During my parenting years I went about life in the suburbs without a name. How did that work you might inquire? Well, – I was given a moniker. More accurately I became a possessive: Jack’s Dad. If I walked up to the soccer pitch, I was identified as Jack’s Dad. If I entered a Boy Scout meeting, I was introduced as Jack’s Dad. So it went for years and eventually it led to a license plate: JAX DAD. Clearly, I was proud to be a possessive. Together with JAX MOM we celebrated his achievements and developing personal network. That was then.  Although we continue to cheer him from the sidelines, Jack is now married to a Georgia gal and lives out of state.

    Work that once kept my life challenging – and often exhilarating – outside the suburbs gradually lost its appeal. So I retired. Three times: from the Army, from a railroad, and finally from independent contracting. I have nevertheless remained busy. Along with my wonderful wife, we keep the grounds around our home attractive, cherish the visits with our son and his wife, and do our best to keep track of our Beagles – Bud & Miller. We enjoy visiting extended family and occasional international travel. I enjoy keeping up with genealogy, managing its related website, and riding my road bike on the back-roads of the surrounding counties. All of which is enjoyable – and healthy. Still, missing from those activities has been a combination of mental and physical challenge. That is how the goal of thru-hiking the Appalachian Trail came to be – and which led to my first blog.