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Posts published by “Penny Skillman”

Florida Times, 2017

A week before Thanksgiving at the Fort Walton Florida airport I was met by my sister-in-law Robin, a retired public health nurse who now sits…

Sutro Heights

Adolph Sutro was San Francisco’s mayor from 1895 to 1897. He realized the idiosyncratic weather of the Richmond district, but apparently loved it. After making…

October in Spain 2016

The leaves on the trees in Retiro Park in Madrid are turning burnt orange and brown, the umbrellas are in hand. Autumn is here and…


The handicapped woman and the Florida tourist got on the bus in the sleepy Florida Panhandle city of Fort Walton. The one, a dark haired…


In the film “Papa: Hemingway in Cuba” a young Miami reporter, who began life as an orphan, a runaway who idolized Hemingway most of his…

A Workingman’s ‘Dead’

As it does on some days in the Richmond District, the 12:00 o’clock siren is blowing, and it reminds me of the daily siren at noon in the small town I was raised in on Long Island. My grandfather, a hardworking German immigrant who farmed after retirement, would put down his hoe and walk back to his bungalow, where my grandmother had lunch ready.

Letter From Madrid

Spain celebrates Three Kings Day on January 6, with a big procession in the middle of the city. But Spain also celebrates Christmas on Dec. 25, and New Year’s Eve, even has a universal holiday cake to be dutifully carried to family gatherings — a ring-shaped white flour cake called roscon, with candied fruit bits on top. The bakeries of Madrid all displayed it to prove a point: one cannot get through Deep Winter Holidays on cake alone.

Remembering the Future: Dreams

Humans are exploring the moon, checking out Mars, digging deeper into the makeup of the atom, mapping incoming asteroids, yet dreaming, a common, ubiquitous experience,…

Easy In Washington Square Park

It’s commonly believed that more than 20,000 people are buried under Washington Square Park, used as a cemetery and home to freed slaves in the 17th and 18th centuries.