PHOTOS AND TEXT BY AMBER KIDNER
Says our resident contributor based in India, “Delhi is a stressful city to live in. Most people say so and that is my experience as well. I’m often drained of words and empathy and playful impulses. Author Lydia Davis and her very short stories guide me once again in attempting to apply words and images to some of our family’s encounters these past few months.”
TINY BALL OF FUR
We drove down tight and cluttered afternoon streets. We parked our car and exited it. We climbed a dark flight of stairs, passing open doors with people staring out at us. At the top of the stairs, we were led into a dimly lit room with a bed against the wall for us to sit on. And in the corner was a puppy for us to buy.
In a fit of desperation I bought a plant online. I didn’t want to, but a couple years of going without plants and a clever use of Facebook by an online nursery did the trick.
The plant arrived all stapled up in a cardboard box. I cut it out and its leaves dropped to the floor like Charlie Brown’s Christmas tree.
I won’t do that again.
He said, “It’s like we moved our fort.”
And I said, “You’re right. Thanks for saying that.”
Amber Kidner has always loved good books, people’s stories, and art. Her loves have taken her into a variety of artistic endeavors including photography, family therapy, and cultural research. Currently, she is studying Hindi and exploring ways to bring her passions to New Delhi in a way that is mutually satisfying and transformative. Follow her adventures on amberkidner.com.
COLLABORATION BY KAMI L. RICE, OLIVIER PEYROUS, AND JC JOHNSON
Since part of our Culture Keeper team is based in France, it seems appropriate to bring you a Culture Keeper take on one of France’s biggest news stories in the waning weeks of 2018: the Gilets Jaunes (“Yellow Vests” or “Yellow Jackets”) movement that made it into foreign news outlets when the protests turned violent in Paris. We’re not a breaking news outlet by any stretch of the imagination, but we are in the business of offering a bit of cultural context where we can. Which is what we seek to do here as we experiment with a new-to-us storytelling format that we hope to perfect over time.
STORY BY JANE POTTHAST
In a holiday season full of the wonder of childhood delight mixed with the hopes and burdens of adults, our contributor Jane Potthast stumbles upon a favorite painting from childhood and wonders whether it holds something new for her now.
ARTICLE BY MIRTHE SMEETS
ENGLISH TRANSLATION BY SOLKO SCHALM
Before being translated to English for our Culture Keeper audience, Dutch journalist Mirthe Smeets’s interview with painter Solko Schalm was first published in Vers Beton, a Dutch online magazine focused on engaging the people of Rotterdam in understanding their city as it changes and develops. Rotterdam is the Netherlands’ second largest city and Europe’s largest port. Enjoy this interview with one of its artists!
STORY AND PHOTOS BY KAMI L. RICE
This week we’re joining the ranks of media outlets offering longer-read stories, because sometimes we all need a break from the sound-bite version of the world. So lean back, kick off your shoes, and tuck into this reminder of the less flashy ways the world’s countries interact with each other. No need to wait to be appointed as an ambassador, for you already are one.
STORY BY KORI WINTER
One recent Friday, Kori Winter Hutchinson, an American who has by now lived half her life in southeast London, was so struck by just how beautiful and fascinating her normal commute is that she made note of it. As a result, we all get to step inside this little slice of London life, and with Kori, we find hope there.
STORY AND PHOTOS BY TOBI AMOSUN
Physician Tobi Amosun takes us along on her recent trip to Florence, where her science knowledge helps us better understand just how magnificent an accomplishment Michelangelo’s David is.
I had dreamed for years of going to Italy with friends for my 40th birthday.
This past summer, that dream trip happened.
STORY AND PHOTOS BY NIHAB RAHMAN
Our View From Here series is back as Nihab Rahman takes us inside a little moment of Bangladeshi life.
Near Chowfol-Dondi Bridge in Khuruskhul, Cox’s Bazar, Bangladesh, Ziyaul Haque, 21 years old, repairs his five-year-old boat for its next destination, which is Sundarbans, the only mangrove forest in Bangladesh.
POEM AND IMAGES BY LORI LANDAU
A poem by Lori Landau. Photograph and painting by Lori too.