Taking The “Gap Year”
As many of you know, my son Jacob is graduating from high school in May of this year. He has been very involved in the family business from a young age, helping to sort and box gun parts when he was around 5 years old or so. He has worked in our warehouse after school and during past Christmas rushes, but now it is time for him to go off to college, OR is it?!
Jacob applied to four different colleges and was accepted into all four of them. But I have asked him to wait for a year and instead travel with me as my cameraman to learn real business skills and see the world.
During this “Gap Year” as it is commonly called, we are going to be traveling around the USA and internationally, filming segments for GunTech and potentially for a cable TV series I am developing called GunWorks™.
I will be putting segments from our travels, interviews and other insider information in issues of GunTech. We will travel around the Northwestern States in July doing the first interviews. Then Jacob’s 18 Birthday is in August!!! and he wants to be home for that. In early September we will travel along with my wife Paula to Europe to start working there. We will travel by ship from Rome down through the Mediterranean to Athens, Greece where I hope to interview the staff of the Military Arms Museum.
We then return to Italy at the port of Venice and will drive up through Austria to the Czech Republic. I plan to be in the town of Bystrice, Czech Republic on my 55th birthday (Ugh!). It is where my grandfather on my mother’s side was born and grew up on the family farm and grain mill. He was the second oldest son, and knew he would not inherit the mill so he emigrated to the USA in 1908 leaving the day after his 18th birthday, never to return or ever to see his Mother again. Doing so preserved his life as he missed two World Wars and there may not have been a Gene Kelly to start the American Gunsmithing Institute and the Gun Club of America. Going there on my birthday is kind of my way of closing the loop in our family history.
This area was behind the “iron curtain” for much of my life so I am really looking forward to it. We will visit the firearm factories at Bruno, and go through Prague on our way to Frankfurt, Germany, where we plan to arrive the first week of October which happens to be during Oktoberfest! We will meet with manufacturers in Germany then my wife will fly back to the USA to take care of the home front and us guys will continue to travel throughout Europe doing interviews.
If you are interested in monitoring our travels, I plan to blog and post on Facebook about what we are doing, seeing and learning. It should be very interesting. During those months I will be using Skype to host the live GCA webcast meetings. If possible we will even meet with our international GCA members. So this will be a truly international travel event.