Anthrow Circus

Sitting in Beauty: How Choral Music Made Me Less Lonely


Behind the steeple of St. Patrick’s Cathedral in Dublin, clouds gathered and boiled, preparing for a storm or a show or something wild, surely. I zipped my coat all the way up as my husband and I picked our way down the narrow street.

I was determined to see at least a little bit of the city before we had to drive an hour south to where I was doing grad school research. This was Dublin, after all. We were there, and we had limited time. We had to see it. My husband, on the other hand, was tired and cranky and being exasperating. I was also tired and cranky, but I was going to have a good time. I was going to see the city. He was being annoying.

Beirut’s Memories Are Written on Its Walls


The thing everyone kept saying at the school in Beirut was that people there feel like a family. And while in other circumstances that might carry a whiff of hyperbole, at this school in the Lebanese capital, I believed it. The students and teachers had already been through a lot together—war and civil war, economic chaos, the devastating Beirut port blast in 2020. They knew how to hold each other up.

In this family, I was an awkward dinner guest: welcomed warmly, but from the outside.