Ever since I can remember, I’ve had a passion for storytelling and a sense of curiosity that could give “that cat” a run for his money.
Raised in a bilingual/bicultural Franco-American household, my love for storytelling blossomed around the kitchen table (in my family, mealtime is taken very seriously; we all sit down and break bread and drink wine for hours). It was during these meals that I learned the power of storytelling. On one side of the Atlantic my French grandfather shared his stories as a Jewish teen during World War II being forced to go into hiding and change his last name. On the other side of the Atlantic in a house surrounded by corn fields, my American grandfather shared stories about growing up during the Great Depression, his “real-world Huck Finn education,” as he dubbed it.
I was stuck between two cultures – accepted fully neither as French nor as American. To make matters a bit more interesting, by the time I was 18, I had moved more than 13 times due to my father’s military career. Constantly being thrown into new environments, different cultures, and meeting new people, I got used to being the ‘new kid.’ Every move was an adventure — new places to see, people to meet, and things to learn. Since I realized at an early age just how powerful a tool storytelling could be, I figured, well, why the heck not use it for something I’m passionate about?