Happy Birthday Dan! (And that word is ‘fortnight’!)
Back in September, 2013 I wrote a post called Closing my windows. It explained how I first met Dan Gomez; now some thirty-six years ago. Let me republish the relevant section:
Earlier on I wrote about launching Wordcraft, the word-processing software for personal computers. That was in early 1979 and later that year I was invited to present Wordcraft at an international gathering of Commodore dealers held in Boston, Mass.
During my presentation, I used the word ‘fortnight’ unaware that Americans don’t use this common English word. Immediately, someone about 10 rows back in the audience called out, “Hey, Handover! What’s a fortnight?”
It released the presenter’s tension in me and I really hammed up my response in saying, “Don’t be so silly, everybody knows the word fortnight!” Seem to remember asking the audience at large who else didn’t know the word. Of course, most raised their arms!
Now on a bit of a roll, I deliberately started using as many bizarre and archaic English words that came to me. Afterwards, the owner of the voice came up to me and introduced himself. He was Dan Gomez, a Californian based in Costa Mesa near Los Angeles and also involved in developing software for the Commodore.
Dan became my US West Coast distributor for Wordcraft and was very successful. When Dataview was sold, Dan and I continued to see each other regularly and I count him now as one of my dear friends. Through knowing Dan I got to know Dan’s sister Suzann and her husband Don. It was Su that invited me to spend Christmas 2007 with her and Don at their home in San Carlos, Mexico. Jean also lived in San Carlos and was close friends with Su. Together they had spent many years rescuing feral dogs from the streets of San Carlos and finding new homes for them.
Thus it was that I met Jean. Discovering that Jean and I were born 23 miles apart in London!
So from ‘Hey, what’s a fortnight’ to living as happily as I have ever been in the rural countryside of Oregon. Funny old world!
It is Dan’s birthday today. One of those big birthday milestones in life. (And it would be wrong for me to openly state his age today but just let me say that Dan would be seeing a sixties birthday again!)
So to my very dear and special friend …..