My father told me last night that he wished he did not have to go to Zurich on Saturday.
He does not look forward to the long flights, traveling alone, and he does not look forward to being away from home for six days by himself.
If it were possible, he would love for us to go with him. If we were to go with him, he would enjoy traveling to Zurich very much.
That’s why he asked us to travel with him to Hamburg last year. It turned a tedious three-day business trip for him into a magnificent two-week family vacation for all of us.
My father loved our vacation in London, too (all of us loved our vacation in London). He loved traveling with my mother, and he loved traveling with my middle brother and with Josh and me, and he loved the historical and cultural attractions we explored. He loved every minute of our time in London. It was one of the best vacations he ever had.
However, he is tired of traveling by himself on business. Whatever excitement business travel offers has long since disappeared for him. In fact, I think he has always detested business travel, except for those trips to the East Coast that provided him with an opportunity to visit my older brother and me while we were in school in the East.
I wish my father did not have to go to Zurich. This is his favorite time of year: he loves autumn weather, and he loves college football, and he loves getting ready for the Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays. One week of that will be taken away from him this year.
One comfort is that he will only be gone for six days. Another comfort is that he will return on the same day that my brother from Denver arrives, and one day before my older brother and his family arrive. When he returns from Zurich, my father will be able to settle in and enjoy a two-week visit with everyone.
My father also told me last night that he and my mother have missed not seeing much of Josh and me since we returned from our Columbus Day weekend in New York.
Josh and I have only seen my parents on weekends since Columbus Day, and on one of those weekends Josh and I stayed home, catching up on things (although we did go see “The Seagull” with my parents the Friday night of that particular weekend).
Happily for my Dad, he will get to see lots of everyone, for two whole weeks, after he returns from Zurich.
He is pleased that Josh and I will stay with my mother during his absence. This will prevent him from worrying about her, and worrying about her trying to do too much before everyone arrives for the holidays. He knows that Josh and I will help her, and that we will do the difficult work, and that we will be present to look out for her.
There is one good thing about my father’s trip to Zurich: he will get to hear Humperdinck’s “Konigskinder”, a work he loves very much, under a good conductor (Ingo Metzmacher) and with an excellent cast (one of which will be Jonas Kaufmann). He bought a ticket for the evening performance of Wednesday, November 7.
Otherwise, in the evenings, he will just stay in his hotel room and read.
I am glad he will only be in Zurich five nights.