Solid Foundations

With the history of Central Europe in the context of recent sentiments of xenophobia and white supremacy spewing from the daily news, during last month’s visit to Vienna we wanted to devote some quality time to honoring the local Jewish population who survived a genocide less than two generations ago.  On a Monday morning M, G, D, and I boarded the streetcar for downtown from our apartment in the Döbling district.  After a delightful breakfast at the historic Café Central we made our way to Jüdisches Museum der Stadt Wien, the Jewish Museum Vienna.
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The Best Day of My Life

The second equinox hangs in the air, suggesting balance between dark and light. As the earth rotates through its even-handedness I am preparing to take a short break from the whitest metropolitan area in the wealthiest nation to visit a region infamous for the systematic murder of racial, religious, and other minorities: Central Europe. Our long time friend M will be joining G and me while we are stationed in Vienna, the birthplace of Alfred P. Adler, my university’s namesake and Jewish refugee who moved to the U.S. in the 1930s in anticipation of the horrors of the emerging fascist regime. The equinox paired with Adler’s principles of gemeinschaftsgefhül—roughly, we as humans are whole within our community—create a useful framework for me to wrap my journey. Lately I’ve been feeling the need to find balance in myself as a part of my community amidst its extremes.
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For the Love of Place

When I visited the Oregon state capital for the first time I picked the pink heart for my souvenir patch. This was not in character for me, even at age six. I thought pink, and hearts, and especially pink hearts were for babies. But I could not resist the pink heart-shaped patch that read “Oregon is for lovers.” Statehood was granted on Valentines Day, so of course Oregon was created for people to love each other and for people who love where they are. It was an act of Congress that marked Oregon as a special place.
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