Bittersweet – Marilya Reese – Germany & France 2006

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Summer Seminar 2006 colleagues stocked up at Ritter Sport factory

The photo I am attaching illustrates the second— sweet —component reflected in my chosen title. It was taken during my summer Fulbright 2006 (to my knowledge the first and Sole joint Fulbright between Germany and France) and a visit to the Ritter Sport factory near Reutlingen.


Emphasizing the pleasant element is intended as tempering the unpleasant—bitter— part of my narrative:


Shortly after I had received my acceptance notification from Fulbright, my father —a Kansas farm boy who had learned German while stationed at Tempelhof during the Korean War—was diagnosed as being in the final stages of cancer after seventeen years in remission.


However, he was absolutely adamant that I attend the Fulbright summer seminar. His pride in that accomplishment of mine gave me the strength, and determination, to get as much as I could out of that remarkable series of events and the equally remarkable group of fellow participants.


Although my father died not long after my return, my Fulbright experience gave me a legacy that means nearly as much to me as my father’s legacy continues to do. 


Marilya Reese – Fulbright to Germany & France 2006

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