As a child raised in a poor family during the Depression, the author could only dream of travel and a fine education. Despite dismal prospects, she fulfilled her dreams, traveling extensively and obtaining a doctorate from Harvard University. This memoir begins with her childhood in a working-class suburb of Montreal, where she grew up in the aftermath of the First World War. As a young woman, she worked as a secretary for the International Air Transport Association, visiting Europe, South American and northern Africa. It was a glamorous career, almost unimaginable for a person from a humble background. But she still yearned for advanced education and eventually decided to leave IATA to pursue university studies. Despite academic and financial obstacles, she persevered, obtaining degrees from Concordia, Wisconsin, and Harvard and embarking on a career as a university professor. In 1968, her life took another dramatic turn when she married John Niemi, a Finnish-American professor who came from a radically different background in a small mining community in northern Michigan. Their life together brought many more rewarding experiences. Through this compelling story, the author urges readers to reach beyond the ordinary, to plan consciously to live richer, more fulfilling lives.
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