The Nice Thing About Strangers

Creative Non-Fiction Short Stories. :) Travel, Oldsters, Love, and Compassion.

For Harisa.

Five years ago, I met a beautiful woman from Bosnia on a flight. We spotted each other before we boarded, and since the plane wasn’t totally full, she came over … Continue reading

February 17, 2014 · 13 Comments

I’m Thinking Lovely

She parks in the first spot outside Arby’s, and he waits patiently in the passenger side, readying his oxygen tank as she comes slowly around the long Buick. She wrestles … Continue reading

May 21, 2012 · 25 Comments

For the (Mean) Professor who told me to be Realistic

On a brilliant November day, my students talked me into teaching outside. So we were at an outdoor amphitheater on the Danube when I broke into the story of the … Continue reading

April 9, 2012 · 23 Comments

Not Helpless

I was trudging home from an English lesson with my astounding student, an asylum seeker and former child soldier from Sierra Leone who had the most remarkably shy smile. He … Continue reading

March 16, 2012 · 8 Comments

Packs of Blondes

Granted, it was a small sample, but from the Turkish TV dramas I’d  watched in passive attempts to learn the language, all of the blonde women were evil. Friends in … Continue reading

February 3, 2012 · 25 Comments

Rock With You

The bus is running and the doors hang open, but not a single passenger climbs in. At other gates people impatiently crowd the doors, but at #3, everyone waits on … Continue reading

January 25, 2012 · 7 Comments

Carpe Diem, Handsome Farmer

He had been handsome when younger; he remained handsome, but had reached an age where people gazed at him like his days were numbered. He shuffled down the narrow hallway … Continue reading

January 13, 2012 · 7 Comments

Get In Someone’s Way

Pen at the ready, the old man attempted to fill out his check, clutching the checkbook in one hand and scrawling with the other, so as not to hold up … Continue reading

December 30, 2011 · 9 Comments

Fearless Zumba Septuagenarians

Zumba is like a cruel trick on the elderly ladies in the sparsely populated fitness room: an eight-dollar drop-in fee for overly complicated dance steps and music featuring figures such … Continue reading

December 26, 2011 · 9 Comments

Totally Not Making This Up

The salesman gazes and grins at a tourist sitting alone in the outdoor café. Her chair points toward his shop. To investigate him, she looks across the center line of … Continue reading

December 19, 2011 · 4 Comments

The Shared Eyebrow and the Runaway Tablet

He has a blue jogging suit and winter coat, she wears leggings as pants with a ski jacket. They stand close while waiting for the plane. She tries to hand … Continue reading

December 12, 2011 · 5 Comments

Window Shopping

No need to rush to the airport, two business men opt to take a coffee in the lobby of their hotel, where all of the signs are in English and … Continue reading

December 7, 2011 · 4 Comments

Self-Sufficient

An elementary-aged girl pushed the button for the tram to stop, then turned to her birdcage, which she had propped on a nearby seat. She exhaled and prepared herself with … Continue reading

November 30, 2011 · 6 Comments

The Guy in Sunglasses

He was his sunglasses.  He could see perfectly well, but these were as much a part of his outfit as his long black ponytail. Reasonably, he wore the sunglasses while … Continue reading

November 18, 2011 · 13 Comments

To Health

In a café on the Dalmatian coast, a middle-aged waitress leans on the bar and takes coffee and unceasing cigarettes for breakfast. The music on the radio is lively so … Continue reading

November 4, 2011 · 9 Comments

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