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Columns

  • Country Comparison

    I am leaving beautiful Berlin and will soon be home again in Indiana.

    As my visit comes to a close, I find myself wondering once more why my ancestors ever chose to leave such a place.

    Make no mistake, I love the U.S. and am proud and thankful to be an American, but three hundred years ago, things were different.  It’s hard to imagine what my grandparents were thinking when they left family, community, and traditions behind and set sail for the unknown.

  • Duets, Karaoke and Grammys

    I wish I had included on my bucket list “sing in the street with a hobo” because I would now be able to mark that item accomplished. 

    While strolling the cobblestone of Vilnius, Lithuania, we happened upon an elderly gentleman. He had a long white beard and blue eyes that sparkled as he sang.  His age and the fact that he had no musical instrument, save his voice, set him apart from other street musicians.  He stood with outstretched hands and upturned face while singing traditional folk songs from the Baltic region. 

  • The essentials we need as humans

    There are several essentials which we all must possess.  The first one of these is identity.  We want to be known.  We want people to call our names.  We like to see our names in print.  One of our greatest fears is the fear of anonymity.  When people feel that they are nobodies (nobody knows them, nobody cares about them, nobody thinks of them) then defeat becomes very real for that person.

  • Photo evokes melancholy

     Today is a melancholy day.  I am sitting in Berlin, listening to the rain drizzle against the slanted windows of our attic apartment.  In the distance I can see the American flag flying over the U.S. Embassy, and beyond that, the glass dome top of the Reichstag, which is the German Parliament building. 

  • Value Fellow Workers

     The human connection is at the root of all satisfying work.  None of us works in isolation, no matter what work we accomplish.  The people we work with not only affect the quality of our accomplishments; they can greatly enhance our pleasure in the process. 

    I feel strongly about the people I work with and not only value and appreciate them.  I love them.  Just as I can’t stick with my work without becoming passionate, it is extremely important to me to deeply care about the people I work with, no matter what part they play.

  • Living a Grace-Filled Life
  • FAKE SYRUP AND CHILLED RED WINE

    When I asked the German flight attendant for ice water, he responded, “One U.S. drink, coming up! You Americans think you are healthy, but your drinks are very unhealthy. You drink everything so cold. Sometimes, even your red wine!” 

    It was the first time in my life I had been told that ice water was unhealthy. I refrained from pointing out that he hails from a country where pork is served for three meals a day, plus snacks; and sometimes that pork is raw.  If anything cold is unhealthy, raw pork tops the list. 

  • A NEW ‘VIEW’ FROM NEW COLUMNIST

    Have you ever thought that everyone in the world is screwed up, except you?  That if more people were like you that things would be oh so much better?  If you could just explain your side of things, surely they would all understand?  Haven’t we all?

  • DEFINING YOUR PERSONAL PHILOSOPHY

    Each of us has a personal philosophy, but few of us have defined what it is.  Although you may never have sat down and defined what your philosophy is, it is operative and working in your life at all times. 

    It deals with what you believe about the world in which you live, about its people and events, about how events and circumstances affect you and how you affect them.

  • PUTTING A TWIST ON BUCKET LIST

    Last Wednesday, my younger sister completed her 30x30 list; a list of thirty items she wanted to accomplish by the age of thirty.  Friends and family cheered from the sidelines, occasionally joining her adventures as I did when she went zip lining.