My more astute readers might have observed that I have not included any stories about my family life once I became a young husband and father. Interracial marriages in 1972 were not common nor well accepted in many circles. Societal stresses, professional pressures and cultural differences in child-rearing created a lot of disharmony, divisiveness and ultimately a divorce in 1994. Like many parents, there are things that I wish that I had done differently, but I am immensely proud of my three children, all well-educated, accomplished adults now. They and my equally accomplished two step-sons are beautiful human beings, making significant contributions, not the least of which is providing Linnea and me eight amazing grandchildren ranging in age from nearly one year old to twelve years old. I have told all our children that their childhood is their story to tell; obviously, each will have his/her own unique perspective. Stand by!
While I’ve touched on some travels that our family did after we came to America since my dad wanted to introduce us to all the national parks, the travels that I did with my own children tended to focus on locations that provided summer water sports and winter snow sports. For many reasons, we didn’t engage in a lot of sight-seeing. After Linnea and I married in 1995, we were fortunate to have excuses to travel for family weddings and graduations all around the USA, including Alaska and Hawaii and then off to Europe when our oldest embarked on a career as an Army officer and provided a home base for us overseas. Spending lots of time in Germany gave me an opportunity to practice my high school German which tended to create more problems than solve them! On our last trip to Europe we had a harrowing experience with the Budapest transit gendarmes who, because we couldn’t read the instructions, told us we failed to get our train ticket stamped and therefore seized our passports until we basically had to pay them a generous bribe. It was a very distressing late-night scene and discouraged us from using any public transportation while visiting Hungary. A gotcha trap! Attending a batch of plays in London and a series of operas in Vienna were also real treats. Besides our trips to China, where luckily language was not an issue, our most memorable adventures were exploring Machu Picchu and the Galapagos. That was a very special tour.