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Mamo's Great European Vacation

October 28-Nov 13

Written December 8


Dear Friends and Families,



Marianne's mother was back this year to complete her house inspection. Despite her 86 years, knees that need repair or replacement, heart pacemaker, and miscellaneous signs of wear, she managed the 20 hour trip from California - coming with Marianne but flying back alone. So, the next time you think it's hard to visit us, remember Mamo.


She had been here a year earlier and saw what she called "ground zero" - our initial ruin. Back then she had faith in us that we saw something worthwhile. Since then, Marianne had kept her up to date by phone, but an in-person inspection HAD to be arranged.

She loved it. From the back door entry, where last year she saw a century-old privy, through the kitchen, and around the other five rooms, she was thrilled. She called it our little "Schmuck Kästchen", jewel box. (We prefer to ignore the cost of jewels!)


Most of the visit was spent doing regular things and catching up. Together, Marianne and her mom speak a strange mixture of Hungarian, English, and German as they would discuss the daily working of our new hometown Pommersfelden, as well as happenings back in Fresno. I'm not sure two places could be more different, but both fed the chatting spree.

One of our favorite "normal things" is a visit to Pommersfelden's new attraction, The Kellerhaus Cafe. We went there on a brilliant sunny day and the vistas were particularly special.

  We also visited Bamberg and, for the most part, continued to enjoy unseasonably sunny weather. I'm sure the sun was brought from Fresno.  

Too soon, the visit was over. Two weeks went by very quickly. We drove Mamo up to Frankfurt airport and she headed off on her 12 hour flight to San Francisco. When she got there, the flight to Fresno had been cancelled by bad weather! I think she HAD given us the California sun, but she brought back German storms. Sorry!

Nevertheless, Mamo is an experienced traveler and, while the family was panicked about where she was, Mamo just hung around SFO as directed by United Airlines, got the next flight, and showed up in Fresno, tired but proud of her accomplishment -- as we are.



So, come and visit, bring sun, and, when it sounds daunting: Remember Mamo.


John and Marianne.


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