She left and took her two young daughters with her (one was four, the other five years old). She had a twin sister and they looked so similar that only family and close friends could tell them apart. She was the younger twin, only a few minutes younger, but she was also the more courageous one.

Boxes packed full of second-hand clothes that were yet to come into fashion in Europe, Big Red cinnamon chewing gum. Long phone calls facilitated by connections in the local Council, and short email messages some years later. An image of the United States was taking shape for us.

She stepped out of the plane at the O’Hare International Airport in January. It was freezing outside. The roads were too wide and had the colour of sand, and were partially covered by a thin layer of snow. Years later, Leann explained to me that roads in each of the 50 states in America have a specific shade after the stone that was used for their construction.




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