Homecoming

She said our meeting was 命運, fate. And I believed her. Words from the young woman I met at the airport, in transit from one country to another. I had been on the road now for more than six months. I had started to yearn for home. Where was home, any way? She reminded me it was with good people. Continue reading “Homecoming”

How do I do an oral history?

Recently I’ve had the enormous joy of spending time with people I love, connecting and/or reconnecting.

I’ve logged hours of oral histories in the process. In some ways it comes naturally to me as a journalist, but in others it feels very foreign to do so with people so intimate to me, so I’m always looking for ways to improve or adapt my process. It’s never perfect. No two interviews go exactly the same way. I suppose the only common way to go is forward.

As I tell people what I’m up to a common response is, “I’ve always wanted to do that but wouldn’t know where to begin!”

If you find yourself saying this, here are some useful guidelines… Continue reading “How do I do an oral history?”

Reading on the Radio

I find several things especially life affirming. These include the butterfly rush from a somersault, when a curtain rises on a stage production, and when a story goes to press. Also when I get to the grocery store and find avocados or good chocolate on sale. Now I can add one more. Recording for radio! Continue reading “Reading on the Radio”

I Have Dual Ethnicity and Double Vision, Superman is Chinese, and Other Revelations

Dropping a note to say I’m alive. And, “Hi!”

The last few weeks I’ve been absent from the internet but present in the world, trekking from Colorado to Wyoming, Washington to Oregon. Except for when I was reading exceptional things. Here are a few… Continue reading “I Have Dual Ethnicity and Double Vision, Superman is Chinese, and Other Revelations”

Maui Friends of the Library Book Store

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Most of the books I intend to use for research are borrowed from libraries in either print or digital form, but bibliophile that I am I’ve acquired a few. I walked away with five new (old) books for a whopping $1.25. I love bookstores that aren’t overly fussy where you can rummage thrift-store style until you find exactly what you need (but didn’t know it).

Our dear friend Martha told us about the one pictured above. It’s one of three supported by volunteers for Maui Friends of the Library. It’s a place for both private individuals and public libraries to donate used books that are then sold to support local library programs.

“Not only does this keep books out of the landfill, but it provides a place where everyone on Maui can buy books for pocket change,” their website says. With prices generally ranging from free to $2, it’s true!

There might be such a program in your home community, too. Shout out to Poudre River Friends of the Library. I have been enjoying its library’s lovely sunlit desks as I chip away on my reading.

Sara Hayden

 

Encouraging words

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Busaba Yip Douglas poses for a portrait on Friday Jan. 15, 2016 after making an offering of orchids at the Wo Hing Museum, where she serves as the Cultural Director in Maui, Hawaii. While the upstairs temple is part of the museum and not generally in use, it remains a place to honor ancestors and Taoist deities. Photo | Sara Hayden

Last week I met a woman who traveled from Thailand to Canada and the U.S. where she pursued her education 25 years ago. She had no intention to stay, but did. It was overseas that she ended up connecting with her Chinese roots.

Now a cultural director at the Wo Hing Museum in Maui’s historic town of Lahaina, Busaba Yip Douglas offered this: “I don’t need Ancestry.com. If we have a good relationship with your ancestors, we don’t have to search for them. They will come to us at the right time, and with the right people.”

Sara Hayden