I saw a movie the other day with one of those lines that will last a lifetime -- “All we are now are memories for our children." And what better memory can any child have than of Christmas morning? It’s now a few minutes past midnight in Uganda. We’re into Dec. 25 eight hours before [...]
I recently wrote here about bringing the children some Turkish Delight back from a trip to Istanbul, where I stopped for some writing fodder while travelling from Canada back to our African home. Some other thoughts from this strategic part of the world, and on peace this Christmas season, are in this Hamilton Spectator column from [...]
(The Hamilton Spectator - Saturday, December 20, 2014) ISTANBUL, TURKEY ✦It was a Sunday, the first day of Advent, en route from Hamilton to my African home, when I toured the Old City here, a place where religions and cultures and empires have collided for centuries. This is when my guide for the day said what he did. I had asked him about some historic notes and holy relics in the Topkapi Palace Museum, items identified as thousands of years old from ancient Israel, but looking dubiously more modern and Ottoman-like, when he told me as plainly as if he was giving the weather report that, "It's all mythology anyway. Whatever you believe is true, that's the truth."
The question came in the UnGame the other evening. “Who is the funniest member of your family?” We’d have to put it to a vote. Jon – “I am!” This from the boy who, when he scores a goal in soccer, pulls down his sports shorts and wiggle his, uh, rear. That is when he’s [...]
The beauty of Christmas is that you don't have to have it all together to join the choir. In fact, it's more fitting if you're off-key, that is, if you're less than perfect, if you're common. In the most common of places, after all, is where the first Christmas was experienced. By the most common of people. [...]
(Christian Week - December 2014) Today in the food court there was a piano. The pianist, wearing a red Santa hat (naturally), finished “Jingle Bells” through the dull roar of shoppers, their winter coats unzipped, hats aside, while they sat and talked and ate KFC or New York Fries or whatever they happened to have. Then a young woman, scarf thrown loosely over her shoulder, stood and put her cellphone to her ear. Strangely enough, she sang into the phone. And her voice, somehow, melodious and majestic, carried through the entire food court. Brows raised. Heads turned.
We are a story, a living story, if we are anything, and this is one reason, maybe the best, why stories will never go out of fashion. In my own family, much of our time together revolves around stories. We read them every night and often the children read more on their beds, flashlights in hand, [...]
It is nothing short of a miracle that Baby Eliana is alive. The family is grateful for this miracle. But now it has an unmanageable hospital bill of at least $26,000.