Beth Camp Historical Fiction

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

March 19 Scintilla: No Turning Back . . .

Everything changed when I met my husband. He was traveling to Mexico to go to graduate school. I was working at an international bank. He said, "I'm leaving in September, and I most likely won't be back." I said, "I've always wanted to go to Mexico." He was too kind-hearted and too enamoured to refuse me.

Within the month, I quit my job and sold my possessions, except for my sewing machine, a heavily loaded back-pack, and my mother's portable typewriter -- all of which I carried over the border. I didn't speak a word of Spanish, yet somehow, a mere 45 hours on the bus brought me to San Miguel de Allende, a small colonial town just north of Mexico City, a town of artists and writers, and Allen.

He did tell me he wasn't the marrying kind, but I took that as a personal challenge.

Isaiah Zagar's mosaics, Magic Garden,
Philadelphia (Camp 2000)
I never wanted to turn back, for Allen was (and still is) a wonderful teller of tales. Normally one person in a couple has the voice of reason. If Allen or I suggested we should travel some new place, we simply went. We have had outrageous adventures. Once we had our daughter, we learned not to rattle suitcases and settled down, somewhat. In 2004, we spent seven months traveling, a month in each country, beginning in Egypt, then Israel, Turkey, Greece, Italy, France, and England, an unforgettable trip.

I remember buying a pair of scissors in a Turkish open air market and immediately cutting Allen's hair. A crowd quickly gathered, offering helpful comments, laughing and teasing to see my handiwork.

I still cut his hair. I would not change one moment of our marriage.

NOTE: I'm joining the Scintilla Project (daily prompts for two weeks) while on the road. Read what others have written at or jump on Twitter at #scintilla13 and write on! To read more about Isaiah Zagar, go here


  1. Beautifully written. I can't quite believe you took a sewing machine and a portable typewriter with you - I thought I was bad with cookery books when I moved abroad!

  2. Writing and quilting remain my two loves. Even today, I travel with a sewing machine! And, of course, a laptop! Thanks for stopping by.