Written By: Charles - Jan• 04•11

Winter                                                                  New Moon of the Cold Month

My brother, Mark, is a traveler, a wanderer, a planet.  He can’t sit still, a powerful urge to move comes over him, an urge with plenty of family reinforcement.  Dad took to the road all the time, as often as he could, as long as he could, even if it was to run down the story of a river that went underground only to pop up somewhere else.  He hunted down the ordinary extraordinary.  Mark takes the sensibility a step further.

He has crossed Russia on the trans-siberian railway, picked olives in Turkey and worked on a kibbutz in Israel.  When he finally hit Southeast Asia, over twenty years ago, something clicked.  This was a place he could use as a base.  And he does.  Teaching English in Bangkok, but setting out for journeys into Cambodia, Laos, Vietnam.  He reminds me of the writers who took off on tramp steamers to see the world.  Now, he’s antsy again, wanting to move, needing to move.  Who knows where he’ll go next?  He doesn’t.

Mary, my sister, travels a lot, too:  Tibet, India, Dubai, the Caribbean, England, Greece, Malaysia, Indonesia.  She, too, has a base in Southeast Asia, Singapore, or Asia Lite as she likes to call it.  She teaches, too, at the National Institute of Education, Singapore.

They both have lives that are very exotic compared to Andover, Minnesota.  I’m glad to have their vicarious adventures in my life.

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