Forty years ago, on January 22, 1965, we got married in Boulder, Colorado. It was a simple wedding, to say the least: a judge performed the brief ceremony, with two witnesses. Our friends threw us a small informal reception. Nobody was older than the age of 30 and the basic attire was hiking boots and blue jeans. A friend made an angel food cake and someone broke open one bottle of champagne. Now, 40 happy years later, we decided it was finally time to have a really big celebration! So this year began with an anniversary party at David and Patty’s newly remodeled house. Liska actually fit into the navy blue suit she wore on that long-ago wedding day. A “Step Back to 1965” Room had displays, magazines, and photos of life in 1965. A scrumptious Mediterranean buffet fed our guests. It was truly a special and joyous event with our many Anchorage friends.
On April 3, we went cross-country skiing in the mountains behind Anchorage. A beautiful crystal clear day… perfect snow conditions…. Dick decided to go up one last steep hill. On the way down, he tripped, fell, and dislocated his shoulder. It was painful, but he managed to ski the 5 miles back to our car. Five days later, Tazlina’s sister, Marley, was born. How lucky we are with two healthy granddaughters!
A couple of weeks later, Dick had rotator cuff surgery and his arm was put in a sling. A week after the surgery, we picked up our “travel car” in Phoenix and met some friends in Utah canyon country. It was a bit of a challenge for Dick to climb in and out of our tent with one arm, but he managed just fine. We did not go on a planned backpacking trip, but did do a lot of hiking in canyons.
We keep busy with volunteer jobs and playing with our granddaughters. Liska’s new volunteer job is a Court-Appointed Special Advocate (CASA) for abused kids. We have also done a lot of work at our cabin this fall. Our kids are busy too. In addition to his computer mapping job, David teaches geography at University of Alaska. Patty is a hearing officer for the disabilities section of Social Security Administration. Gary is teaching high school math and Heather is a busy mom. She also works a few hours a week consulting on health and social service projects.
The following paragraph is Dick’s:
While enjoying a beautiful Alaskan view with our friend Libby, we were telling stories of interesting things of nature we had seen. I told her about the time I saw a pair of peregrine falcons fly up high to an eagle and suddenly kill it. We also discussed life in tidepools where one thing eats another, which in turn is eaten by something else. Libby described that while watching brown bears feeding in a salmon stream, she realized that the bears were not even safe from being killed, despite being at the top of the local food chain. At the fishing grounds where the bears congregate, the cubs often get killed by being flipped by the male bears. The female bears get hurt trying to protect them. The males get hurt fighting each other. After a slight pause, I said “You would think that mankind should be able to rise above the other animals by eliminating all that fighting and killing, especially in this day and age with our knowledge and technology.” Then Libby said sadly “That has been the biggest disappointment of my life.”
It is our fervent hope that peace will come to the world.