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2008 First Place Non-Fiction           
National League of American Pen Women
Memoirs of a Middle-aged Hummingbird

On this long, unique, extraordinary journey, we join an American middle-aged teacher as she wanders the world. Emigrating to Israel in 1983, she takes us to a boarding school where she cares for newly arrived Ethiopian teenage immigrants. We follow her next to a small Israeli Arab town.

In 1988, she takes us back to China as it can never be seen again, and through her students’ lives, watches its tumultuous changes from then until 2005. Taiwan, Macau, Bali, and Korea also become “home,” while New Zealand, Fiji, Turkey, Vietnam, Russia, and Iceland, among others, beckon briefly, but she always returns to China. Through the enthralling details of the everyday life of ordinary people, the reader virtually lives their struggles, fears, achievements, joys and dreams.

Curiosity, intensity, and the journals she keeps along the way are her constant traveling companions. This independent budget traveler keenly experiences cultures, like a hummingbird with feet planted firmly in mid-air, hovering, drinking deeply, and then flitting away to return another day. Interwoven throughout are her personal, emotional, and spiritual journeys. This is a true life odyssey any seasoned or armchair traveler will want to explore.

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