[Today's blog is a guest blog by Bob.]
There are several factors that contribute to a successful, long-term relationship like the one Susan and I have shared for over thirty years. We are attracted to each other on several levels. We met through an unusual personal ad (remember this was before the internet) that used characters from a novel to describe the qualities of the person I was looking for. Susan was one of only two serious responses. We met, moved in together after a week, bought a house together after a month, raised two boys, and are in love with each other 31 years later.
|Bond Falls, Upper Peninsula, Michigan (Photo by Bob)|
Another contributing factor to the success of our relationship is our common background. Both of our families share very similar trends which makes the way we live our lives together very comfortable.
Susan’s parents met in Ann Arbor, Michigan. When Susan was three years old, in 1956, her family moved to California. Then in 1966, after California started to get crowded, the family again moved to Newberg, Oregon, where they settled down.
My father moved his first wife and children from Chicago to California in the early '50’s as well. After a divorce, he met my mother, started a second family, and when California got too crowded, moved the family to Hawaii in 1960.
But there is more to the story than that, as it turns out. Susan’s father was born in Marquette, on the upper peninsula of Michigan. My father was born in Iron River, on the upper peninsula of Michigan. Until you have been here, you don’t realize what a coincidence that is, given the sparse population of the U.P.
|Bob in his father's town of birth|
Susan’s father’s family moved to a suburb of a mid-west metropolis (Detroit) and my father’s family moved to a mid-west metropolis (Chicago).
On my mother’s side, while she was born in California, her father grew up in Watertown, Wisconsin, another place we visited on this trip. He attended University of Wisconsin in Madison before moving to California in the '30’s. In an interesting side note, my father’s father ALSO attended the University of Wisconsin.
There has been a lot of movement in both of our families. Thus it should come as no surprise that Susan and I have called four states home and currently live in a house with wheels!