February, 2015

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Sunday February 22nd. Good news. Monday February 23rd. Bad News

Sunday, February 22nd, 2015

2/23: I was ahead of my self. It turned out that John’s daughter does not have any spare passes. So, I’m back to square 1.

2/22:  It did not take giving myself away in marriage or into adoption. A Knight in Shining Armor came to the rescue and did me the Favor. We made the deal this morning after the 8.30 mass  at my parish church. John Oldham is an actual Knight, a Knight of Columbus at my church. When I was still in Holland with the boat he had wanted to come meet me. His daughter, Mary, is a flight attendant for an international carrier and flies frequently on the Amsterdam flights. I get my inexpensive travel and John gets his Dutch travel guide. My finances continue to limit my expenditures. Tomorrow I have the first of both cataracts being removed. The eye drops and antibiotics cost me already close to $ 600 this month… and I will have  a number of expenditures yet ahead before the boat is ocean voyage ready for this summer departure.

Today I received more details and the official invitation to the program on May 4th in the Bellevue Theater in Amsterdam. In the program “Names instead of Numbers” thirteen students will present their biographies of thirteen Dachau prisoners. One of these students will come specially from Germany, Henriette Schulze , and present the story on our mother Rennie de Vries-van Ommen. Her story is based in part on “The Mastmakers’ Daughters” and interviews with my twin brother, who lives in Germany, and her own research. More details: http://www.theaternadedam.nl/voorstelling/geen-nummers-maar-namen/

There will also be a special exhibition at the Verzetsmuseum (Museum of the Dutch Resistance) in Amsterdam on the Dachau program “Names instead of Numbers”: http://www.verzetsmuseum.org/museum/nl/exposities/expositie-geen-nummers-maar-namen .  The two women featured, who were in the same Dachau AGFA Commando in Dachau with our mother,  in this exhibit, Lies Bueninck – Hendrikse and Willemijn Petroff- van Gurp I have met personally. Lies passed away at age 100 in 2010. see: https://cometosea.us/?m=200909 Willemijn is still very much alive, see previous blog. I expect to see her again at the annual Dachau commemoration on April 25 and on May 4th.

If you have not read “The Mastmakers’ Daughters” you should check the Wikipedia page I recently published at: http://www.en.wikipedia.org/wiki/AGFA_Commando

Tentatively we will arrive Amsterdam on April 22nd and depart on or around May 6th.

This should also give me an opportunity to promote my new book “Soloman”. Right now I am 90% done with the Dutch version. Looks like a 400 plus page book, before editing/ cutting.

Rainier from Lisa's home

Rainier from Lisa’s home

Arabella's Landing Marina in Gig Harbor

Arabella’s Landing Marina in Gig Harbor

Monday Feb 16. An offer you can’t refuse

Monday, February 16th, 2015

I would like to be in Amsterdam from around April 20 till May 7th. The 70th anniversary of the end of WW II and of the liberation of concentration camp Dachau will be commemorated. In a theater performance on May 4th, in the program “Names instead of Numbers” http://www.comiteinternationaldachau.com/en/archive/32-names-instead-of-numbers   one of the German students will present her story about our mother’s experience in Dachau. Willemijn Petroff-van Gurp  one of the last surviving survivors will be there with her two biographer students. We met and became friends in 2013. See my blog for the 2013 Dachau commemoration at: https://cometosea.us/?m=201304.

Jop Bruin, Willemijn and Jelle Braaksma (of omgekeerd, maar de langste moet de Fries zijn)

Jop Bruin, Willemijn and Jelle Braaksma

There is a good chance that I will have the Dutch version of “Soloman” ready for presentation at that time and this would give me a chance for the promotion of it.

The cheapest airfare I find is over $ 1,000 and that is not in my Social Security budget. From 2007 until 2010 my dear friend Judy provided me with buddy passes to fly home from and to where the boat was and a winter respite in Indochina. I often ended up in business class. This ended when United merged with Continental. I can get the occasional buddy pass to the East Coast on the domestic carrier where my ex-wife retired from. I am looking for an International carrier employee, that can get me to Amsterdam.

The OFFER is Marriage or Adoption or a Favor.(preferably in reverse order) The best husband, son, friend you could ever have wished for.  

I know the routine, I’ll never be in jeans or ask dumb questions or throw a tantrum fit when space is not available. If you want to see the real Amsterdam I’ll be your guide, interpreter, bodyguard. I speak four European languages fluently and Spanish and Italian reasonably.


Sunday Feb 15 An Early Spring

Sunday, February 15th, 2015

We have had unusual mild weather in the last weeks. The Daffodils, Japanese Plums, Azaleas, Forsythias and even Rhododendrons are blooming already. Today was a sunny but cold day. I went to mass in Gig Harbor, I had not been to my parish church service since the day before I left for Virginia on December 14. Afterwards I attempted to get the engine running with the new fuel pump. The last time I had leaks in the lines. This is fixed but I still could not get the engine started.

Vashon Island Ferry landing Tacoma side

Vashon Island Ferry landing Tacoma side



Last weekend a number of sailing men friends from Gig Harbor got together on Saturday in the Foss Waterway Marina in Downtown Tacoma. I hitched a ride with Roger and his brother Tom.

L.R. Kelley, Pete, Tom, Tom G. , Tim, Roger, Tom. missing Terry J and Ron R.

L.R. Kelley, Pete, Tom, Tom G. , Tim, Roger, Tom. missing Terry J and Ron R.

I am still staying with Rose Marie and Donovan in Federal Way. I have the right eye de-cataractized on the 23rd and the other eye soon after. From the 8th of March I shall be a permanent resident again in Gig Harbor.