Welcome to Letters from Monster! Here you’ll find excerpts of journals and letters from me (Monster) and from my Great Aunt Jean. Born in 1893, Jean was a woman ahead of her time. She was independent and avoided conforming to social norms. We share a love of travel, exploration, and the occasional glass of whiskey. Jean and I are storytellers at heart, whether it’s through a series of photographs or words penned on paper, and I like to think of this space as a blog for the both of us.


Why Monster? It’s a nickname given to me by a dear friend of mine and it seems as fitting to me as my real name. It’s a point of irony that I embrace, having both a strong side and a gentle demeanor. And, let’s face it, Monster just sounds cool.

Bound by pen and sea

We are kindred spirits at heart
Thriving in the island breeze
Nearly a century apart

No trip is too far
For two women with coy smiles
No road is off limits
No idea is too wild

Banana boats bound south
Dancing on the deck until dawn
The stars prove nicely as a roof
Home and office all but gone

Languages practiced
With folks of a different life
Making a way in this world
Rather than being known as somebody’s wife

Cayman calls from shell up to ear
Prayer flags in Nepal wave hello
There are mountains to climb and elephants to meet
Might as well say f*** it and just go

Fearless, rafting down the river of life
Seeking adventure on a whim
Rendering ourselves sentimental
After one whiskey or tonic and gin

Writing letters back home
Describing adventures and our tales
Joys and wonders abound
A touch of mischief without fail

Batting eyelashes just the same
Underestimated but we pleasantly surprise
To the boys I’m known as Monster
To her captain, she was Bright Eyes