Category: Travels With Grandma

The Mutiny on the 7-2-7

In the mid-1970s, Gary and I decided to go back to Lima, Peru to visit his parents before they moved back to America after over a dozen years abroad. Peru was pretty much the same. If anything, it seemed to be economically worse off. As I sat alone in a car, young women would approach... Read more »

The Mother-in-Law (The Interview Oprah Missed)

You heard us before you saw us. With a jubilant scream, we’d run across rooms to embrace–startling bystanders and timid animals alike. At this point our heads would tilt together as we jabbered and finished each other’s sentences. So much to catch up from the last time we’d been together. My wonderful, BFF mother-in-law, Bea,... Read more »

Airline Travel Abroad in the 1970s

Tegucigalpa, Honduras 1970s Once upon a yesterday, two airplanes sat on the tarmac at the airport. Painted on the fuselage were the airline’s initials SAHSA, an acronym known locally as “Stay At Home-Stay Alive.” As the passengers settled in on their small airplanes, one pilot climbed up the stairs to board each airplane. The engines warmed up.... Read more »
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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 »

At home, abroad; the expatriate

Forgotten abroad, is the expatriate. Charles Dickens would have named the person sitting across from me, “the well-meaning relative.” Late into the night, the interrogator repeatedly hammered as to why we lived abroad? “How will your kids ever grow up to be real Americans, when they’ve never lived in the USA?” My overtired brain had no... Read more »

Once Upon a Kidnapping in Guayaquil

Moving to a new country is always the same. The husband goes to yet another office; as my darling mother-in-law Bea said, an office is an office. The kids go to a new school where they hope to find new friends. And I, as the left behind spouse, am home, alone. Very, very much alone.... Read more »
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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 »

Christians, Christmas and the Atheist down the block

You don’t have to be Christian to say happy holidays. When I was a pig-tailed Protestant child tucked up in my single bed in New Jersey awaiting the iconic fat man with the bag of loot (who had a passion for my Mother’s homemade cookies), I enjoyed the Christmas holidays. As a nice Jewish matron... Read more »

Vegetarian Rental--the latest in PC NYC

Now I’ve seen it all. Looking for a rental in NYC, one popped up that looked of interest. That is, until I came to the line saying it was “no smoking and vegetarian only.” The rental is vegetarian? Really? You’re renting a property to the public and limiting it to vegetarians only? What if we... Read more »
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Boston from Italy

From Florence, Italy, the view of the tragedy in Boston at the marathon is clear…the wide world is smaller than ever. We are all connected despite our tribal moments when group A demeans group B, or seeks to kill it. The bells tolling in Florence echos those in Boston. Though 7 hours ahead of my... 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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