As a result of Dan’s tortuous career path, eh, career trail, The Martin Family was proud of accumulated relocation expertise. And then they moved to Holland. The adventure is recounted in Dan’s book: Stumbling Through the Tulips. This page contains some excerpts.
We are a normal American family. Well, we are a wandering American family. After completing graduate school at Georgia Tech, Nazy and I moved to Memphis, where I fulfilled a lifelong ambition by becoming a college professor. Soon, however, economic reality, in the form of baby Mitra, mandated entry into the “real world.” Turning down a job offer at FedEx (overnight package delivery didn’t seem viable to me), I joined the “more stable” commodity brokerage business. Two children (Darius and Melika) later, a corporate sale dictated a move to Vancouver. We missed the Memphis barbecue, but we loved the great Northwest. Events beyond our control (company bankruptcy and Immigration Canada) forced yet another relocation. Shunning nearby Microsoft (I thought Bill Gates was a nerd), we chose the stability of the oil industry in Texas. My mother, aware of my track record, immediately sold all oil shares just before the market crashed. The children had accepted the move to Vancouver with excitement. The move to Houston, however, was somewhat more problematic. Melika, four years old at the time, summed up the situation on Christmas Eve. It was about eighty degrees and I was outside raking leaves.
“It’s Christmas Eve.”
“When’s it going to snow?”
“It’s never going to snow in Houston, Melika.”
“Well…who decided to move here?”
“I’m working on it, Melika.”
So, after a short stay in Houston, I found a job at a small software development firm in Hanover, New Hampshire. We were enamored with the beauty of New England. We learned to ski, we visited Montreal, and we made friends. After spending four successive Christmases in four different cities, we finally put down roots. To settle the matter, we even embarked on a major kitchen renovation project.
For the traditional American family, it was the traditional harbinger of doom. It tested the bonds of matrimony and the ability to live in harmony while surrounded by rubble. At the same time, it stretched our budget and shortened our tempers. (But we got granite countertops!) It is through events like this that the indomitable American spirit is borne. The calm, confidence, and unflappability exhibited by the astronauts is forged in the chaotic caldron of home renovation.
The project was over budget and late. It also activated my world adventure gene. It was time for a family meeting.
But I Like it Here describes Martin Family reaction to the proposed, well, already agreed move.
He is Wearing a Tie brings D-Day and invasion to mind. Bluffs on the dunes of the Scheveningen Beach hosted World WarII bunkers. Sand below hosted the "swimsuit optional" beach.
There's no Christmas Sprit recounts a a strange series of events that culminated with Mitra in the kitchen. Darius' reaction ("If she's cooking, Dad, then I'm not eating.") was predictable. Melika? She just wanted a cat.
The Martin Family - after a few years in The Netherlands