An Obituary in Progress

Jody Hanson, Casablanca

Why wait until you are dead to have other people struggle to write your obituary? Do you really think they are going to get it right? Unlikely.

Always the control-freak I decided to write my own in advance.

And when I shuttle off this mortal coil, I don’t want a funeral or a memorial service. Instead, have a party, drink a toast to my somewhat irratic lifestyle that I enjoyed so much and tell some Jody stories.

My ashes are to be stored in the Old Dutch Potate Chip tin that was our childhood cookie jar and occupied a proninent place on the kitchen counter.

Anyone who wants some of my ashes is welcome to them. As I learned when my two brothers were cremated, jewelery etched in ashes can be soothing. They can be scooped out with a silver spoon from Nekselo that was a weding present to my paternal grandparents.

When it is time to move on, the rest can be scattered to the wind, which is how I lived my life.

My obit is sprinkled with more photos of me than you likely want to see. And at the end there is a photo gallery of kith and kin with a brief clip of where they fit in my life.

When Google — in its relentless pursuit to totally controlling our lives –disbaned Picaso I lost a lot of photos so apologies to anyone who feels slighted. But you can remedy the situaiton by sending me a photo to load.

Ever the minimalist I don’t want a headstone. But if I were to have an epitaph it would read “Some loved her; some hated her; everyone had an opinion.”

Dated at Medellin, Colombia June 6th, 2016 while I am still very much alive. Check in from time to time if you want to see the updates of my obituary-in-progress.

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Jody Lois Anne Hanson was born on January 24, 1953 and raised in small towns in central Canada. As the first child and grandchild she received more than her fair share of attention – until, that is, she learned to walk and talk at nine months. Since then, according to family myths and legends, it was downhill.

But, really, what else would you expect from a child whose first word was “mama” and whose second was “why”?

According to Kathy Hanson -- Jody's sister-in-law -- she was cynical even at the age of six.

According to Kathy Hanson — Jody’s sister-in-law — she was cynical, even at the age of six.

But, that isn’t surprising, as she was born in the Year of the Dragon: “Whether breathing fire or generally causing a stir, Dragons often attract, and enjoy attention and are also more at home in demanding situations that require assertive action than in routine everyday business.”

Furthermore, Dragons are flamboyant, original, iconoclastic, utterly irresponsible and convinced that rules and regulations were made for other people.” And Jody was the quintessential Dragon.

As the oldest of six siblings she would never do as she was told and she readily embraced the role of the black sheep, a title she proudly defended to the end.

Realizing that domestic skills could lead to marriage, Jody refused to learn to cook, sew or crochet. Instead of spending time in the kitchen, she took refuge in books and read voraciously.

Rather than merely taking the road less travelled, Jody grabbed a machete and hacked her own path through the jungle of life. Early on in the piece, she decided men were wonderful – but she didn’t take them too seriously.

Consequently, she never married, although she had three significant relationships. She also heeded the parental warning of “Wait until you have a child just like you!” and didn’t bother with motherhood.

While at university Jody started doing short-term teaching contracts on

J as an early 20s something.

J as an early 20s something.

isolated Indian reserves and splicing her work with taking classes, getting a Bachelor of Arts in sociology and a Bachelor of Education in English along the way.

With a teaching certificate in hand, she bought a log cabin at Stanley Mission, an isolated settlement in northern Canada, that served as a base as she came-and-went. She quickly adapted to hauling her own water and cutting her own wood, not that there was much choice in the matter as the survival chores of living in the bush had to be done.

Stanley Mission from across the Churchill River.

Stanley Mission from across the Churchill River.

After a few years, Jody traded the cold of northern Canada for the heat of West Africa and accepted a two-year teaching contract in Nigeria.

There she was posted to a small bush village with no electricity, no running water and once-a-month mail delivery.

J with her Superzaki at Lafia, 1981.

J with her Superzaki at Lafia, 1981.

Her postcard comments to her adopted Cree family and friends on the reserve in Canada read, “The weather is hotter, the people are darker, but other than that I haven’t noticed much difference.”

The village chief socially reconstructed her as the mulatto daughter of the Chief of Qua and Jody was addressed as “Rankaditti” and accorded all the privileges of an African princess.  She enjoyed her – albeit brief – stint of royalty.

Returning to Canada she did a term as a vice-principal at an Indian controlled school and then worked at a northern community college as a programme coordinator.

Again she became restless and secured a teaching contract at the South West China Teachers University in the People’s Republic of China.

Work permit in China 1986 -1987.

Work permit in China 1986 -1987.

In the Middle Kingdom she improved her ability to eat with chopsticks and learned to say nihao ma (hello) and fourteen other Chinese words, generally related to greetings or food.

At the end of her term, rather than flying back to Canada, she took the Trans-Siberian Express from  Beijing to Berlin.

Image courtesy of Martha de Jong-Lantinll at Flickr.

Image courtesy of Martha de Jong-Lantinll at Flickr.

Along the way she learned that the Mongolians in Ulan Battour look a lot like the Dene in northern Canada – except that they eat yak meat rather than beaver – and that Siberia looks just like southern Saskatchewan from hence she came (a revelation that didn’t impress the farmers there).

On returning to Canada, Jody went through a series of short-term contracts, working as an educational consultant for a tribal council, a communications officer for a school board and a principal of a school.

Basically, she had a short attention span when it came to employment. During this time her jobs required extensive travel to isolated northern areas, so evenings in hotels or being weathered into Fond du Lac for the weekend because the bush planes couldn’t fly provided her with a lot of time to pursue graduate studies. By the end of this stint in the north, she’d finished a Master’s degree and a Ph.D in adult education.

Wanting a base in southern Canada, Jody sold her log cabin and bought an A-frame on a farm 15 km from the town where her parents lived.

Hank the builder.

Hank the builder.

Hank – her brother who claims she caused him more angst and anxiety than everyone else in the world combined – did the renovations.

Subsequently, whenever she visited Canada for the next 19 years, she was in-residence at her pointy-little-house-on-the-prairie.

Once the pointy-house was done, she set off on a 29-country round-the-world trip with Cathy. In Botswana Cathy headed for West Africa and Jody went to eastern Europe.

When they met up in London a few months later, Cathy quipped, “You know, I’ve turned out to be a lot more like you on this trip than I ever wanted to be.”

 The Land of the Long White Cloud

Following her global jaunt, Jody accepted a tenure track position at the University of Waikato in Hamilton, New Zealand. As Dr. J, her research focus was how women learn to work safely in the sex industry.

It was during this time that she met Toni — or “The Madam” as she called herself — who ran Toni’s Escort Service.

Out sailing with Toni after we spoke at a tourism conference in Taupo. 1997

Out sailing with Toni after we spoke at a tourism conference in Taupo, 1997

They were on the same wave length in many respects. And hanging out with the sex-workers was much more fun than going to the faculty club. Toni and Jody also did a number of public speaking engagements about the sex industry and managed to raise a bit of controversy from time to time. Imagine that.

Dr. J at the Universtiy of Waikato 1996.

Dr. J at the Universtiy of Waikato 1996.

During this time she did field research in New Zealand, Australia, Canada, Thailand, Viet Nam, the Philippines, Fiji and Tanzania and subsequently wrote The Business of Sex.

Going freelance

After three years in academia Jody resigned from the university to pursue creative self-employment as a consultant. She moved to Auckland where she rented a flat behind Jill Summerfield’s house.

Jill -- aka Aunty Margaret

Jill — aka Aunty Margaret

As anyone who has ever worked freelance very well knows, the available work varies and consultants have to be free to reinvent themselves accordingly.  Translated, if you have time to travel you don’t have the money; if you have the money, you don’t have the time.

Jody thrived on the challenge and the financial panic attacks of being a sole trader. She needed to stay healthy as she simply couldn’t afford to be sick. Fortunately, she had picked the right parents and came from study genetic stock: The last time she visited a doctor because she was ill was in December 1997.

On her 50th birthday she decided to forego all medical tests: no annual checkups, no mammograms, no pap smears. She always said that if she died of something preventable there was only one person she could blame: herself.

Australia Bound

After three years in Auckland Jody moved to Australia. Realising that the regulations about trans-Tasman migration were about to change she arrived in Melbourne in August of 2000. The woman at Immigration stamped her New Zealand passport with a permanent resident visa and said, “Welcome home.”

Six months later the rules changed, but she was already in the country and took out citizenship two years later. At this point, she became an Aussie sheila with a somewhat flattened Canadian accent holding three passports.

Jody lived in the Fitzroy district of Melbourne for three years.

J and friends spent considerable time hanging out at The Bar With Know Name that everyone called “Laura’s.” This little place was the social centre of the area.

Laura and J about 2002.

Laura and J about 2002.

Larua was a feisty little thing. And when she got tired she would announce, “Okay, I’m over all of you. Get the hell out.” and everyone would quietly slink out the door, only to return the following evening.

 

North to SYD

In August 2003, Jody moved to Sydney where the weather was warmer, the work was more available and the cost of living was higher. She lived in Surry Hills, an inner city suburb, where she didn’t need a car.

Everything a single woman could possibly want – a multitude of restaurants, theatres, art galleries, bars, shops, supermarkets, wine shops, florists, and an outdoor Olympic pool that is heated all year around – was within walking distance.

Karen Owens -- aka The Nurse, Carmen and J.

Karen Owens — aka The Nurse — Carmen and J.

Her diverse urban-tribe in Sydney varied from Carmen, a famous drag queen from New Zealand to a multi-millionare spy to a psychiatrist. Her tribe also included doctors, pilots, sex workers, waiters, cross-dressers, trannies, restaurateurs, writers, artists, a disproportionate number of lawyers, a retired supreme court judge, the most notorious paparazzi in town and a smattering of interesting others. Her open invitation parties reflected the variety.

On Turning 50

Jody celebrated her 50th birthday in Timbuktu. The pattern had started when she turned 30 in Nigeria and then 40 in Ethiopia so there was no point in breaking a winning streak.

Although she invited over 500 people, only one – Karen Owens aka The Nurse – showed up.

When J told Hank about it, he snorted, “Right, The Nurse has travelled extensively in New Zealand and Australia and now she is going to go to West Africa with you.”

The overriding tone was that she must have been holding her curling iron too close to her head.

Dusty, wind blown Timbuktu. Image courtesy of Upyernoz at Flickr.

Dusty, wind blown Timbuktu. Image courtesy of Upyernoz at Flickr.

The low turn-out rate at Jody’s 50th inspired her to give everyone a decade’s notice that her 60th was going to be the Zambian side of Victoria Fallls. And her 70th is planned for Kampala in 2023. No point in leaving things until the last minute.

 

The Economic Crisis of 2008

When rumours of the financial crisis began circulating in 2008, Jody questioned clients who were merchant bankers, investors, and corporate lawyers, as her knowledge of international finances could best be summed up as “total ignorance.”

Peeking through the bars of the stairs

Peeking through the bars of the stairs

When she realised that they, in fact, didn’t know any more about what was happening than she did, it was time for concern.JH in zebra

Even though Jody possessed the mathematical acumen of a four-year old, she quickly figured out that working freelance, living in inner-city Sydney, maintaining a decadent lifestyle and having an unpredictable income added up to a precarious perch to be on during an economic meltdown.

By this time she had declared that she “never, ever, ever wanted to see snow again and that the only acceptable ice was in her vodka and tonic” so anywhere less than temperate simply wasn’t an option.

She’d had a spectacular eight-year run in Australia, but craved adventure and challenges. The empty spots on her map of the world were north Africa and South America.

So on November 20, 2008 – she was 55 at the time—Jody announced that she was moving to Casablanca in six weeks.

J packed and ready to head to Casablanca.

J packed and ready to head to Casablanca.

Her reasons for choosing Morocco?  She’d never been there, didn’t know anyone and didn’t speak the language.

It was, however, an ideal place to teach English, the global lingua franca. As for challenges, it was something Arabic North Africa was sure to offer. So she downsized a two-bedroom terrace house into two suitcases and a carry-on and headed out on a one-way ticket. No backward glances; no regrets.

J's theory of packing: if you can't sort it into bags you likley don't need it.

J’s theory of packing: if you can’t sort it into bags you likley don’t need it.

Her 18 months in Morocco provided the adventures she craved. She rented an apartment in Derb Omar – where she was the only occidental woman – in the old part of the city.

And while experiencing Ramadan and the sheep slaughtering festival wasn’t a movie she

J in Casa 2010wanted to see again, she was glad she’d done it

At the deskonce.

Further, she made some spectacular friends, did some travelling in the region –Portugal, Algeria and Tunis – and regularly played the pianos at the Churchill Club and Sky 28.

During that time she also took on the national and international bureaucracy and helped Hamza, an orphaned computer genius, study in Canada. He graduated with top honours four

Hamza the computer genius.

Hamza the computer genius who may be even more spectacular than Bill Gates.

years later and now has a spectacular job. Hamza is oine of those people who is going to make a difference.

Ramadan loomed on the horizon and things Arabic started to get to her, so  Jody decided to move to Santiago. Remember, the two blank spaces on her world map in 2008 were north Africa and South America. One box was ticked so it was time to tackle the next.

Life in Chile

In Santiago de Chile, she found the almost-perfect apartment at Plaza de Armas, the historic and cultural heart of the city.

View of Plaza de Armas from the apartment window.

View of Plaza de Armas from the apartment window.

Not realising that she was moving into a national monument, she ended up in a 3-ring circus, where the evangelicals regularly screamed outside her window. This particular sect believe they had to shriek at god to get her attention.

This was the view from her window where she spent so much time looking at the people in the plaza that she started to feel like the Lady of Shalot.

J in her apartment in Plaza de Armas.

J in her apartment in Plaza de Armas.

Meeting the Locals

While sitting at a bar underlining the Spanish words she knew in a newspaper she met Patricia Guzman, an actress. Other friends — check the photo gallery — included the artist/song writer Camilo, and  Caroll, a graphics artist.

Patricia & J, 24 December 2010.

Patricia & J, 24 December 2010

In the Kitchen

A positive development of moving to Chile was that Jody started doing her own cooking – the restaurants in Santiago were as bad and as expensive as they were good and cheap in Casablanca.

All her food was fresh, in-season and came from the market a few blocks away.

Mercado Central

Mercado Central

She also developed an idiot-proof exercise programme to stay in shape and dropped a dress size without trying.

Lifting weights

 

 

 

Becoming a Real Writer

Although Jody went to Chile as a teacher, on November 1, 20010 she decided to write full time. Even though she had always written since she could hold a pen, this time it was the difference between having dinner parties and being a chef: it was her source of income.

She harboured no illusions about the first year being hard-slugging and it was. Starting off with how-to pieces – her piece de resistance being How to crochet a horse sweater – she also wrote travel articles and “graduated” to writing research papers for UNESCO by the end of the year.

Downsizing

While Jody was in Canada in the summer of 2011 she decided to sell her A-frame. So she gutted her pointy-little-house of all her art treasures and inflicted them on kith and kin at her parent’s 60th wedding anniversary.

When her mother asked her if she wanted to store some things in the garage she responded with “Mother, pleassseeeee, if I haven’t wanted anything from there for all this time do you really think I’ll change my mind?”

Jody’s friend, Iris, summed it up precisely when she chuckled,

Iris

Iris

“Its good you don’t want your body shipped back to Canada when you die. Now all Hank has to do is call the local authorities in whatever country you happen to be in, tell them to creamate you and to give the contents of your two suitcases and the carry-on to the street people.”

“Yes, exactly,” Jody replied, “I always wanted a Muslim burial as I figure they got it right – wash the body, wrap it in a white sheet and plant it before sundown. But ceramation makes more sense, so I’ll go with that.”

Jaunting Around South America

At the end of 2011, Jody again became restless so she cashed in her One World travel points and set off on a trip to Bolivia, Peru, Ecuador and Galapagos with only a carry-on and a computer bag.

Headed for Bolivia

The plan was that a month later she would return to pick up the two suitcases she had stored with her friend, Patricia, and move to Buenos Aires.

 

J in La Paz

Classic Galapagos

Classic Galapagos

J in Guayaquil

 

Living in Argentina

In the midst of a financial panic attack, Jody rented an apartment and she discovered the world of slum landlords. Scumbags about sums it up.

San Telmo, however,  was an artsy location, location, location sort of place. And there was so much to do and see in BsAs.

J in Buenos Aires 2012

Blogging It

In April 2013, life added another twist — from keeping a diary since August 1981 when Jody headed for Nigeria — she took up blogging.

Andres and Carolina designed a new www.j-hanson.com and her forum to keep people who to date on her latest project  was born.

Andres and Carolina

Andres and Carolina

 

After six months in BsAs Jody left for Bogota, Colombia. The morning after she arrived she woke up to an editing contract that lasted for two months, which was a plus.

After a month in Bogota she went to Trinidad where she and her friend, Nick – whom she has known since she was 18 – teamed up to review luxury resorts around the Caribbean.

Nick in Port of Spain, 2012

Nick in Port of Spain, 2012

The Spice Island Resort where they stayed for three days. Curiously enough, people go there for months at a time, even though the all-iniclusive fee is $1.329 per night.

From there it was on to Petite Anse — a simply delightful place run by Annie and Philip –and then the Magdalene Grand Beach & Golf Resort in Tobago where she did a scuba dive.

All dressed up and ready to dive. Vanuatu 2007

All dressed up and ready to dive. Vanuatu 2007.

J was always amazed that she got a PADI certificate as she truly was the worst diver ever.

After a month in Canada, Jody returned to Buenos Aires for four months. Then it was time to head southern Africa and make her way to her 60th birthday party at Victoria Falls.

At this point in time, she had further downsized so that her worldly possessions tucked into one suitcase, a carry-on and a diaper bag.

 

Turning 60 in Zambia

In December 2012 she headed out for southern Africa.

From Johannesburg she flew to Capetown, and then set out overland to Lesotho, Swaziland Mozambique. Back in J’burg she met up with The Nurse — always the best attendee — her partner Andrew.

Out for a wonderful lunch in J'Burg -- The Nurse, J, Andrew. January 2013.

Out for a wonderful lunch in J’Burg — The Nurse, J, Andrew. January 2013.

Later Cecile –whom she has known since 1981 when they were in Nigeria — arrived. Next it was off to Malawi, Zambia and Zimbabwe.

 

As it evolved, her 60th turned out — check the blog for details —  to be a spectacular surprise.

J and Scott at her 60th in Zambia.

J and Scott at her 60th in Zambia.

 

 

Helicopter view of Vistoria Falls.

Helicopter view of Vistoria Falls.

 

 

 

 

South East Asia

Why the Kingdom of Cambodia? Why not? Jody’s two-year stint there proved to be interesting. The food was good, the expats were eclectic and eccentric and the weather was steaming hot.

Life in the Kingdom

Life in the Kingdom

During this time, Jody did a variety of writing – including becoming a restaurant reviewer for a local newspaper – and ended up running a project for a questionable philanthropist.

Her next career development was to become the editor of the Khmer Times. Her stint there lasted five months, eleven days and one hour.

Another perk of the Kingdom was that The Nurse – the only attendee at Jody’s 50th – moved to Phnom Penh. They first met in New Zealand in February of 1995 and have crossed paths a number of times. Unexpected adventures were always on the horizon as the Nurse helped Jody with her Down in the Dumps project and later took over Educate a Girl.

Time to hablo espanol

When leaving the Kingdom – as she always called it—Jody decided to head for Cuba. She first visited there in 1978 and liked the island.

Good plan, but the Internet was so weak and so expensive that she had to reroute her sojurn to Medellin, Colombia.

Mention Colombia and people often think of Pablo Escabar and the narco-trafficing. Jody, however, found Medellin to be a delightful city where she extended her visa by becoming a student.

Unfortunately, the Universidad Pontificia Bolivariana was hideously expensive for disorganized classes making it like paying for Champagne and getting plonk wine.

The year 2015 turned out to be one of the most difficult ever. First of all Paypal froze Jody’s account for 77 days for committing the sin of visiting Cuba. The argument of being Canadian didn’t wash as Paypal is an American company.

On 3 September that year, Jody’s 56 year-old brother Murray dropped dead from a heart attack.

Murray at 56.

Murray at 56.

Three months and three days later Chris – her 48 year old brother who was bigger than life – did the same thing. Jody went to Canada for the funeral in a state of shock.

Chris at 48.

Chris at 48, an hour before he died.

On 30 November, her 92-year old father quietly checked out. So for the Hanson, the saying that deaths come in threes proved true.

Dad on his 86th birthday.

Dad on his 86th birthday.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Wrap-up

Jody was a self-confessed travel junkie and she visited 107 countries. Initially she wanted to be eligible to join the 100 Countries Club. However, once she had enough stamps she pulled a Groucho Marx and didn’t bother.

For a quick reference she started keeping track of her sojourns on a map – complete with dates and lists, of course.

J's map of the world in 2008.

J’s map of the world in 2008.

By material standards Jody was a failure, as she didn’t have possessions by which she could be judged.

She did, however, have a supportive family, a spectacular – and eclectic – urban tribe, an impressive collection of passport stamps and thousands of photos and stories about her escapades.

Jody wasn’t the least bit afraid to die, because – always her pretentious self to the end – she felt that she had lived.

If you want more detail about what Jody was up to, check her articles and blog pages. There is more than enough information to solve insomnia problems for years.

And now it is up to you to decide if you loved her or hated her. The most important thing, however, is that you had an opinion. And she woulnd’t have wanted it any other way.

Photo Gallery — stilll have a lot of photos to load. If there is a happy snap you would like included, please send it and I will add it to the gallery. The photos are in no particular order of events

The Hansons

Awards Dinner -- Joey, Mom, Shane, Shawna, Trish, Curtis

Awards Dinner — Joey, Mom, Shane, Shawna, Trish, Curtis 2016

 

Shelley and the Flowergirl at Carol & Gord's wedding - 2009

Shelley and the Flowergirl at Carol & Gord’s wedding – 2009

 

 

 

 

 

 

Shawna and Sarah - 2016

Shawna and Sarah – 2016

Mom & Dad on his 86th birthday

Mom & Dad on his 86th birthday

 

 

 

 

 

Hank in his Jarley jacket.

Hank in his Harley jacket.

Sister-in-law Gloria, Nephew Travis and brother Doug. 2009

Gloria, Travis and Doug. 2009

Del & Murray 2009

Del & Murray 2009

 

 

The Wagner Woman Wrap up on my mother's side of the family. An annual lunch event at the Bessborough.

The Wagner Woman Wrap up on my mother’s side of the family. An annual lunch event at the Bessborough.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A lot of Sia and a bit of MacKenna

A lot of Sia and a bit of MacKenna 2016

Looking gorgeous Jess and Sarah - 2009

Looking gorgeous — Jess and Sarah – 2009. Chris always told the his dauthers that they would have to learn to hunt and fish and shoot as they were so ugly that no man would ever look after them.

Great-grandma Jean with Josey, Jentry and Alilene

Great-grandma Jean with Josey, Jentry and Alilene – 2016

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Shawna circa 2010

Shawna circa 2010

 

 

Michael and Jamie -- without the girls 2009

Michael and Jamie — without the girls 2009

 

 

 

 

 

 

Steph and Jess - 2009

Steph and Jess – 2009

 

 

 

 

 

 

Mom in her garden 2009. Do you think it is enough for the winter?

Mom in her garden 2009. Do you think it is enough food for the winter?

 

 

 

 

 

You can take the girls out of the kitchen, but you can’t get them away from their aporns.2016

 

 

 

 

 

 

Mom and Dad

 

A Hanson family photoshoot circa 1990.

A Hanson family photo shoot circa 1990. Mom told me I couldn’t have red hair for the occassion.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Shawna and Sarah - 2016

Shawna and Sarah – 2016

 

The Hanson kids: Shelley, Murray, Hank, Chris, Doug, J

The Hanson kids: Shelley, Murray, Hank, Chris, Doug, J

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Friends in Canada

The women from Neudorf. Linda and Jeannie (fr) I have known since I was four. Georgina and Judy (fl) since I was nine, Abby since I was six and Pat since I was 13.

The women from Neudorf. Linda and Jeannie (fr) I have known since I was four. Georgina and Judy (fl) since I was nine, Abby since I was six and Pat since I was 13.

 

Peggy -- featured with her partner George -- and I go back to northern Sask some time about 1977.

Peggy — featured with her partner George — and I go back to northern Sask some time about 1977.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sharon and I met in 1968 after my family moved to Watrous. Circa 2010 as I still had my pointy little house.

Sharon and I met in 1968 after my family moved to Watrous. Circa 2010 as I still had my pointy little house.

 

Sallie and Antoine -- from my McLeod family in Stanly Mission -- visiting circa 2009.

Sallie and Antoine — from my McLeod family in Stanly Mission — visiting circa 2009.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Priscilla and I go back to somewhere in the late 1970s.

Priscilla and I go back to somewhere in the late 1970s.

 

Pat at my pointy-little-house-on-the-prairies. Circa 2010.

Pat at my pointy-little-house-on-the-prairies. Circa 2010.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Cecile and I met on the plane to Nigeria in 1981. She hosts the annual northern women's Gazebo Gathering.

Cecile and I met on the plane to Nigeria in 1981. She hosts the annual northern women’s Gazebo Gathering.

Michael -- a very influencial person in my life for many reasons.

Michael — a very influencial person in my life for many reasons.

 

Cathy who did the round-the-world trip with me in 1991-92.

Cathy who did the round-the-world trip with Jody in 1991-92. And decided she didn’t want to be so much like her.

Carol and Gord's wedding 2009. Jenna, The Bride, J, Shelley

Carol and Gord’s wedding 2009. Jenna, The Bride, J, Shelley

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Lily and I met when we sat on an education committee together in the 1970s.

Lily and I met when we sat on an education committee together in the 1970s.

Tanda — the first man I loved.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

New Zealand

Fi, Toni and Marie -- at one of the many parties during that era.

Fi, Toni and Marie — at one of the many parties during that era.

Every girl about town needs a cross-dresser. Bob/bi and I did all the social scenes and best restaurants.

Every girl about town needs a cross-dresser for a friend. Bob/bi and I did all the social scenes and best restaurants.

George and Sue from the University of Waikato later visiting me in Sydney.

George and Sue from the University of Waikato later visiting me in Sydney.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Louise -- My Switzerland-born land-lady -- I rented the granny flat behind her place -- who loved her cigarettes and Scotch.

Louise — my Switzerland-born land-lady — I rented the granny flat behind her place — who loved her cigarettes and Scotch.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

After Paul died, Brooke became my almost-a-step-daughter. As close to moterhhood as I got.

After Paul died,
Brooke became my almost-a-step-daughter. As close to moterhhood as I got.

 

 

Toni visiting in Melbourne.

Toni visiting in Melbourne.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Out sailing on Lake Taupo.

Out sailing on Lake Taupo.

 

 

 

Toni 2016

Toni 2016

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Australia

 

Janelle and Elena from the Scarlet Alliance.

Janelle and Elena from the Scarlet Alliance.

 

Scott and J at a party.

Scott and J at a party.

 

 

 

 

 

Fantastic friends Andrew, Neil, J, Monique & Emma

Fantastic friends Andrew, Neil, J, Monique & Emma.

 

 

 

Samantha visiting just before I left for Cassablanca.

Samantha visiting just before I left for Cassablanca.

 

 

 

Neil and J later taken in Cambodia when the family came to visit.

Neil and J later taken in Cambodia when the family came to visit.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Carl and J, who met in New Zealand, hanging out in Sydney.

Carl and J, who met in New Zealand, hanging out in Sydney.

 

 

 

Amanda, my artist friend who lived next door in Surry Hills, 2008.

Amanda, my artist friend who lived next door in Surry Hills, 2008.

Alex 2008.

Alex 2008. The catch phrase was “Call Alex.”

 

At the Mardi Gras in Sydney, 2008

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

At the Mardis Gras with the Scarlet Alliance in Sydney, 2008.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Morocco

My wonderful women freinds on an outing to El Jadida.

My wonderful Moroccan women friends on an outing to El Jadida.

 

Jalal -- my source of philosophical conversations in Casablanca.

Jalal — my source of philosophical conversations in Casablanca.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Worker's Restaurant in Casablanca. The sardine balls were the best ever.

The Worker’s Restaurant in Casablanca. The sardine balls were the best ever.

 

Housain, a darling guy who worked in the bank and we became friends.

Housain, a darling guy who worked in the bank and we became friends.

 

 

 

 

 

 

At the Churchill Club

At the Churchill Club with friends, 2010.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A henna design of wearing living art.

A henna design of wearing living art.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Chile

The very artistic Camilo, 2010.

The very artistic Camilo, 2010.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Maria and J in Valparaiso, 2011.

Maria and J in Valparaiso, 2011.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Argentina

 

Out for steak and Malbec, 2012.

Out for steak and Malbec at midnight, 2012.

 

 

 

 

Marcus from Berlin whom I met in Buenos Aires 2011.

Marcus from Berlin whom I met in Buenos Aires 2011.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Kingdom of Cambodia

 

 

 

 

 

Helen and Vichika's grandmother, Phnom Penh 2014

Helen and Vichika’s grandmother, Phnom Penh, 2014

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Colombia

 

Alvaro, my darling friend in Medellin. He lived in New York for 12 years and spoke English.

Alvaro, my darling friend in Medellin. He lived in New York for 12 years and spoke English.

 

J and her Medellin mother - December 2015.

J and her Medellin mother – December 2015.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Jorge Uribe, the painter, and J - 2015

Jorge Uribe, the painter, and J – 2015

 

NYE 2016

NYE 2016. A delightful celebration at Luis Fernando’s apartment.

 

 

 

 

 

Rob from Amsterdam and I at the Cafe Alaska, 2016.

Rob from Amsterdam and J at the Cafe Alaska, 2016.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Masala Photos From Here, There, Where Ever

Out for a wonderful lunch in J'Burg -- The Nurse, J, Andrew. January 2013.

Out for a wonderful lunch in J’Burg — The Nurse, J, Andrew. January 2013.

 

Our for dinner with The Nurse in Vanuatu, 2007.

Dinner with The Nurse in Vanuatu, 2007.

Eating fresh coconut in Port of Spain, 2012.

Eating fresh coconut in Port of Spain, 2012.

 

 

 

 

Penguine near Cape Town, 2013.

Penguine near Cape Town, 2013.

 Angkor Wat, 2007Angkor Wat