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Marion Franck

Summer vacation pushes me to notice changes

In summer, many of us return to where we “always” go. Family tradition propels us there, or affordability or love of a particular place. Some of us simply like to go somewhere familiar. I return to favorite places for all of those reasons, but I find that when I get there I think not about […]

June 03, 2012 | Posted in Columns | Tagged ,

When you turn 65, you get a big chunk of homework

A friend asked me what it was like to turn 65. “It’s such a big date in our culture,” she said. She was giving me a chance to express sadness about aging, but I hadn’t had time to feel sad; I was too busy signing up for Medicare. If that sounds like an exaggeration, you […]

May 27, 2012 | Posted in Columns | Tagged ,

On the search for elusive treasure

Morning, the cool time of day, is definitely when I should go. I’m excited, but I dress carefully first. I pull on my long-sleeved buzz-off shirt, treated to repel insects, lightweight buzz-off pants and buzz-off socks that are thick and uncomfortable but feel essential. I’ve heard this is a big year for ticks. Because I’m […]

May 20, 2012 | Posted in Columns | Tagged ,

An empty auditorium made for a full graduation

* Editor’s note: Marion is taking the week off. This column first ran in 2007. The most important moment of my son’s college graduation took place at a concert where the master of ceremonies, some of the performers, and most of the audience didn’t show up. The setting was his small, liberal arts college in […]

May 13, 2012 | Posted in Columns | Tagged ,

Look up in the sky, look down the land

When something new and important happens, I am often dismayed by how slowly I catch on. The best example I can give you is 9/11, which I witnessed on TV in real time. I knew something horrifying had happened and I grieved the loss of life. But it took quite a while before I understood […]

May 06, 2012 | Posted in Columns | Tagged ,

It takes all the senses to get the full impression

You learn a lot about your travels after you get home. Friends ask questions and, in answering, you discover what was important from your trip. This happened to me after my husband and I returned from our cruise in the eastern Mediterranean. Today I narrow down my experiences to one sight, one sound and one […]

April 29, 2012 | Posted in Columns | Tagged ,

Traveling from boat to boat to see the world

In the world of cruising, there are normal passengers and there are superstars. The superstars are people who have taken many cruises with the same company. They get perks and recognition. They puzzle and amaze me. Shortly after my husband and I boarded a 300-passenger cruise ship, the Silver Wind, the cruise director enthusiastically announced […]

April 22, 2012 | Posted in Columns | Tagged ,

Should the Greeks take their marbles home?

I just returned from a part of the world where wars abound, and I find I want to join one, a cultural war. This all began when my husband got the travel bug and suggested a cruise in the Aegean and eastern Mediterranean seas. Before you could say “global hot spot” we signed up for […]

April 15, 2012 | Posted in Columns | Tagged ,

Mix, stir and repeat

What are the ingredients of a good day? This is the question I asked myself last night when I realized I’d had a good day, the kind of day when life feels rich, but couldn’t say why. I am lucky to enjoy many good days, but most of the ones I immediately label as “good” […]

April 08, 2012 | Posted in Columns | Tagged ,

This folder of correspondence strikes to the heart

* Marion is taking the day off. This column has been slightly edited since it first appeared in 2006. This column contains a warning, although I don’t know exactly what my advice to you should be. Maybe I just need to recount what happened five days after my dad’s death, and if I omit some […]

March 30, 2012 | Posted in Columns | Tagged ,

Many of us have discretely joined a new tribe

There’s a tribe that people over 50 belong to and I’m not talking about AARP. This tribe has secrets. It has rites. It has rules. It has suggestions that get passed from one member to another. It has advice that doesn’t make sense to outsiders. “Chill it, it will taste better.” “Swallow fast.” “Drink through […]

March 25, 2012 | Posted in Columns | Tagged ,

A young performer nails poetry out loud

Recently, I had the pleasure of being the first person in the world to interview Corbin Gomez. I have a feeling I won’t be the last. Last month, Corbin won the Poetry Out Loud contest in El Dorado County. In order to do so, he had to compete against first-place finishers from eight other high […]

March 18, 2012 | Posted in Columns | Tagged ,

Ten thousand hours seem like only yesterday

Every now and then something I read in a book — something that doesn’t seem to apply to me at all — turns out later to be true. Here’s the story of my latest discovery, beginning with the math. I started writing this column in March 1996, alternating weeks with former Davis resident Stephanie Szmyd. […]

March 11, 2012 | Posted in Columns | Tagged ,

For good or ill, our parents leave a road map

I write this on my mother’s birthday — although I may not publish it right away. If she were alive, she would be 99 years old this year. She wouldn’t have wanted to live that long. A Christian and a believer, she expected to be reunited with loved ones after she died. I’m sure that […]

March 04, 2012 | Posted in Columns | Tagged ,
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