Not everyone is fortunate to have an aunt who never ages. She really doesn't. This picture of Jo Anne was probably taken in about 1957 at our home in College Station, Texas. This is the age my aunt will always be... at least to me. My younger sister is on the left in the picture and I am on the right. (You will always know it's a picture of me because of the squint. I think everyone used to think that you were supposed to look into the sun for a picture.)
Jo Anne is a travel agent and has been for over fifty years. She has been just about everywhere. I asked her once when she treated me to a trip to London, "How many times have you been to London?" Replied that she really did not know.. many times.
Jo Anne is my late father's little sister. He even helped to name her. There was about nine years difference between my father and Jo Anne. He watched over her and lived up to the image everyone has of an older brother. I know. Jo Anne saved almost all of her letters throughout the years and I have just about typed them all to put in a journal for her. My father wrote letters of encouragement as my aunt progressed through her college years. Then there was the man who hired Jo Anne to work in his travel agency. Jo Anne needed a pep talk from time to time just to deal with a very demanding boss who secretly had a lot of confidence in Jo Anne.
Jo Anne has never married. Not that she didn't have the chance. She's been courted often and proposed to several times. The timing was just never right.
My aunt is always up for a trip around the world or an excursion to a museum or art gallery. (She loves Monet.) She enjoys people and her social life is very full. Recently she traveled to Maine with a friend and upon her arrival home left for Houston with another friend.
Her best friend these days is her cat, a Turkish Van named BuddyBoy. We haven't clued Jo Anne in yet that he rules her life but we suspect she may already know that.
Jo Anne makes me laugh. Her down to earth view on life is sobering, yet her light-heartedness teaches us to take advantage of the fun things in life. She is absolutely one of the very best people in my life. Consider me very fortunate.