About nmotika

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So far has created 11 blog entries.

Ireland with music and ghosts

Dave and I visited western Ireland in the company of archaeologists and ghosts. We tromped through the long grasses, wet by rain, into burial chambers thousands of years old. We visited friends in long-suffering Galway and attended an unforgettable concert by classical guitar rock musicians Rodrigo y Gabriela. Everywhere the indefatigable spirit of the Irish […]

Africa raw

Our family visited Kenya during a lull in the riots under the watchful eye of legendary mountaineer and guide Iain Allen. Except for the Mara and the Swahili island of Lamu, we saw virtually no other tourists. During a visit with the Samburu tribe, cousins to the Masaii, we were allowed to watch the tribe’s […]

Frozen off: A climb with my daughter

My 15 year old daughter Talia shivered uncontrollably as she climbed the first pitch of the Aftonroe route on Guide’s Rock near Banff townsite in Western Alberta, Canada. The wind buffeted us, funneling over the large prow of rock through which the climb ran. We were exposed, a wart on a big rock nose. She […]

Live Big! seven dead kids and then change

THE CONNAUGHT CREEK AVALANCHE TRAGEDY – The 2003 Avalanche that buried the entire 17 person group from the patrician Strathcona Tweedsmuir School and killed seven tenth graders, was a defining event for modern Canada.

It ignited an emotional firestorm across the nation, preying upon all parents’ worst nightmare and throwing doubt upon Canadians’ relationship with their […]

Walking with dinosaurs

Kneeling against a large mound of sandy dirt, sweat rilling down my face and my hammer and awl set aside, I used my fingers to remove a few chunks of dirt.  As the soil shattered, I recognized the telltale chocolate brown of dinosaur bone, come to light for the first time in 65 million years.  […]

Bendel was almost eaten

On a starless night just after Christmas, my husband and I walked our dogs along the Bow River in Canmore, our adopted mountain town. The river snapped with shifting ice. The trees closed in and the path got dark–ambush territory. Our German Shepherd Spira alerted. Rigid, head high with radar ears, she hated on a […]

A Pope for our time

Pope Francis bent over a recumbent boy wracked by disability. The Pontiff blessed the child and kissed his forehead while the boy’s uncontrolled mouth yawed open in delight and his spindly arms joyfully batted the air. While the Popemobile waited, the Pope walked slowly among the assembled wheelchairs, paying special attention to these special children. […]

The final baby was the one who got me

The final baby was the one who got me. Barely three and a half feet tall, the smallest and struggling to keep up, he intermittently trudged and trotted mightily at the end of the line. It was late afternoon and they were coming in for the evening. Some plodded slowly, ears hanging. Hungry and tired […]

Avichai Kremer and the killer ALS

John McArthur, then Dean of Harvard Business School and my mentor, called me with a request. He wanted me to help a student start a biotech company. This was not optional, and it was no average student. Avichai Kremer, an extraordinary Israeli MBA candidate, had been diagnosed with ALS at age 29. After taking 24 […]

It’s dark, where’s my husband?

My husband Dave and I decided to attempt Mt. Assiiboine which at 11,870 feet is a significant climb through a variety of terrain elements. It is a beautiful, powerful peak with a siren call. The mountain is guided one-on-one; I climbed with my friend and guide Grant Meekins, and Dave was guided by British guide […]