On the way back to our hotel in Hoi An one afternoon, a young woman offered to pop my zit. The […]
Monica GraffAfter two decades of copyediting for scholarly publishers, I decided to put down my red pen and pick up a black one. Now I write essays, some of which have been published on various websites and in print anthologies. When I'm not in Montana, I'm on Dewees Island, SC, or wandering around the planet with my husband, always wondering what to make of this amazing gift of life.
Cambodia #3: A Drop in the Bucket
From her seat in the tuk-tuk, Nita held her palm above her eyes and scanned the roadside. She looked not […]
Cambodia #2: Ant Pee and the Silver Lining of Agrarian Communism
Despite our early start, we didn’t beat the heat. Cambodia was in the chokehold of a record-setting heat wave, and […]
Cambodia #1: Pay It Forward
Two shots of rice whiskey and twelve hours of sleep didn’t help. My head and chest felt like pressurized powder […]
Himalayas #9: The Final Frontier
Back at my desk in Montana, I stare at the Rocky Mountains and try to remember the rooftop of the […]
Himalayas #8: The Birds and the Bees
In Italy it’s the Catholic churches. In India it’s the Hindu temples and Buddhist monasteries. You can’t swing a squirrel […]
Himalayas #7: Finding Hope
Once upon a time, there was an American socialite named Hope Cooke who longed to travel to distant lands. She […]
Himalayas #6: Why Not?
One might wonder why it’s easier to bathe a cat than it is to enter Sikkim. I certainly did. But […]
Himalayas #5: Mugshot Bazaar
We got in the jeep and proceeded to Rangpo’s upper bazaar. Dustin dropped us off in front of a string […]
Himalayas #4: Border Crossing
“Wait here. I’ll be right back.” Nidup, our quick-smile guide with a Buddha belly, walked up to a bank-teller-like window […]
Himalayas #3 A Darjeeling Tea Tour
“Did you see that man in the pith helmet,” I asked Chris as we walked down a grassy two-track into […]
Himalayas #2: Glenburn Tea Estate
The next morning, I found a gazebo with a table and chair where I could sit alone in the early […]
Himalayas #1: On the Way to Darjeeling
Getting to a place like this isn’t easy. When you look at a map of India, Sikkim is a tiny […]
India #6: Loving the Ganges to Death
Floating down the Ganges one magical evening, I took a deep breath and filled my lungs with what I hoped would be […]
India #5: The Sheen of the Taj Mahal
Call me a cynic, but the fairytale romance sounded Bollywood to me.
India #4: The Little Tout
It’s hard to feel connected to a country when touring by train. You’re separated from most of it by glass […]
India #3: The Maharajas’ Express
The Maharajas’ Express. Just the name makes you think of a turbaned prince draped in silks and jewels charging across a […]
India #2: Ringside in a Rickshaw
“There is no end to the adventures we can have if only we seek them with our eyes wide open.”
India #1: You’re Going Where?
Chris and I weren’t sure this was a trip we really wanted to take anymore. But, too late. Reservations had been made and deposits paid. The next day we’d be in Delhi.
Scotland #4: Knot Tying at Balfour Castle
If you would have asked me last year who got married nowadays in a castle, I would have said Madonna or Princess Di. Certainly not me.