From my perch in South Florida, I reflect on my childhood in the Foreign Service, my near-miss with death in Amsterdam, and the importance of community. I write about politics, travel, hHealth and home.

My diplomat parents made me a fierce defender of America’s democratic ideals. I am grateful to be here. And a day with a palm tree is always a great day. 



Home Leave to the Heartland — Part 2

Our 1962 Foreign Service family trip from home (in Rome) through the American West left an indelible image in my DNA. This is where I was from, although I’d never lived there.

Home Leave to the Heartland

I recently shared a post from the American Foreign Service Association about summer travel in the diplomacy business. It’s the time of year when Foreign Service officers and their families typically move to their new post and/or return to the United States to reconnect with their country and visit family. This periodically required family vacation…


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Dognapping Home Invasion

In this recent piece for the PBS NewsHour, correspondent Malcom Brabant discusses England’s COVID canine calamity. As I wrote in a recent post, dog adoptions have soared in Florida during the pandemic. Same thing in Britain. Toilet paper hoarding and puppy housemates have become the English physiological and psychological base in the Maslow Hierarchy of…

Nurturing Nature

“When we plant a seed, we plant a narrative of future possibility.” Sue Stuart-Smith, “The Well-Gardened Mind”

Finding a Purpose: Americans, Dogs, and a Seagull

I was moved by the Democratic National Convention, beginning with the Zoom-esque choir of American children singing the Star-Spangled Banner. I was moved by the variety of spokespeople for the states’ Convention delegation, by our geography, our languages, our passions. And I was moved by Joe Biden. If ever there was a time for a…


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Foreign service

The True Voice of America

With friends like Michael Pack — and presidents like Trump — damaging our democracy from the inside, who needs enemies?