Rite of Passage 10 – The Oceans Beckon –
1957 to 1958 -I am twenty three to twenty seven years old
Q: Working with parents: It’s not always a good idea…did you begin this way…how did it turn out for you?
I really didn’t have anywhere to go after my army service and my parents needed help in their 15th century coaching inn in Tenterden, Kent –United Kingdom.
It’s often like this, with the younger generation bringing in their understanding of newer technologies…especially nowadays during such rapid innovation?
If parents are willing, as mine were, it can be a godsend.
In my case I came into their successful Bar and Hotel business with a food idea and actually began to create dishes based upon local ingredients and invite customers to choose the ingredients they preferred and then I would create the dish. It was a success, in a small way, and an experience that would serve me well in later years. Remember this was back in 1957!
Then came the big disruption, the Suez Canal crisis and the economy, increased bank rates and gas rationing –that was the end of our family enterprise.
We were ‘’picked up” as a team to run the Royal Ascot Hotel and within a year my dad landed the management of the famed Gravetye Manor so I was finally on my own.
I had watched my parents at their work for over twelve years and gained so much from the patient integrity they used every single day.
So…what about now?
It has worked somewhat the same way with our children. Son Andy came for several seasons to pick up where a business relationship had come to the end of a contract. His ‘talented’ mother, who had produced almost all my shows to that date, coached him as my producer for a PBS series. He brought with him the technologies of the day and I must admit –it was fun!
I’m not sure he would say the same because I was still very certain about my direction and completely ‘dumb’ when it came to new electronic systems!
Last year, as we passed through the dark valley of Treena’s sudden illness, it was Kareena, our youngest daughter, who stepped in and helped makes sense of all the technical and medical conversations -I am blessed to have an “insider” help me navigate my way thorough these new medical technologies.
Finally our first daughter Tessa arrived with her husband Scott and she has become caregiver, secretary and social media ‘expert’; a tremendous asset, in some ways as ‘definite’ as her mother and in other ways very honoring to me…as I continue to grapple with how best to communicate to my modern world and remain consistent to my desire to ‘convert habits that harm into resources that heal’!
I do appreciate all my children’s wisdom. It helps that we all share a deep devotion to our faith as ‘wild salmon’ Christians moving upstream –seeking an inner resilience and avoiding judgment of others so that love might rule.
Working with family sure works for me!
This week I read Treena’s poem Unconditional Forgiveness