From my beloved Aunt Esther, a postcard from British Columbia. She and Uncle John were on a cruise up the coast of Canada, and then on to Alaska. This would have been in the second half of the 1970s, but with my eyes and poor light I can’t make out the postmark year.
Today I give you two postcards from my maternal grandmother Ruth Blocher (we called her “G-ma” for some reason) written from Glorieta in New Mexico and then from California where she was visiting my cousin Keith who was in the military. This was 1978, and I was working at Windermere that summer before my senior year of high school.
But first, an early photo of me with G-ma and Poppie (who died in 1967). The children are my cousin Karyl, cousin Keith, and me on Poppie’s lap.
Summer 1978. I worked at Windermere Baptist Assembly, the state Baptist conference center at the Lake of the Ozarks. It was a transformative summer in many respects:
- I found a calling to religious life
- I easily made friends
- I spent the summer at the lake
- I confirmed my love of Pepsi (now Diet Pepsi)
- I was diagnosed with a bleeding ulcer
- I got to play the Wicks pipe organ nearly every day
- I started to emerge as a person, away from my family
August 1978. My parents and sisters were at Student Week at Glorieta Baptist Assembly in New Mexico. And Mom wrote this postcard:
It’s a jumbo postcard!
Postscript: looking up the correct name of Glorieta, I found that Glorieta was sold several years ago and is now called Glorieta Adventure Camps. The internet has changed much in this world, and apparently attending week-long summer conferences in New Mexico is one of the changed things too.
I found a trove of postcards in a box in the basement, one that has moved with me several times. I don’t know when I got them, but they were pretty musty.
And I have enough new fodder now for at least a year of #PostcardMonday!
This is the old card I found in my own scratchy scrawl. I was eight years old, soon to turn nine. I wrote this card to my sisters who were staying with G-ma in Adrian, whilst I was with my beloved Aunt Esther in Columbia. At some point, I went to Jefferson City to stay with Aunt Margaret and my cousins.
Ten years ago this summer I made my first trip to Italy.
That excursion, with bunches of Ball State University students and my friend D, included stops in Rome, Sorrento, Delphi, and Athens, and an overnight ferry crossing in the Aegean Sea.
And a day trip to Capri, off the coast from Naples and Sorrento.
When I have money, or decide to go into debt, I’ll spend a days on the Isle of Capri.
The new school year’s classes begin today at Webster University.
I am starting my 21st year of full-time college teaching, and my 31st year of teaching in higher education.
And as I do so today, I am ever so grateful for those life-changing three years at the University of Kansas, where I earned my doctorate. I could write volumes about the learning, the lifetime relationships, the formation, the music, the beer, the travel.
Rock Chalk Jayhawk!