Oh Holy Night

rosh-hashana-can“L’Shana Tova!,” my relatives and friends are saying as they greet each other tonight.  “Happy New Year! And,” some add, “may you be inscribed.” The whole expression is, “May you be inscribed in the Book of Life,” but I suppose we’re just too busy around the Jewish High Holy Days getting the gefilte fish ready to have time to finish our sentences.

The Book of Life is a bit of a fuzzy concept for me… I’ve forgotten the orthodoxy about it that I was taught as a child (we were Reform Jews, not that kind of orthodoxy, but still…). What remains with me is the sense that during these “Days of Awe,” we are given an opportunity to reflect on how we are coming along on the road to our holiest purpose. Continue reading

Riding the Peace Train

italian_peaceflagAs I begin to write this, I am 49-1/6th years old to the minute.  I love being this age.  I love that I have memories of being a child in the 60’s, a teenager in the 70’s, a young adult in the 80’s, a 30-something in the 90’s, and an early-middle-ager in the 2000’s (or whatever you call that unpronounceable decade).

My undergraduate degree in History left me with many gifts, among them a profound appreciation for the power of the individual to impact the course of the world throughout their lifetime, and the simultaneous influence the world has on each of our own life experience. Continue reading

Back to the Beach

DSC_0642.JPGOn the morning of December 27, 2007, I pulled out of the driveway of my home in sunny Los Angeles, merged onto the San Diego Freeway heading north, and four days later (having taken my time visiting friends and relatives along the way), crossed the border into Canada to begin a new life.  I had flown up a few weeks earlier and signed a lease on an apartment, but my furniture hadn’t arrived yet, so I was staying at my friends’ house. They were out of town for the holidays, so my New Years Eve celebration that night was quiet. Continue reading

Scratching an Itch

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It’s been at me lately, this itch to get at this blog again.

With the pending winter holidays has come the usual number of annual social gatherings where I’m asked  by those who haven’t seen me in a while, “So, Hilary, what ARE you up to these days?”  Chances are, my answer will be different from the last time you asked.  If I tell you about the last six months that have passed. you’ll hear some tales of travels, of family, of a kitten, and perhaps even of gainful employment, thankyouverymuch.

But if we’ve never met and you ask me what I do and I’m feeling particularly cheeky, I might tell you that I’m a writer and photographer.  Continue reading

My Roger

Two weeks ago today, I lost a dear friend.   Roger Moss was my therapist at a pivotal time in my young adulthood, and became one of the most important teachers and beloved mentors of my life.  While our clinical relationship came to its natural “closure” when I left L.A. in the late ’90’s, Roger remained a touchstone for me always, up through the last time we visited last summer.  He had a way of relating that was, from the very start of knowing him, so familiar, so warm, so intelligent, so full of love. Though I didn’t fully believe he was right until years later, it always made me feel better to hear him say that the only thing wrong with me was that I thought there was something wrong with me.

Continue reading

Oscar Night: It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year

Somewhere in one of my parents’ homes, buried deep in a pile of old relics, there’s a photograph of my mother and father, circa 1972, my dad looking awfully dapper in a tuxedo and my mom donning an elegant low-cut black dress with a string of pearls, sitting at a dinner table at the Emmy Awards.  Perhaps for obvious reasons, it’s an image that always comes to mind when Oscar night approaches.  Continue reading

Leagle Eyes

View from Locarno Beach - New Years Day 2012

I was supposed to be a lawyer.  But I’m not.

That’s one of the many stories about my life that I tell people when they ask me, “What’s your story?”  There are others… sometimes I say I’m a photographer (works well when holding a camera at a function and taking pictures of people I don’t know – and heck, sometimes I actually AM the photographer, so go figure).  Or a producer.  Or a writer/producer/photographer/researcher (that’s what my card says).  (Really.)

Once, I actually just said, “I’m a writer.”  It was a powerful moment. Continue reading

Festival of Light

EB and I visited Manhattan seventeen Decembers ago as part of her tour of the East Coast academies where she was considering studying for her philosophiae doctor degree.  You’d think when we were looking for fun, it being near Christmas and all, we might have laced up some skates and headed over to Rockefeller Center, but this dog don’t skate.  Instead, we went to a Solstice Circle at an urban shaman’s house.  Continue reading

Home for the Holidays

Make yourself at home.  There’s no place like home.  Home is where the heart is.

As I approach the fourth anniversary of my return to Vancouver, I am comforted knowing that I have found a home here.  It wasn’t always clear to me where my home was, especially during my decade of moving up and down and back and forth across the western part of the continent (LA – Oakland – Vancouver – Sedona – Berkeley – LA – Vancouver). That question — where is my home? – weighed heavily on me at times.

Of course, old adages are usually right.  Continue reading