddhism hold an unshakeable faith in reincarnation. I loved these people and respected their beliefs and culture. Nevertheless, I thought the notion of rebirth to be unrealistic. I paid no attention. Much the same as I would ignore moon worship or an argument in favor of a flat Earth. . . .

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Just a Sip






Sara Todd-Stone


 
© Copyright 2022 by Sara Todd-Stone



Photo by the author.
Photo by the author.

My husband and I left it all. We had successful careers, lived in a historic apartment downtown in a bustling city, walked to the local co-op for our groceries. We were up and coming … yuppies. After a visit to the mountains in North Carolina, we decided to take the road less traveled; literally. We moved across the country to a little old farmhouse at the end of a dirt road that backed up to 100 acres of old growth forest. We knew there would be work involved - lots of it. But our naivety slapped us in the face when we got there. . . .

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10 Critical Pieces Of Advice For All Our Future Sons And Daughters





Abdallahi Hamby


 
© Copyright 2022 by Abdallahi Hamby



Photo courtesy of Laura Garcia at Pexels.
Photo courtesy of Laura Garcia at Pexels.

This letter is for not only my future son(s) and daughter(s) but for all of our future sons and daughters. For in fact, the next generation is all of our responsibility and they will be the ones to hold all of us in their hands. Your son might be my daughter’s future husband or vice versa. Your daughter’s decisions might be the ones to drastically influence my son. The possibilities are endless and so are the ripples. . . .

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My Real-Life Story



Jeanne Marie Donnelly


 
© Copyright 2022 by Jeanne Marie Donnally



Photo (c) 2010 by Richard Loller

Photo (c) 2010 by Richard Loller

The two dates that changed my life were October 28th 2012 and December 8th, 2014.  

This story is about how these two dates intertwine. October 28th 2014 is the day hurricane Sandy hit New York. Prior to this, I never thought much about natural disasters or their life-altering impact. Life was great as the weather until that evening. . . .

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Robert Louis Stevenson and the Pearl Harbor That Didn't Happen





Gene J. Parola




© Copyright 2022 by Gene J. Parola



Photo courtesy of Ebay.
Photo courtesy of Ebay.

The photo is grainy, as most Honolulu newspaper photos were in 1941. However, there is no mistaking the man and woman who stand in regal finery, hands raised in the half wave that royalty seems to favor.  

The caption barks its message in capital letters: THE CROWN PRINCE AND PRINCESS KAIULANI GREET PILOTS RECENTLY RETURNED FROM JAPAN’S SUCCESSFUL DECEMBER 7 AIR ATTACK ON SAN DIEGO.
Unbelievable? Of course. It never happened. . . .

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The Olive Oil Thief



Salam Syagha




 
© Copyright 2022 by Salam Syagha



Photo courtesy of Pixabay.
Photo courtesy of Pixabay.

This true story will definately lead us to think twice before we decide on our expectations. I hope you enjoy it. . . .

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Charlie's Good Year



Valerie Forde-Galvin




 
© Copyright 2022 by Valerie Forde-Galvin



Drawing of Charlie by Valerie.
Drawing of Charlie by Valerie.

They say that relationships hold up the mirror and teach you something about yourself. Well, Charlie did this and more. Charlie possessed courage, style, and joie de vivre. Sufficient unto himself, Charlie had chutzpah. And Charlie passed it on. Yes, Charlie came into my life to remind me of who I am and who I could become. . . .

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Snowy






Amritha Sobrun-Maharaj

 
© Copyright 2022 by Amritha Sobrun-Maharaj




Photo by EKATERINA  BOLOVTSOVA at Pexels.
Photo by Photo by EKATERINA  BOLOVTSOVA at Pexels.

I was a little girl, in the 1950s, around five or six years of age I think, when I had my first encounter with a snake. It changed my life forever. . . .

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Swimming With The World’s Biggest Sharks Before They Become Extinct



Jennie Mae Ong

 
© Copyright 2022 by Jennie Mae Ong




Photo by Adiprayogo Liemena on Pexels.
Photo by Adiprayogo Liemena on Pexels.

Jump, get in the water” The spotter suddenly shouted. His excited voice drove us all into a frenzy and we started jumping off the boat. Water splashed everywhere as our dark heads bobbed in the water. Not everyone can swim, but our life jackets were keeping us afloat. We all bobbed around waiting excitedly for instructions, anticipation filled the air. . . .

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Jeanne's Valley



E. P. Lande


 
© Copyright 2022 by E. P. Lande



Photo (c) Marc Beerman, http://www.oldmanphotography.com
Photo (c) Marc Beerman, http://www.oldmanphotography.com

We walk daily—Lily, Mandela, and me. When it was just Lily with me, we would walk around the lake or take one of the paths that led farther into the hills surrounding the lake. But Mandela is a small dog, so when he’s with us, we walk through Jeanne’s valley. . . .

More. . . .





The Black Sheep of the Family Walks Away




Kelly Maida



 
© Copyright 2022 by Kelly Maida


Photo of the author.
Photo of the author.


HI, it’s just me.

The black sheep of the family! I’m back and I have something to say. . . .

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The Deer Survived



Lew Goddard
Edited by Anne Goddard


 
© Copyright 2022 by Lew Goddard


Photo courtesy of Pixabay.
Photo courtesy of Pixabay.
                      

The old green John Deere D tractor was under my control in a field belonging to my-brother-in-law who had married one of my sisters. I was fifteen. Summer fallowing was a common practice wherein no crop is grown and plant life is controlled by cultivation or chemicals during a season when a crop might normally be grown. . . .

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Where Does The Hare Go

 

Ellie S. Thomas   
 

© Copyright 2022 by  Ellie S. Thomas

 
 

Photo by Georgiana Simon on Unsplash
Photo courtesy of Pixabay.

There were three small rabbits living next door and we wanted to see them. No one knew how they got there or where the mother was but these little fellows were making it all on their own. . . .

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I Was Here



Roger Barbee


 
© Copyright 2022 by Roger Barbee




Photo courtesy of Pexels.
 Photo courtesy of Pexels.

Uncle Foy was the youngest of the five children in my father's family. My memories of him, his wife Mildred, and their two young daughters are good ones even though events happened as they did. He was the uncle who had a friend make my brother and me a small wire rack to use over the campfires we built in our backyard. . . .

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Where The Wild Things Are In Alaska





Valerie Winans


 
© Copyright 2022 by Valerie Winans




Photo property of the author.
Photo property of the author.

My husband and I worked two seasons as campground hosts in Denali National Park and Preserve in Alaska. It was like working in a zoo where all the animals roamed free. Our first encounter was on our very first day at Savage Campground. As campground hosts, we needed to know what the area was all about before we could be much help to visitors. . . .

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Who Ruffled the Emu?





Desiree Kendrick


 
© Copyright 2021 by Desiree Kendrick
 

Photo courtesy of Pixabay.
Photo courtesy of Pixabay.

A child’s memory is a precious thing. Even selective. It’s innocent at times and devious when the situation calls for survival of the fittest. We were a playmate trio, my younger siblings and I. However, if you ask us to retell a story you may easily get three different versions. I leave it to you to decide whose version is the closest to the truth. . . .

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When Giving Kindness Pays You  Back


Kathryn Payne-Olson

  

© Copyright 2022 by Kathryn Payne-Olson

  
 

Photo courtesy of Pixabay.

Photo courtesy of Pixabay.

My adorable little cavachon is the best judge of character. We live in a huge community of 1,800 homes with walking trails, dog parks, gazebos and baseball fields. He growls at grumpy people and wags his tail at people who exude good energy. It’s true. . . .

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I Walked with the Wind




Lew Goddard


 
© Copyright 2021 by Lew Goddard


Photo courtesy of Pixabay.
Photo courtesy of Pixabay.
                      

. . . .Many years ago past midnight after a hot day in the western foot hills of the Kettle River mountain range in northern Washington State it was awesomely quiet. In fact the quiet was deafening in relation to the place where my home is located. The moon was so bright that one could have read a book with its light. Elevation was estimated three thousand to four thousand feet above sea level according to the map. . . .

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A Sleepover with Friends



Deon Matzen


 
© Copyright 2021 by Deon Matzen


 
Photo courtesy of Pixabay.
Photo courtesy of Pixabay..

For most of my life I have liked sleeping outdoors. I did it as a child and still do it as an adult. My longest season of sleeping out came when I lived on a farm in Redmond, Washington. Having just gotten a new canvas wall tent in the ‘50s my sis and I managed to spend almost five months continuous sleeping outdoors. Sleeping in a tent is not my favorite as I like to wake and watch the stars, but it allowed for us to sleep out even through misty rains that are common to our area. . . .

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And The Lions Laze




Anna G. Joujan 


© Copyright 2022 by Anna G. Joujan 

   

Photo (c) 2001 by Richard Loller

Photo (c) 2001 by Richard Loller

It is a sound unlike any I have ever heard before, and a sound impossible to describe with the written word. But once you have heard it, you can never forget it. So my sleep has been sweet, lulled into slumber each night to the soft and steady hum of the lions. . . .

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The Pot of Gold





Pamella Laird



 
© Copyright 2022 by Pamella Laird

Photo courtesy of Pexels.
 Photo courtesy of Pexels.

Myths and legends about rainbows promise strange things. It matters not, where in the world we are, we gaze in wonder at the colours arcing between earth and sky. What do they mean, what causes this magnificent spectacle? Is it really a sign from God that never again will the world be flooded? . . .

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Animal Encounters of a Different Kind




Kelly Maida


 
© Copyright 2022 by Kelly Maida



Photo courtesy of Pixabay.
 Photo courtesy of Pixabay.                         


When I was a child,  my parents had a camp in old forge, New York. We saw a lot of wildlife up close!  My parents would take me and my cousins to the dump to see the bears. We would watch the bears eat through the trash. It was actually fun and a little scary at times. Especially when the bears would notice us watching them and run towards us. . . .

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Children's Folk Tales and Fables








Solomon Eboh


 
© Copyright 2022 by Solomon Eboh

 

Photo of the author.

Photo of the author.


The Bee Keeper

Once upon a time there was a farmer, who was lucky to have a bee perch on his mouth while he was asleep. Though bees sting the bee did not sting him but let a drop of honey from his abdomen on the farmer’s mouth and flew away. The farmer on his bed had sensed the bee perch on his mouth with its weight and felt it had been in a dream; why! he had been motionless to hit the insect off from his mouth, he could not say why. . . .

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Horse Encounters of the Worst Kind





Charles T. Faulkner



 
© Copyright 2022 by
Charles T. Faulkner




Photo courtesy of Pixabay.
Photo courtesy of Pixabay.

Horses and I are at war. Don’t blame me, I didn’t start it. They hate me and have since I was a child. As Muhammed Ali once said about the Viet Cong: "I don’t have no argument with them!" I have never struck or in any way mistreated a horse. Yet, apparently they would kill me if given the chance. Let me elucidate. . . .

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Searching For Prey







Nabil Dabars


 
© Copyright 2022 by Nabil Dabars

 

Photo courtesy of Pixabay.
Photo courtesy of Pixabay.

Isn't the sublimity of man and his wisdom in his silence and serenity? I mean staring at the stars at night and contemplating the beauty and joy of the moon.  All this I learned from my friend Yuki, the wolf who has been raised by me since I found him a young man who lost a home to live in or a family he belongs to. . . .

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Beaver and Willow



Alex Byrd Jones


 
© Copyright 2022 by Alex Byrd Jones






Photo courtesy of Pixabay.
Photo courtesy of Pixabay.

My father’s one wish was to be a worldly gentleman, and yet the man couldn’t help himself, he just really hated beavers.

On the other hand, my Dad loved trees, in particular those weeping willows he planted in our back yard. Thus he despised the enemies of the willows, those slovenly creatures that crept out of the creek in the dead of night and munched his darling willows until they silently toppled over on the dewy grass. . . .

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Icky Impala




Don Shook





 
© Copyright 2022 by Don Shook



Photo courtesy of Pixabay.
Photo courtesy of Pixabay.

Icky hit the ground with a thud. Dazed, he opened his eyes, blinked, then moved his legs. Covered with a sticky film, he tried rolling to his feet and was immediately coated in dirt. Nearby, hidden in the tall grass, two young impala stood watching. “That’s icky!” one exclaimed. The other snorted, nodding in agreement, then both turned and strode away. Thus Icky Impala was greeted onto the Serengeti Plain of East Africa birthed, named and covered in dirt. . . .

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Attitudes



Don Shook


 
© Copyright 2022 by Don Shook


Photo courtesy of Pixabay.
Photo courtesy of Pixabay.

As a typical, self-centered, hormone-motivated teenager, I was constantly at odds with my father (I called him Daddy) over my attitude. In his words, I had a bad one. I usually either ignored or bristled over his accusations. And, of course, this reaction was only further evidence of my bad attitude. . . .

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Synonyms 101




Ugochi Eke




 
© Copyright 2022 by Ugochi Eke

 

Photo courtesy of Pixabay.
Photo courtesy of Pixabay.

I believe that in the English language, the most confusing words are the almost-synonyms, Sympathy and Empathy. Maybe that stems from a personal background instead of a general one, but hear me out. . . .

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Choosing





Bobbi Ali




 
© Copyright 2022 by Bobbi Ali
Photo property of the author.
Photo property of the author.

Packing my bags for my “grand adventure”, as my mother called it, to China, my husband walks in. “I am deciding what to throw away, and what to keep,” I tell him, and he lowers his eyes rather than confront me with the obvious slight in the words. “So, this is it?” he asks. Yes, this is it, I think, as I finish preparing for my morning flight, and fall into bed with him one more time, this person who was a part of me for the past ten years. . . .

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Ed and Wilma




Dale Fehringer

© Copyright 2019 by Dale Fehringer

  

Photo courtesy of Pixabay.
Photo courtesy of Pixabay.


Years ago, my aunt Margaret corralled me when I went to visit her. I had recently retired and was interested in writing; she had recently moved into a care home.

I want you to write the history of the Lacy family,” she told me, and she jabbed her index finger into my ribs. When Aunt Margaret asked you to do something you took it seriously. . . .

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Thanks for My Rodeo




Dale Fehringer

© Copyright 2019 by Dale Fehringer

  

Photo courtesy of Pixabay.
Photo courtesy of Pixabay.

As soon as she heard there was a rodeo that night she was on me to take her.

If I have any points built up at all, I’d like to use them to go to the rodeo,” she whispered to me. . . .

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Mom Shops Moscow
   

Janis LeForge
   

© Copyright 2022 by Janis LeForge
 

 

Photo of Janis.

Photo of Janis.


My mother was passionate about shopping. She’s gone now but I remember she shopped everywhere she went and anytime. Garage sales, department stores, grocery stores (she loved coupons), drug stores, the mall, craft fairs, boutiques, at home or on vacation. In her day there was no online shopping. . . .

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In The Neighborhood




Don Shook


 
© Copyright 2022 by Don Shook


Photo courtesy of Pexels.
Photo courtesy of Pexels.

“All the pastors in this neighborhood have asked us to drop by and talk to you about this beautiful new bible.” The opening line of our sales pitch seemed innocent enough, but we (especially me) were simply too young and/or inexperienced to consider the ramifications. . . .

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Grandmom Kate: Lessons on Being a Grandmother


Linda A. Dougherty


 
© Copyright 2022 by Linda A. Dougherty

Photo of grandmom and Linda, 1955.
Photo of grandmom and Linda, 1955..
                    

As I thought about what to write, I pulled this out of the bowels of my computer files and decided to polish it up. In the summer of 2021, I became a first time grandma. It has made me think about my Grandmother and how the greatest gift she gave all of us was her love and sense of fun. . . .

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The Dutch Aunty

 

Margie Hofman 


 
© Copyright 2019 by Margie Hofman 

 
      

 

Photo courtesy of Pexels.

Photo courtesy of Pexels.

Having time on my hands in this pandemic – don’t go out too much – don’t mix with too many people – stay in and clear up. How boring – BUT going through some photographs and trying to get them into some kind of order, I found some photographs and this story is for my children as well, . . .

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Electric Car




Douglas Holub



 
© Copyright 2022 by Douglas Holub


 
Photo of Doug's airplane--Velocity N2980W.
Photo of his electric car by the author.

I'm an electrical engineer. Just for fun and for educational purposes, I built an electric car back in the 90's. I bought a 1984 Ford Escort hatchback with a blown engine from a junk yard for $75. After removing the engine, exhaust system, gas tank, and cooling system, I installed a large electric traction motor, a motor controller, and lots of batteries. The project was a success....

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Man vs. The Man




Douglas Holub


 
© Copyright 2022 by Douglas Holub


 

Photo of the house at Chilhowie.
Photo of house at Johnson City.by the author.

We bought a small house in Johnson City, Tennessee back in the 80's. It had a dirt/gravel driveway, and the water meter was located in that driveway. We soon discovered that the water meter leaked so that a small, steady stream of water would constantly trickle out of the meter hole and down our driveway out into the street. So there was always a little muddy mess in our driveway. . . .

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Warped





James L. Cowles

  

© Copyright 2022 by James L. Cowles

 

Photo courtesy of Pexels.
Photo courtesy of Pexels.


I miss you, Harry, wherever the hell you are. Why did you do this to me? They made me boss, Harry. They insisted, I resisted, they won. I can't lose my job, so I said, “yes.” Harry, you SOB, you caused me to lose my freedom. I love the field! I love sales. I hate even the thought of Sales Management. . . .

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Reliquary






Giles Ryan

 
© Copyright 2022 by Giles Ryan




Photo by Willian Luiz at Pexels.
Photo by Willian Luiz at Pexels.
At the end of the road is a box of bones.

For a thousand years pilgrims have come to this church, drawn by the idea of being close to the remains of a person who knew Jesus. Over the millennium this tremendous edifice has grown up, a kind of architectural miscellany, Romanesque at its core with added flourishes of Gothic and Spanish Baroque, as if each successive century wished to reaffirm a truth - he's here, Santiago, James who walked with Jesus. . . .

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The Experiment




James L. Cowles

  

© Copyright 2022 by James L. Cowles

 

Photo courtesy of Pixabay.

Photo courtesy of Pixabay.


I don’t remember when it first hit me, or why (?). I’m no different than anyone in the lab, so I wonder if any of the others have given it much thought? We’ve worked on this project for three years, but we really don’t know each other, or maybe I should say, I don’t know any of the others, not even one. . . .

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The Playboy


Maureen Moynihan
 



© Copyright 2022 by Maureen Moynihan


Photo courtesy of Pixabay.
                              Photo courtesy of Pixabay.                                

My dad was an athlete who reeked of masculinity. He put ketchup on everything, including eggs, and balanced a ball with the agility of a circus seal.  When Dad stepped up to the plate, the infield inched back and the spectating wives batted their eyelashes as if the wind was blowing dust bunnies. Biff, they called him. . . .

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The Boldest Birds






Giles Ryan

 
© Copyright 2022 by Giles Ryan




Photo of the author.
Photo courtesy of the author.

Time and again across the years I have met crows, ravens, magpies and a miscellany of jays, and these encounters have often marked a stage in life. This is no random group of birds — they are all corvids, the smartest, most audacious birds, the birds who live their lives most closely to ours. Or does it seem that way because I’ve been living close to them? They certainly appear in more memories than I can count. . . .

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Ferry Ghat






Giles Ryan

 
© Copyright 2022 by Giles Ryan




Photo courtesy of Pixabay.
Photo courtesy of Pixabay.

To travel back to Dhaka from Rangpur in the far north you had to cross the Brahmaputra River, and if memory serves me at all, we did this south of Sirajganj. Rahman was driving our solid, sturdy Mahindra jeep, for it was understood that it was too dangerous for a foreigner to drive anywhere in Bangladesh in those days and certainly not upcountry. . . .

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Staying






Giles Ryan

 
© Copyright 2022 by Giles Ryan




Photo courtesy of Pixabay.
Photo courtesy of Pixabay.

In the winter of 1970 I went to Korea, a country still recovering from a terrible war. The Peace Corps sent me there to teach English at a middle school in the central mountains, near the DMZ, where a fragile armistice was not always honored. The winter was colder than what I had known, learning the language was difficult and in those early months I was often ill. But the true challenge was witnessing a kind of cruelty that most Americans today would call child abuse. . . .

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Fostering Felines




Karen Radford Treanor 

 

Photos by the author.

© Copyright 2022  by Karen Radford Treanor

Photos by the author.Photo by the author.
                    

Many people have found new interests during the last two years of seemingly endless restrictions and lockdowns. There’s been a revival of sourdough bread making; air fryer purchases have skyrocketed, lots of craft shops have reported booming sales—mostly online—and animal shelters reported a much higher adoption rate than usual. . . .

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To Be, or Not to Be. a Father. . .







Carl Winderl

 
© Copyright 2022 by Carl Winderl




Photo courtesy of Pixabay.
Photo courtesy of Pixabay.

. . . or some type of Dad.

For years in my writing classes, whether at the college Back East, at the university on the West Coast, or on-board ship for Semester-at-Sea – in fact, even where I taught abroad in London, China, or Japan – I used the word “father” to illustrate the concept of ‘denotation.’

I also used the word “dad” to illustrate the concept of ‘connotation.’ . . .

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Family Matters




Karen Radford Treanor 

 

© Copyright 2022  by Karen Radford Treanor

Photo of Mrs. Zwane.
Photo of Mrs. Zwane.    
                       


. . . .Mrs. Zwane was no ordinary housekeeper and babysitter. Having seven living children of her own, she was far more expert than I at the mothering game. I could go out to my daily work at the handcraft cooperative knowing that my girls were being well looked after. . . .

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Fazed By Frogs


Karen Radford Treanor 

 


© Copyright 2022  by Karen Radford Treanor

Photo courtesy of Pixabay.
 Photo courtesy of Pixabay.    


                          


As a child I recall hearing the spring chorus from the swamp across the road. The singers were tiny froglets which we called 'peepers', and we also heard the occasional bullfrog. One summer my mother introduced me to a leopard frog she had caught in a beached rowboat. It was she who pointed out what beautiful eyes frogs have. Other than that, my acquaintance with frogs was a distant one until we moved to Mundaring, in the hills above Perth, Western Australia. . . .

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Something Personal



Fred Cheney


 
© Copyright 2022 by Fred Cheney



Photo courtesy of Pixabay.
                                     
Photo courtesy of Pixabay..

Writing was serious business at my high school. To begin, we had to write. We had an essay a week. 300 words as freshmen, incrementally up to 1000 as seniors. . . .

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Golden Silence, Silver Tongue



Thomas Turman


 
© Copyright 2022 by Thomas Turman




Photo courtesy of Pixabay.
Photo courtesy of Pixabay.

At 7:45 a.m., I approached the entrance to my faculty office and found a formidable woman in a red dress and large floppy hat blocking the double doors. A satchel-like purse hung from her arms crossed over her massive bosom. She stood like an unmovable, Nubian guard to a local church. . . .

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My Day With Big Moma



Thomas Turman


 
© Copyright 2022 by Thomas Turman





Photo courtesy of Pixabay.
Photo courtesy of Pixabay.

"Tower to motor pool. Tower to motor pool, we have a wounded bird over the East range. Do you read me?"

Mandy, the Seabee dispatcher sitting closest to the squawking radio slowly carefully wipes his big black hand over his face, slides his feet off the desk and turns his squeaking, Navy issue chair to face the blinking lights of the radio. The old radio is always patched into the tower for quick response. . . .

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Willie Alexander



Thomas Turman


 
© Copyright 2022 by Thomas Turman





Photo courtesy of Pixabay.
Photo courtesy of Pixabay.


The phone rang just as I was about to leave my office and go across campus to one of the college’s professional development seminars. We do these seminars during the week before classes begin, so I wondered who would be calling. . . .

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Viner Con Migo, Senoritas


Pamella Laird


 
© Copyright 2022 by Pamella Laird


Photo of,Miguel, Pamella, and Alphonse.
Photo of Alphonse, Paula, and Miguel..

We looked at one another. What on earth does he mean? He beckoned us off the side of the road towards a half-hidden dusty track. A second guard lined up behind us urging us to move along. The two uniformed young men had been among several guards at the border when we crossed into Spain. . . .

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My Old Friend, Mike




James L. Cowles

  

© Copyright 2021 by James L. Cowles

 

Photo courtesy of Pixabay.
Photo courtesy of Pixabay.


Mike was one tough dude, with only one flaw. He had  a learning disability and consequently, was perceived by some to be a little “slow.” From the time he was very young in the late 1940’s, he was placed in “special” ed. classes. During those years there was not enough understanding of “dyslexia,” and the impact it might have on learning, and looking back over the years, it's certainly a distinct possibility Mike was afflicted with this problem. . . .

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Picasso
 The Most Influential Artist in the 20th Century



Yanjin Song

 
© Copyright 2022 by Yanjin Song
Photo by Mike Petrucci on Unsplash
Photo by Mike Petrucci on Unsplash

The jacket of my school uniform is white with navy blue and luminous orange color blocks. The unusual shape and color pattern caught my eye, and I was curious as to how such designs are created. Some weeks ago, I was surprised when my math teacher mentioned in class that the uniform design is based on Picasso's paintings. . . .

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Field of Dreams






Sara Etgen-Baker



 
© Copyright 2022 by Sara Etgen-Baker
Photo proberty of Sara.
                    Sara with brother Eddie getting ready to
                            play basebal.  lPhoto property of  Sara.

We stood outside the dilapidated picket fence and shaded our eyes, casting our gazes across the grassy pasture of old man Buhler’s farmland. His thriving cotton farm had once been one of the largest in the region—a 20+acre piece of land near the center of town. . . .

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The Eskimo Igloo Cake






Sara Etgen-Baker



 
© Copyright 2022 by Sara Etgen-Baker
Photo proberty of Sara.
                      Photo property of  Sara.

Mother’s rectangular-shaped kitchen was tiny—no more than 7 feet long and 5 feet wide. Although equipped with a moderate-sized refrigerator and a full-size gas range, it was cramped; had no pantry; and little storage space. Storage was so sparse that Mother kept her pots and pans in the oven overnight and removed them the next morning when she prepared breakfast. . . .

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Intangible Ingredients






Sara Etgen-Baker



 
© Copyright 2022 by Sara Etgen-Baker
Photo proberty of Sara.
          Mother, Winfred Stainbrook Etgen
                  Photo property of  Sara.
Poto property of Sara.
        Granny, Helen Morain Stainbrook  
                Photo property of  Sara.

After Granny died, Mother requested only one item from her mother’s possessions. “All I really want,” Mother told my uncle, “are her old recipe cards and antique file box.” Mother’s request puzzled me, for I knew Mother didn’t need the recipe cards and file box for any practical reason. She’d known for decades how to make Granny’s pumpernickel bread, sauerkraut, and her breakfast specialty—streusel kuchen. . . .

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The Poor Little Matchstick Girl









Sara Etgen-Baker



 
© Copyright 2022 by Sara Etgen-Baker
Photo property of Saara.
Mother, Winifred Stainbrook-Etgen.  Photo property of Sara.
Photo property of Saara.
Father, Edwin C. Etgen.  Photo property of Sara.
                    

"The Poor Little Matchstick Girl" is a memoir and a true, biographical account of my brief encounter with a neighborhood girl named Deana—a ragamuffin girl who moved into my childhood neighborhood for a short period of time. . . .

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The Enchanting Story of the Wolf Moon




Kelly Maida



 
© Copyright 2022 by Kelly Maida


Photo by Richard Loller.
 Photo by Richard Loller.                          

There are those that say a wolf sang the moon into existence. And there are those that say the moon is a god and that is why the wolves howl. Because they are worshiping her. I have always loved learning about the moon. I love to sit before her and adore her. . . .

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Chicken Little Goes Shopping




Sam DeLeo



 
© Copyright 2021 by Sam DeLeo




Photo from Pixabay.
Photo from Pixabay.

What’s that, Pop-Pop?” Albee said, pointing upward.

Where?” said Pop-Pop.

At 71, Pop-Pop, or Earl Sykes, wore thick glasses and his straggly gray hair rimmed a large bald spot, effecting a bit of the demented professor look.

There,” said his grandson Albee, “in the sky.” . . .

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The True Meaning of the Holidays




Kelly Maida



 
© Copyright 2022 by Kelly Maida


Photo by Richard Loller.
 Photo by Richard Loller.                          

Have you ever thought of an upcoming holiday and felt overwhelmed? We see on television and have watched how others celebrate the holidays. It includes a lot of decorating, cooking and the purchasing of presents. . . .

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My Journey to Kolkata




Chaitanyamoi Ceta


 
© Copyright 2021 by 
Chaitanyamoi Ceta



Photo by Maud Beauregard on Unsplash
Photo by Maud Beauregard on Unsplash

. . . .I am reading my school text book in the table. One of the chapters dealt with the extinct animals and I am looking at the picture of the woolly mammoth and its long tuskers. In curiosity, I wondered, “Is it possible that an animal with long tuskers once roamed on the earth?”. . .

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Life Before The Internet



James Osborne


 
© Copyright 2021 by James Osborne




Photo by andre govia on Unsplash
Photo by andre govia on Unsplash.

Our water dipper looked much like a soup ladle. Everyone in our family and many neighbors used it to drink water from a galvanized pail perched at one end of the kitchen counter. We didn’t know then, in the late 1940s, about the dangers from lead solder on the seams, or sharing the dipper was causing the whole family and others to come down with colds or the flu, and us kids with measles, mumps and chickenpox. . . .

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Holiday Magic



Deon Matzen




 
© Copyright 2021 by Deon Matzen


 
Boy and Dog Park, Langley, Washington.
Boy and Dog Park, Langley, Washington.  Photo courtesy of the author.

 On a cold clear day in December, an old gentleman sits by himself on a bench near a bronze sculpture of the Boy and His dog, located in a small park on First Street in Langley. . . .

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Danley & Coy, Young Adventurers




James L. Cowles

  

© Copyright 2021 by James L. Cowles

 

Photo by Quino Al on Unsplash
Photo by Quino Al on Unsplash


It was a cold winter day, too cold for the two barely teen boys to find any comfort in outdoor fun. There were no computer games in 1954 and little else electronically to entertain besides a black and white TV, with a 10" screen and only three stations to choose from. . . .

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Harry's Remorse




James L. Cowles

  

© Copyright 2021 by James L. Cowles

 

Photo by Christian Erfurt on Unsplash
Photo by Christian Erfurt on Unsplash


Snow flurries were flying and the temperature was rapidly dropping. Christmas eve had finally come to the little Kentucky township of Lyndon.  Harry had just turned sixteen last summer and was thinking about girls and cars and not much else.  Those who knew him, knew he was always thinking, "what's in it for me." but now, as Christmas approached, he had become even more self-centered. . . .

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Blackberry Brandy
 





Joyce Benedict


 
© Copyright 2021 by Joyce Benedict

Photo by Daniele Levis Pelusi on Unsplash
Photo by 
Daniele Levis Pelusi on Unsplash
                           

. . . .The  operation completed I awoke with my right arm encased in a thick cast from shoulder to hand. It was Christmas 1952. I had just undergone the second of three orthopedic operations  performed due to polio contracted when I was four. I cried quietly each night from pain, self-pity and loneliness.  I wanted to be partying. I was just a junior in high school. . . .

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Easy Kill




James L. Cowles

  

© Copyright 2021 by James L. Cowles

 

Graphic courtesy of Pixabay.
Graphic courtesy of Pixabay.


This might interest a few of you, I don't know. It started as a story a friend told me, that was just too hard to believe. If you have a couple of minutes, I hope you'll read it and give me your thoughts. . . .

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What Lies Beneath





Christin Kaiser



 
© Copyright 2020 by Christin Kaiser


 

Photo property of the author.
Photo property of the author.                      


The foundation of our old farmhouse was dry laid fieldstone, which Dad pointed in the early 1940’s when he placed a concrete pad for the new furnace. The pad covered the central portion of the dirt floor, leaving much of the rest of the cellar under the midsection and the barn apartment unimproved. Never one to waste builders’ material, Dad pointed much of the stone foundation at the same time, using the remaining mortar. . . .

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The Abandoned





KC Chan Wing Haw



 
© Copyright 2020 by KC Chan Wing Haw


 

Photo by the author.

Photo by the author.                      


This story tells how I as an individual who likes to think we have forgotten our roles the way our daily lives take us on. Storeroom is one place we rarely spend time tidying up or even use our free time thinking bout what contains inside. I decided to open this door and I see a different self. . . .

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Lost in Switzerland





Justina Ogodo


 
© Copyright 2021 by Justina Ogodo

Photo by Patrick Robert Doyle on Unsplash
Photo by Patrick Robert Doyle on Unsplash                                                

. . . . The journey was totally unplanned, and it was past midnight as we wandered about in a foreign land. We had never visited Switzerland before, neither did we understand the language. Everywhere we turned was like a dead end — the streets were deserted, of course. . . .

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No More Innings




Lew Goddard

Edited by Anne Goddard



 
© Copyright 2021 by Lew Goddard

Photo by Christopher Campbell on Unsplash
 
Photo by Christopher Campbell on Unsplash                                             

That felt extremely good! There it goes, the baseball I just hit! Up, up, soaring toward the fence, and over it! My twenty fourth, an even two dozen, home runs for my team. . . .

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The Seagull'
 


Joyce Benedict


 
© Copyright 2021 by Joyce Benedict

Photo by John Higgitt on Unsplash
Photo by 
John Higgitt on Unsplash
                           

. . . . In the summer of 1984 I had decided to take a trip. I was recovering from what had begun as a beautiful relationship, but ended by being destroyed by the ravages of alcoholism. The trip was my prescription for a broken heart.  I believed it was impossible to ever love again. This man had satisfied me intellectually, emotionally, physically and spiritually.  I was 47, mourning the loss, and drained in every way from my efforts to ‘cure him.’  The change of scenery eagerly anticipated. . . .

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Half-Starved As A Child, She Fed Everyone
Life Lessons Mama Taught Me



Karla Bowen Herman


 
© Copyright 2021 by Karla Bowen Herman



Photo of Mama.  Property of the author.
                     Drawing of Dortha as a girl. Property of the author.

Everyone who comes into my house for the first time always comments on the wall of photos featuring family members cooking in the kitchen. It is to honor my mother, Dortha Fox Bowen, who was half-starved as a child, but made sure her younger siblings were fed—as well as everyone around her, for the rest of her life. . . .

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A Mother Always 'In The Mood'
 




Joyce Benedict



 
© Copyright 2021 by Joyce Benedict

Photo by Jens Thekkeveettil on Unsplash
                                        Photo by Jens Thekkeveettil on Unsplash
                           

. . . . It was April 12, 1945. My sisters and I came home from school one day to our little house in Corpus Christi, Texas. It was deathly quiet. We three looked at one another questionably. Always, mother would be ironing in the living room, a stack of clothes piled high on the floor, Glenn Miller, Benny Goodman and other familiar sounds  blaring away  on the old Philco radio. My mother dancing  her boogie-woogie style as she ironed. . . .

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You Can't Always Tell A Priest By His Collar




Frank Stern

 
© Copyright 2021 by Frank Stern




Photo by CHUTTERSNAP on Unsplash
                                                   Photo by CHUTTERSNAP on Unsplash

Rented klieg lights illuminated the concrete walkway, lending a festive air to the quiet suburban neighborhood. Cameras snapped and whirled as community leaders, church dignitaries, parishioner families and invited guests in animated conversation trekked their way through the open maple doors. The minister said “Welcome” to each person who entered – as did the President of the Board and the President of the Women’s Auxiliary. The local Methodist church was dedicating its new sanctuary. . . .

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My Most Memorable Visits




Okoye Gosife Janefrances


 
© Copyright 2021 by 
Okoye Gosife Janefrances



Photo by James Coleman on Unsplash
                                              Photo by James Coleman on Unsplash

. . . .The 5th of August, 2017 was a day I will never forget. That very day, we were to have the grand finale or the national level of a quiz I had been participating in right from the parish level. I and my partner together with a few others including the MCA animators travelled to Benin for the quiz to represent Lagos Archdiocese being that I was the first and my partner was the second position at the archdiocesan level. . . .

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Covid Castaway




Stanley Bloom

 
© Copyright 2021 by Stanley Bloom






Photo by Ross Stone on Unsplash
                                                                  Photo by Ross Stone on Unsplash


My travel story begins with a scheduled three-week visit to family members in California. That was early in March last year. Countless flight cancellations, travel restrictions and ESTA extensions later, instead of being six thousand miles away, I was still there. But life for me was not to be a simple matter of seldom venturing beyond the front door, mask-wearing and social distancing whenever I did step outside, thoroughly washing hands and ordering supplies online for delivery. Much more drama lay in store. . . .

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Cross Country Jaunt




Tiffany Smith

 
© Copyright 2021 by Tiffany Smith




Photo by Julia Karnavusha on Unsplash
           Photo by Julia Karnavusha on Unsplash

On June 2nd, 2020, at ten am in the morning, I started driving out of Long Beach, California, where I had lived for several years, toward a friend’s house in Millsboro, Delaware, not far from the city where I grew up in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. But Philly, with relatives of mine still stuck in 20th century thinking, wasn’t my ending destination. I wanted to go and be of help, service, and what I thought was to be love, to a friend who had suffered some very personal losses in her life. . . .

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War and Woman




Arad Niksefar


 
© Copyright 2021 by Arad Niksefar



Photo by Levi Meir Clancy on Unsplash

                                                    Photo by Levi Meir Clancy on Unsplash

I was busy playing on the family farm when I heard the sounds. A boom, shots firing, fear and Parisa’s mother screaming out her name. Sounds that are never heard in the village of Boustaan. I could hear fear, chaos and the need to escape in the sounds around me. The loud noise of bullets firing sounded like pop-corn bursting in the fire. They sped past the terrified villagers and once in a while someone would fall to the ground. . . .

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Behind The Masks

 

Shivaji K. Moitra 

 

© Copyright 2021 by Shivaji K. Moitra 
   

 

          Photo by Swarnavo Chakrabarti on Unsplash
                                                                Photo by Swarnavo Chakrabarti on Unsplash

The hellish curse, the inferno, the vicious plague, the pandemic, by whatever name we may wish to describe the most terrible scourge of modern times, still seems to be an understatement. . . .

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The Philippines is a Rice Place to Live









Gloria Lauris

 
© Copyright 2021 by Gloria Lauris




Photo property of the author.
                                                   Photo property of the author.

When people talk about SE Asia, typically Thailand, Malaysia, Bali and Indonesia spring to mind. But the Philippines? This ‘Pearl of the Orient Sea’ is often overlooked by tourists and by foreign retirees as an affordable option. . . .

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Camping and Covid-19




Sally Quon

 
© Copyright 2021 by Sally Quon




Photo property of the author.
              Photo property of the author.

How’s that?” My son asked. “Does it have enough air?”
Even though I could feel the cement pad below the tent brushing my spine, I was quick to acquiesce. The mattress was firm enough. The problem was that I weighed too much. If we added any more air, the plug would just plop out the first time I rolled over in the night. I’d rather deal with a slightly less than perfect mattress now than deal with sleeping on the ground later. Besides, my mattress at home was firm. It wouldn’t be that different. . . .

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My First Glimpse into the Real Mexico




Michelle Lin

 
© Copyright 2021 by Michelle Lin





Photo by Michelle.
                         Photo owned by the author.

Is Chipotle an accurate representation of what Mexican food is like? I have always been a passionate Mexican food lover. But, people often laugh at me when I appreciate the burrito bowls from Chipotle, calling them "Mexican food." Last year, I was fortunate enough to be selected to attend a language exchange program in Mexico where I built life-long connections and saw the authentic "Mexican food." . . .

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Campground Gods on Padre Island




Janda Raker

 
© Copyright 2021 by
Janda Raker



Photo by Brittani Burns on Unsplash
                                                     Photo by Brittani Burns on Unsplash

Like most gods, campground gods are subtle, almost impossible to perceive, difficult to determine their wishes and the results of their judgments. My mom had always told my brother and me to leave the world a better place than we found it, and I have taken that literally, in many ways. I wipe off countertops in public restrooms, volunteer for social-justice organizations, sat on the board of the local PTA, vote, and of course, tidy up campgrounds I stay in, always trying to pick up litter around my campsite. . . .

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Life Was Calling, And I Had To Go




Ankita Bagri

 
© Copyright 2021 by 
Ankita Bagri



Photo by the author.
                             Photo by the author.

. . . .In her usual disillusioned style, my friend, Prerna, used to say, “Europe would be the high point of our lives, nothing after this will ever come close.” Looking back, the 36 days Euro-trip, was so chock full of memories that every word spoken then, every thought from those times, became unforgettable. . . . .

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Travel Solo, Not Alone




Hilary Bryn Thomas

 
© Copyright 2021 by 
Hilary Bryn Thomas





Phoyo by the author.
      Hilary's journals, guidebook,
      and maps. Photo by Hilary

In this essay, Hilary Bryn Thomas captures memories of a journey fifty years ago, when she traveled from Canada to Argentina by land and a little by sea. She traveled solo, but not alone. . . .

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Bison, Bear, and Elk - Oh My!




Suzanne Anderson

 
© Copyright 2021 by Suzanne Anderson






Photo by Goutham Ganesh Sivanandam on Unsplash
                            Photo by Goutham Ganesh Sivanandam on Unsplash

Tourist visit Yellowstone National Park, hoping for wildlife encounters. Being from the Midwest, I’ve encountered bison in fences and elk in nature. I’ve even sighted a black bear in my front yard as I drove into my driveway. My first visit to Yellowstone exposed my latent fear of grizzly bear. . . .

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Deep in the Canyon




Robert Sperry

 
© Copyright 2021 by Robert Sperry




Photo by Parsa Mahmoudi on Unsplash
                                        Photo by Parsa Mahmoudi on Unsplash

We continued to sing and laugh in the back seats of the old station wagon as it rumbled through the wilting early June desert heat. The excitement and anticipation began to build as we gradually approached our destination. Finally arriving, we clamored out to get our first look. As a teenager in the 70’s, I was well practiced at looking cool. Not much could elicit emotion from me, or so I thought until I stepped to the edge of the south rim of the Grand Canyon that bright summer morning. “Wow” was about all I could muster in breath taking awe of the overwhelming beauty and enormity of it all. And then the realization truly hit home - we were somehow going to the bottom to camp for a week. . . .

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The Old Normal




Aditi Neelakantan


 
© Copyright 2021 by 
Aditi Neelakantan




Pboto owned byy the author.

It was the January of 2020 when my sister and I visited the beautiful country of Vietnam. It had been a couple months of planning, syncing schedules, drawing up itineraries and occasionally yelling at each other, but now we were walking into the airport with the sweet trepidation of having successfully coordinated our first international trip together. It was around midnight when we walked to the terminal and patiently waited to board our flight to the city of Ho Chi Minh. I recited random facts about Vietnam as my sister, or Akka as I called her, nodded, politely feigning interest. Life was good. . . .

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Somewhere In Between




Arch Ramesh

 
© Copyright 2021 by Arch Ramesh




Photo by Bna Ignacio on Unsplash
                                                    Photo by Bna Ignacio on Unsplash

. . .Walking down streets like these, debating between the two-dollar fresh juice at the local hawker center or the eight-dollar bottled juice at the retro-chic juice shack, I always found myself in between these Singaporean contrasts. Unfazed, I swerved down the scrubbed alleyways in search of something that fit. Indian by origin, American by design, I had always found myself trapped in the space in between the two words...and worlds. . . .

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Who Says The Best Trip Is An Unplanned Trip?




Tya Ulfah

 
© Copyright 2021 by Tya Ulfah




Photo owned by the author.
                                                          Photo by the author.

At exactly 01.00 pm ACST, I stepped out of the bus. Today was the deadline for the Finance and Accounting group task. The course that had been running since last month was the toughest course I have ever taken in my life. How not, this was a foreign major for me. Luckily, I received an Australian Awards scholarship, but the program that I followed was a double degree with a predetermined major. Like it or not, I had to finish what I started. . . .

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A Park Reborn - Gonarezhou National Park



Diane McLeish



 
© Copyright 2021 by Diane McLeish



Photo by the author.
                                            Photo by the author.

The roads less travelled in Africa lead to exhilarating places and some of the most spectacular scenery in the world. The more I travel in Africa the more I yearn to discover new wild, remote and untouched areas. For me the African bush is a feast for the senses with different excitement and energy every day. . . .

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Come Away, Step Across the Tide




Avani Sudhakar


 
© Copyright 2021 by Avani Sudhakar




Photo by Ravit Sages on Unsplash
                Photo by Ravit Sages on Unsplash

Your journey begins across the beach.

It’s five o’clock, and the tide is still low. To your left, you have the murky green waters of the sea, and to your left, you have the brownish sands of the beach. Take off your shoes or sandals; roll up your trouser legs. You begin your trek on wet sand that the tide has shaped into lovely ridges. . . .

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A View From Above



Edie Jones



 
© Copyright 2021 by Edie Jones





Photo by Jordan Steranka on Unsplash
            Photo by Jordan Steranka on Unsplash

ACA 2000, Albuquerque, New Mexico. That is what I read on my cup, as I sit here relaxed looking down at the waves. 2000 was the year of the last American Camping Association conference my husband Ted and I attended. . . .

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Sharing



Edie Jones


 
© Copyright 2021 by Edie Jones



Photo by Ethan Richardson on Unsplash
         Photo by Ethan Richardson on Unsplash

My heart is heavy as I listen to the radio and hear devastating news from around the world. First there’s the terror experienced in Afghanistan as the Taliban takes over the country. Then Haiti and the horror of the earthquake and now a torrential storm that has them reeling. On top of that, are the many reports of hospitalization and deaths from the Delta Variant, in our country and all corners of the globe. And closer to home, wildfires burning out of control with smoke cascading down upon us and a Hurricane gaining force on the east coast. . . .

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Lost and Found in Los Mochis




Brian Wettlaufer

 
© Copyright 2021 by Brian Wettlaufer




Photo by Marv Watson on Unsplash
                                Photo by Marv Watson on Unsplash

Are coincidence, fate, and good fortune different experiences than divine intervention? I suppose it depends upon circumstances and your personal convictions. I faced this question head-on years ago while on a journey through Mexico. . . .

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Foreign Anxiety




Stephanie Maldonado


 
© Copyright 2021 by Stephanie Maldonado



Photo by Victor Rodriguez on Unsplash
                                                 Photo by Victor Rodriguez on Unsplash

Medellín, Colombia.

The once upon a time home of Griselda Blanco and Pablo Emilio Escobar Gaviria, infamous for the creative paths they paved in life. Idolized by those aspiring to follow in their footsteps, by those who enjoy a clever mind and a damn-good true story. Loathed by those who disagreed with their unorthodox ways and those who are first hand victims of their actions. . . .


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Indelible India
\\





Mari Zipes Wallace


 
© Copyright 2021 by Mari Zipes Wallace




Photo by Sonika Agarwal on Unsplash
          Photo by Sonika Agarwal on Unsplash

My husband, Alan, suffers from “itchy feet”. No, not Athlete’s Foot...but the itchy feet that one associates with a wanderlust, a great desire to hit the road. In essence: to travel. And ever since we’ve been a couple, I’ve benefited from this desire of his. . . .

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The Pedestrian Baritone




Laurie Hall

 
© Copyright 2021 by Laurie Hall




Images provided by CCSearch.com. "Bari, Italy" is by L.C.Nøttaasen licensed under CC BY 2.0
                    "Bari, Italy" is by L.C.Nøttaasen. I
mage provided by CCSearch.com.

Bari, Italy. Remembering it, I have an impression of broad, bland boulevards and grandiose civic buildings drenched in unrelenting sun. And the blister blooming on my ankle inside my hiking boots. . . .

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An Unlikely Bunch






Marie-Eve Bernier


 
© Copyright 2021 by Marie-Eve Bernier





Photo by Bianca Ackermann on Unsplash
              Photo by Bianca Ackermann on Unsplash
A short story about how 11.5 people found themselves in a large van in Poland

Of the roughly 24 million tourists who visited Poland in 2014, very few were from Quebec. In fact, the number is so low that no one collects data on just how many. Which is why it is astonishing that I found myself in a large van in Poland with my very Quebecois family and husband-to-be. . . .

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Journey Into Kurdistan
 


Eva Bell    


© Copyright 2021 by Eva Bell 


 

Photo by kimia rezaie on Unsplash
                       Photo by kimia rezaie on Unsplash
                         

In January 1977, the Shah of Iran was still on his throne and entry into the country was not as difficult as it is today. I was on my way to a small Mission hospital situated high up in the Zagros ranges, which catered to the health needs of the Kurds of Iran. . . .

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Sleepless Near Seattle




John C. Hollinger

 
© Copyright 2021 by John C. Hollinger





John.
Photo by the author.

Rain, coffee, granola, and grunge. As we hit the outskirts of the Mecca of all these things, none were on our Seattle to-do list. This visit would be a targeted suburban strike: two goals, three to four hours. In and out, quick and easy. Or not. . . .

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Culture Shocked (West Coast Bias)






John Smistad

 
© Copyright 2021 by John Smistad




Photo by Annie Spratt on Unsplash
                Photo by Annie Spratt on Unsplash

 I am a western USA guy. Born and have lived most of my life in western Washington state. Grew up in Texas. Spent a stint in Salt Lake City. . . .

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Lioness in the Maasai Mara




Cathleen Gianetta

 
© Copyright 2021 by Cathleen Gianetta





Photo by the author.
                                                       Photo by the author.

My husband and I traveled to Amboseli and the Maasai Mara in Kenya in October 2019, just before the recognition of the
COVID-19 pandemic.  This story is one of many amazing experiences we had with the help of experienced guides.

Not far from the dirt road, in the shade of a sausage tree, the lioness sat perfectly still with an air of calm, but also with a sense of command that perhaps resulted from the tension in her muscles that gave an impression of high alert. . . .

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The Feeling of Nationality Beyond the Boundary of Nation (Country)


Milan Rijal

 
© Copyright 2021 by Milan Rijal



Photo by Rach Teo on Unsplash
                                                      Photo by Rach Teo on Unsplash

The recent U.S. Bangla Aircraft crash in Tribhuvan International Airport reminded me of my trip to Thailand. It was a matter of pleasure and honor for me to have the opportunity to represent Nepal in the international forum as a young apprentice. It was back in October 7, 2017, I was making my first international flight heading to Bangkok. My flight had been reserved in the Thai Airways by the travel agent named 'Sunshine Travel Agency' of Jawlakgel. . . .

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Folly Beach




Kamuka


 
© Copyright 2021 by Kamuka




Photo by Bre Smith on Unsplash
                                                                   Photo by Bre Smith on Unsplash

Travel is about so much more than external travel. I was born in South Carolina but I grew up in Wisconsin and have lived in New York City for 30 years. Time travel seems impossible they say, but the past is always with us. I’ve always wanted to connect with South Carolina where I was born. . . .

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Bite, Chew, Swallow, Repeat




John C. Hollinger

 
© Copyright 2021 by John C. Hollinger





John snf Heike.
John and Heike.  Photo by the author.

When you think of Maine, cookies and cream might not be your first thoughts. But after an unexpected challenge for the ages, John now knows that Maine is all about makin’ Whoopie… Pies.

With Heike riding shotgun, Boo asleep in the back, and Tino sunning himself on the dash, John navigated the backroads of Maine. In addition to being transportation across exciting new lands, our little red Kia Rio hatchback had also been acting as our home away from home the past two months. . . .

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Driving Down Highway 101



Deon Matzen


 
© Copyright 2021 by Deon Matzen


 
Photo by Georg Eiermann on Unsplash
                                        
Photo by Georg Eiermann on Unsplash

Sounds intriguing? Sounds like fun? I must admit, it was only a small section of 101, the Pacific Coast Highway. We are camping in late October. Not in a tent, but we are camping in a trailer. We started in Port Townsend, Washington this morning and have traveled to the Long Beach Peninsula, the southern and western-most region of Washington State. . . .

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What No One Told Me
Heidelberg, Germany 1969


Deon Matzen


 
© Copyright 2021 by Deon Matzen


 
Photo by Yutacar on Unsplash
                                        
Photo by Yutacar on Unsplash.

It was autumn and my sister and I were off to Europe for a grand tour, more like modest, but still a great trip for two young women on their own. I had been working for about three years after I had graduated from college and had finally saved enough so I was treating myself to a trip, to a special vacation. . . .

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Camping in Torrential Rains

Deon Matzen


 
© Copyright 2020 by Deon Matzen



 
Photo of cranberries.
                                            Photo by the author...

We couldn’t have expected much other than torrential rains visiting this time of year. It is late October. Not much happens on the Long Beach Peninsula in October. It is Thursday and the hot deal tonight is prime rib at the Lost Roo. . . .

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A Trip Through Culture



Nischal Samrat


 
© Copyright 2021 by Nischal Samrat




Photo of author.
Photo of the author.

Never had I known that a single day field trip could be experienced like a fortuitous cultural unearthing opportunity at a young age. I can still feel the reminiscence of my indelible field trip of my fifth grade. It made me understand the rich cultural roots of my ancestors, marvelous places yet to be visited out there in this enormous world, and how the modernization has led an impact on our culture and the new generation of citizens. . . .

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To Taste the Moments of Coffee: the Roots & Resiliency of a Rio de Janeiro Café Owner




Kate Morin

 
© Copyright 2021 by Kate Morin




Photo by Agustin Diaz Gargiulo on Unsplash
                              Photo by Agustin Diaz Gargiulo on Unsplash

 As an ICU travel nurse on the front-lines of the pandemic, I took 4 months off to rest, recover, and live in Rio de Janeiro. During my time here, I met a lovely woman named Anna. This is Anna’s story amidst the backdrop of current day Rio de Janeiro. . . .

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Portal, North Dakota




Nikki Everts

 
© Copyright 2021 by Nikki Everts





Photo by the author.
So, do you have a gun?” The young US customs official asked me as I stood across the counter from him and his two colleagues.

No!” I replied. His question made me feel cranky and offended. I was a middle aged, verging on old, woman tired from a week of driving in the summer heat without air conditioning. Raised in the US, I had moved to Canada in my twenties and fully accepted my adopted country’s persona of non-violent civility. Couldn’t the young man see that I was a Canadian and therefore unlikely to be carrying a firearm? . . .

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It's A Small Town
A Generous Act Can Bring Trouble



Marcia McGreevy Lewis


 
© Copyright 2021 by Marcia McGreevy Lewis


Photo by Ben White on Unsplash
Photo by Ben White on Unsplash

To say that my partner never met a stranger is an understatement. He chats easily with many generations and has found his way across the globe by doing what he calls a “shout out.” People are always happy to give him directions, and the response he gets is heartwarming. He talks to nurses, barbers, uber drivers, bellmen and food servers. Board chairs, tech geniuses and doctors--no problem. He truly cares about getting to know people, and they pick up on his genuine interest by rewarding him with gratifying interactions. . . .

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A Long "Summer" Vacation to Remember



Justina Ogodo


 
© Copyright 2021 by Justina Ogodo



Photo by Timothy L Brock on Unsplash
                                          Photo by Timothy L Brock on Unsplash

What do you see when you do groceries in the produce section? I see hot peppers, and I remember. This story is set in 1974 when I was a young girl. I was born in a small seaport city with a humble background. At the age of six, we moved to a bigger city. Like every city dweller, my siblings and I were unfamiliar with rural life where most of our extended family resided. Because of our city dwelling, our cousins in the village often thought differently about us, much like those living abroad in the Western world, Europe, North America, etc. My father planned my school long holidays for 1974 for my sister and me. I was ten years old. We would spend the entire vacation with our uncle on his farm situated in a rural part of the country. . . .

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Reptilian Brain




Zandi Eberstadt

 
© Copyright 2021 by Zandi Eberstadt




Photo by Dominik Lalic on Unsplash
                                                  Photo by Dominik Lalic on Unsplash

. . . .Every doctor talks about me like I’m the problem. Panic DISORDER. Well, maybe I’m not the problem, the issue is a world that expects people to live in crates without being anxious. To lug ourselves around underground tunnels like rats. . . .

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Coping With PTSD




Kelly Maida



 
© Copyright 2021 by Kelly Maida



                                                   

I have already felt like a misfit and that I did not fit in before I was diagnosed with PTSD. And ever since I found out almost five years ago that I have Ptsd, I feel now more than ever that I really don’t fit in. I feel the biggest problem is society does not even understand ptsd at all. . . .

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In Armenia You Would Never Starve




Elena Bubeeva

 
© Copyright 2021 by Elena Bubeeva




Photo by Gor Davtyan on Unsplash
                                              Photo by Gor Davtyan on Unsplash

If you were given a chance to see gorgeous mountains higher than the Alps and embrace Stalinist-style architecture, would you say no?” asked Alex in a rush. It was summer as I sat idly in Hamburg. He just received a response from the Chair of Expeditions Committee. . . .

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The Revolution or the Co-existence?




Somaya El-Absawy


 



© Copyright 2021 by Somaya El-Absawy




Photo by Elena Mozhvilo on Unsplash
                          Photo by Elena Mozhvilo on Unsplash

I have different overlapping stories. They raise a confusing thorny philosophical question about the choosing between revolution and coexistence. . . .

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To My Beloveds
(You know who you are)




Kirthana B. Raj


 
© Copyright 2021 by Kirthana B. Raj





I haven’t written anything remotely good in the past year and this was not the piece I intended to begin with, see I have all these messy webs of stories, poems, essays about pandemic, about all the new people I got to shake hands with, the new things I got to learn, the social media and hundreds of others but this is important because this is all I keep thinking about (so we write what we must, not what we want).  . . .

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My Aunt Went To Victoria Falls




Natisha Parsons

 
© Copyright 2021 by Natisha Parsons





Photo by the author.

 
Although this story is written as a story told by a niece, telling of her aunt’s trip, the trip was taken by my daughter and myself as a seventieth birthday gift from her to me.
 
My Aunt enjoyed telling me about her visit to Victoria Falls in Zimbabwe. They had a lovely, though short, journey in a South African plane. She went with her best friend forever. . . .

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It's Never Enough
 






Joyce Benedict



 
© Copyright 2021 by Joyce Benedict



                           

A most unusual afternoon luncheon in a New York mansion brings a valuable, life  lesson to a young married woman. . . .

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The Route To My Root





Samuel Edward

 
© Copyright 2021 by Samuel Edward







This nonfiction piece is a travelogue which narrates the story of how the contest of who gets elected in the revered elders' council was settled by means of the most traveled person. Here, the writer had garnered enough experiences through his extensive travels through countries in the West, East, North and South of Africa. His traveling adventures subsequently won the crown for him as he emerged the winner from the pile of contestants. . . .

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The Shine In Us




Siti Nabihah

 
© Copyright 2021 by Siti Nibihah




Photo by Phil Desforges on Unsplash
                       Photo by Phil Desforges on Unsplash

It has been a pretty good day. So a little dirt on me is fine. It’s fine. Not that it matters much anyway, with four days passed since my last bath. I grimaced slightly without looking down on my feet. They felt damp and cold. Tufts of muddy grass must have taken a grip in between the spaces of my toes. I wriggled them discomfortingly and hoped they hadn't touched anything more unpleasant. Clearly, tracing the vast fields of Altanbulag Sum in Ulaanbaatar at ten degrees celsius in flip-flops was not a very good idea. . . .

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A Trip Back To Time




Ilhamul Azam

 
© Copyright 2021 by Ilhamul Azam






Hey Ilham, get up!” says my sister while shaking my dozing body.
 
This time I didn't ask to let me sleep for five more minutes as the excitement of going to the most beautiful place in Bangladesh had had its enchantment for a few days in me. I and my sister get ready on a foggy morning, this is the first time we see the first sunshine peeking through our balcony. We don’t have sleep dangling from our eyes, rather we look forward to having an adventurous experience incorporating the primitivity of Bandarban. . . .

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Skytree





Sarah Hozumi

 
© Copyright 2021 by Sarah Hozumi




Photo of the skytree.
Photo by the author.
                                        

Though I’d arranged the time and place, I still found myself hiding in a boutique near the train station when he showed up. He was in a nice shirt with dark pants – a slim figure amid the crowd of people filtering through the station’s entrance. I could see him from the boutique’s window as he sat down on a bench nearby in the humid summer heat, resolutely scanning the crowds for me. . . .

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What Happens Here





Barry Purcell

 
© Copyright 2021 by Barry Purcell




Photo by Nicola Tolin on Unsplash
                                                        Photo by Nicola Tolin on Unsplash

Everything I know about Las Vegas I have learned against my will. My first time, in 2003, was part of an extended honeymoon with my first wife which also saw us take in Hawaii and San Francisco. Originally we had planned to get married in Las Vegas, but it turned out that she did not want our marriage to be a post-modernist statement, filled with irony and self-referential humour. In retrospect, I can see her point. We spent two blurry days in that salt lake neon cabaret, blurry because this city will not allow you to slow down. . . .

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The Story of a Mountain Girl




Nawshin Anjum

 
© Copyright 2021 by Nawshin Anjum




Photo of a river in the mountains.
Photo by the author.

There is a river on one side and mountains on the other side. The green water of the river seems to merged into the sky. And the mountains? They will surely touch the sky today. The mountains seem to have conquered horizon after horizon, standing proudly with heads held high. They must meet the clouds today. And the blue sky also seems to have welcomed and wrapped them in a sheet of clouds. The yellow-white wild flowers on the mountains are like the ornaments on a velvet .Can you imagine this heavenly beauty? . . .

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The Kooteny




Frank J. Stewart

 
© Copyright 2021 by
Frank J. Stewart





It was 1964 and it was a proper morning of mountains and rising sun. Quail in the bushes, the Raven discovering some irritant on the beach below A new day awaited and the young man had decided on a course of action. It was a moment that he had been awaiting and had done much preparation for. This was the day that he and his cousin would go to the high River. The north Kootenay of British Columbia. . . .

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Trip Through The Western Part of New Mexico



George Pintar
 
© Copyright 2021 by George Pintar






I recently read an article about the severe traffic congestion on the roadways around the Albuquerque area, which reminded me of a trip I took from Grants to Deming. I had anything but congestion on this trip. I was lucky to see more than a handful of oncoming cars and only a few more pickup trucks. . . .

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El Viejo




Giles Ryan

 
© Copyright 2021 by Giles Ryan




Photo by DaYsO on Unsplash
                     Photo by DaYsO on Unsplash

Once you've had a long and deep immersion in another culture and language it will mark you, and some things will abide long after, including attitudes and indeed behaviors previously unknown, so that you become just slightly someone else, and the effect may not always please you. I have another proof of this on the Camino. . . .

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Re-Construction




Lew Goddard

Edited by Anne Goddard



 
© Copyright 2021 by Lew Goddard

                                               

I jumped when Jaxon burst through my field office door. “Boss, he hollered, come with me, ---hurry! He turned and ran back to the construction site. . . .

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A Prince of Thieves
Crime and Antic of a US deported Jamaican Youth


Winston Donald

 
© Copyright 2021 by Winston Donald




The Green Line bus came down the hill with such a speed, missing the retaining walls of my grandmother’s home by just a foot and braked suddenly at my gate. The accompanied jolt threw the baggage , boxes and some jute bags of pumpkins onto the recently asphalted rural road . I disembarked from the bus and looked to my right to see the little thief picking up another person’s property. “ Pumpkin thief” , I shouted jokingly and Prince looked up with the typical ominous grin , frontal teeth glistening with gold , red and green, typical colours that are part of a Rastafarian attire. The sly look on Prince’s face hid his devious character that preyed on the village butchers, baker, shopkeepers, small farmers and even my grandfather the parish cabbage farmer. . . .

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Simon's





Lew Goddard



 
© Copyright 2020 by Lew Goddard


Photo by Kayle Kaupanger on Unsplash
Photo by Kayle Kaupanger on Unsplash

This story is the continuation of another story of the homeless, The Streets.  That was about the time when Simon was on the streets and was forced to survive. That story was just the beginning to his new and different life in the big city.

Simon has obviously made a name for himself after becoming the manager of what use to be Helpers and is now Simon’s. . . .

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Lost and Found





James L. Cowles

  

© Copyright 2021 by James L. Cowles

 



                    


It was there all this time, I guess, huh(?), but, how could I miss it? I must have walked passed it a thousand times, but if it was there, I missed it. But, every time? No way!  Someone must have known I have been looking for it for months; someone who felt guilty they took it, so now they put it where I could find it? But, who and, and, well.... why? . . .

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Guilty or Not Guilty



Hiliary Chukwu


 
© Copyright 2021 Hilary Chukwu





There was nothing left. The doctors have tried all they could, they have exhausted their medical options and nothing seemed to work. The boy would not still come around. Dr. Smith walked out of the theatre and the look on his face said it all: all hope was lost! He was the most senior surgeon in the clinic, so if he could not handle it, then that’s it. There was no need asking him how Jire was doing, but his helpless mother had to ask anyway; even if just for the very sake of doing so. . . .

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Never Again



Hiliary Chukwu

 
© Copyright 2021 Hilary Chukwu





So I had to embark on this journey over the weekend, again without my car and again because my mechanic failed to deliver the job I gave him to do on the car since two weeks; going on three (a story for another day). I had to take my nephew back to the village. He had visited to spend the long holiday with my household. . . .

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A Cedar Pilgrimage




Angelina Saule


 
© Copyright 2021 by Angelina Saule






We’ve made it,’ breathes my mother. With our heads bobbing somewhere above numerous peaks, with a carpet of thick white cloud approaching, we’ve finally come to the Tomb of Job (‘Maqam Nabi Ayoub’ in Arabic). The massive checkerboard of negotiations crisscrossing the mountain ranges are behind us or below us, which, depending upon the perspective, seems to have dwarfed the daily human activity of the town Jezzine, where we had just stopped by a friend’s for a robust coffee. . . .

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Webber002






Lew Goddard

Edited by Anne Goddard


 
© Copyright 2021 by Lew Goddard


                                                   

It was just about midnight and he was on his daily, I should say nightly, walk through an area where the residents were in bed and he encountered no one. It wasn’t described as a stroll; in fact, it was a very rapid walk that extended his long legs and stretched powerful muscles. Muscles that were developed and refined over a long period in his life. His trip was five miles return summer and winter. Winter in this city, never saw snow. . . .

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Transatlantic Crossings




Francis Edwards

 
© Copyright 2021 by Francis Edwards






My grandmother for years and years filled my questioning ears with her revelations of going forwards and backwards from England and America on ships. She used to be invited to sing on board many Cunard Ocean Liners leaving Liverpool, UK to Philadelphia, U.S.A. up the Delaware River or to New York City. You can imagine how fascinated I was as a little boy. I knew how to get her talking about her experiences every time I took down from the mantel piece a wooden replica of an ocean liner she purchased from one of her trips and held it in my hands. . . .

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The Trip that Was...and Wasn't






Alice Burnett


 
© Copyright 2021 by 
Alice Burnett



Alice's drawing of her brother.
Drawing sent by author.

“Alice, a white skirt would be nice to travel in on the plane!” said my mother.To my eyes, a white pleated skirt was the height of fashion, and I was thrilled. Most of my clothes had been hand-me-downs lately, and I hadn't minded, but I had just turned thirteen, and fashion began to matter. “And I'll wear my good suit.” My mother was all atwitter, and wasn't thinking clearly about the practicality of such outfits. That's just how people travelled in those days, the early sixties. . . .

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1971 - Hiking the U. S. - A Memoir




Don Lubov


 
© Copyright 2020 by Don Lubov



 

Photo by Atlas Green on Unsplash.
                                 Photo by Atlas Green on Unsplash

Boredom and loneliness could not stand the adventurous light of this day. They both scattered like unwelcome insects blinded by the sun. Destiny roared into my apartment like a freight train on steroids.  Bam! Bam! There’s a knock at the door. It’s eight a.m. on a Saturday. . . .

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For Evermore




Priyadarshini Chanda


 
© Copyright 2021 by
Priyadarshini Chanda





Being a member of middle class family and being cautious regarding financial stability at the end of every month, going to extensive trips was something rare for person like me. But after my fourteenth birthday for a birthday gift, my parents arranged a trip to the nearby mountains for three long days. . . .

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Of Indian Food and Bhutanese Buddha




Mansi J. Sood

 
© Copyright 2021 by
Mansi J. Sood






Has your love for food changed someone elses course of life forever? Mine has.This is a story about my love for

 
Rajma-Chawal which led to me becoming a successful matchmaker in a foreign country. . . .

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Molted




Paul Farran

 
© Copyright 2021 by Paul Farran






Following Paul Farran’s survival from a Taliban suicide attack, we accompany him during his transformational hike along the Camino de Santiago across Northern Spain, from where he shares his introspections, struggles, and revelations as he perseveres in his efforts to recover from trauma. . . .

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Searching for Sloths



Žiga Povše


 
© Copyright 2021 by 
Žiga Povše




Photo of a toucan by Richard Loller March 2015.
Photo by Richard Loller.

We are standing next to our car in the middle of a wide dirt road when a loud bang scares the hell out of me. I turn around and the biggest iguana I have ever seen lies by the roadside; it fell from a tree and bounced off the tin shack onto the road below. Junior, a local surf instructor who agreed to take a day off to be our guide to the southwest of Costa Rica, runs after the iguana and brings it back. . . .

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Scratching the Surface




Fiona Kamal

 
© Copyright 2021 by Fiona Kamal





Niamh and I are both gazing abstractedly at the postcard scene before us, where red-fringed rickshaws buzz like flies around laughing, visor-shaded tourists, and the odd delivery van snails-paces it across crowded flagstones, driver dangling an ash-loaded cigarette patiently out of a wound-down window. . . .

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Liesl and Me




Scott Talbot Evans



 
© Copyright 2021 by
Scott Talbot Evans

Photo by Farrinni on Unsplash
                                                          Photo by Farrinni on Unsplash

When people ask what my relationship to Liesl is, I tell them she is my fiancée. The next question, of course, is, “So when’s the wedding?” That’s where it gets tricky. “Maybe some day.”. . .

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The Wake-up Call



Nancy McAtavey



 
© Copyright 2021 by Nancy McAtavey




Photo of an African wild dog.
Photo by the author.        

I expected my African safari experience to be like one of those episodes on a travel documentary: happy vacationers aboard a Land Rover, listening to their guide point out the exotic animals and the ever-changing landscape of South Africa. My travel brochure never mentioned just “how up-close and personal” this adventure would be. . . .

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Hiking With Fireflies




Renata Pavrey

 
© Copyright 2021 by Renata Pavrey




Photo of fireflies by Renata.
Photo by the author.

The world was aglow with sparkling delight. It was Christmas in the middle of June, as nature lit up in celebration of life itself.

My love for nature has often taken me trekking and hiking on the outskirts of the city. I enjoy exploring the outdoors, climbing up forts, traversing trails, and appreciating life under the blanket of a night sky. It’s an enchanting experience to skedaddle from the busyness of city life, even if only for a few hours or days. . . .

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Bubbledon County





Mort Morford

 
© Copyright 2021 by Mort Morford





Photo by John Moeses Bauan on Unsplash
                                                 Photo by John Moeses Bauan on Unsplash

If you believe that water is water and rocks are rocks, you have not been to Bubbledon County. . . .

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Anaro



Zaynab Ben Allouch


 
© Copyright 2021 by 
Zaynab Ben Allouch




Photo by Anna Karp on Unsplash
                                        Photo by Anna Karp on Unsplash

Being alone was my biggest fear. And I never thought that destiny will take my parents and leave me alone against the world.

I quit morning jogging, I couldn’t wake up, I don’t why. After one month, I started feeling powerless and hated myself for that, so I decided to come back to my morning routine even without motivation. . . .

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Blue Highway Brew Tour




Richard Fulton


 
© Copyright 2021 by Richard Fulton





A beer tasting adventure along the blue highways from San Antonio to Bellingham, Washington. . . .

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Roots




Jaehee Son


 
© Copyright 2021 Jaehee Son




Dangsan tree.
Drawing by the author.

I don’t understand why we have to go, this place is boring and it smells.”

Seung Uk! Don’t talk like that! We haven’t seen your grandmother in years, and we promised to visit for Arbor Day”. . .

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D Short's Last Cruise

Cody Short
 


© Copyright 2021 by Cody Short 

 
 

Photo of the Cosy Anna.

Photo by the author.

A forty-five-foot Mainship trawler was launched in St Petersburg, FL in 1985, the same year that I became Cody Short, D Short and I finished the year by getting married and having a New Year’s Eve Party.

I always called Dennis Short “D Short” because that is how he introduced himself on the phone during our initial contact. We met through a dating service before computers were household equipment. . . .

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Chicago Revisited






Susan Taylor


 
© Copyright 2021 by Susan Taylor



Photo by Christian DeKnock on Unsplash
                       Photo by Christian DeKnock on Unsplash

What a great place! My husband and I recently were in “The Windy City,” (more about that later). It was early October, unusually warm; in fact, temperatures were in the high 70’s, with a smattering of rain. After a punctual and comfortable flight on Southwest Airlines, we disembarked at O’Hare Airport, pulled our suitcases through a corridor, and shed the layers of clothes we had put on that morning in our hometown, San Diego, California. . . .

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September







Laura Elizabeth Horgan



 
© Copyright 2021 by Laura Elizabeth Horgan


Photo by Rhys Fradley on Unsplash
                                Photo by Rhys Fradley on Unsplash

I’m breaking and I don’t know how to show you the cracks.

I’m not sure if we can be pieced together this time, but I’m trying. I keep my mouth shut and hold it all back. The dam won’t break even when its full. Even though this time, it feels empty. . . .

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I Gave Oxygen To My Wanderlust




TWP Tilden


 
© Copyright 2021 by TWP Tilden


 



During my very first sojourn to Los Angeles, all those years back, my nights were spent at no less a haunt than the Cecil Hotel. Back then, in the early aughts, memes didn't really exist, conspiracy buffs weren't mainstream, and “Cecil Hotel” meant absolutely nothing to me. But enter its name in any search engine nowadays and one can easily click himself deeper and deeper down the rabbit hole of know-it-all YouTube plagiarists, replete with slick video-editing and tiresome voice-over narration. . . .

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The Other Man



Pamella Laird



 
© Copyright 2021 by Pamella Laird







                                       Photo by Alexander Nachev on Unsplash

He pulled the heavy, studded door behind him. Inside, a dull thud that mimicked his dejection echoed from pillar to pillar. Then silence. A silence that moved mist-like into the furthest corners and hung above him… waiting.

Ken hesitated, a stranger to an atmosphere that despite his misgivings said, ‘Welcome.’ The walls seemed to hold a serenity in their arms as if it were a national treasure, a gift to all who shuffled namelessly into its haven. Cautious, alone, haunted by the loss that had shattered his life Ken released his withheld breath. The world had moved on, leaving him in an airlock of thinking that skulked in his brain like a malevolent fungus. . . .

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A Needed Job





James L. Cowles

 
© Copyright 2021 by James L. Cowles


 


                    


      A few of my friends and family said, “Your time in the insurance industry will be short and very boring.” Almost everyone asked me if they had requested a list of prospects from me, you know, a list of friends, relatives and the like. They had, but I didn’t give anyone the satisfaction of an answer. This was a new job, and my new employer had arranged school to prepare me to get my license, even before I started work. . . .

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Lingering Memories




Kelly Maida




 
© Copyright 2021 by Kelly Maida



Photo by Peter Herrmann on Unsplash
                                                      Photo by Peter Herrmann on Unsplash

We never can pick or choose the memories that linger in our mind. If only it were that easy. Memories are like songs playing on repeat sometimes. But unfortunately we can’t pick and choose the songs on our memories playlist. I only have one memory of my uncle Mark. I was three years old and I remember him playing the Eagles song called life in the fast lane. I remember I couldn’t say fast lane. I kept saying play gasoline, play gasoline. . . .

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