I've shown people this picture in the past and they always ask if I went to Vietnam.
The answer is "No".
This photo was taken at the entrance to Hope Village, near Weimar, California, in the early 1970's.
It was a camp set up to house Vietnamese refugees who had fled their country after the War came to an end.
My photographer (the late, great Howie Shepherd) and I had gone there because John Wayne had offered some land of his in Arizona to house some of the refugees. We had heard that the former premier of South Vietnam, Nguyen Cao Ky, was at this camp and that he had been talking with Wayne. So we flew over to Sacramento (on a milk run that stopped in San Diego and Los Angeles before getting there), rented a car and drove to Weimar.
We arrived in the early evening, checked into our hotel, and then with nothing to do until the next day, looked at a map and promptly drove to South Lake Tahoe, about 100 miles away.
Well? Isn't that what the network boys would have done?
Next day, after little sleep, we interviewed the former premier.
His wife was very pretty but he didn't seem thrilled to meet me.
Next we flew home to Phoenix, did our reporting and a few days later another photographer (Tim Terrific)* and I flew again to California where we interviewed John Wayne. Now THAT was a thrill.
The Duke was dressed in seersucker slacks and a camel hair blazer and was incredibly gracious with the two young guys from Arizona.
He offered us coffee and a great view on the bayside patio of his home in Newport Beach.
In spite of this photo where he seems to be about to say "isn't it about time for you guys to get outta here?" he was curious about Tim's camera and even invited us to go view his operation where he was trying to turn old discarded tires into oil. (There was a shortage going on then.)
We didn't scare him or Premier Ky off but the refugees never did settle on Wayne's land in Arizona and Ky ended up running a liquor store in southern California.
But it was a great week for some visiting newsmen from Arizona.
* - Tim is now a vice-president of a different television station, apparently still trying to rise to this level of grandeur.
You fellahs probably can relate to the following song as well as you ladies can. As I am trying to simplify my life I began last night going through a huge collection of cassette tapes. If you can't remember (or never knew) what those were, here's a picture to help you.
I discovered one I had been seeking for years. I had the plastic case for it but the tape had gotten separated from it at some point in the past.
But, surprisingly, last night I located it shortly after I began this project.
It's called "Songs From An Aging Sex Bomb" by K.T. Oslin.
Now, I've never been totally into country music but I loved the songs on this tape, which came out about 1987. And especially the song that became the Country Music Association's Song of the Year for 1988 - "80's Ladies."
I found a video of it on You Tube so here it is. Enjoy, ladies (and gentlemen.)
It's a little melancholy but I can remember a number of those "80's ladies" myself. Good times!
Yes, yes, they're back. And just in time, too, I'd say, judging from what I see on the evening newscasts these days. Reminds me of that old tune by the Kingston Trio - "there's hurricanes in Florida, and Texas needs rain" etc. But forward into the battle we march!
And if you DO think of something funny, pass it along and remember, always remember . . . keep laughing!
Today's Throwback Thursday post has two purposes. First, as always, is to show you some photos of lives in the past. But this week it's also to offer some relief to those of you suffering in blistering heat this summer. So we begin with a photo of my late father from many decades back as he handled a regular chore he was used to around our home in North Dakota.
Do you see how deep that snow is?
He had to shovel a path just so he could get out of the house!
(I'll bet you're feeling cooler already, aren't you.)
Okay, let's flash forward a couple of generations. Here's a photo of my nephew, Dr. Barry, as he descended into the Grand Canyon on a visit.
You undoubtedly have noticed two things.
There is snow there so obviously this little camping and hiking trip was undertaken in the winter!
And secondly, he's wearing shorts! Obviously hoping that the temperature will rise as he gets lower into the Canyon.
Now just to show you that Dr. Barry is not totally in control of his senses, here's another photo of him on ANOTHER winter vacation.
Those white spots are snowflakes. He's up in the Boundary Waters area of Northern Minnesota, or someplace like it, skiing.
In a snowstorm!
Now, I don't want you to get the impression that he's the loony one in the family.
Here's a picture of his brother, Tim.
He'd been out skiing in Washington.
Now I've had a little fun with these boys but I love both of 'em.
I just can't figure out why neither one of them took after their dear old uncle, who knows what to do when the weather turns cold and snowy.
He heads for somewhere warm.
Preferably near an ocean.
Where the locals now how to fix a fine piña colada.
Or at least where he can grab a cerveza in the sun.
(Now, don't you go makin' fun of my beads. They might be sacred.)