I’ve never been much for travelling. I like short vacations a few times a year, but if they go much past a week, I start getting antsy about going home. Travelling means living out of a suitcase, and using unfamiliar, often awkward, bathrooms. I like my creature comforts. However, when my youngest son, then twenty-four, enlisted in the army in 2016, I learned to embrace travelling. I became a military mom.
My son, a native Californian, travelled all the way to Fort Jackson, South Carolina, to Basic Training in the month of November. He was sick the whole time, landing in the infirmary at the very end for hypothermia, stage one. He graduated at the end of ten weeks, in February 2017. Like a loving, devoted mom, I flew out to see the ceremony.
I’d never been to South Carolina, so my husband and I flew out a few days before our son’s graduation, landing in Charleston. What a beautiful, Southern city! Even though it was cold (frigidly so, for my California blood), we explored the city. We took a carriage tour of some of the homes in the historic district of the city. That was enjoyable, and very informative about why the houses were built the way they were (for the summer heat and humidity).
We also explored city graveyards, which could be found next to, or behind, churches. We looked for the oldest gravestone, or the youngest, inside the cemeteries. The churchyards reminded us of ones we saw in New Orleans on a different vacation, with the stones all tilted and cracked.
During our visit, we also toured a plantation. If I ever decide to write an historical romance, I will have much knowledge for that pre- and post-Civil War era, and how the woman of the house was really the backbone of the whole operation. The grounds of the plantation were vast and beautifully maintained, even if the water was swampish and spooky.
And lastly, and by far the best part of the trip, we saw our son graduate from Basic Training!
My travelling days weren’t done, however. Our son tested into Army Intelligence, and was sent to Fort Huachuca, Arizona, for his AIT school. What a weather change that was! The best part of this move, in my opinion, was that he was only one state over from us.
He spent five months in training at the base, and we visited him three times, bringing his fiancée with us. We chose to drive instead of fly, since Fort Huachuca isn’t near any airports. The ten-hour drive was brutal, but still enjoyable. Where else can you see Saguaro cactuses, gaze upon old west scenery, and see a real-life rodeo? With the added bonus of watching your son graduate once again, this time from AIT (not to mention his wedding to his fiancée)?
Our travels were far from over, though they did come even closer to home. During AIT, our son was tested in languages, and he scored high enough that the army decided to send him to language school in Monterey, CA. A mere six-hour drive from us! That was a trip we gladly made, and have made, over the last year-and-a-half. We’ve travelled to Monterey in all the seasons, and have enjoyed attractions as Monterey Wharf, Carmel, and Christmas with our son and his new wife.
These trips have been a special part of our life, a reconnecting with a grown son who nevertheless doesn’t want to lose touch with his family, especially since he doesn’t know what the next chapter of his life will bring. I guess that’s the best reason for travelling: showing your loved one you’ll go to the ends of the earth to be with him or her.
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DEA agent Sawyer Hayes came to California in search of a drug cartel leader who slipped through his fingers in El Paso. The link to finding him is Kate Munroe, a nanny for one of his henchmen. The problem? He didn’t expect to be so drawn to a possible suspect. How is he supposed to do his job when his growing feelings for her are clouding his judgment?
Interior designer Kate Munroe’s life is a train wreck. Her parents’ deaths left her with their mounds of debt, she can’t get a job designing even a cubicle, and she’s bunking in her best friend’s spare bedroom. To make ends meet, she’s a nanny to a lonely little boy whose rich father works all the time. Romance is not on her radar. But her hot new neighbor could change her mind, with his broad shoulders and Southern charm. Too bad his secrets could destroy her.
Cathy Skendrovich has always loved a good story, and spent her formative years scribbling what is now called Fan Fiction. The current heartthrob of the time featured heavily in all her stories. Unfortunately, once she went to college, her writing took the form of term papers. Upon graduation, Cathy became a middle school English teacher. Along the way, she married her husband of now thirty-three years, had two sons, and moved to southern Orange County, California. She chose to work part-time in the school system there. She eventually joined the online writing site, Wattpad, and credits those followers for encouraging her to become a published author. She is a member of RWA, and writes contemporary romance for Entangled. Her Entangled titles include Prisoner of Love, available now, and the soon-to-be-released romantic suspense, Protecting the Nanny. She also has two historical romances published through Literary Wanderlust publishers