Do you believe in signs?

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In September of 1996, I was nearing the end of a solo vacation to the Pacific Northwest. I’d long wanted to leave Atlanta, where I’d spent the past 24 years. I needed a change. I’d traveled throughout the South and the East Coast, and, while many places interested me, none truly had called to me. In February of 1996, though, …

Is rain depressing?

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Few would deny that the Pacific Northwest is one of the most spectacularly beautiful regions on earth, but our climate is notorious. If you don’t live here, I’m sure you’ve heard that it rains all the time—a hard, steady rain that can last for weeks at a time. The sun doesn’t come out at all during the winter, shrouded behind a …

Why I love the holiday season

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Childhood: The magic of Thanksgiving and Christmas When I was a child in Rochester, New York back in the 1960s, the longest stretch of time for me was the month leading up to Christmas Day. Somewhere around Thanksgiving, the thick-as-a-phone-book Sears catalog would arrive. I’d pore over the toy section, informing my parents of what I hoped Santa Claus would …

My soul was born in Hawaii

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I’m fascinated by the fact that many people have an intense affinity for places to which they have no discernible connection, or why they have no affinity for the place where they were born and raised. It’s easy for me to understand why someone would love the place where they were born and where they grew up, even though it …