The xylophone jingle on my cell phone announced an incoming text from my son as I drank my first cup of coffee this morning. This particular ring tone is his and his alone, and it is always music to my ears. The message was short but radiated excitement.
Wow. Just got an email. Papers cleared. I’m a Brit!
The dual citizenship that he had applied for months ago was now official. Here is an excerpt from the letter sent by his lawyer.
I am pleased to inform you that your naturalisation application has been approved and we have received your documents back from the Home Office! Congratulations!
My son, the seasoned traveler and seeker of adventure, is now also my son the Brit. I suppose I will now have to answer to “Mum” and serve tea and crumpets when he comes home. Do I also have to spell favor as favour and program as programme?
1,000 Places to Visit
Evan, the “Where’s Waldo?” of our family, has fashioned a life for himself that combines work with travel and extreme adventure that we can only marvel at from afar. His passport is emblazoned with the stamps of about 50 countries and counting.
In Mongolia he lived in a tent with a family and learned how to hunt rabbits with an eagle. I’ll spare you the photo of the luckless rabbit.
He finagled his way into the 2012 London Olympic Games. I mean, he was in the Olympics. The Opening Ceremonies, to be exact.
One Christmas Eve he hiked up the highest mountain in Cameroon, met a fellow hiker who happened to be a priest and a chaplain in the Australian army. They celebrated Christmas Mass together — a first for this nice Jewish boy from Philadelphia — and sat up all night talking about the meaning of life.
In Cambodia, he had dinner at Happy Pizza and ended up in the emergency room, not so happy. The pizza had been laced with a hallucinogen.
During a trip to Iceland with a buddy, he got caught in a huge snowdrift with only a windshield scraper at hand. Fortified by a pint of whiskey and a loaf of bread that fortuitously had been thrown in the trunk, they dug out the car and four hours later were able to make their way to safer ground.
Highways and Byways
One of the reasons he loves living in London is the ease of weekend travel. As he puts it, “You can be anywhere in two hours and 100 quid.” “Quid” is a currency denomination that Brits use but beyond that I’m clueless. Living in London has also given him opportunities to explore the rich history and culture just a tube ride away, “It’s an incredibly vibrant international city,” he says.
After several years of working in the UK and recently earning his MBA, it now looks like London will be a more permanent home. He recently launched his own business, The Travelling Classroom, an idea that has been marinating for a while and now has become a reality. With his background in travel, education and project management, The Travelling Classroom is a natural progression, and his passion for it is contagious. I can’t help but smile when he talks about it so animatedly.
My Son Grew Up Too Fast
I am so proud of him, of who is is and the life he leads. I just wish London were a little bit closer.