B is for Butterfly; C is for Courage

In the rearview mirror I spied her little hand hanging out the half-open back window, the wings of her butterfly finger puppet flapping madly in the wind.

B is for butterfly. B is also for bunny ears, the alphabet item she brought to pre-school earlier in the week. Bunny ears are good. They are cute and they stay on her head, where I can see them bobbing sweetly in the same rearview mirror. They do not feel compelled to fly out the window. Continue reading

Island Dreaming in Wintertime: Revisiting Malapascua

IMG_4730
Dark rum daiquiri at Dutch Kills, NYC

It is winter in New York City. Oh, I know, that flirty temptress Spring lifted her skirts a bit a few days ago, but the City was very recently besieged by benumbing temperatures and snow and is once again shivering under a rainy grey pall. I am, however, finding ways to cope, like happy hour, because no matter the weather, you can always find a good cocktail in this great sodden metropolis. Just the other day, I sat at LIC-favorite Dutch Kills, enjoying daiquiri-induced day dreams about fun times on hot, sun-soaked islands… like Malapascua in the Philippines. Continue reading

Wanderlust Is Born

When I was a very young girl, my favorite song was “Leavin’ on a Jet Plane” as recorded by Peter, Paul and Mary. The track was on the folk trio’s “best-of” cassette, which I would insist my mom play in the car on the way to ballet practice. That album was also in the small collection of cassettes that accompanied our family of five on road trips and included other greats like Loretta Lynn, Willie Nelson, Johnny Cash, Kenny Rogers and the Muppets. I could sing “Too Much of Nothin’,” “The Gambler” and “Coal Miner’s Daughter” as well as I could “Rainbow Connection” by the time I hit second grade.

In 1980 my parents loaded us into a light blue station wagon and took us on a grand tour of The West. Continue reading