Awhile back on Facebook, there was a message in my inbox from someone I’ve never met before, asking if I were related to the von Trapps from the Sound of Music, who escaped from Austria into Switzerland and I thought… SERIOUSLY?? Has it really all come to this?
I've become used to this question during face-to-face meetings pretty much every time I meet someone new. I’m fine with it. I mean, if I wasn’t, I would never have reverted back to my maiden name after getting divorced. In fact, I’ve become quite adept at answering the questions with grace. But this took things to new heights.
So did I answer the question? Sadly, no. In that moment, I was overcome by a sudden need to protect my privacy and deleted the message. In retrospect, I now question that move – did I once again pass up the opportunity for some shameless self promotion? I mean, if Julie Powell can achieve fame and fortune by cooking her way through Mastering the Art of French Cooking, then blogging about it, and Tucker Max can do the same by exploiting his debaucherous lifestyle, what’s stopping me? Maybe, just maybe, this is the opportunity I’ve been waiting for. I’ve been meaning to start a blog for a while. I was just waiting for the perfect topic. Was it right in front of me the whole time? Would readers really be interested in knowing what it’s like to grow up as “a von Trapp of Sound-of-Music fame? You tell me.
So, let’s start at the very beginning (a very good place to start, or so the story goes.….. sorry couldn’t resist that). Yes. I’m one of those von Trapps. My father was Rupert, eldest of the original seven children. But they didn’t escape from Austria into Switzerland. That was just for cinematic effect. Ever look at a map of Austria? When you climb the mountains near Salzburg, Germany is on the other side to the north, and more of Austria in the other three directions. What my father and his siblings did do is put on their hiking clothes, walk to the nearest train station, and hop a train to Italy for a hiking holiday.
So you’ve got questions? Go ahead, bring them on. I’m ready for you now! - F.v.T