MARCH / APRIL 2005
Registrations for our Mini Reunions Washington D.C. April 7-10 and Hong Kong October 12-15 are progressing well. It is not too late to join the "Cherry Blossom" group - just call David Scharff's office at 301-215-7377. The key deadline for Hong Kong is May 23 by which time we need 40 people registered in order to proceed with our event. If you have questions, contact either Jonathan Ater at 503-226-8471 or your Corresponding Secretary.
John Hatch (Arlington, VA) is a classmate with considerable experience in Indonesia and the other South Asian countries devastated by the tsunami. He works as an advisor in Basic Education with USAID. John traveled to Indonesia twice during 2004 to help develop U.S. spending priorities for education projects. "Following the tsunami, there is concern," he says, "that the schools need to be used for education rather than remain co-opted for other developmental needs, refugee housing, for example. In Indonesia, the tricky part will be to focus on helping the Indonesians with their development needs by sticking with it fully until thanked and excused, and without trying to push or trumpet our political agendas."
We heard recently from Nick van der Merwe (Kalk Bay, South Africa) who sounds like he has a truly idyllic life. "I retired early from the Harvard faculty in 2000," Nick writes, "and returned permanently to the University of Cape Town. In the course of my career as a forensic archeologist I have done fieldwork in 24 countries. It was finally time to live closer to the African countries where I have done most of my work. Besides, Cape Town is a beautiful place, warm enough even in winter for female students to walk around with bare midriffs. My family and I live about 30 minutes south of the campus. Kalk Bay (kalk=chalk) has a small harbour and a handline fishing fleet, with open-decked boats much like those found in the Greek islands. Our home is on the side of a 45-degree mountain slope, about 300 feet above the shoreline; we look out over 30 miles of False Bay. Southern Right whales have started to put in their annual appearance for calving and mating. Above our house is a road that runs along the 350-foot contour and above that is Table Mountain National Park. We can walk out the back gate and climb up to 2500 feet for exercise. Some wise people of the distant past zoned the Cape Peninsula so that building cannot take place above the 350-foot contour; this has avoided the California problem of houses climbing up the slopes. My wife Karen trains pre-school teachers for rural and tribal areas and writes their teaching materials. Daughter Nicolina, 18, is a fresher (i.e. freshman) at the University."
Henry Holland (Kalamazoo, MI) posed an interesting challenge while proudly writing about his 12 and 10 year-old boys. "I roomed all 4 years with Dave Hemphill (Pelham, NY) and have stayed in contact with him. He also has two young kids, just a year younger than mine. I think we must be the classmates with the youngest munchkins." Anyone out there with younger children, please step forward. Henry adds that he "retired from Eaton Corp. a number of years ago and now am Treasurer for the Christian Schools as a volunteer. Very rewarding but even though the pay is lousy, the schedule allows us to take wonderful vacations with the family." His twelve-year, he says, "already has his sights on Yale while the 10 year old is not yet sure."
Another classmate working in new surroundings is Joe Young (Bethesda, MD). "I was planning to retire late in 2002 after more than 30 years of government service. I did that, and my plan was to do a bit of consulting, a bit of travel, and a lot of goofing off; however I managed to get off track. What I thought was to be a consulting assignment turned out first to be part-time and now full-time job as a Senior Research Scientist at the University of Maryland Center for Advanced Study of Language. Our center is funded by the military, security, intelligence, and diplomatic sectors of the government to do research in support of government foreign language professionals. I'm having a ball while keeping off the streets and bringing in some cash!" Joe and wife, Ina, now have seven grandchildren between them including two-year old triplets.
The Red Sox World Series victory brought in a couple of stories and reminiscences, which seem timely with baseball season again upon us. First, Tappy Wilder (Chevy Chase, MD) and Terry Culver (St. Louis, MO) offered their own versions of a $20 wager they had on the Cardinals-Red Sox 1967 Series. Terry picks up the story, "I invested my winnings prudently so that 37 years later I was able to contact my fellow Culver Military Academy alum George Steinbrenner and more or less cover the cost of two series tickets to the fifth game. I was hoping Tappy would come to St. Louis. He begged off and then the fifth game never happened due to the Cardinals four game collapse. I recall only that when staggering out from Busch Stadium, I spied on sale at the gift shop spritzed-out champagne bottles from the Redbirds' pennant celebration. I called the Missouri winery on the labels and was delighted to learn that for $15 I could ship fan Wilder the very same elixir the Bostons had sprayed around their locker room. So the winery shipped Tappy a bottle with my explicit warning that it was not to be sipped or guzzled, only to be applied externally."
Completely separately, Charlie Brainerd (Hartford, CT) shared this story. "Once the Red Sox had won the A.L. & the Cards the National, I called my old Roomie Dudley Taft (Cincinnati) whom I knew to be a Cards owner to suggest that he could enjoy some Boston hospitality if he arrived with four owners box seats. Bill Hoyt (Hamilton, MA) and I would offer a round of golf at the fabled Myopia Hunt Club. He took the bait and whistled into Beverly in his Cessna Citation A-3. We had a fun golf game on the course President William Howard called his own. The rest is history. Red Sox win 4 Cards 0. We were KINGS."