Norm Ballantine

Profile Updated: September 20, 2011
Residing In: Essex Jct., VT USA
Spouse/Partner: Sallie
Occupation: Many
Children: Parke (a girl) born 12/24/69
Military Service: USMC  
Yes! Attending Reunion
Comments:

After a stellar career as a student I joined the Marine Corps in '62. I spent the 4 plus years (We were all extended 4 mos.) on the East Coast & Caribbean. Then with one month left received orders for Vietnam. "Report to Camp Pendelton for further transfer overseas".(Sounds romantic). I passed to attend college in Durango CO. Got married & transford to DU so Sallie could attend their law school. We then moved to Fresno & I finished up at Fresno State & our daughter was born.
Fresno was too hot for Sallie so we moved to my family's place in Wilmington, VT. After some dithering around with some grad school at U Mass Amherst we bought a sailboat. Spent a summer going up & down the East Coast; wintered back in VT so daughter Parke could go to school while I worked in a ski shop & cross country skied which I could do from our house & connect with an extensive snowmobile trail network, and headed to England the next summer. 3 friends joined us for the Bermuda leg. It was 1976 so the Tall Ships joined us there on their way to NYC for July 4th. We met Robert Pirsig who had a sister boat. His book "Zen & the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance" was in stores at the time. My cousin's father-in-law was an English prof at Amherst & asked if RP appeared normal to us (RP wrote of time in a memtal hospital) He did. After our friends left it was all up to us. The passage to the Azores (Green & beautiful) was slow & easy. The one to England was a bit more strenuous. But when we saw what looked like a day sailboat race & then Land's End it was all high fives & "we've done it!"
We spent 2 weeks in London & 2 in Paris. The boat was tied up near the d'Orsay which was still an abandon train station & not the museum of today. We left Paris going up river & crossed France on rivers & canals exiting the Rhone River into the Med.
On the trip back to this side of the Atlantic we had Thanksgiving dinner enroute to Barbados from the Canaries. The turkey came from a small elliptical can & we wondered who would put turkey in such small can. It was cocktail size, but it was ours. Conditions were a little boisterous at the time & the whole dinner flipped & hit the deck face down. Not a problem, we were hungery.
On the way back to the US we decided that it was time to get to work. As it happened, our neighbors in Wilmington, Bob & Ingrid Silverman, were publishing a
magazine from their house called "The Piano Quarterly" Sallie was interested in gardening & we'd planted an herb garden at our house in Hadley MA (Sold for the sailboat). So we would start "The Herb Quarterly". We saw an ad for a publishing seminar at Sarah Lawrence which Sallie attended along with a young Graydon Carter now of "Vanity Fair". The Silverman's & we would have dinner at each others houses & for "dessert" would stuff envelopes for a renewal appeal or subscription campaign. Most likely our Senior Year English teacher, Miss Young,if you were lucky, would have me arrested for having anything to do with the written word. I was able to escape her notice & we published the magazine for 10 years before selling. Both magazines "The Piano Quarterly" & "The Herb Quarterly", by independent means, went from Wilmington,
VT to San Anselmo, CA. Bob can be seen in a movie about the pianist Glen Gould. He had a medical emergency during our recent hurricane & with no communications or transportation was another victim of the storm.
We bought a print & copy shop in Brattleboro, VT. And I learned how to run a press. One of our customers was Coach Troppman's daughter.
Our daughter Parke went to the Putney School, & if you have any grandchildren of an independent nature I highly recommend it. Parke says the most interesting people to date she met at the Putney School. She then went to Pitzer in Claremont, CA "I can't tell you how much I don't want to go to University of Vermont". She married a guy at Harvey Mudd who is one of the head engineers at Bloom Energy in Sunnyvale, a fuel cell company. Prior to that he worked at IBM here in Burlington, VT & we moved up to be near them. After 12 years of marriage they finally got around to having a kid, Franklin. We'd pretty much given up on that idea.
We bought an apartment building so now we're landlords & I'm a handyman/carpenter.
I enjoy our querky little state where the senators outnumber the representatives by a 2 to 1 margin! Check out an episode of "Stuck in Vermont" on U Tube.

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Jan 25, 2020 at 4:35 AM
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Jan 25, 2019 at 4:33 AM
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