Author Archive | Debbie Weil


Here Comes the Sun

Just when you think you can’t stand more rain and fog on the coast of Maine, the sun comes out. It’s beautiful in the summer. It’s dazzling in winter. Here are a few photos from our walk yesterday along Sunshine Road on Deer Isle. The ice is starting to melt and you can see tidal heaving […]

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What You Can Do On a Rainy Winter Day

We woke up this morning to a vista of white and gray. Woolly fog. Melting snow. And the patter of rain. And more rain. I’m in a tiny town on the coast of Maine so there isn’t much to do today. There are no museums to wander in. No shopping or window gazing along technicolor […]

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Debbie’s Three Words for 2014

I’ve procrastinated, painfully, on this blog post. Here’s what happened. For the past several years I have selected three words as guides for what I want to accomplish and how I want to change in the new year. It’s a way of setting goals that I stole from several well-known bloggers (see here and here if […]

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Midpoint Review: “Why” a Gap Year

An article in the Wall Street Journal this week prompted me to think again about why we are taking a gap year at age 62. Today is my birthday so I can accurately say 62 for both of us. In The Case for a Midlife ‘Gap’ Year, the reporter lays out several reasons why aging Baby […]

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Paris: Dark Corners in the City of Light

I had a Proustian moment at the Alliance Française recently. Our professor was explaining the plus que parfait, the pluperfect form of a verb. Suddenly, it was 47 years earlier. I was at the Collège Cêvenol, a boarding school in Le Chambon-sur-Lignon, a small town in the mountains of central France. We were dutifully studying […]

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Pencil erasing an "error"

What It’s Like To Be My Husband’s Editor

When Sam and I decided to write a blog together, we spent about five minutes on the logistics of how it would work. It was clear we would both write. It was also clear that I would be the “editor” as well as the tech person responsible for posting new entries. So far it has […]

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Carpe Diem: Remembering the Genesis of Our Gap Year

The genesis of our gap year goes back 15 years. Sam and I were having lunch in a restaurant in Washington DC near the big, rambling house in which we raised our three children. It was a Saturday afternoon in April 1998. We were talking vaguely about what our future might look like and whether […]

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Josephine: Welcome to Our New Grandbaby!

A wonderful addition to our Gap Year arrived yesterday in the person of Josephine Catherine Harrington. Welcome Josie! She’s the daughter of our son Timothy and his wife Jessica and has a big brother named Cornelius whom you’ve heard about. We haven’t met Josie yet as she was born in Mountain View, CA where Tim moved […]

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The Advantage of Fewer Choices

I’m a little slow sometimes picking up on popular trends. I recently ran across the terms satisficer and maximizer and realized, to my dismay, that I am a full-on maximizer. It drives Sam crazy. Stick with me for a minute. There’s a reason I’m telling you this. The terms satisficer and maximizer were popularized almost a […]

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Why I no longer lust after a job at Google

I’m sitting in a bustling Peets cafe in Mountain View, CA, two miles from Google’s offices. Yesterday we had lunch at the main Google campus with our son, who is newly working there as a lawyer. The sky was blue. The temperature, in the low 70s, was perfect. The campus is marked by green lawns and […]

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