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Coconino National Forest


"...being a foreigner ... is a sort of lifelong pregnancy—a perpetual wait, a constant burden, a continuous feeling out of sorts. Like pregnancy, being a foreigner ... is something that elicits the same curiosity from strangers, the same combination of pity and respect." -  Jhumpa Lahiri, The Namesake

Blog: Welcome

I'm making a film

A few years ago, I decided to make a documentary about my maternal grandmother after she fell and broke her hip. The incident reminded me...

We have no idea what we eat

If you think you have free will, think twice. Nothing you see in the grocery store is there because someone thought of your health or cultur

America is broken

“You’ll all pass,” I announced to my students at the beginning of the semester. “I want to live,” I added, giggling. I was joking, but I...

On Water

Our life made it easy not to use water and because everyone lived the same, there was nothing unusual about our relationship to it.

On the wrong side

And while the Belarusians get to have their peace, Lukashenko is co-plotting with Putin to end the world as we know it.

Trip home

As an immigrant, you always want to go back. The umbilical cord between you and your motherland is stronger than any distance or time....

Why I keep coming home

Coming home is like coming to a waterhole. You are thirsty, and it is the only waterhole you know. You might get killed by an alligator or..

The Milky Way

To buy a car, I hired a lawyer and a mechanic. To register it without a permanent resident card, I bribed government officials. I was...

Progress is us

Growing up in a country with no economy, progress meant money. Money to buy salt and flour. Money to buy a second pair of pants. Money to...

When my language dies

When there's no more words from my childhood, I'll leave too. When there's no more sounds from the bison, I'll be silent too. When the...

Why I never dated Eastern European men

I never dated a man from my country or even Eastern Europe. It was intentional - I just never thought I could respect a guy from that...

A little house and big hands

The little wooden house, painted in yellow and blue, is her haven. It is surrounded by birch trees, an apple orchard, plum trees, and...

You are not a tree

In the last year of my doctoral program, I started waking up exhausted. I had a cold sore after a cold sore on and around my lips. I...


I didn't care about immigrants, I wanted to become an émigré. An émigré exiled from her home by a dictatorship or war. An émigré...

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