So What’s It Like To Volunteer?

Todd and I had long talked about combining travel and service and the Rotary Club provided a great opportunity. When Albany Rotarian Ellen Davis and her friend Mykell Winterowd gave a presentation about Partner for Surgery/ACPC and the important work they do in Guatemala, we were ready to hear. They…

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A Very Special Home Visit

A Very Special Home Visit

On the sixth day of the jornada (medical mission) we were almost back to Antigua when ACPC Director of Operations Ariel Marroquín invited us to make one more stop. Health Promoter Gabriel Vásquez was traveling with us, and he was due to check in on one of his families. Did…

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Solving Problems, Changing Lives

Solving Problems, Changing Lives

Alé van Scoyoc, 17, participated in a Partner for Surgery/ACPC surgical mission in Guatemala City in January 2018. With her father, she witnessed a successful cleft lip surgery. Alé spoke with the Canadian surgeon who did the procedure and learned of a medical tape that has been found to improve…

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The Meaning of Partnership

The Meaning of Partnership

I have already mentioned that Partner for Surgery lives up to its name by walking with patients through the long process of surgery and recovery. That sounds good. But there is nothing quite like seeing it for yourself. We were privileged to tag along with Health Promoter Aurelio Cordova as…

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Many Hands. They're All Needed.

Many Hands. They’re All Needed.

Todd and I were both eager to sign up as volunteers on a Partner for Surgery mobile medical mission. But once everything was arranged and we still had weeks to wait, I confess we had moments of doubt. Neither of us has a medical background of any kind. I speak…

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The Best Kind of Partner

The Best Kind of Partner

July 2, 2018  |  Guatemala, Partner for Surgery, Travel  |  10 Comments

This June, Todd and I joined a team from Partner for Surgery and their counterpart Asociación Compañero Para Cirugia (ACPC) on a medical mission to the highlands of Guatemala. We visited four towns in four days — Chajul, Nebaj, Chiché, and Zacualpa. Doctors examined patients and referred many cases to…

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Courir de Mardi Gras

Courir de Mardi Gras

March 13, 2017  |  Travel, Uncategorized  |  2 Comments

I have long wanted to witness a rural Louisiana Mardi Gras, and last week I did. This is nothing like the more familiar Mardi Gras as celebrated in New Orleans. This is a ritualized traveling show that can be kind of creepy, a little bit scary, very colorful, and a…

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The Many Faces of Rosie

The Many Faces of Rosie

August 14, 2016  |  Events, Local Interest, Uncategorized  |  3 Comments

This is what it looks like when almost 2300 people gather to win a Guinness World Record: the most Rosie the Riveters together at one time.

But look closer. It’s about so much more.

History. Community. Celebration. Recognition. Gratitude.

Those are some pretty good reasons for a party in my book. It was…

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July 22, 2015

July 22, 2015

July 25, 2015  |  Local Interest  |  4 Comments

There is something mysterious and perhaps even romantic about abandoned spaces. The rust and decay can have a certain kind of beauty, and can engage our imaginations as we wonder what the place might have been like in its prime. Movies often employ a time-fade technique where decrepitude is gradually…

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In the Company of Books

In the Company of Books

June 30, 2015  |  Books, Travel  |  No Comments

I love books. And bookstores. And, most especially, used bookstores. They are magical places where time slips away. The discoveries are many: new titles, forgotten titles, inscriptions that hold a story, volumes that simply must be mine. Books are pretty and they smell good. Used bookstores are quirky and individual….

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