My wife, Dorothy Ho, had died in February of 1969. We had been married for only 14 months, having married in Dec. 1967.
I planned a trip, part from wanderlust and part to visit her family in Malaysia for the first time. I needed to return to her family her jewelry and her two large jade bowls.
On this trip I had stops in Tokyo, Kuala Lumpur, Bali, Jogjakarta to visit Borobudur, Jakarta to visit friends Jack and Billie Crawford, Sumatra to visit Lake Toba, Penang, Bangkok, Rangoon, Pagan (NyangU), Kathmandu, Pokhara (Fish Tail Lodge), Kathmandu, Delhi, Rome, and Milan.
I received a cable at the New Delhi Library of Congress office from Bill Welsh, Assistant Director of the Processing Department, asking if I would be willing to be detailed to the Serial Record Division to clean up a mess there. I was at time Chief, Descriptive Division. I replied saying “Sure, but I would like to talk about it first.” Upon my return, I found that he had not waited. I reported to the Serial Record Division. (subject of another blog)
Since most of my trip was half-way around the world, I decided to continue the by going the same direction with stops in Rome and Milan – to attend operas at the Rome Opera, La Scala, and Piccola Scala in Milan. Time has erased from my memory the operas I saw at La Scala and in Rome. However, I do remember at Piccola Scala hearing Il matrimonio segreto by Domenico Cimarosa with a wonderful young mezzo soprano, Fiorenza Cossotto. She later had a major operatic career. I was able to hear her several times at the Metropolitan Opera. Also, I remember having, by accident, had breakfast with the Australian teacher of Richard Bonynge whose wife was Joan Sutherland.