Category: Taking care of business

Expatriate Networking, Mexican-style 1995

Moving into our home in Mexico City in the summer of 1995, we encountered unique challenges unheard of in Westport, Connecticut. Like having the telephone company appear at the door to ask if we wanted our telephone service connected? Oh, yes please. Well to do that would cost us the equivalent of US$200 in cash. If... Read more »

Thankful for the Small Expatriate World

Within months of arriving in Lima, Peru in 1972, my boyfriend Gary and I were on a street downtown. Greeted by someone who knew him, I asked, “Who was that?” “Oh, one of the Peace Corps volunteers who came to my parents house to take a bath.” Now why hadn’t I thought of that? As... Read more »

Discrimination Against Bladders and Kidneys; or the (not so) Public Toilet

The recent bias episode of two gentlemen arrested in a Starbucks after one asked to use the public toilet brings up many serious questions. Why did an employee call -911? Why arrest the men and not arrest me when I’ve ask the same question in Starbucks? And when the hell will we ever learn, to quote the... Read more »
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Living the expatriate; A is for attitude

Is the glass half empty, or half full? The question hung in the air between the Peace Corps applicant and the interviewer. The interviewer knew the ‘right’ answer. Would the applicant, a wanna-be expatriate? Optimists–and potential Peace Corps volunteers–see the glass as half full, pessimists as half empty. For this reason alone, optimists adjust better... Read more »

Corporal Punishment IS Child Abuse

Let me be perfectly clear, all corporal punishment is child abuse , whether hit, spank, smack or switch (the Southern tradition) a child–it is child abuse. This is not my opinion. It is the specialists in psychology. Don’t give me that old saw declaiming it’s a Biblical injunction. Is that the very same Bible you cherry... Read more »

End Ticket Scalping NOW

For those who have had it with ticket scalpers, for those who wanted to see fill-in-the-blank but were shut out seconds into trying to buy a sold out ticket–there could be a solution if the Do Nothing Congress of the 21st C run by–remind me what party–did something. Legislate that in order to buy tickets... Read more »
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Belgian Budweiser Beer, China Cheap and America Patriotism 2016

With the announcement that Budweiser beer, owned by a Belgian company, rolling summertime pseudo-patriotic red white and blue cans branded “America” that were designed by Jones Knowles Richie of  London, Shanghai, Singapore (and oh yes, NYC)–what is left to parody? When marketing plans are self-satire, comedy is dead. Then again, we in America parody ourselves. Big Boxes stores... Read more »

Tales of an Opium Drinker; or My Mother the Drug Pusher

Who would have guessed that my oh-so-straight-laced Southern mother would push opium on her unsuspecting daughter? But push she did, repeatedly again and again. And I–being the good little girl–would open wide and gulp down that nasty tasting brew called Paregoric. It wasn’t until I was the mother and asked my GP in Vancouver BC... Read more »

Star Wars, Donald Trump and the Aversion Toward Wrinkles.

IF you are lucky enough, you will spend most of your life as an old person. As an old, wrinkly person. Most of the world will never have the privilege. Live fast, die young, leave a good looking corpse may have sounded like a sweet phrase when you were barely old enough to buy beer... Read more »
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10 Days of Chicago Christmas; or 10 Reasons to Leave the Burg

Why would one leave Chicago? Let me count the reasons….and why I’ll sadly take my taxes to pay them in Massachusetts where the government invests in the citizenry. Yes Kristin. The public schools of 8-9-and-10 stars of 10 are actually funded! 1. The gunshot in front of our house Christmas night. Never reported by the... Read more »
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    Candace Drimmer

    I was an accidental expatriate; love and marriage led me to it. One day I was a bandy-legged kid sitting atop my dogwood tree looking out of my small backyard world in 1950s New Jersey, wanting to move somewhere--anywhere, different. Next thing I knew my father had accepted a job in Houston TX. I was ecstatic, it was a foreign land in 1961 America. After high school graduation, my parents’ gave me a matched set of fawn-colored hardsided American Tourister luggage. Taking the hint, I went to college; well four colleges in five years--it was the 60s after all. Meeting a young hirsute anti-war, soon-to-be-Peace Corps volunteer, I fell in love. After finishing up college coursework for my degree, but before I even walking a graduation stage, I grabbed the paper airline ticket my boyfriend had sent me, my brand-new passport, and was off to the airport and Lima, Peru.

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