A Kid’s View of America from the Back Seat of Daddy’s Car

When I was just out of the first grade at Miami Shores Elementary School, my father took a job as an electronics field engineer with a company based in Baltimore.  Upon the sale of our house, my mom and I headed north to meet him after he completed his orientation with the new job.  His first assignment was at a radar station – in Naselle, Washington!  Talk about hitting the road!

We had a small, early 1950’s era Nash that took us on our first exciting odyssey across the United States.  (No Interstate highways then, just open roads!) I think my love of travel – and the ability to amuse myself for hours – was born from that first excursion.

My dad made sure we visited as many historical and interesting sites along the road as we were able to and I still remember visiting Lincoln’s home in Illinois, Mark Twain’s home in Missouri, seeing snow for the first time in the Rocky Mountains, and many more adventures. I was encouraged to keep a scrapbook of the trip and I still have it to this day!

The window next to the back seat of that car became the portal to a new world and I would stare for hours at the new and exciting scenery I saw.  From palm trees in Florida to rolling plains, from wheat fields in the Midwest to snow-capped mountains and awesome waterfalls, we saw it all. Naturally, I spent a lot of time daydreaming about the different towns we would go through and made up stories to go with what I thought I was seeing.  My dad, whose mother was an artist, made sure I always had crayons, color pencils and lots of paper to put my thoughts and impressions on.

Thus my love of travel and making art was born.

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