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Ask a Solutionista, Volume 1 – Kiini Ibura Salaam

Posted on 9 May 2013

Meet Kiini Ibura Salaam, Solutionista: artist mother world traveler speculative fiction writer homeowner Kiini shares her inspiring story, tosses us some pearls, and reads a story from her new collection, Ancient, Ancient.

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Vol. 52, In Mexico: Sounds and Food in Oaxaca

Posted on 19 October 2005

Oaxaca, Mexico I have friends here in Oaxaca who are constantly hosting friends from the States. One of the things they end up doing for their guests is interpreting the sounds of Oaxaca. It is interesting how we become so deeply accustomed to every facet of our lives—visual, rhythmic, verbal, sonic—that sometimes we don’t realize… »

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Vol. 47, In Mexico: Vera Cruz

Posted on 10 March 2005

Vera Cruz, Mexico I am on my first writing trip ever since my daughter’s birth two years ago. I am proud to say I have been able to maintain my “schedule” of leaving NYC for the winter every other year even as a mom. I will be in Mexico for three months, but I am… »

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Vol. 23, In Brazil: Being a Tourist

Posted on 9 April 2002

Salvador, Bahia Brazil There are elements of being a tourist that—assuming you feel comfortable with the country and the language—can be fun. I don’t mind being ignorant, asking questions, getting lost. But there’s a certain type of tourist I’m not. I don’t like prepackaged tours. I’m not that deep into seeing the sights. After while,… »

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Vol. 21, In Brazil: Candomble and Visual Arts

Posted on 6 March 2002

Salvador, Bahia Brazil My latest discovery in the hand-washing clothes saga is, despite Salvador’s heat, anything I want to dry properly must be hung directly in the sunshine. During my second go-round with clothes washing, I hung all my clothing at one time. Since line space was limited, I hung half my clothes in the… »

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Vol. 20, In Brazil: Ilê Aiyê and Tourist-Native Relationships

Posted on 22 February 2002

Salvador, Bahia Brazil I’m not a person who “keeps house,” but here, as in many warm places, the necessities for cleaning are multiplied. With so many openings to the homes—balconies, wall openings for ventilation, windows without screens—dirt easily comes in and settles on the floor. Floors need to be swept almost daily. With the presence… »

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Vol. 19, In Brazil: Carnival Time

Posted on 14 February 2002

Salvador, Bahia Brazil [The doorbell just rang. Went to the balcony and a woman was below with her child. She asked about the woman—the rasta, as she calls her—who used to live here. The rasta used to give her food for her and her family. I told her she wasn’t here, she asked me for… »

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Vol. 15, 9-to-5

Posted on 23 December 2001

An ongoing conversation about j-o-b-s New York, NY Before I went away on the Thomas J. Watson fellowship (and before I’d worked an actual 9-to-5), I thought I had to work to feel settled in my life. These words from my student lips: “I can’t live without working. I’d go crazy.” Then I went away… »

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Vol. 5, The Science of Carnival

Posted on 10 September 2001

Carnival/Labor Day Celebrations Brooklyn, NY My girlfriend Vanessa Richards and I have done Carnival together in three countries: Notting Hill Carnival in London, Brooklyn’s Labor Day festivities and, of course, Trinidad’s Carnival. What amazes me about Carnival, besides the freedom and lawlessness of it, is the Science of it. There’s so many elements to the… »

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