Today we are in Thousand Oaks California to celerbrate Lois Taylor’s (Mom) 93rd birthday.
Lois has led an exceptional life full of travel and adventure. She has seen and experienced much change in this world in her 93 years.
She is a California girl that has traveled through Europe, driven the Alaska Hwy 3 times and visited that state more than 30 times including once during the dead of winter.
In the mid 1930’s her family departed St Louis for the promised land of opportunity, sunshine and orange trees also known as Southern California. After driving on wooden plank roads across the sand dunes near Needles Calif, Lois arrived with her parents in Los Angeles. At that time the town was still just a hamlet.
The living was easy in those early years, the concepts of congestion and smog were yet to be realized.
During many trips north to visit family in San Francisco, Lois rode in an open air rumble seat at the back of an old Ford coupe. The trip along Hwy 1 took a full 12 hours or more and she and her sisters were throughly wind burned upon arrival.
In the early 1940’s Lois sold all her possessions, bought a ticket to Hawaii and traveled by steam ship to the islands with her friends. This was back when airplanes only had propellers.
In the the late 1940’s she met and married Sam Taylor (Dad). Together they followed jobs around the western states while raising 5 energetic and very intelligent children 🙂
During these times Mom’s mantra was that Sunday afternoons were made for wandering the local back roads and driving past road closed signs to see what was just up ahead.
Dad’s work took us to many different towns which meant hundreds of backroads to explore. It also meant moving the family at least 6 or 7 times between 1950 and 1964. Mom got very good at packing.
These were certainly the burgeoning years of my wanderlust and I am sure eventually what inspired my world travels.
Once her sons permanently moved to Alaska in the 70’s Lois traveled north almost every summer to join them.
She volunteered at the Denali National Park visitor center and she and Sam spent one summer as campground hosts at Teklanika campground located in a remote section of the parks wilderness.
They divided their time between Taylor Basecamp in Denali National Park and Copper Center where their son Sam lived just outside Wrangel Saint Elias National Park.
Her Alaskan adventures are many and stuff of legend.
Without question Lois has influenced and helped shape her family’s lives in many extraordinary ways.
She continues to set the good example and do the right thing no matter what the outcome.
She has met thousands of people and has asked them millions of sometimes very direct and personal questions all the while learning new things and making good friends along the way.
With her open minded outlook and ever positive attitude Mom continues to inspire all that meet her.
Happy 93rd Birthday Mom!!
Thank you for all you have taught us and done for us throughout the years.
We are very lucky to have you as our mother and mentor.