I’ve been traveling since early childhood. During WWII, my family moved 15 times by the time I was 8 y.o. A year after Dorothy, my wonderful wife, and I married, we moved from Clifton, NJ to Monument, OR, where I was the intern in the John Day Valley Parish in Eastern OR.
Incredible rimrock country all around us, spectacular drive to Portland, OR the Three Sisters, and the coast. We returned to NJ, Princeton, where I completed my seminary degree and started my PhD. In Princeton, our son, Peter, and our daughter, Lise, were born. They’re now well-established adults. Peter lives in Sandia Park, NM with his wife, Susan Hoines. Lise and her husband, Allen Varner, live in Palo Alto, CA.
My father took a job in Saudi Arabia in 1947. We expected to join him after two years, but that didn’t happen. He did send home and bring home many pictures of things that I would like to have seen myself. So I determined to take my family abroad and live there a while.
In 1970, the Evangelical (Protestant) Provincial Church of Wuerttemberg, in Stuttgart, Germany, invited me to take part in their revision of their education of student assistant ministers in the area of pastoral care. In August, 1971, we made the move, returning in 1974.
Travels to Venice, Rome, the Tirol, Luebeck, Paris, and Norway astonished us. I taught in East Germany for a total of 12 weeks over 2 1/2 years, which took us to Berlin, unreconstructed Dresden, and the far southeast corner of E Germany near Poland and Czechoslovakia. In Europe I became a lover of fine art and opera. Opera was inaccessible to me, as a New Mexico country kid who listened to Grand Ol’ Opry and who thought all soprano opera singers were screeching.
And, of course, Germany is the land of Wanderungen. We did our own wandering while we were there.
After Peter and Lise left for college, Dottie and I spent 9 summer vacations in Rocky Mountain National Park, staying in Estes Park and Winter Park. Our last Colorado vacation occurred about 1996, when we went to Durango, CO. Stunning country.
In April, 1997, I ruptured my left quadriceps tendon, so hiking was out that summer. We went to the Mendocino coast, staying at Fools Rush In, a motel that offered good accomodations for me with my temporary disability. For a number of years thereafter, we returned to the Mendocino coast.
In early December, 2008, we took a trip to Orlando, FL to participate in our first time-share presentation and tour. I was smitten, Dottie kept saying no, and the price seemed to drop, the more she said no. We wound up buying, and by early April, 2009, we had “discovered” Sedona, AZ and visited the Big Island and Maui in Hawaii. Since then, we say that we are traveling “as long as we’re able.” In the last 18 months, we have traveled at least 22 weeks, not counting four weekends a year at the Ridhwan School’s courses in Wisconsin.
I was talking with my spiritual teacher about our travels in one of our private telephone conversations. She said that she heard more excitement in my voice talking about our travels than at any other time in the two or more years we had been working together. I began to do a bit of writing, and I found that I agree with my teacher. I love this writing. It deepens my experience and my appreciation of where we are and where we have been.
You’ll decide for yourself whether the blog speaks to you. If it does, we’d like to hear from you. Even more, if it doesn’t. How could we present our experiences so that they’d resonate better with you?
Share some of your travel experiences on my blog!