From the monthly archives: "May 2011"

Huffington Post, May 31, 2011

In the far-flung town of Thiotte, located in the sliver of rainforest still left in Haiti, women in pastel-colored kerchiefs sit at outdoor tables piled high with pale dried Arabica coffee beans. Their hands move rapidly, picking out the blighted or damaged ones, which they toss into a separate plastic tub. This painstaking sifting process is one of the last laps in the coffee beans’ long, labor-intensive journey from the plantation to your double-tall latte. And this year, the 4,000 members of this coffee cooperative will be paid in advance for their harvest, allowing them to pay for schools and other basic social services. The loan comes from Root Capital, a non-profit bank with 250 ongoing projects worldwide, whose mission is to finance the great overlooked middle — projects too big for microfinance, and too small for the commercial banking system — with low-interest loans. It’s a rubric that would cover, in other words, a large portion of the small farms and cooperatives throughout the developing world.

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Litchfield County Times, September 25, 2009

I used to think that having a baby is what brought you into the family of man, but I think I was mistaken.  Now I think that it is dogs that really complete our lives.

As of now, I am still “That Person”: the mother in the one dogless household left in Litchfield County.  But in two week, our family will join the rest of mankind when we welcome a puppy, a mini chocolate labradoodle, with the warmest, softest belly, to our home in Bethlehem.

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As if in anticipation of the arrival of Memorial Day and the summer that follows, our neighborhood, the 920 square miles of Litchfield County we are lucky to call home, has been immortalized over the past several months by the magazines we read when pondering a vacation or when dreaming of places we fear we might never see. One cover trumpeted Vail, San Sebastian, Lake Como, Beverly Hills, as well as our own Litchfield in a list of luxe destinations.

It amused, and I must say, thrilled me to see my landscape stage-lit to perfection in a second magazine, while I stood in line at Stop & Shop in the very town of Litchfield the article twice dubbed ‘twee’ with my haul of lamb chops, detergent and Zip-Loc bags. As I headed home, I tried to reconcile the art-directed version of the place I call home with the unglamorous one I was driving through.

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