In 1962, when Niilo got accepted to graduate school 4500+ miles away, Koponens had a rousing driveway auction, then loaded up the TravelAll and trailer with horse Kijafa, dogs Maya and AbiYoYo, the 7 family members, and lots of stuff.
I remember being excited but sad as we pulled out of the driveway, leaving cats Fancy and Gypsy in the care of renters, and yelling, “Good-bye House! Good-bye Trees! Good-bye Home!” I always believed we were coming back.
Indeed, Dad graduated from Harvard with his doctorate in Education in 1966, and we narrowly escaped moving elsewhere, and excitedly headed home: Dad, Alex & Heather on the TransCanada RailRoad, Mom, Sanni, Chena + Ruthie & Ollie + 2 horses and 1 dog in the TravelAll and trailer, Nonni separately by air after canoe camp in Canada.
Many wonderful adventures were had. I loved the train trip, and remember especially the fold-away berths, delicious meals, and Dad teaching us to play Spades and Wist (which I have since forgotten.)
The best part was getting Home again.
I remember dozens of mice (actually voles and shrews) scurrying under the cupboards as we stepped through the entry. A new cat soon remedied that, and so began a new chapter…