2022 Christmas Epistle

Amy and I hope this finds all of you well and enjoying a measure of freedom after a long pandemic. We continue to be grateful for our healthy families and for the security we enjoy living in The Highlands at Wyomissing. The Highlands at Wyomissing 

Twenty twenty-two has been a very busy year – happily “busy is not followed by sedentary.” 

Calvin has secured a job with Northrop Grumman, programming satellites, we’re told, and now has to choose from which remote venue to work.

Tessa, in her last year of college, is applying to multiple dental schools – apparently the requirement to secure a position amidst such a flood of applications.

Demetri has started his first year at Penn State main campus studying engineering and business, and seems to enjoy that atmosphere.

Alex has been inducted into the Honor Society at Berks Technical School, and has been accepted at Penn College for a major in the electrical trade starting next Fall.

Katie is on the soccer team that made it to the Finals before being eliminated. She will be applying to colleges this next year.

Mason is a Keeper for his soccer team and will be attending a training camp run by a professional team.

All of our “kids” are busy with and excelling in their careers. Amy and I are grateful and proud of our family. We are refreshing aging structure and mechanical systems at Bergheim to prepare for a “trouble free” decade ahead.

We have successfully navigated – pun not intended – a Douro River cruise in Portugal which followed three days in Madrid. You can follow us here Madrid and Cruising the Duoro River. For a second time, we’ve enjoyed traveling with Tom and Ann Wolfe and Bill and Debbie Dusch.

You may remember that July 2022 was hot and dry here in the States. The same was true for Madrid where day time temps hovered around 100 F; the roads, buildings and sidewalks absorbed the heat and donated it back during the evenings, so that there was no let up for evening sightseeing, dining, or shopping. The same was true during the first part of the cruise while we were further East, especially in the town of Pinhao, the temperature for our excursion on foot through this hilly town was a sizzling 108F – still short of a recorded July high of 116.6 F.  Besides the sun and heat, Pinhao was memorable for our voucher exchange. We were given three vouchers specific to vendors in the city. We bypassed the first which provided a hot dog for the exchange. The second, rather better, provided a piece of chocolate cake and a bottle of cold water. But the third was in an air-conditioned tasting room where our voucher bought us a tasting of port and a tray of chocolates – very good ending to the morning before returning to the air-conditioned ship and lunch.

Cruising West to Porto on the Douro, the Atlantic breezes gratefully moderated a welcomed relief to temperatures of upper 80s – lower 90s. 

On arriving back to Pennsylvania, we learned that the Pocono weather was also unseasonably hot and dry during our trip. Our nephew called to inform us that the water pumps serving our Bergheim pond and stream were sucking air, indicating a failed well water pump. We had a weekend of seeking drinking water from family and used the pond water for flushing. Monday morning, July 25, still jet lagged, brought the install of a new well pump and that afternoon, the delivery of the Spa which we had ordered a year prior.

There are several more episodes, yet to be completed, which punctuated 2022; you are to be spared from wading through those thickets.

As we come to the end of another year with recorded memories of joys and delights, we remember, too, those whom we’ve lost. We tend to be thinking more of what may lie ahead for us in our ninth decade. We are grateful for health, family, community, and faith. 

We wish you all the Blessings you may experience from shared family time as we commemorate The Gift of Salvation.

Amy and Jim

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