Christa Paul Nolan's first trip to America in 1955. Shots taken by her father Bengt "Benekiki" Paul and mailed to her in the U.S. Here she is waiting to get on in Gothenberg, Sweden. Click on image to enlarge.
My grandfather Bengt Paul (Benekiki) was an amazing photographer, and used to send some of his shots as postcards. This one, of my mom and brother Chris, says: "Dear Christa and Jim—today 42 years since mother and I were married and yesterday it was 9 years since you got engaged. So my thoughts quite naturally go to you with all their hearts and pockets full of love. Hope you are all well and enjoy life. Next time I hope to send a new enlarging. P&K (Puss och kram: kiss and hug) yours Benekiki." It was nice that he wrote it in English so my dad could follow. Bengt picked up the name Benekiki in Hawaii, when he visited my parents there after his wife Hildegard's death in 1957. I've included the story below.
Hope you all are well and will have a good Easter. Here in Skåne we still have snow and cold weather which is very unusual for this time of the year. So we don’t expect to be able to sit outside this year to enjoy our Easter lunch. What we eat for lunch is the usual, the same as we have for Christmas and midsummer, that is of course herring in different forms.
We celebrate Easter together with some old friends and their families. We start with Easter lunch, which is herring and snaps. Later we rolls eggs. This is something for you to try. Everyone should have a very hardboiled egg which you have painted. Build a course so you can roll down your eggs, not too high. You start with everybody rolling down their egg. Then the youngest picks up her egg and rolls it and tries to hit one or more eggs. Everyone is equipped with a candy bag, so if you hit any egg you can pick a candy from that person's candy bag. Then it's the next youngest's turn. We continue until almost every egg is broken.
Mikael, Agneta, Thang and Linh
Thanks, Mikael! A great Easter to all the Pauls and Stolts!
Mom has a big birthday today. I thought I'd post this picture of her from November, 1943. It's a Father's Day card she made while living with relatives in Sweden and Bengt was working as a journalist in Berlin. Love you, Mom.
My Swedish cousin Mikael Paul recently celebrated his 60th birthday by visiting New York and Buffalo with his wonderful family. Here they are being observed by Pterodactyls at the American Museum of Natural History in NYC. From left, Mikael's wife Agneta, my son George, Mikael, and their kids Lind and Thang. Bengt and Hildegard would be pleased to know their family is still getting together. Mikael is in a characteristic Paul pose, taking a picture of someone taking a picture.
My grandfather used to write me lots of letters and postcards. I didn't write him back that often, but he kept the letters I sent. I have them now. Is there anything better than getting a personal letter in the mail? I got one this week, first one in many months.
My mother just sent me a bunch of old letters, including this one from my grandfather Bengt Paul for my first birthday in 1960. When I opened it, I found this mint condition silver certificate enclosed. So I got his great birthday present, just a little late.