Category Archives: history

The Last Empresss Dowager – A Re-Post

It is the year 1861 in the Western calendar while in China the Xianfeng Emperor lay dying.   He was the ninth Emperor of the Manchu Qing Dynasty and he was but thirty years old.  Each Emperor, upon ascending to the throne … Continue reading

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Leon and Frida

Nadia, Frida Kahlo and Leon Trotsky arriving in Tampico in 1937 On the morning of January 9, 1937,  a Norwegian tanker carrying Leon Trotsky and his wife under guard arrived in Tampico, Mexico.   Natalia Trotsky refused to disembark until … Continue reading

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How The Poles Saved Christian Europe

It is September 10, 1683.; perhaps the pinnacle day of Ottoman power. The armies of Mehmet IV, which had been camped outside of the walls of Vienna for two months were preparing to storm and take the city.  The Habsburg … Continue reading

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The Toritto Phone Book

. The white pages of Toritto, pulled from an Italian phone book in the mid 80s. I have often expressed  that I grew up in a village, surrounded by grandparents, aunts, uncles and cousins.  I wrote about it last year … Continue reading

Posted in family, history | 3 Comments

On Christmas Traditions

Well Christmas will be upon us next week and most of us will participate in all of those Christmas “traditions” handed down to us by our parents as cultural imperatives.  Even if you don’t participate you know what they are. … Continue reading

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Mona Lisa Who?

Back in the mid-1990s while on one of several business trips to Paris (somebody’s got to do it!) I made a special effort to cross off one of the items on my bucket list. I went to see Mona Lisa.  … Continue reading

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“It Was The Best of Times…..

it was the worst of times.” Thus the opening line of Dickens’ “A Tale of Two Cities”  a historical novel set in London and Paris before and during the French Revolution. The novel tells the story of the French Doctor … Continue reading

Posted in history, Uncategorized | 9 Comments