The purpose of this site is to share some thoughts along life’s journey. My own path has had its ups and downs; some smooth traveling and also potholes that sent me flying. Even so, the journey is always survivable and it’s always with purpose because Father God is leading the way. I’m doing my best to follow.
My life has been one of travel, adventure, and unusual experiences. I grew up the daughter of an Air Force Sergeant who later became a church pastor and Bible teacher. My mother was a Kindergarten teacher and a children’s church leader. We lived in so many places. I spent my High School years in Hawaii and Florida. When I left home as a young adult, I first went to a university in Tennessee and then left for a missionary career in Europe and countries beyond. The last 40 years I have divided my time between work in Eastern Europe, Central Asia, England, and the southeastern states of the USA.
Over the years I have had some amazing opportunities to hike in the Bavarian Alps, travel behind the former ‘Iron Curtain’ of Eastern Europe, ride a train from Shanghai to the southern parts of China, take a helicopter ride to a glacier in the Tien Shen mountains, and spend a week on a canal boat in England, mooring for two nights below Windsor Castle. I had the humbling experience of walking through the Walled City of Hong Kong before it was torn down. It was a den of drugs and prostitutes; a place where the love of God burst forth through the love and determination of Jackie Pullinger. I’ve had the humbling pleasure of taking clothes and food to those who had little or none in Central Asia, giving medicines to many who could never have obtained it themselves, being involved in a humanitarian outreach that gives aid, comfort, and hope to those overlooked by bigger organizations. I’ve watched as children squealed in delight with a toy they never dreamed would be there own, and I’ve watched grandmothers cry when we gave them food their meager pensions could never buy. My heartstrings have tugged with the pain of dear friends who have run for their lives in a bloody “ethnic cleansing,” wading waist-deep through a rushing river to safety with children in their arms, while those filled with hatred and violence chased them with machetes. In recent years I’ve seen my greatest bucket list dream come true — I volunteered in Africa for two months, up close and personal with its wildlife. I worked with a wildlife orphanage in Zimbabwe, saw the beautiful Victoria Falls, zip- lined across the Zambezi Gorge, came across a family of giraffe while hiking in South Africa, and witnessed the Great Migration of wildebeests rushing through the Mara River in Tanzania. Tears of joy sprang to my eyes when, after hours of hiking up the Virunga Mountains in Rwanda, our guides slashing away jungle vines with machetes, I sat with an entire family of Silverback Gorillas. These gentle animals were welcoming and uninhibited by our presence. I’ve had the privilege of training with a team of veterinary professionals in two different veterinary practices in the USA. I’ve shared in the joy of watching someone’s beloved pet get well and I’ve cried my own tears to watch another pet slip from this earth. I’ve sat cross-legged on the floor of a yurt in Central Asia sharing a meal of boiled sheep’s lungs, bumped along in a jeep where there were no roads, and lived in places with no heat or electricity for long periods of time. I’ve walked through slums in India, meeting people who sleep in sewers or live in large garbage dumps. I’ve met nomads in high mountain places, met a president of a Central Asian country, once shared a dessert with Alan Alda, coffee with Charlton Heston, and shook hands with Henry Kissinger. In my childhood I lived with my family for 18 months on Midway Island in the Pacific Ocean. It was a place of no cars, thousands of Albatross, and collecting glass balls from broken fishing nets that floated to the island was a hobby for all residents. It was there the late Bob Hope landed with his crew, returning from his Christmas tour to Vietnam. In the early hours of the morning they entertained us, too. My list goes on and on of once-in-a-lifetime experiences, adventure, and travel to the “back of beyond” and back. Through it all, whether joyful or sad, my greatest encouragement, constant companion, and the one with whom I could share it all, has been my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. He promised in Hebrew 13: 5 to, “never leave me or forsake me.” I have found this to be true.