We challenged YourLifeIsATrip.com writers to tell us about home in 25 words or less. What it means. What it doesn’t mean. Where they feel it. Where they don't. Is it a person? A place? A memory?. And, don’t let the small size fool you — at the heart of each of these very very short essays is a powerful story.
When Nancy King celebrated her 80th birthday with a vision quest ceremony in rural Quebec, she carried a lifetime of self-doubt into the forest with her. Today, she's free from all that. Find out what happened.
Cindy Carlson dreaded her 50th birthday and feared the heartbreaking agony of aging that she'd witnessed in her parents. Then, a kayak adventure in Hawaii revealed a surprising paradox about fear, and a new perspective emerged.
He studied the French tapes. He bought the French software. He even took the French immersion course. Jules Older was ready for Paris. He would sound just like Maurice Chevalier and leave the French with a better impression of Americans. He would be the Pretty American.
Jane Davis' two dogs Hogan and Magic were both therapy dogs who regularly accompanied her to the prison where she volunteered. Sadly, both dogs have since passed away. In this story, learn how the dogs impacted the life of a former prison inmate.
All Elyn Aviva wanted was a quiet, peaceful vacation in a rented cottage in Penzance, Cornwall. Noise, traffic, and a lack of privacy was what she got instead. Ready to call it quits and return home, she creates a mental trick that helps her to endure. Until it doesn't.
Not everyone celebrates their 80th birthday alone in the wilderness for four days and four nights . But that's exactly what writer Nancy King elected to do when she signed up for a spiritual Vision Quest. Discover how she manages to tamp down fear and ready herself for the woods as she prepares for the big event.
When writer Joe Shaw, a hyperconnected traveler, arrived in Snowdonia National Park in north Wales, he discovered epic landscapes, adventurous travelers, a dazzling night sky, but no phone or internet service. None. Zip. Nada. Dream getaway or vacation nightmare?
It's not always easy to age. But here's the thing. It happens to everyone. In this story, discover how writer Carolyn Handler Miller faces the physical and emotional challenges of aging during a hike at Kasha-Katuwe Tent Rocks National Monument in northern New Mexico.
Kids and culture is a difficult thing to get right. How to introduce the kids to high culture while managing not to ruin it for the adults involved? Author Jules Older attempts to do just that when he buys tickets for the family to see Madame Butterfly at the Sydney Opera House. He'd hoped for the ultimate Believe-Me, You'll-Thank-Me-Later cultural experience. His young daughters, however, saw things differently.
Mary Ann Treger is a talker. When she's not talking, she's texting or emailing or surfing social media sites. Being connected is her cocaine. Even alone at home, political pundits yak on the television in the background. So why would this motor-mouthed writer go cold turkey and sign up for a silent retreat in an isolated abbey where shutting-up is the numero uno requirement? Read on...
Looking back on his life, former Air Force pilot turned research psychologist Milton Wood shares five important lessons learned "while herding aircraft around the sky and working closely with those who do."
As an American expat teaching English in high schools and universities in the Philippines, YourLifeIsATrip.com contributor BJ Stolbov's students often ask him, “What makes Americans American?” Learn why it's a question that he finds difficult to answer as America becomes increasingly socially and politically divisive and discover how his answer is still one that unites.
To travel solo for days in a kayak is to be not on or in but of the water. It loves you, rocks you like your mother did, speaks to you with many voices, supports your meandering, bathes you, feeds you, tells you when to travel and when to stay still on the island of the moment. On every trip there is a time of storm, of being wind-bound when the judicious kayaker stays put, writes, rests, wanders, constructs stone sculptures and listens for the still, small voice.
Maria Natividad Pascua Olivar has died. Nanay Mary (Mother Mary), as she was known, was 76 years old. Her husband, Ruben Olivar died suddenly 36 years ago, leaving Nanay a single mother with six young children. Her eldest, Rowell, died when he was hit by a car at 6 years old. Her next eldest, Ronaldo died suddenly of a heart attack 9 months ago at the age of 50. With her four surviving children, two daughters and two sons, all now in the 40’s, around her bed, and after a long sickness, a confluence of incurable old-age illnesses, Nanay Mary breathed her last. She died peacefully.
My wife, Michele, and I spent much of our twenties in one of Taiwan’s lesser known cities, Tainan, where we soaked up the former capital’s unique culinary, social, and cultural delights. Food and rent were cheap while teaching wages were high. Meeting friends for a lavish feast on a whim was practically the norm.
I sit tightly wedged into an economy class airline seat, braced for the long haul — a pashmina hanging from the seat back, a water bottle in the magazine flap, ear pods in the iPhone jack—when a handsome Air France steward stops to stand beside my aisle seat.
“Excuse me, madam,” he says, leaning into my view. “These two are mother and daughter,” he continues, gesturing to an elegant middle-aged woman in the row in front of me and the twenty-something blonde seated beside me. “Would you please exchange seats so that they can sit together?”