PS duPont Class of '59

Wilmington, Delaware

Jürgen Thewes Annual Thanksgiving Wishes

Dear Former Classmates,

Happy Thanksgiving!

Edeltraud and I do hope that you all are in the best of health and that you will be able to celebrate Thanksgiving with your families and friends. It is your most important holiday, we understand, and on this occasion most of you will be able to return home. Have a wonderful family reunion and happy hours.

55 years ago, when I was hosted by the Harry C. Watson family during my AFS exchange year, we had been invited by the Watsons’ relatives on a farm in Maryland where we enjoyed a fantastic Thanksgiving meal. I hadn’t experienced anything like that, and I hadn’t tasted meat of a turkey at all. The turkey was a real big one, its meat and stuffing just delicious. Even today I’m very grateful for that Thanksgiving holiday. In 1993 when we visited the United States for the second time I succeeded in finding that farm again. 34 years had gone by. However, Doug Watson’s uncle recognised me at once. He looked at me and instinctively said ‘Oh, you were the boy staying with the Watsons!’ An unforgettable moment in my life. By those relatives we learned where to find my former host brother Doug Watson and his sisters, Nancy and Gail. Already in 1992 we had searched for them, but without success. In 1993, just a day before we had to leave the United States again, Edeltraud and I met Gail and her husband Don for the first time after that long period of time. What a wonderful reunion! And that’s the reason we returned every year. Of course, we had met Trudy and my second host mother, Mrs. Anne Said, in 1992 already.

This year was an extremely busy one: A lot of friends celebrated their 70th birthday, our nephew Thomas married and had an unforgettable wedding celebration. Our niece Sabine acquired a new home pretty close to us. Our travel highlights were not only trips to Austria to live at our second home for a while, but we also experienced new forms of traveling. A combined flight and cruise led us to the Canary Islands and to Madeira. Aboard a gigantic cruise liner with 1800 passengers we started at Tenerife, were taken to Funchal on Madeira, then back to the Canary Islands. It turned out to be excursions into the world of volcanoes. After docking, buses took us into the interior of the island to watch gigantic craters or calderas. Lovely vegetation was everywhere, banana trees, all sorts of flowers and fruit. We enjoyed the cruise ship AIDAsol — nice, our cabin, and very nice hours aboard. 8 days of highly interesting sightseeing and decent weather.

Meanwhile, I’m in charge of our former teacher’s wife. That takes a lot of time and requires continuous administrative work. Fortunately, a former schoolmate and I try to manage the heritage.

At his end of May, we started for another trip to southern Italy. This time it was a combined flight and bus trip to Bari on the Adriatic Sea from where we were taken to Alberobello in Puglia (name of the province situated in the ‘heel’ of Italy). That small town is world heritage because of special kind of houses. They are built in a circle by stone plates without any mortar. Their roofs are cones (false vaults). In former times you might have considered them pretty primitive, but today they are tourist attractions. We then started for exploration of the province which is famous for its millions of olive trees. You may find walnut, cherry and almond trees as well. As to the highlights of that country, we visited wonderful cathedrals and castles. One of the outstanding monuments was Castel del Monte, an octagon which had been erected by Emperor Frederick II of Suebia in the 13th century. Having been placed on a hill, it is overlooking the landscape for about 20 miles. Not less impressive were the Romanesque cathedrals with outstanding sculptural works. I should have had much more time for photographing, but today you ask yourself ‘What for are you doing this?’

Well, during July and October we went down south to Austria again. There we enjoyed ‘Indian summer’. But the trip is quite a distance (725 miles) not to be covered in one day any longer; i. e., you have to stay some place for the night. We are always happy after our return not having been involved in long traffic jams or even accidents.

At home it’s time for clearing up our garden. That takes a lot of time, and the weather is not favourable right now. To summarize, I’ve got little time to do some writing. I do regret that I’m not able to constantly keep up contact with you.

Finally, Edeltraud and I want to send you ‘Season’s Greetings’ and all good wishes for the year to come. Perhaps we’ll make it for the 55th class reunion next year. We do hope to see you then.

With our warmest regards,

E. + J.Thewes

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November 26, 2013 Posted by | 55th Reunion, General, Thanksgiving, What's Doing Now | , , , , , | Leave a comment