Category Archives: Friends & Family

Mazama Retreat, Day 5

Deeply personal writing, especially about suffering, challenges  the best writers. Other people played roles and even the most objective reporting can’t fully capture all points of view. I’m far from the best writer, and I have enough journalism experience to know how hard it is to get a simple news story right. In the past […]

Mazama Retreat, Day 3

Today marks the 15th anniversary of my son Andrew’s death. Once it was clear the end was near, I made it my mission to help him prepare. Very quickly he let me know there wasn’t much I could tell him. I figured out I should turn myself around, and walk beside him. I don’t know […]

Mazama Retreat, Day 1

Ever since my son died, in 2001, I’ve gone on retreat the last week of October. The 26th marks the anniversary of Andrew’s death. Cancer. He was 16. I come to Mazama, just outside North Cascades National Park, at the head of the beautiful Methow Valley. Just me and my lab, Jessie. We get easy […]

Happy Birthday, Andrew!

29!  And I love that cake! Only 2.5 sticks of butter, 1.5 lbs of chocolate, 3 cups of sugar and 3 eggs. All organic, of course!

Slovenian Cooking

  Research isn’t just about reading or going on location.  It’s also about eating and, even better, cooking.  My second book revolves around a Slovenian woman, so last night I made a five-course Slovenian dinner for a handful of friends.  Because of its location at the confluence of Latin, Germanic and Slavic cultures, Slovenia has […]

Happy birthday, Andrew

He would be 28 today.  

Father’s Day

While my children were growing up, one of my favorite things to do for them was make pancakes.  We had pancakes nearly every Sunday morning.  I’d be up early and make the whole batch, put them in the warming drawer under our oven (the warming drawer is my favorite kitchen appliance), fry up a big […]

Mille Grazie

  Sono appena tornato da Trieste e mi sento impaziente di tornare all’ lavoro di rivedere mio manoscritto, pero prima di tutto vorrei ringraziare tutti che mi hanno aiutato a realizzare le indagini di storia di Trieste e della mia famiglia:  Elisabetta de Dominis e Uberto Fortuna Drossi; Nereo Castelli e Roberto Vicic; Edda Vidiz; […]

Optimism and Patience

My son Michael’s 30th birthday happens this month.  I would greatly appreciate it if you could take a moment to think of him and his family and wish him well.  I firmly believe it will contribute to the healing that WILL happen.  I am optimistic.  Any day now, I could hear his voice on the […]

Umberto Nassutti

Research goes well, a combination of archival research, book acquisition and networking with writers, photographers, academics and museum curators. While digging through my father’s stash of photos, I came across this one, of my grandfather Umberto in his 60s. There are many more, I just think this one captures what I know of the man […]