Here's Uncle Roland
Incident In Africa
Develop Your Own Odyssey
few years before he died at 86 in the early 1990's, my father gave me
hell for not telling stories about
my international work and travels (he had spent some 30 years in the
same office as a doctor). I started
with short stories, roamed around with a novel, back to nonfiction. I'm still roaming around with intentional and unintentional 'writer's block' (I have a Master of Arts in Procrastination).
Born and raised in Connecticut with summers on a mountaintop in Vermont, I was an only 'Depression Baby' after mother almost died at childbirth. Relatives jokingly said my red hair was attributed to our russet
dog! Father, himself an 'ham radio operator' in the early 1920's, guided me into radio and I got my license at 14. Because of a communications capability, I was in Civil Defense and member of the Auxiliary State Police. DXing fueled my interest in affairs foreign. After undergraduate work at Washington and Lee in Virginia, I enlisted in the US Army's Counter Intellignece Corps and volunteered for Berlin after agent and German language schools. After three years, I thought my long term goals elsewhere in international affairs and went to Johns Hopkins' School of Advanced International Studies for a MA. Then it was a tour in international finance in the US Treasury, a short stint as a consultant in Congress on to a financial attache at the US Embassy in Bonn.
But, alas, I felt I 'had to go independent' and left the US Government to set up an office in downtown DC to work on World Bank projects. Assignments and sightseeing along the way took me to some 40 countries. I have been published directly and indirectly by Johns Hopkins, GPO, OECD and the Hartford Courant and have taught political science at the college level.
What am I to do now? Well, first, I have to shed my MA in Procrastination; second, heed my father giving me
hell to write stories and; third, to type. All assistance is gratefully accepted.--- Arthur Fern