We write this letter, as we have now for the past forty or more years, having celebrated Thanksgiving with much to be thankful for. Again we have been blessed with another good year, but there is no escaping the indicia of old age. One gets clumsier and slower and forgets where one puts things a few seconds ago, at least we do. Doctor's appointments for this and that ailment seem to come more often and the number of daily pills goes up every year. Despite all that however there have been many happy events and times, which we would not have wanted to miss.
Two of our grandchildren graduated from high school and started college. Paul and Sue's son Michael at Georgia Tech and Leslie and Joseph's daughter Hannah at North Carolina State. As it says in the song “when did they grow up so fast”. We attended their graduations in Cary North Carolina and in Annandale Virginia. One a Christian school with a class of about 30 and the other a public school with a class of about 500. Both were a wonderful experience to see what great adults they had grown into with no little thanks to their parents.
In contrast to this year where there has been nary a flake yet, last winter we had snow by the foot. The skiing was great even around Midland but of course even better Up-North. However after a while it does get tiring and one yearns for a warm sun. We were no exception and escaped the cold weather for ten warm, sunny days in Puerto Vallerta.
The summer went fast with time at the “Summons” on Traverse Bay where we were fortunate to have our son Paul and Sue and their sons Michael and Bryan stay with us for too few days. A trip out to Los Angeles for the wedding of Nancy's brother, Let, to Barbara Sanderson in July was most enjoyable. Let who had been leading a bachelor's life for many years, married into this wonderful big family of Barbara's. What a change, but he seems to be enjoying it immensely.
The fall saw our usual theatre trip to Stratford in Ontario where we saw three productions including Westside Story with unbelievable choreography that was exhausting just watching it.
Our son Eric and Dawn seem to have finally settled in Toledo where Dawn is teaching at Toledo University, in that they acquired a beautiful home in the suburb of Sylvania. Eric still has to commute to his job at the engineering consulting firm in Cleveland, but the work there with NASA is fascinating and very satisfying. Of course for us the greatest attraction there is our granddaughter Abigail, now a precocious three, talking up a storm. Leslie and Joseph our daughter and son-in-law are still living in Cary North Carolina where Leslie is teaching high school chemistry and biology and Joseph has started his own software company involving mass spectrometric analyses that has really taken of.
Bill is still working professionally although each year he threatens to quit in part because the Patent Office is making life miserable for inventors by totally arbitrary decisions on what is patentable. This administration believes that patents are bad for the economy and they are therefore trying to squelch them. However he did have one highlight, namely a European opposition hearing in Munich in which he was allowed to argue some of the issues involved and was successful in having the opposed patent revoked. After two cataract operations Bill can now, after at least sixty year,s see without glasses except for reading.
Nancy is coping with Parkinson's and working hard to maintain a normal life. She is in the pool at least three mornings a week on aquatic exercises at our Community Center as well as working out on the machines there.
As we again approach the Christmas season and its message of peace and goodwill that we all seek and pray for, we extend our wishes to all of you for a joyful, healthy and rewarding Christmas that may last throughout the coming year
Bill and Nancy
© 2004 Bernd W. Sandt. All rights reserved.