Thursday, August 14, 2008

England Trip - August 14th, 1983

We said goodbye to the Onslow Court Hotel and cheerio to England on a 12:30pm flight. Our trip handlers advised us it was customary to tip the bus driver at the end of a charter coach journey. Tipping is not an innate skill, one has to learn it and I had no idea what to give Gordon. I thought he did a great job so I gave him 20 pounds. That was about 30 dollars in those days. We took off from Heathrow and it was busy but there were no problems. The flight was long and we landed at O'Hare, Chicago in time for a four hour layover. Argh.

My Dad met me at the gate in Kansas City. The plane touched down after 8pm. I couldn't wait to get home. We were all tired. In my rush, I don' t think I made a big enough deal about my goodbyes.

I saw Tom, Melissa, and Marc again at K.U. (and our pub mate from Bath). We made plans to meet with the two Judys that November for a reunion to look at snapshots and Tom's home movies. He carried either an 8mm or a 16mm camera with him in England and we all made the highlights I'm told. I never saw the prints. The projector bulb shot craps the day of our reunion. But Tom didn't give up. He and Melissa went to KU, got married, moved to Carmel where they befriended the Mayor, Mr. Clint Eastwood. Tom and Clint collaborated on several films and Melissa worked behind the scenes too.

Marc, the one-time cable man from Los Angeles, got a job at 96X, a rock station in Ottawa, KS that serviced the Lawrence market. He sold air time, was on the air, and starred in their local cable TV ad campaign as the Herb Tarlick-like salesman who got zapped by the cool rock sounds of 96X. I think Marc stayed in sales but I haven't talked to him in over 20 years. He may be living in California.

Judy Oden retired from Shawnee Mission North and became a travel agent. She and Judy Spencer continued to visit Europe, though not always together. Gordon drove coaches across the UK for many years. I hope he still does.

I unpacked my things when I got home but I didn't have long to rest. The dorms opened three days later at KU and I prepared to start another exciting journey, a new chapter, as a freshman at Oliver Hall. 1983 was a busy year.

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