Archive for the 'Fourth Annual Solas Awards Winners' Category

Travel Memoir Bronze Winner: Notes on an Andean Pilgrim

Tuesday, March 30th, 2010

by Tom Miller He came to my Quito residence for dinner that equatorial night in 1982 wearing blue jeans and a recently washed button-down work shirt. I had delayed meeting the amiable white-haired Moritz Thomsen until I’d finished reading Living Poor (1969) and The Farm on the River of Emeralds (1978) , two books that […]

Travel and Healing Gold Winner: French Dolls

Wednesday, March 3rd, 2010

by Catherine Watson To the end of his days, my father insisted that my travels were nothing more than “escapism.” Whenever I said I was going somewhere alone, he accused me of running away, of being “avoidant.” It didn’t matter whether it was Europe or the movies. “What is wrong with you?” he once snarled […]

Travel and Healing Silver Winner: Spiritual Enlightenment for Modern Conquistadors

Wednesday, March 3rd, 2010

by Eliot Stein “Lake Como touches the limit of the permissibly picturesque; but Atitlán is Como with the additional embellishments of several immense volcanoes. It is really too much of a good thing.” Aldus Huxley, Beyond the Mexique Bay, 1934 Where do we come from? Huxley may not have realized it at the time, but […]

Travel and Healing Bronze Winner: The Secret Acts of Talent Show People

Wednesday, March 3rd, 2010

by Kevin McCaughey I brought my ukulele on our Caribbean cruise.  Every afternoon my mother and I sang old standards in the cabin, while my father reclined on his bed, reading Robert Ludlum and wagging the book to the beat when we got to a rousing number like “Five-Foot Two.” It was December of 2002, […]

Travel and Food Gold Winner: Fruits of Childhood

Wednesday, March 3rd, 2010

by Mohezin Tejani This morning, perched on a wooden chair in my teeming tropical garden in northern Thailand, I am writing about Africa, the continent that still holds a firm grip on me. The sun’s warmth, after the heavy dawn shower, has brought plants and insects to life. Brown centipedes and gray snails are crawling […]

Travel and Food Silver Winner: Showdown at the West Esplanade Canal

Wednesday, March 3rd, 2010

by Darrin DuFord Can two hundred tons of chili save a city? Exciting events are not supposed to happen in the suburbs.  I mean, what would the neighbors think So I wondered what the neighbors thought as I cruised past their curtained living rooms while shell casings flew in front of my nose.  It was […]

Travel and Food Bronze Winner: Everybody Plays the Fou

Wednesday, March 3rd, 2010

by Tom Weller No Chadian village is complete without a fou.  I discovered this in 1993 while serving as a Peace Corps volunteer in Beinamar, Chad. The fou is the village crazy person.  Beinamar’s fou was typical of the fous I encountered in villages all over Southern Chad.  A middle-aged man, he wore only a […]

Most Unforgettable Character Gold Winner: Fishing Under the Face of God

Wednesday, March 3rd, 2010

by Charlie Levine Zipping along a mangrove-lined creek not much wider than his 16-foot homemade skiff, Jewel, Capt. Ansil Saunders cut the engine as we approached a pond-like opening in the lush greenery. The boat coasts to a stop, and the only thing I could hear is the wake of the small vessel sloshing against […]

Most Unforgettable Character Silver Winner: Afghans and Texans

Wednesday, March 3rd, 2010

by Taylor Jennings Reza Shahnan’s entrance one morning during breakfast at the Park Guest Quarters in Kabul the summer of 2003 caused a bit of a stir. He was one of those unusually tall Afghan men and was wearing a finely tailored suit in sharp contrast to the olive drabs, jeans and photographer’s vests worn […]

Most Unforgettable Character Bronze Winner: Ho Chi Minh Slept Here

Wednesday, March 3rd, 2010

by Craig Stevaux I had every reason to think I knew Udon Thani. After all, I’d lived in the Northeastern Thai provincial capitol for five years at the height of the Vietnam War. I knew the main roads that spun off the three aligned traffic circles on the highway that ended at the Mekong River, […]

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