Adapting to the Society We Live in

When I first started working as a teacher in Liestal, Switzerland, I remember holding onto the pre-conceived idea that Swiss people aren’t really known for their friendliness. Why on earth did the other teachers in the staff room never greet me when I entered or say good-bye when I left, regardless of the size of…

The Light and Dark of Breastfeeding

Breastfeeding can be a source of pleasure and great happiness, but for many it is a time of worry, even controversy. Your baby is there, you are filled with joy and even relief. It is a beautiful moment, filled with light. But there can also be shadows. You might have had a difficult birth – perhaps…

The Shadow Side of the Expat Experience

This column does not shy away from the shadow side of the expat experience, as you know! Nevertheless there is a difference between politely hinting at negative, experienced realities and getting a huge Maglite torch and shining a light into the shadows. Let us get a giant pack of batteries and begin. It starts with…

Of Ghosts and Unicorns and Quite a Few Metaphors

“I’m going to dress up as a unicorn this Halloween!” my youngest child tells me, glitter-eyed. I don’t think this is really in the spirit of Samhain, the ancient Celtic festival of the liminal, when ghosts and spirits walk among us. But it’s not as bad as the year she wanted to go as Twilight…

Notes for New Fathers

Hello, soon-to-be dads as well as you guys who are just thinking about it. This piece is for you. I think it’s nice to share tips and stories with each other. So here we go with a few of the big things I have learned as I approach ten years of being a dad. The…

Feel the Flow

During a recent trip to London, I had the pleasure of talking with a lovely shop owner who suddenly began to discuss her love and admiration for the game of golf. This caught me off guard, because I had never envisioned a fashion-minded owner of a high-end boutique to be remotely interested in a game…

Hearty Baked Pumpkin Soup

When I was a little girl, my father decided he wanted to try out this recipe because it had been recommended to him by a colleague. I had always known that my father had a soft spot for any food with a ton of butter and/or cream in it, so it came as no surprise…