Self-imposed exile: An Adoptee in the Serbian Diaspora

“A woman drove me to drink … that’s the one thing I’m indebted to her for.”  — a fabulous W.C. Fields misquote … but fitting.

So, why would an adoptee choose exile among a people from a totally different culture, history and mind-set? Isn’t it enough just to try to fit into the foreign milieu you’ve been dropped into? An adoptee is a Steppenwolf, at once part of society and outside it. Observers. Ciphers. Chameleons. Born ghostwriters. Whether we have the tools, we still must adapt or die!

Lured by the exotic and erotic, I entered another world, becoming at one with the culture, but always apart. In spite of her hot-blooded nature, I‘m forever grateful for having known Kraljevo girl, the Serbian dynamo that flipped my WASP world upside down!

I was blessed with a quiet empathetic manner that allows me to gain the trust of others and listen and learn. That meant rich, passionate and painful tales from the dynamic Eastern European Diaspora in which was immersed for over 3 decades — a whole other world of unique characters, storylines, and POVs to write about. That multicultural sensibility was enriched by a deep understanding of the history of many peoples, from my travels, and from a lifetime of watching silent films and learning how to communicate with my hands.

Along the way to here, I left behind the nice, normal guy destined for small town predictability and started looking at the world differently. What I found was a wonderful, riveting, challenging place … full of amazingly compelling stories!

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