Parallel worlds and creative foundations

April 14, 2013Places

I became aware that there was an old world existing parallel to the present when I was about eight. We’d just moved into a brand new house built on land that not ten years earlier had belonged to a larger estate. The massive old house still stood—out of view—on the other side of the thick … Read More

The Last Quiet Places

May 15, 2012Places

  Yesterday I was listening to The Last Quiet Places, an interview with the acoustic ecologist Gordon Hempton on the radio show On Being. So good—defining silence as a presence and the absence of noise instead of the absence of sound. This interview resonated so much with me, a person who seeks daily refuge from city … Read More

Farewell Minneapolis Avenue

October 15, 2011Places

My grandparents are old—in their 90s—and it is too dangerous for them to stay in this place with steep stairways and tiny spaces. So they are going to move in one month. I realized that I was putting off the visit because I knew that it would be the last time. How do you go … Read More

A Good-Bye

March 5, 2011Places

During my first stay in Germany—before email, in the early nineties—I got to know a man in my German class named Bodo. He was a 50-something refugee of the Bosnian War, a professor of architecture who had been reduced to a door-to-door sales job in Germany. He smoked like crazy, drank a lot, and had … Read More

Heidelberg at dusk.

December 31, 2010Places

Heidelberg, Germany. + Ontario and other places visualized. (via

Christmas in Germany.

December 24, 2010Places

Freiburg, Germany. It’s been quite an old world charmer, this Christmas: we drove through a snowstorm to the Black Forest, prepared a goose for dinner, walked with candles through the dusk along the river Dreisam, sang carols around the piano with accordion accompaniment, and opened presents under a tree lit with real candles. Warmest holiday … Read More


June 30, 2010Places

Heidelberg, Germany Long before there were digital cameras, I lived in Heidelberg. I took black and white photos and developed everything in the darkroom, and I was just learning to speak German. These last few days have been interesting; seeing the same place with older eyes (and a digital camera—oh how I wish blogs had … Read More

The path to the lake.

April 5, 2010Places

Lake Minnetonka, Minnesota Delightful characters in this photo, especially my great aunt Millie, who always seems to be off in her own world. But what strikes me most about this image is the setting — it is the lake that I grew up on. The little path down to the water, the horizon of trees … Read More

Happy New Year!

December 31, 2009Places

It is just after 6pm and the fireworks are already so loud that I am dreading leaving the house. I found a great description of a Berlin New Year’s Eve here. Warmest wishes!