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Ryan Dennis

Ryan Dennis is the son of a New York dairy farmer and a literary writer whose early essays were originally published in Progressive Dairyman.

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All hail to the countryside when it comes to candy on Halloween. There were only a few houses on the roads in either direction – most of them relatives – but, boy, would they fill your bags up.

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Recently, I went back to Berlin to visit an old friend. The German capital is a vibrant, international city known for its eclectic clubs and a willingness to accommodate all types of eccentricities and counterculture.

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It is no secret farming is a difficult enterprise. Present economic and political conditions have made it even more challenging, particularly in the dairy industry.

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I started noticing a lot of people looking back in my direction. At first, I assumed they were looking at my girlfriend, which filled me with that natural mix of jealousy and pride.

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If you’re reading this, you know something I don’t: who won the World Cup. (Is it Brazil? Don’t tell me it’s Brazil.)

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Southern Italy can be a tough place to live. My girlfriend is a hardened product of its streets. She rode the public bus two hours to school each day while ignoring the perverse catcalls of nefarious men (and once a slap in the face from an old woman).

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