Where in the World?

Excerpts from a Life Abroad

My thanks to the scores of people who responded positively when asked, via Facebook, if they’d be interested in reading edits of the journals and letters I wrote home from a lifetime of living and working overseas. I’m going to give it a try. I’d hoped to be able to dig into my extensive archive of photos, but they’re currently in storage. Because of the pandemic shelter-in-place, I can’t get at them. For now, I’ll post some available photos or photos I can create out of whatever I have to illustrate the text. Later on, when I can get into all those boxes, I’ll post additional photos taken during my sojourns abroad.

Meanwhile, here’s an excerpt from my first journal, about a girl from small-town West Virginia who almost bit off more than she could chew.

During my Junior year at West Virginia University, I felt a strong need to do something useful. A psych-soc major, I wanted real experience, not more lectures. And I wanted the challenge of trying this somewhere else in the world. I was president of the student YWCA at the time and asked the director, Harriet Shetler, to help me identify some summer programs with those opportunities. She came up with …

That first experience of culture shock during Asian Seminar 1964 pretty much inoculated me for the rest of my life. By the time I applied for Peace Corps training after obtaining my Masters in Television Production at Boston University, I knew what to expect and had some ability to deal with the discombobulation of entering a new culture.  I’d also learned that being busy and productive was critical to having …

I was working for CBS in Los Angeles and sharing an apartment with WVU chum Bettina Altizer when the phone rang one day. Recent calls from men who wanted to inquire if I liked to “swing” had made us cautious. Bettina answered, listened for a few moments, put her hand over the receiver and said, “It’s some guy who says his name is…” she rolled her eyes “…Russell Sunshine.” “Oh …

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