Lest you Think I’m Dead—–(A Memoir-Moving-Marriage Update)

I thought it was way past time to post something—in this case, a long- overdue and death-defying feat of literary brevity and poor prose.

Better that than you think I’ve met with some untimely and unfortunate, moving-related demise.  I’ve not gone this long without blogging in a number of years.  But, unfortunately, selling a home, relocating overseas, and getting married are more time-consuming and brain-draining than I’d imagined.

Yes, that’s right.  I said—“getting married.”  Sara and I leave for New York City next week to tie the knot—a tangle of lesbians-on-the-move, covering-legal-loopholes.

We had hoped to marry in DC or New York  over the holidays, but formally exchanging the rings we’ve now been wearing for seven years may benefit us economically in Ecuador—and more immediately than waiting till December.


The company (and our new, already-living-in-Cuenca buddy Malcolm)—the ones helping us expedite residency visas—advised us to make our way, “post-haste,” to a state that would allow us to “legitimize” our partnership.

Both Argentina and Uruguay (more recently) have legalized gay marriage.  Columbia is considering it, and gay civil unions already grant lesbians the same legal rights as married couples in Ecuador.  Marriage equality is on the move in South America, and Sara and I plan to ride that wave of welcome all the way to Cuenca and beyond.

But—since Sara and I are living out of suitcases and time is limited, I’ll do a bulleted update with photos to illustrate our adventures over the last few weeks—a month of moving and grooving and doing serious damage to life as we knew it.

  • Daddy had an Alias!

Just as we got deep into sorting and selling, packing and stacking—a leaning tower of almost-Ecuador—my dad’s FBI file arrived in the mail—a small, flat package containing only a single CD and not nearly the number of pages I’d been promised.


(In the event that you’re new to my blog, you might want to know that, in addition to moving with my partner to Ecuador, I’m in the process of writing a memoir about growing up in an organized crime family.  Because I wanted to understand my father’s mafia connections more clearly, I applied for a copy of my dad’s FBI file last May.  To read the first chapter of my memoir, whose working title is Kids Make the Best Bookies, click here.)

I’d been told nearly 1, 700 pages were available, but just over 200 remained after redactions and the subtraction of still-classified material.  Good-god—Daddy’s been dead for more than thirty years—“classified” my ass!


At any rate, I did learn that my father had an alias, and simple and unsurprising as that may sound, it disturbed me on some unexpected level–I suppose, his having an identity I didn’t know about.


  • Our house has sold, and the check’s in the bank.

Much to my (but not Sara’s) surprise, we closed on time—March 29th –two days before Easter and a “Good Friday,” indeed.  But getting out of the house—our boxes packed and possessions moved—proved more challenging than I could have ever guessed.


It was one thing to move to Vietnam or Haiti, while leaving our US home intact, but moving overseas and liquidating our stateside life was another animal altogether—another moving mammal, if you will.



  • Sara and I have been to Pittsburgh and back!

Hard to imagine, isn’t it?  I can barely believe it myself.  We stayed at a Comfort Inn less than a mile from the home where I was raised.

And the old neighborhood seems less changed than I’d imagined.  Or maybe a whole lot changed, depending on one’s perspective.

The house I grew up in, 35 years later--

The house I grew up in, 35 years later–

To be honest, I think I’m simply stunned having been back on what was once home turf.  It feels a bit like time travel—a journey that’s transported me back decades more than miles.

Chatham Elementary School in 2013, where I attended Kindergarten through 6th grade--

Chatham Elementary School in 2013, where I attended Kindergarten through 6th grade–

It leaves me feeling a bit whiplashed, perhaps, but not in a bad way at all.  In a very good way, in fact.

This will be done by my Big Apple, buddy, one some of you may know as Lame Adventures—and maybe even Jackie of “Jacqueline Cangro.”

Some of you may recall that last spring I served as WordPress wedding correspondent for friend Tori of “The Ramblings.”

Tori and Kathy meet at the "Very Bloggy Wedding"--

Tori and Kathy meet at the “Very Bloggy Wedding”–

Well, since our nuptials weren’t announced, let alone planned, until the last-minute, Tori won’t be able to cover the equally mind-blowing marriage ceremony of Coppler-McCullough.

In her stead, Lame Adventures will pinch hit and blow the ball far beyond all real or imagined walls of our proverbial park, in this case a making-lesbians-legal grand slam of World Series proportions, I’m sure.

  • We leave for Ecuador May 1st.

Sara, the dogs, and I will fly out of Lexington in less than two weeks.

So stay tuned for my first post from south of the equator, more about our wedding, and lots more memoir madness via my dad’s FBI file and our recent trip back to Pennsylvania.

Hasta luego!

Please tell me in the comments below what you most want to know about Ecuador, Daddy (his mafia connection-FBI file), and/or our wedding in the Big Apple.

Also, please forgive me if it take a few days to respond to comments.  I’m in the midst of a lot.  I apologize, as well,  for not reading my friends’ blogs in recent weeks–same excuse, I’m afraid.  I love and miss you all and hope to return to normal reading-writing habits in a few weeks.

58 thoughts on “Lest you Think I’m Dead—–(A Memoir-Moving-Marriage Update)

  1. How exciting! So many things happen all at once. I am very keen to hear all about your wedding and the big move…and your Dad…everything really.
    My son and his lovely girlfriend have just done a guest post for me from Cartagena in Colombia. I wonder if Ecuador will be similar.


  2. So much is happening in your lives….WOW! Congratulations to you and Sara! I can’t wait to hear all the details, and see photos of course, after you are settled. As for Equado, I know nothing, so want to know everything, I will be lapping up all of this new information you will be writing about. As for your father, why did he need an alias? Was it a straight forward double name existence, or did he lead a double life?

    I’ve just realiased, in all of this moving activity, Sara will be having her birthday, so if I don’t have the opportunity to speak to you before then, happy birthday to Sara and safe moving.

    Will Sara be going back to blip at some stage? I could give her blip-friends an update on what’s happening if she would like me to. Hugs to you both. xxx


  3. Congratulations on your much anticipated marriage!! I can not even begin to imagine all that you guys have been going through to get through all of the events of the past few months and the upcoming one. It makes my head spin!!! Overseas moves really make one take stock of their lives and whittle things down to the bare necessities!!! What I want to know is just exactly how much of your crafty stuff did you get rid of??? 🙂 Can’t wait to hear the next installment when you get a minute!


  4. For some reason, I was just thinking about you earlier today and wondering how things were going. Thanks for the update! Congrats on the nuptials and looking forward to updates from Equador. xx


  5. Kathy, and Sara,

    Congratulations on your up coming Marriage! Plus you seem to be making a world wind tour around the east before leaving… Oy!

    I knew you would surface at some point, when there was breathing space. Well glad that you did.

    I am not certain what your time frame is about being in NY, I am only 2 hours away, just saying…


  6. You HAVE been too busy to blog. Goodness, I’m worn out just reading about it! Congratulations on the nuptials! Glad to hear the house sale went smoothly. Fascinating about your father, but the whole “exploring his other identity” as an adult criminal vs your father is what you signed up for. Please find room in your memoir for some of the things you’re feeling and experiencing as you explore his (and your) past. Best wishes for the actual moving and settling in. I hope things continue to click along and that you will be settling in with blogging time again soon. I’ve missed you!


  7. I commented and it disappeared !

    Kathy & Sara, Congratulations on your Marriage!!! I am not sure of your timeline in NY or where you will be? I am only 2 hours away, just saying!

    I knew you would surface, one can’t keep a blogger down. I should talk I have not blogged in months! (don’t think, just do it)

    Well I am glad that all the plans are coming together, that soon the new married couple will be off to a new adventure, affording you many opportunities to blog, create, take photos!

    Hugs, best of the best for both of you!


  8. What a great report on current events! What a lot you have going on! So sorry the long awaited FBI report was a disappointment…though that alias, troublesome as it is, gives you another entire angle to pursue in your writing (as if what you had wasn’t already amazing!). Congratulations and best wishes for your marriage and your move. I’ll look forward to hearing all the news. Thanks!


  9. Wow…you have been busy…congrats on your wedding…everything seems to be moving along so nicely…can’t wait to read more about wedding and your adventures in Ecuador…be well my friend.


  10. Very exciting news, all the way around, and congrats on your upcoming wedding, on your pending move to Ecuador, and on the progress of finally receiving SOMETHING from the FBI files about your dad. Safe travels, and a happy life in Ecuador!

    p.s. Recently I ran across an article about “the new trend – painted stairs” and thought of you and your beautiful stairs project. I was so inspired by your creativity and style when you posted photos of your stairs. Who knew? Turns out maybe you’re a real trend-setter! In more ways than one!


  11. yes yes YES! You two are certainly in the vortecks (that key isn’t working on the laptop!) of a swirl of positive progress! i’m so glad that malcolm provided so much help!

    cuenca is a lovely city, and i predict great happiness and success for both of you!

    welcome to ecuador!!!!



  12. I’m just glad to learn you didn’t take another, more fatal this time around, tumble down the stairs! Figured you were extremely busy what with an international move and all.

    I would love to know about the cuisine of Cuenca: what types of foods they are known for.


  13. Wow … very exciting! So happy for you two … congrats! 🙂

    Been absent myself a loong while but will be back with updates in a few weeks. Lots of changes for both of us it seems. 😉



  14. Wow! How exciting!!! Mazel Tov on everything 😀 — upcoming nuptials, sale of house, receipt of FBI files, and MOVE TO ECUADOR! (Did I miss anything???) It is always so exciting catching up with you. I look forward to reading your memoirs, hearing about Ecuador, and seeing Sara’s photography from a new land. My best to you both.



  15. Wow! I was wondering how you and Sara were managing with the upcoming move down south. Little did I know you guys had managed to squeeze in some travel AND plan a wedding in addition to everything else. 🙂 I’ve missed reading your words but am totally behind on blogs myself. (3-month vacations will do that to a girl!) I wish you and Sara and smooth transition to Ecuador and will excitedly read whatever it is you decide to post about your adventures. All the best, Kathy! 🙂


  16. Kathy – I thoroughly enjoyed reading and viewing the 3-M update: Memoir, Moving, and Marriage. CONGRATULATIONS! How darned COOL is that?!

    You asked what we’d like to know. Since you’re on an “M” theme, I’d like to know one thing each that starts with “M” about your dad, Ecuador, and your wedding (and it’s can’t be mafia, moving, and marriage)…


  17. OH I AM SO EXCITED!!!!! I have this same pic of you and Tori on my fridge, I love it. I can’t wait to hear about your own Very Bloggy Wedding! It’s going to be fabulous, I know! Love y’all!


  18. Oh, how very exciting! Congratulations and may you have many happy years together. Sounds like such an awesome adventure. Would love to hear about all your adventures!
    Btw, believe it or not, but my eldest daughter has an opportunity to go to Ecuador on a school tour next year, so I am saving every last penny to give her this fabulous chance!
    Good luck with the move!


  19. I am as excited as a wiggly puppy over all this news for you and Sara. Truly, I LOVE the fact that you’re getting married. So happy to hear it. So so happy! Once you are settled you simply must supply me with an address to send you and Sara things. This limbo living arrangement of yours is not conducive to the things I’ve stored here for you.


  20. so glad to hear all this. Have been thinking of you and wondering where you were and what all was going on. Wow. a lot is going on. Looking forward to hearing all about it once you’re settled a bit and have caught your breath.


  21. You have been missed, my friend! I miss your memoir pieces, your dog stories, your art posts, your relationship humor… But understandably, it’s impossible to keep up the pace you’d set for yourself and still manage a move to Ecuador.

    I want to hear about it all as soon as you’re able, but I’m really looking forward to a wedding post and pictures! YAY! Congratulations!


  22. Kathy, my heart started to race with excitement when I saw the title of your post in my reading list–thank you for starting with the wedding news. I probably would have read the post out of order in hopes of finding out more, lol. I am so excited that you two are finally finally going to be allowed to be married!! Like my heart almost hurts from feeling so much excitement for you! 🙂 Such wonderful news. I can’t wait to hear more about the wedding, and the move, too! And how strange that your father had an alias. Despite his less-than-legal activities and connections, I think just knowing that he went by another name (that he felt like he needed to go by another name?) can be really jarring. You have so many wonderful, exciting things coming up in your life right now! I’m proud to know you and proud for you both. 🙂 I hope you have a safe move, and once you get settled I hope that you’re able to spend more time blogging, too.


  23. WOW — you are really making the very most of your last days in the USA!
    Congratulations on your wedding — I’m sure it will be a beautiful affair .. and I’m so excited to hear more about your Ecuador adventures settling in there.
    I can’t wait to hear more!! (and I totally get why it’s so disturbing to know that your dad had an alias) …. the mystery continues to unfold!!


  24. Let me see here… In order…

    Congratulations on engagement…
    Damn… At least it wasn’t “big pussy”!
    You’ll be back… They all come back…
    I will most likely have to miss your bloggy wedding… Sorry in advance…
    While in Ecuador… Plant a coconut tree for me please… I would but…

    Good luck… And thank you for the inspiration and good reads…

    peace – chriscondello


  25. Congratulations to you both! What a happy and exciting time! I can relate a tiny bit since my husband and I just moved to a new state. A new country wins though! 🙂 What I’d like to know most about your move to Ecuador is what the shopping is like. Can I get photos? The stories you’ve shared about your father defy even my imagination and I can’t think of anything to ask. Regarding your wedding, please just post your favorite pictures of the happy day!


  26. How exciting!! Moving and getting married – congratulations!! Don’t worry about responding, just know that I wish the two of you the very best, and I hope you are able to get settled in your new life in Ecuador soon!! ♥


  27. So nice to hear from you again – you were missed!

    It would take me years to move continents, so I’m very impressed with how quickly you and Sara got going. Once you’re settled, I’d like to hear all your stories.

    Congratulations and best wishes for your wedding!


  28. I am so happy for you and Sara! Congratulations, if I were anywhere near you I would come and force my broke down body to dance in the street at your wedding!

    Did I mention I have missed you? No? I have missed you.

    What do I want to hear? Everything, just simply everything you want to tell. I am telling you truly if the world continues to spin off its axis I am following you. I am buying Rosetta Stone, learning the language and following you. I will need your map to moving overseas.

    I want pictures of the Wedding. Pictures of the Move. Pictures of everything.

    May the road be filled with bright blessings and great joy. Come back when you are settled in the meantime, I and all your friends will wait for you.


  29. Kathy, you have so much going on, I want to know it all! The wedding of course and your move, too. But your father’s files and secret identity! Wow, can’t wait to hear about that, too. Congrats on the nuptials. How very exciting! Looking forward to seeing photos of your new home in Ecuador, too. Sending you lots of hugs and well wishes!


  30. Thrilling! I am so excited for you on all accounts but perhaps none more than the nuptials! As a result, I’m going to take it upon myself to use excessive amounts of exclamation marks!!! Congratulations to both you and Sara. I think it’s just fantastic. What a wild ride this last little while has been. I hope you’re both taking it in stride, even if the stride is a shuffle under all you’re taking care of. Best of luck to you both with all of it.

    Be good (but not too good)!


  31. Wow! You have a lot going on in your life! Congratulations on your upcoming (or already accomplished?) nuptials! May you and Sara have a long and joyful life together. Good luck with your move. I’m moving, too, around the same time. 🙂


  32. I read this blog the day you posted it, but am just returning to offer (belated) congratulations. A LOT is happening in your life! No wonder there isn’t much time for blogging. Thinking about the sadness which came up about your father’s alias–and about the happiness you and Sara are experiencing now. Such a juxtaposition. Like all life, I suppose…


  33. omg I almost missed this post with all your wonderful news! I’m so glad I thought to come over and see what was happening over here.
    Wow I’m so impressed how quickly you guys packed up and sold the house. I’m so late reading this that you’re already married and already in Ecuador 😀
    (Although I want to read all about your wedding I’m being strict and reading in date order.) Congratulations Kathy.
    I hope the US Supreme Court does the right thing and approves gay marriage… France and New Zealand recently approved it.

    I can’t imagine what it must be like getting your father’s file with all those parts whited out, or what it must be to discover you hardly know anything about him because he didn’t tell you he had an alias.

    I also want to hear everything about Ecuador. 😀
    much love


  34. Hi Kathryn, just found this and I am so pleased for you both. After much wrangling, arguing and petition raising, we now have same sex marriage here in New Zealand. And why not this ancient soul asks.
    Enjoy Ecuador; take your time in reading the FBI file remembering that it has been highly doctored and most f all enjoy each other.


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