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March 12, 2021

My father was stranded in England after World War II. So he wasn’t an immigrant, exactly – he hadn’t made a plan to leave Poland for better things. I suppose, technically, he was a refugee. What he had done, before the world went to war, was to leave his homeland in 1938 to work in…

March 11, 2021

It was my husband, Jay. He kept asking me why I didn’t use my proper name when I was writing. According to the US Passport office and Social Security, my name is Gabi Coatsworth Wilson. And he was never thrilled about the Coatsworth part. That’s because Coatsworth was the name of my first husband. Here’s the thing. When I

December 24, 2018

Here’s a short extract from my memoir: Christmas always demanded a perfect conifer. In his mind’s eye, Jay (my husband) saw a tree that reached the ceiling, but wasn’t too wide, because it would spread out as the decorations weighed the branches down. And it must cling to its needles for dear life. During Christmases…

November 3, 2017

3 minute read My French hosts had set me adrift in Paris at the age of fourteen. I was resourceful, thank goodness, and relieved that I wouldn’t have to hang out with the family, but part of me wondered about the manners of hosts who invited people to stay and then ignored them. I began…

October 20, 2017

3 minute read “What do you miss most about London?” they asked me, when I went to live in Chicago in 1979. “Paris,” I said. In answer to the blank stares, I explained. “If you travel 300 miles south of here, you’re still in Illinois. 300 miles from London, and you’re in Paris.” I was…

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