Persico 2019 Holiday/Christmas Letter

Dear Friends and Family,

Have you ever looked at some old high school years books?  No doubt you noticed that hairstyles are a dead giveaway to the era that you are looking at.  Today, it seems words reflect the times we live in.  A few years ago, we were deluged with the word “Awesome.”  Everything was awesome.  My boyfriend is awesome.  My underwear is awesome.  Then, the word “traction” seemed to mysteriously enter the English language.  Trump was gaining traction.  Biden was losing traction.  My car tires could get no traction in the snow in Arizona (Oops, car tires are not a good example and we do not get any snow down here in Arizona City.)  Lately the words have become more complex but no less ubiquitous.  The words meme, trope and narrative have become almost cliched.  “I was spinning a narrative just the other day that was full of tropes and memes and just for fun I decided to throw in a few faux facts or were they alternate facts?”  Well, you know what I mean.

Karen asked me to start off our annual Holiday/Christmas letter.  I thought maybe you would all like to hear some good news.  I will forego talking about my life or the people I know who died this year or my aches and pains.  I am sure you have enough of your own miseries without getting mine.  So, I embarked on a quest to find some good news.  A happy story that would transcend the gloom of politics, the animosity of the impeachment process, the rhetoric of the elected officials that we are condemned to hear.  I found just the story on NPR.  It was a tale of a young girl (Two years old) named Parker Curry who wrote a book (Some help from her mom) about her experiences at the National Portrait Gallery in Washington, D.C.

Parker

Parker came across a picture of Michelle Obama and was mesmerized when she realized that she was the same color as Parker.  To Parker, Michelle was more than just the first lady, she was an inspiration.  A photographer took a picture of Parker staring up at Michelle Obama and it became a viral sensation.  To me it shows the value of a role model and the need to see people who are like we are.  Parker was later asked if she would like to be President or a First Lady.  Without hesitation, Parker said “President.”  The book is called “Parker Looks Up.”  I highly recommend the book.  It will make you feel good even if it is a book for kids.

MonkeyKaren’s turn.  2019 was the Chinese year of the pig, or to be more accurate, the earth pig.  Pigs represent good fortune, wealth, honesty and peace loving.  My Chinese sign is the monkey, and unfortunately for the monkey, 2019 was to bring unplanned expenses.  So true.  After 40+ years of my lobbying to get some sort of a camper, we finally did it and purchased a 26-foot Aspen Trail travel trailer.  Of course, that meant that we had to buy a truck to pull it.  Then we found out the many necessities required to use a travel trailer.  The Amazon delivery truck had daily trailer deliveries and sure knew where to find us.  The trailer sat in front of our house for months so we could learn to pull it, turn corners, and the worst—how to back up.  According to the Zodiac, John (the dog) in the Chinese Zodiac) was to have special opportunities to change his plans and trace new directions.

2019_Dutchmen_AspenTrail

DogJohn got more than he wanted.  It was his job to organize all the new tools and supplies while I decorated.  We had a first practice trip to a nearby State Park for a “dry” run and then a second longer trip to Puerto Penasco in Mexico.  Feeling more confident, we took off for Wisconsin in April by way of Mountain View Arkansas to first attend the Dulcimer Jamboree before heading home to Wisconsin.  In June, our trailer went to Kentucky Music Week and in September to Bayfield, WI for a 30th anniversary celebration.

Finally, it was back to AZ in October. But our trips were not done yet.  Shortly afterwards, our sister Jeanine visited from Rhode Island and we took her to Mexico to practice her Spanish lessons.  She enjoyed both her first trip to Mexico as well as her first RV experience and camping on a Mexican beach.  We’re not pros yet, but we have sure learned a lot about RV’ing.  We wish you all a wonderful holiday season and a happy New Year.  2020 will be the Chinese year of the metal rat.  But it’s much better than it sounds.  It should be a strong, prosperous and lucky year for almost all the Chinese Zodiac signs.

John and Karen   

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