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Destinations, Dreams and Dogs - International adventure with a fast-track family (& dogs) of Old World values, adopting the Russian-Italian-American good life on the go…!



Mid-East Peace Process Goes Kaput

Well, well, well, no surprises this week in the news.  Hot on the heels of Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas saying that Palestinians will never recognize Israel as a Jewish state, the Arab League meeting in Kuwait echoed the same sentiment. Do you get this?  The ARAB League insists that they will not recognize a…


Rainy Day Roadtrip Thoughts

I do a lot of command performances, not that I am in any way a performer, I just have to be certain places at certain times, rain or shine.  So once again, over the weekend, I’m in a rental car, traveling at high speeds in pouring rain and fog. Better than snow and ice. I…


Big Bully Putin…At Home & Abroad

President Vladimir Putin of Russia is either paranoid or vitamin-powered, because the guy is busy 24/7 putting out fires at home and abroad.  It’s hard when everybody hates you. As his piece de resistance, the Sochi Olympics, came to an end, protesters again flooded Moscow’s streets.  So he blocked the websites of his critics, and…


Young Daughters of Privilege

With two teen sons and two teen daughters of our own, I gravitate toward other teens and young adults in the news, whether to learn or lament over their “example”.   Currently, two well-publicized daughters spring to mind, the first demonstrating a clear sense of entitlement and the second, almost exactly the opposite. Enter Rachel Canning,…


Renting Abroad – Odd & Unusual Situations

Spring and summer vacation season approaches and you may be considering a foreign getaway that involves renting a convenient base of operations.  In the past, I’ve advised what to bring to such homes or apartments which could offer little or lots in the way of amenities. Today, we cast our gaze to even more unusual…


Real-Life Russian Reality Story

I’ve always asserted that reality is far more interesting than fiction and there’s a story from Siberia that confirms my suspicions.  The saga comprises such a strange and other-worldly scenario as to almost be unbelievable. It was while researching another matter entirely that I learned of this story. Carried by the Smithsonian magazine last year,…


Where Have All the Americans Gone?

What’s happening to our country when thousands of Americans are renouncing their citizenship?  Yes, I know we generally think of our Russian children coming of age and possibly renouncing their Russian citizenship, but here we are with thousands of Americans doing the same in the last calendar year. Why is that?  Taxes. Some are seeking…


Defender of the Fatherland

On the off chance that you were simply lolling about this weekend, and didn’t receive the memo, Sunday was “Defender of the Fatherland Day” in Russia. (They may need a similar day soon with all of the unrest in Ukraine, but I digress….) Nowadays, the semi-holiday has turned into more of a Father’s Day, or…


Is Sochi Going to be Safe?

We’re starting the one-month countdown till the Sochi Winter Olympic Games and no, I don’t believe the Russians can keep the games, their athletes, and their spectators safe. I hope they do.  Maiming and mutilation should happen to no one, but given Russia’s track record with terrorism, honestly, don’t count on it.  As was recently…


Mohammed’s Old City Pizza

Almost 40 years ago, Benedetto was a young college student working in Israel for the summer when he stumbled upon Mohammed’s bakery.Cats wandered in and out at will, and characters appeared at all hours of the night, since he often baked while the rest of the neighborhood slept.  It was the perfect place to eat,…

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