• travel wars: us v. them

      To most, the sixties “generation gap” was a vague, pop-culture generality. To us—my parents on one side, my husband Michael and I on the other—it was my family’s defining motif. We were deeply, truly, madly split on every subject. Police brutality. Dean Martin. Grey Poupon versus French’s. It was all equally significant. Where you […]

  • why can’t I appreciate wine?

      I am a good cook and have a reasonably good palate. But I’ve never been able to identify very many flavors in wine and can never remember any of them. This has always been something of a mystery to me. Scent, like music, which I also can’t remember, seems totally ephemeral to me. It […]

  • Edna’s list

      After my mother’s death at 83, I was surprised to find among her personal papers a frayed and folded magazine clipping entitled Wonders of the world. It consisted of two lists: one proclaiming the world’s ten greatest sights and the other hedging with another 25 runner-ups. The clipping was tucked into her pocket date […]

  • travel fantasy undone

      By the time I was a midlife wife and mother, I knew the Age of Exploration had long since passed, and yet I still craved a sense of discovery—and of self-discovery—when I traveled. The word “trip” continued to have a ‘60’s ring. Over the years, I’d come to realize that what I sought was […]

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