Grocery Store Grace

Yesterday I made a quick run to the grocery store a mile down the road, an entire world away. Instead of the fresh, organic, independent brand, small batch, sexy imported or even sexier locally produced and lovingly packaged food that I like to get at the Food CoOp, Trader Joe’s or Whole Foods, most everything there…

The Ultimate Existential Hack

I have this trick that makes shitty things easier to bear. Ready? Lean closer. Here it is – I have a theory that, before I came to earth, God and I went on a little date.  

The Scientific Process

It was one of those end-of-summer/beginning-of-fall Michigan afternoon days.  The sky was the color of blue so common in drought-afflicted California, which I’d been missing sorely all summer while suffering in the humid purgatory of midwest peninsular living. My bumper-sticker-covered black RAV4 was humming down US-23 on the way back from selling shimmery violet eye…

Looking for Answers

There are few things I love more than someone saying to me “Naomi, you’re an expert on (massage, teaching Spanish, online dating,  international travel, jam-making, heart-breaking, eye shadow application, etc.”, what’s your opinion on this? Really and truly.   I think I’m not wrong when I say that most of us have a littler inner…

Hamsa, or The Time I Almost Got Blown Up By A Possible Terrorist

Hilde and I took a train back to Madrid from Italy that summer.  We had just walked five hundred miles across northern Spain as peregrinas on the pilgrim trail of Santiago de Compostela with many of our siblings and several friends and decided to treat ourselves to a week of recuperation on the beaches of…

Cuba Libre

If you haven’t yet read Three Shots of Rum, at least take a peek at the first few paragraphs, otherwise the lovely cleverness of this title will completely pass you by. It was the second second day on the job. The medical team and I took a tired-out bus painted a lurid purple an hour into…

So Much More

After many hours of wandering with a mounting sense of panic, I am no longer lost in the foggy, newly plowed and reorganized fields of northern Spain. Whew. And I didn’t go more than a couple of miles out of my way, either. I followed the distant sounds of cars and my compass readings to…

Third Person Love

Self-care can become a whole new world (cue Aladdin, please) when we think of ourselves in the third person. As in “I’ll bet Naomi would really love it if someone washed this three-week pile-up of dishes here in the sink for her.” Invariably, I’m willing to do an act of loving service for a friend…

Holy Baby in Holy City or The Magic Carpet Ride that Never Happened

The streets of Old City Jerusalem wander and stagger through the covered souks of various quarters – Armenian, Muslim, Christian, Greek Orthodox. This rabbit’s warren of never-ending stall-lined streets sellis anything one could possibly want or need and has been in existence in this place, in some form or another, for literally hundreds of years….

Three Shots of Rum

Other than having a clever name, I wasn’t quite sure how or when I’d begin this story. I didn’t know if I’d have anything interesting to say until we got up into the hills and started seeing 19 year old moms with 5 kids already, dads with machete wounds and small brown children with bellies…

Love Is

It was a dreary, rainy, long walk of a day mid-Spain, mid-Camino, mid-October. Thirty or more kilometers, with at least half of it through rocky, rain-lashed fields as far as the eye could see in either direction. It was one of those stretches where all you can do is long for soup and dry socks,…