Milord’s Family Lore
Milord Randyland Story Volume One: The Car By Prince Andrew
Growing up my dad drove a BIG BLACK shinny car with RED PIN STRIPES down each side. I’m not talkin’ big by today’s PC, GAS Constrained, Spotted Owl huggin’ standards. The series of Oldsmobile sleds that graced our driveway and pulled up at various sporting events, Cub Scout gatherings, and Parent Teacher Conferences were behemoths. It was clear from my earliest recollection of school that Dad’s car wasn’t normal. According to Dad it had all the “Bells & Whistles.” But it was the very package, the presentation if you will, that drew one to conclude that this must be a PIMP WAGON.
Dad wasn’t a ‘car guy.’ We didn’t have much more than a few screw drivers and a hammer in the garage at home, but he clearly liked luxury. As a kid I once asked my Dad how he selected his Oldsmobile. And boy was I surprised when he came back with the fact that every three years he received a glossy catalogue and sat at his desk to choose the latest in a long line of black & red love machines.
How did this change you may ask? I can hear it now, “I’ve known Randy for years and he’s always driven that tasteful little Swedish import.” And look at his new lovely Lexus, which claims to be “as elusive to the wind as it is inspiring to the eyes.” Well, in the ‘90s U.S. Auto Companies began looking overseas for inspiration so did our loyal ‘boomer’ parents. Dad was fond of the “Buy American” approach until Ford purchased a significant percentage of Saab and then it was off to the races. In Summary, progress is all around us and it should be comforting that Dad outgrew the ‘Pimp-mobile’ in the late 80’s, but there will always be a part of me that wonders…’can’t they make a Black Lexus with a red pinstripes and plush red velour interior?’
Milord Randyland Story Volume Two: The Wall
According to Webster’s: Wall- A continuous structure of masonry or other material serving to protect an area. In every young boy’s life there should be one accomplishment that stands out among other memories of ones father. In my case, it was the construction of a giant rock wall. The rock wall swells in my recollection. It’s six feet tall and stretches for no less than 100 yards. Where the motivation came from to build ‘The Wall’ remains a mystery to me even now. It was early in my father’s marriage to Cathy. And so perhaps in an effort to keep Dad out of trouble she came up with the idea to build this epic wall. To this day, I can’t imagine my Dad looking down from the deck high above the rhodi bushes and thinking to himself now’s the time to build something great with my son. Well, in the end that’s just exactly what we did. Accompanied by me and frequently a 16oz can of Bud on the arm rest we set out from our former roost on Fairhaven Drive in the trusty ‘Company car’ the Oldsmobile Delta 88. Rent a truck, hire a masonry company…hell no! We had the Olds and two strong backs…well, at least 1 and a 1⁄2 for I was only about 8 at the time of the great build.
In order to “protect” the car Dad laid out some “ground rules” a) cover the trunk with cardboard b) No throwing boulders into, or towards the car c) No cussing…except for Dad Needless to say it wasn’t two trips before the outside of the trunk was riddled with dents. Two weeks and flecks of paint were beginning to fall off. Yet we pressed on traveling to and from the house to rock quarries in the southwest hills. Portland was a town back then and we simply showed up at the quarries and filled our car…no cash, no questions asked. Those two spots have long since been moved and the idea that you could cruise through the Portland heights to find boulders to build a wall comes from a different time.
Building ‘The Wall’ taught me a lot as a young boy. a) Dad works hard & so should I b) Hard work is rewarded…frequently with Chocolate Malts & a hug. c) The work you do can last a lifetime My relationship with my Dad is better today than it has ever been. I respect him as a man and still look up to him as a Father. Building ‘The Wall’ allowed us to begin building a relationship that’s grown stronger with age and will stand tall for many years to come…just like The Wall.
With Love, Prince Andrew & Princess Steffanie Happy Birthday Dad!!!!
On this joyous occasion I’d like to share a few thoughts and defining stories with everyone about my adventures with my father for the past 25yrs, herein outlining why I think you’re the world’s greatest dad, and an all around beautiful guy. Everyone please get a drink, because as you all know Randy has a wealth of material from which to choose, and this may take a while.
A. First and foremost dad I’ll always remember you making time to participate and help me with my interests. Be it leaving work early to coach my basketball and baseball teams sometimes in monikured dress shirts and wing tips (despite a hefty cleaning bill) so you’d be on time; or a helpful swing thought on the course and a “here we go buddy drop another ball, get it this time”. You’ve always really been there for me with help, love, and commitment. Welllll wait a minute……. I seem to remember, it’s a little hazy though. Oh yeah.
B. This story begins on a sun splashed beach on the Northeast (?) side of Maui called Slaughter House. Andrew and my cousin Jason talked my father into taking his 9 year old son to a local surf spot with a Styrofoam boogie board, while the bigger boys had rented boards and fins. The first day was deceptively tame with 1-3’ swells, the second day this beach decided to make up for the ground it had lost in these mainland howley’s minds and live up to it’s name. I unfortunately at the time had never been trained in duck diving ( the art of diving under the wave with your chosen board before it comes crashing down on you), nor was I shown the nifty little trick as Andrew and Jason make quick work in leaving me behind for deeper waters, and thus while trying to keep up with them I found myself briefly inverted trying to paddle over a five to six foot swell before being slammed onto my back snapping the $5.00 Styrofoam board to smithereens, and my body repeatedly tumbling like a rag doll underwater.
Yada, yada, yada, the next thing I know I’m being saved by not one but two locals who thankfully pulled me to shore, while my father is yelling, “Drate swim away from the rocks” accompanied by a circular wave of his left arm and a vice grip on a cold boy in his right hand. For which I’m not bitter, he really tried. It wasn’t RRREEEAAALLLLLLYYYY my father’s fault since he was a new comer to the beach as well, blind as a bat while not wearing his glasses, and of course he had to save the beer in his hand. Not saving me was very understandable; any father could have made the same mistake.
Fast forwarding a year from Maui brings us to the Bowles North/South reunion down in Manhattan Beach, CA where my aunt, uncle, and cousins live. Needless to say I was less than eager to get back into my almost watery tomb anytime soon, so I was playing in the sand. Popsy comes over to check in and get me to conquer my fear of the ocean by jumping back on the horse (A good fatherly thing to do at first glance). I was less than enthusiastic having the taste of salt water asphyxiation still fresh in my mouth, but you’re not going to get your way at 10yrs old. You’re just not going to win that battle. “Come on, jump on the boogie board and come out with me, I’VE GOT YOU BUDDY!!” (I’m sure Custer’s rally cry must have been just as inspiring!!! Famous last words as they say).
To my chagrin I finally conceded and faced my demon with my trusted hero promising to protect me. Obtusely overlooking the obviously compromised position facing me, I should have seen the writing on the wall and abandoned Captain Ahab’s ship immediately after getting a couple saline facials from being dragged through the incoming waves on my stomach at the beginning of the mission. Yet, again I will point out the sincerity in my dad’s face claiming the voyage’s safety (as stated previously he’d a near perfect track record coming into the fiasco of being there for me). So instead of bailing I switched to kneel on the board to avoid the water in my face but unfortunately further compromising my precarious position. For as we all know the best laid plans rarely work out, and lessons are only learned through trial and error.
Lesson 1: Always go with your instinct
Getting back to the story, five or six steps and two gallons of ingested salt water later we are into the water 10-15ft from the shore and dad’s a little over waist deep at the littlest waves. Now I’ve no idea, but I’m guessing he probably was intending to flip me around, and release the board on a wave for me to ride in on and thus reacquaint myself with the pleasures of the big bad sea (that somewhat close Pop? Or was there any game plan?) Regardless, you can draw your own conclusions about that. Turning around to ask how its going I’m assuming because of my gagging sounds Pops is met with a horrifying look on his son’s face who is staring down a 4-5 ft sneaker wave closing in rapidly with the pilot asleep at the wheel. Fortunately his son’s grieved look was just warning enough to turn his head, and duck dive under the wave while holding my boogie board cord. Ladies and gentlemen it’s very hard to watch your hero fail to overcome such a small thing like the force of the ocean, in particular when you are who reaps the consequences of the lost battle.
Lesson 2: always remember nothing can stop or be pulled through a moving wall of water. For example, a kid on a buoyant boogie board
You see what happens is the nose of the boogie board dives violently into the wave with the occupant’s face, only to abruptly have the board you’re clinging to be stopped by the force of the wave and flipped backwards onto the sand as the wave breaks 180 degrees in the opposite direction. Dazed, confused, and crying in a heap on the shore, I look up at my Hercules with the rest of our family around us through the sand in my eyes, and say “daddy… you said you wouldn’t let go?” And my father honestly comes back with some pearls of wisdom that to this day have served me well as the third lesson of this story. “Well buddy, sometimes it’s every man for himself.”
Lesson 3: “Sometimes, it’s everyman for himself.”
Good point there!!! Though I’m sure he could have told me that before flat backing me on the beach and I’d of believed him. Good work Dad, that one stuck with me.
C. For my third story I would like to acquaint those of you who’ve not been out the country with my father as to his brilliant linguistic abilities. He is truly a man of many tongues, a man of the people. It goes a little something like this. “Hola amigo, I would like a cold cerveza, and some chips and guacamole to start.” All’s fine right? Except that is Randy at the local Mexican restaurant where everybody speaks English. In Mexico it goes a little something like this; “Hola amigo, I’M LOOKING CLUB CABOS IN CABO SAN LUCAS, RIGHT HERE ON THE MAP”, accompanied with various hand gestures and so on, which would be great if the map weren’t in English.
Lesson 4: No matter how loud or slow you speak English, people who don’t speak English won’t understand you. In fact, most will think you are crazy. Needless to say it is always an adventure, but this might be some food for thought.
D. Seriously though, this fourth story should lay to rest any questions a person might have about my father’s sanity. We all know Dad is one of the beautiful people (at least in his mind), and mom, Andrew, and I just love you to death Pop. But just in case there was a weak moment in our dedication, or we just needed some sage advice on life we could always look to you for the answers we needed, unless of course you were hard at work on the road, then we’d be out of luck. That is we were out of luck until you had that wonderful epiphany to leave your picture on the kitchen table at your spot so we could see you every morning and evening when our “road warrior” was away. Now that was thinking captain. It was like you’d never left!!!!! You haven’t lived until this portrait awaits you every morning at the kitchen table. It was truly a delight. Not only that, but he requested we speak to the picture as if he were really there. But through all the ups and downs, there is one constant, our family’s love and tolerance for each other. HAPPY BIRTHDAY DAD!!!!!!!!!!! May all your birthday wishes come true.
You’re the best dad a guy could hope for and I love you with all my heart.
Happy 60th Birthday to Our Favorite Son-in-Law From Your Favorite In-laws. Since you make our favorite Daughter happy and really are a very fine fellow, this is why we call you “our favorite son-in-law.” HAPPY BIRTHDAY!
Lady Grace I want to thank you first for the wonderful week in Hawaii with Milady, Prince Drayton and you. Even though you forgot to confirm our car reservations and also our Condo, which I thought we wouldn’t get to use as no one seemed to know anything about the reservation in your name and the registration office had to call Arizona to the Condo owner to authorize use before we could get into it, along with the fact that we were completely worn out since we left Portland at 3:00 AM because you wanted to try to eek out an extra day in Hawaii for us, and despite Prince Drayton saying to his mother, “I can’t believe you let him make the arrangements for this trip!” and Milady laughing hysterically, obviously used to such calamity.
Needless to say, Prince Drayton and I were not particularly as “enchanted” with you as Milady! However, the week was just wonderful, which made up for the return trip to Portland. It turned out that you tried to give us another extra day in Hawaii, so we were flying home at midnight, but we had to be out of the Condo by 11:00 AM and the car was full of our luggage, so whatever activity we chose for 12 hours had to include one of us remaining with the car and then upon arrival at 7:00 AM to Portland, it turned out that you had told the Limo driver to pick us up on the day before.
Milord’s method of planning has always been a bit of a question to me because I always plan meticulously for just about everything I do. Tardiness and haphazard behavior not only goes un-tolerated, but is completely baffling to me.
On more than a few occasions, Milord’s plans have been made with… well, let’s just call it, “great gaps of flexibility.” A perfect example is many years ago when Milord and Milady came to visit us when we lived in Edmonds, Washington which is on the NORTH end of Seattle. Flying out for a 2-wk business trip to Chicago, they asked for a ride to Sea-Tac at 7:00 AM. I was most happy to oblige and delivered them to the airport in plenty of time to catch their flight.
Upon arriving home, I found that Milord had called Lady Grace, who was taking care of Prince Drayton while the kids were gone, to ask if I could drive back to Sea-Tac to bring his sample case to the airport, which he had forgotten. Milord said that I should simply take the sample case to Air Cargo and they would send it C.O.D. So, I drove back to Sea-Tack with the sample case confident that following Milord Randy’s direction it could be sent C.O.D. to Chicago.
When I explained to Air Cargo what Milord had said, they said, “we don’t send C.O.D., you have to pay.” Well, I didn’t have enough cash on me to pay the shipping costs, so I went back to the house in Edmonds to get money and then drove back to Sea-Tac to pay Air Cargo the shipping costs! Upon arriving home for the 3rd time, around 3:00 PM, I said to the Lady Grace, “That boy!”
My brother-in-law, Milord, has quite a reputation for:
Misplacing his wallet….about every other day
Misplacing his keys….about every other day
Eating his grapefruit while wearing the armor of my sister’s aprons
Always asking “what’s goin’ on?” while watching a movie
always making the obvious statement, right after the very same statement has been made but you know, he’s fun-loving, easy to get along with, easy goin’ and is good at gettin’ out there and enjoying life, living it to the fullest!
I lived with Milord and Milady for almost a year when I got out of the Navy. On several occasions I mentioned to Milord that a “scratcher” seemed to be living in the basement with me, behind a wall. One night the “scratcher” was busy, so I quietly snuck upstairs to where Milord and Milady were sleeping and asked Milord to come listen. We did a low-crawl down the stairs to the basement and you know, he and I sat around waiting for the “scratcher” to make a sound for about 30 minutes! Now, not every brother-in-law would hang in there for as long, seriously intent upon helping me discover the problem and not complain. Happy Birthday from Sir Richard, the resident Chicano!
Here are my favorite stories about my brother, Milord RB:
1. RB used to keep the keys to his car (what was it?) under the mat. This would have been in the 1970’s. The car was stolen and not seen for weeks. RB thought it was gone forever until one night, on the freeway, he saw what looked like his car pulled over on the shoulder. He pulled over and walked back to investigate. It was his car and the driver apparently had car trouble. RB reached in and grabbed the driver, ready to slug him. The guy pleaded for his life and swore that he had bought the car recently and that he could prove it if RB would follow him to the next off-ramp and then proceed to a service station. RB relented and allowed the guy to drive off, following him. At the service station RB got out of his car and started walking over to the car. The driver sped off and he was gone. The car was found a week later wrapped around a tree in southern Oregon.
2. RB was driving in the local neighborhood in the late 70’s or early 80’s. He pulled up to a stop sign. He started to go and a jogger ran in front of his car. RB had to hit the brakes to keep from hitting him. The jogger “flipped RB off” and he returned the favor. Words ensued and then RB got out of the car and they started throwing lefts and rights and firing off “F bombs,” as the neighbors observed. Suddenly RB realized he knew the guy. “Hey, I know you.” The other guy said the same thing. They stopped fighting, shook hands, laughed about what had just happened, and then went their separate ways. Only RB could have this experience!!!
3. RB was about 10-12 years old. The new fad was making dart guns by rolling up a newspaper and then blowing them out of a piece of construction pipe. RB, the great White hunter, wanted to impress his little brother. We walked out the back door and RB spied a black bird on a wire 20 yards away, over our backyard. “Watch me get that one”… (the odds being about 200-1). He blew mightily and the dart shot out — right through the bird’s throat. We raced out in horror and quickly buried the bird. The old man was a bird lover and it was years before he ever heard about it.
4. RB, the rookie drinker went over to a friend’s house during his junior year in high school. The friend proceeded to make mixed drinks, mixing every form of alcohol in the liquor cabinet. RB was the only one bold enough, or dumb enough, to drink these wild mixtures. His good friends later brought him home and propped him against the front door. I was watching TV with Mom and Pop. We heard a scratching on the door. As Pop opened the door the car sped off and Pop caught RB as he was falling backwards on the porch. He was up all night throwing up, swearing that he would never drink again. That promise has been broken.
Lady Ashley’s favorite Milord Uncle Story
One of my favorite stories about my Milord Uncle Randy is one that seems to be retold and retold over the years. I think I was about 8 years old, and Prince Drayton couldn’t of been much older. We were all at the beach one day with the Bowles south and the Bowles north just hanging out. Everyone had been in and out of the water all day body surfing and boogie boarding.
In the afternoon Milord Uncle offered to take Prince Drayton in the ocean and help him along with the boogie board…I mean he was only 10 or so. I remember watching this on the beach, and just when they were having a good ole time you could see this humongous set start to form on the horizon. Well Milord Uncle had hold of Prince Dayton’s board and they were hurrying out to try to make it over the wave. It became very obvious they weren’t going to make it over the wave and just as the huge wave is crashing you see Milord Uncle letting go of Prince Drayton and pushing him away as he saves himself and dives under the white wash. I remember seeing Prince Drayton and the boogie board getting absolutely crushed, twirling and tumbling around. Milord Uncle made it to shore first and Prince Drayton followed slowly behind dragging his board behind him with tears rolling down his face. I remember exactly what Prince Drayton said, “But, but dad, why did you let go of me??” Milord Uncle kinda pondered as he looked down at the 10 year old Prince and said, “hey Drayt, at times like that, its every man for himself.” We continue to laugh about that story every time it’s told!
Sir Brian: Scene- 8th Street Manhatten Beach
Witnesses: Lord Chris, Sir Brian, Prince Andrew, Milord Randy, and the Prince Drayter.
Incident: “THE WAVE” I don’t remember the exact year, but it had to be around 1987 or 1988. It was a typical summer day in lovely Manhattan Beach, and the Bowles South crew decided to take the Bowles North down for a day of fun at the beach.
Having arrived at the beach without any hysterics from R.B. (ie. keys locked in car, wallet lost, forgot smokes at the house, . . . you know, the usual), I decided to strap on my boogie board and catch a few waves. Prince Andrew followed suit and we both made our way out into the surf. After about an hour, Prince Andrew called to me and let me know that he was heading in. I thought he was kind of soft for doing so, but instead of heckling him I just waved and continued to catch waves. . .
A few minutes later Milord R.B. and Prince Drayton started making their way down the beach to go for a swim. They were in their element! Milord R.B. was strutting down the beach in his shorts (which zipped off at the knee and would double as his khaki casual pants later in the day…he still swears that they are not only functional, but also high in style) and the Prince Drayter was blinding passers-by with the glint coming off his white body.
Soon however they both made their way out into the surf and Milord R.B. began giving Prince Drayton lessons in how people body surfed in the 1960’s. . . All the while, I had noticed that the waves had begun to pick up and were pretty sizable compared to the normal 2-foot summer surf on “Lake Manhattan.” Still, my uncle and cousin were well inside the impact zone, picking off some of the smaller waves, and therefore were in a safe position. . . .Then I turned back toward the horizon and I saw a huge black mass forming.
Instantly I knew a huge wave was coming our way. I turned around to check on Milord R.B and Prince Drayton and what I saw was not good. Apparently Prince Drayton had worked up his courage on the small “insiders” and was now wading out hand in hand with his father to conquer some bigger waves. . . Remember that the Prince Drayter had to be around ten years old at this point in time, and his fine water skills had not yet been honed to their current state. In fact, I think it was on this same vacation that Prince Drayton nearly drowned again in Hawaii. But that is a whole different saga which I’m sure will be included in his Book of Wellington!
On with the story . . . My first thought was that both of them were gonna get drilled by this big ass wave! So I yelled, “OUTSIDE!!!”, forgetting that the members of Bowles North would have no idea that this was a slang surf term for, paddle your ass off cause there is a monster wave coming. I might as well have yelled at them in Chinese. . . So they both looked up like deer in headlights and I whipped around and kicked and paddled for my dear life.
As I climbed up the face of the wave, I quickly turned to see the fate of my poor uncle and cousin. What I saw was not pretty. Both were running hand in hand in about a foot of water with expressions on their faces that I had only seen in horror movies. I made it over and waited for any sign of life. As the wave began to explode I feared the worst. But then I saw Milord R.B. dart up through the back of the wave like a torpedo and crest his way to safety!. . . but where was Prince Drayton?
We both turned and looked at the wave, which was now a mountain of white water. No sign of Prince Drayton. We both rushed into the beach and looked down and saw Prince Drayton had washed up about two lifeguard towers down. He seemed to be breathing which was good, but he was not in good shape. Prince Andrew and my father rushed down to meet us. My dad had Milord R.B.’s smokes in hand, knowing full well that his brother was gonna need a rocket after this ordeal. As Prince Drayton struggled back towards us I witnessed an exchange that I will never forget for the rest of my life, and a story that has become one of the gems of Milord Randy Bowles lore. . . . “Dad when the wave came, how come you let go of my hand?” Prince Drayton asked, still badly shaken. I looked up at Milord Uncle R.B. as he took a long pull on his Parliament light and he said without skipping a beat, “Drate, when the waves are that big it’s every man for himself.”
Lady Claudia’s Milord Randy-land Story
On the day Prince Drayton was born… My favorite Milord Randy story comes from a time I was visiting my best friend, Milady MCatherine, the week her first child was scheduled to be born. I had decided to take the time to visit on the off chance that the birth would be on time and I would get to participate in the process (and even maybe be of some small help). My story takes place on a very cold November Sunday in 1977. There was snow on the ground and freezing wind was blowing that morning when Milady’s water broke. She told Milord that it might be time to go to the hospital but it was hard to get his attention. He told her she would have to wait a minute because he was in the middle of making some important bets and had to complete his phone calls. Thinking she would get a better response from some other quarter, Milady tried to call her mother but couldn’t get through and had to fall back on her husband again. When the seriousness of the situation dawned on Milord (or when he completed placing his bets) he realized that he had to take action and come up with a plan. He reasoned that we might have a long wait on our hands (births are so unpredictable) and he wanted to be prepared so, he started barking orders as he went into siege mentality and gathered supplies. One of us (me) was to make sandwiches and a thermos of coffee, while the other (he) collected the other necessary equipment – a portable TV to watch the 49er game, the Sunday newspaper and other equipment.
Milady was left to her own devices to collect whatever she thought she might need for herself and the baby (in a siege, it is largely every man for himself). After several trips, we finally got everything into the car (not forgetting the expectant and slightly impatient mother who had been waiting alone in the garage turning to ice meanwhile), and started for the hospital. Milord Randy found a ‘really good’ parking spot just a few blocks from the hospital and, after declaring that we couldn’t expect to do any better, started to unload the gear. He and I had our arms pretty full so, Milady was, once again, on her own to climb over the curbside snowdrifts and find her way to the main entrance of Good Samaritan Hospital. Milord helped to check Milady in and then turned her over to a capable looking nurse and started setting up camp in a corner of the waiting room.
Soon it looked like his living room with all the comforts of home. I remember it being an engrossing football game but at halftime Milord tore himself away and went to see Milady and checked on how she was doing. After the game he offered to rub her back for a few minutes.
Prince Drayton was finally born late that night and, to celebrate, Milord Randy and I went to the Fish Grotto for dinner and champagne. It was clear that it would take more than the birth of a son to throw this man off balance; he had his priorities straight. An aside to this story is that Milord Randy’s eldest son, Prince Andrew, had weighed 10lbs. at birth. So before Prince Drayton was born, Milord solicited bets from friends and strangers alike. The bet sheet had four columns; Weight, Boy, Girl, Bet. Several people waged $1.00, choosing a number of slots for weight and gender. Milady MCatherine put $1.00 on 7.5lb. Boy–EXACTLY right for the baby Prince Drayton!
A Bowles story by Sir G. Drayton Marsh Hawaii Vacation with Milord Randy
Making a week long trip with Milord Randy to Hawaii turned out to be a real experience. Everyone had a good time in the sun and the blue Pacific. Snorkeling was one of the first activities that Milord wanted to do. The problem was that he felt he needed a snorkel mask that would let him wear his glasses while snorkeling. There was not one to found, so Milord Randy tried a mask without the glasses and found that he could see well enough. With fins and snorkel mask in hand, Milord approached the surf and in attempting to put on the fins he dropped one as the surf came in, as the surf went out so did Milord’s fin, leaving him to now snorkel with only one fin.
We started out snorkeling together, in time we drifted a part. As I came up to get a breath of air I hear a guy say “what in the hell are you doing?” It seems that Milord thought this person was me and proceeded to get face to face with this individual and gave him his number one finger. It was obvious Milord couldn’t see as well as he thought. The irony to this adventure is that as we finished snorkeling and started walking down the beach to return the fins, I laughed and pointed out that he was going to be charged for a set of fins. About 50 yards from the rental shack, a wave threw up a fin and Bowles, without missing a beat, bent down, swept up the fin, then turned to me with a BIG grin on his face and said, “part of the plan.” It could only happen to Milord Randy!
We had sun burns after so many hours in the surf, so we talked with a lifeguard who told us to use canned milk to relieve the pain. So Lady Bobbe and Milady MCatherine applied the milk to our burns, but while we were sitting on the patio the milk began to curdle and we stunk to high heaven. Needless to say, the Ladies abandoned us and locked us out of the condo for hours!
Hawaii evenings turned Milord Randy into a strange dude. As the moon would rise in the sky, Milord would say “do you have a dime? I don’t have any change.” This occurred each night of the trip. It seems this dime was needed for a newspaper. Milord Randy’s claim was that he “needed the feel of the print” to aid a call from Mother Nature. If there were no dimes available Milord’s last resort was the local real estate advertiser. It turns out he doesn’t like to carry change in his pockets. So I gave him a dime. Well, after about four days of this behavior, I just got where I put a dime on the table when we sat down in a restaurant, knowing he would need one in pretty short order! As Milord Randy has now reached 60 years of age let us hope he has prospered to cover inflation, a newspaper now cost 25 cents for the feel of the print. So, Milord, we have the happiest memories of our vacation with you and Milady. Not sure we’ve ever had quite the same experiences again in our lives, but know you are a great guy and wish you very happy returns on your 60th! Sir Drayton & Lady Bobbe Marsh
Milord Randy Bowles-60 years old-by Princess Helle Kjelder
Dear Milord Randy, I have been asked to write what I would remember about you, if you were to die in a little while and what I would want to tell you before then, if I had the chance. You are not dying, and this is a chance, so here we go. I have decided to write about 4 of the most important ”roles” in your life. Please remember, that everything I write is written with respect and love.
Milord Randy, the businessman
I remember Milord Randy as the hard working and very successful businessman. When I lived with Milady and Milord, he was working as the vice president for FLAV-R-PAC. One of the products was frozen orange juice. I had never heard about such a thing before, but I have to admit I grew to like it. In the beginning I was a little disappointed, because I thought every household in America was filled with coca cola. Milord Randy has always payed a lot of attention to his looks, and the way that he dresses. Milord Randy was the first man, I ever saw wearing a big ring with a colored stone – A turquoise. I also remember Milord Randy eating grapefruit wearing his nice office suit. And you might wonder if it’s true or not, but it is. I might have to add, that he was wearing at least 4 of Milady’s aprons to protect his shirt while eating the grapefruit.
I always thought Milord Randy had an easy job. He always talked about going out for dinner and playing golf with different customers. I mean, how difficult can that be? Well, he explained it to me like this: “If two companies are selling the same product, and the quality and the prize is the same too, and the only difference is, that I take them out to dinner and we play golf, they will find out that I’m a nice guy, they will end up buying my products”. I was convinced that he was right.
Milord Randy-the sportsman
Even before coming to America Milady and Milord asked me if I was interested in Sports. I told them that I had been playing handball for some years, so yes I was interested in sports. It wasn’t until I arrived, we found out that it wasn’t the same kind of handball, we were talking about. I was thinking about team handball, which is completely different from what Milady and Milord were thinking about. Because of my interest in sports, Milady and Milord had arranged for me to have a guest-membership for a year at the Multnomah Athletic Club (The MAC).
It was a great gift, and it gave me so many good experiences. One of them was playing volleyball just like Milord Randy. Milord was a very good player and was playing on the best team in the club. He just didn’t have the time to practice as much as the rest of the team, but he was still one of the guys. Already then Milord Randy had another big passion – playing golf – I didn’t know much about golf then and I still don’t. When he talked about handicaps, I thought it was physical and when he talked about eagles, I thought it was a bird. I remember once, when he wanted to introduce me to golf, and the whole family went to LOCC (Lake Oswego Country Club) to play. After having spent an hour trying to teach me to pick the right club, and to get the right swing, he simply gave up and asked me to drive the “golf cart”. I was rather proud of myself – I managed to stay on the golf course, without anyone getting hurt.
For some reason, I think Milord Randy has been playing golf all his life and he might even have been born with a golf club in the mouth. As far as I know he is an excellent player – according to himself, he is like Tiger Woods – these days. I also know, he promised Milady a mink coat when she broke a 100, probably because he thought she never would, but she did. Another of Milord Randy’s big passions is the Super Bowl. I never understood football. Where I come from football is soccer. I don’t think Milord ever played football himself, but none near him could ever have any doubt about, which team was his favorite team. Of course – San Francisco 49’ers – For me football looks more like wrestling on a battlefield. I don’t know what Milord Randy enjoys the most about football. Watching the game or collecting his bets? I also remember one evening, when Milady had to go an perform and it was my night off, and one of Milord’s friends called to let him know, that he had an extra ticket for The Portland Trailblazers game at the coliseum, Milord immediately said he would go, but then Milady had to stop him, and remind him that it was my night off. Milord Randy stayed home and watched Prince Drayton and I ended up with the ticket. – Good game, by the way.
Milord Randy, the family man
When I came to live with Milady and Milord, I wanted to learn about the American culture, and one of the things was the language. I was told that if I wanted to learn some slang, Milord Randy would be the one to teach me. I don’t know, how good a job he did, because the only thing I remember is: We are talking ……….. .He also taught me to do high five, low five and around the world.
You can’t really say that Milord Randy is a family man, because he has always been working very hard, and therefore never spend a lot of time at home. But I remember once, when we went camping on the coast, we had a campfire and roasted marshmallows and Hershey bars. It was fun, and the nature was beautiful, but I never understood what’s so delicious about marshmallows. Milord Randy also goes to the ”big” family reunion in Santa Cruz on Memorial Day, which he enjoys very much. He also loves his wife and two sons very much, and is very proud of them. He has a wife, who is very different from himself, and who can give him qualified advice. He knows, that behind every great man, is a great woman. He also enjoys the company of his sons, and especial as they have grown older, they have enjoyed each others company in different activities, and have been on several trips together.
Milord Randy-the Banana Boy
You might not know it, but Milord Randy is a Banana Boy. This is a name I gave him a long time ago, when I found out how unfortunate and forgetful he was / is. I could give you lots of examples, but I’m sure Milady can give you even more. Just ask her to tell the Gummy Bear story, and you will get a good laugh. I could add lots of car-key stories + a story about Milord’s driving all over town with his coffee mug on the roof of the car and about him dropping his car-keys into his coffee mug in the morning, just as he closed the back door and then ringing the back door bell to get back into the house to get his keys out of the coffee and wash his hands. This happened with the coffee mug at least once a week over many weeks! After a while, Milady wrote a song called “Banana Boy!”
With a Calypso beat, it goes,
“Oh, oh Banana boy, What you goin’ to do today? Uh Oh, Banana boy, You lose your keys again you say! Oh, Oh! Banana boy!!!!
Another cute story took place at Christmas. Milady had bought some very special alligator leather belt for Milord Randy as a Christmas present. On the back was engraved: “Lost by R.W.B”. When Milady and Milord visited Denmark in 1989, we went to Tivoli Gardens – of course. There we had a nice dinner in a nice restaurant. About 15 minutes after we had left the restaurant Milord Randy found out that his camera was missing, and we all suggested that he return to the restaurant to look for the camera. And there it was hanging on the chair on which he had been sitting. While in Denmark, he also wanted to go to a fitness center to work out. In the locker he forgot his very expensive gold watch, but also this time he was lucky to get it back.
Milord Randy-the Birthday Boy
My family and I wish you a very happy birthday, and hope that this very special day will be filled with lots of joy, happiness and good memories. We wish you all the best and a long healthy life. Lots of love, Princess Helle
Milord Randy story by Lady Annette Kjelder
My daughter Princess Helle stayed in Milady and Milord Randy’s house for a year as an au pair girl. At that time I did not know the people she stayed with, but she wrote wery often letters to tell everything of her life in Portland U.S.A. and the family. I got the empression that it was a vonderfull family and now I know that it was true. She told me about the husband in the family, that he was a merry and fun chap, called “Banana Boy”.
Once he was in a hurry, he took a cop of coffee to drink on his way to the job, he placed the cop on top of the car so he was able to open the door, and then he drove on, with the coffee still standing on the roof. Things like that could never happen in Denmark we drink our coffee at home.
As I met Milord Randy for the very first time I found out that it is true, he is a funny chap, always in a good mood ( as I see him ) but he is more than that, He is a hospitable man, everyone is welcome in his home, even people he don’t know . He bid my mother, sister, friend and myself welcome to stay in his house for several weeks. And as my friend and I borrowed his car and smashed it, he took it very relaxed and calm, and we could not feel if he was a little annoying, and he did not through us out the house. Thank you, Milord Randy.
Last time I visited Milord Randy was in the summer 1997 where I stayed in the house for 21⁄2 weeks ( take care I will be back some day ) he was gentle, kind, funny, nice to talk to, and willing to spend lots of money, even on me . Only once we had a discussion. Milord Randy could not understand why we Danes are so happy about our monarchy, but we are. 92% supports it and every week we can read in magazines about our royal family, whom are traveling around the world representing Denmark, making trade agreements and working in help organizations. They are nice people.
I will not mention that Milord Randy loves playing golf, because I think that everyone else has done that. I will send Randy my best wishes for a happy birthday and a long and happy life together with his vonderful wife. Love, Lady Annette
Prince Jason Thome
After age 9 my, father pretty much disappeared from my life. Milord Randy not only took me along with Milady, Prince Drayton and Prince Andrew on family vacations, he also took the time to teach me how to play card games, throw a Frisbee, work out, boogie board and countless other things that are simply passed along by just being a great role model. I will never forget one trip to the Oregon coast where Milord Randy let me know that if I needed someone to talk to considering the situation with my father’s absence that he would be there for me. I will always appreciate that. Another memory that I have is on one of those famous trips to the Oregon coast. We would all be cruising down the highway in the plush, purple lined Olds. Almost floating or sailing down the highway, with the gentle 55MPH ride only an Olds can provide. Then along side us a little Mitsubishi buzzes by. Now back in 1984 or so, the average Mitsubishi was about as big and powerful as a Yugo. So, of course we kids had to say “Hey, we’re being passed by a Mitsubishi!!” Fatherly like, Milord Randy said “Now guys, this is not a race.” However, slowly the needle on the dash of the Olds began to nudge at 60, then 70, then 75 and finally that Mitsubishi was in the dust.
Prince Andrew, Prince Jason and Prince Drayton!
Love you Milord Randy and Happy Birthday, Prince Jason
Sir James and Lady Helen Leyden
You have asked for a humorous “Milord Randy” story, and I am positive that you’ll be able to fill a library with the incoming texts. But could we, instead send a “Milord Randy” comment which could be used as an opener or closer? As follows: How can one man be so utterly charming but so hilariously discombobulated at the same time?
Helen and Jim
It takes quite a fellow to have these two qualities combined – – We love you, Milord Randy!
The Book of Wellington Part 3 will be published on October 2, 2014