By Raan Parton
We woke up early to see our second sunrise over the factory. Dave, Geoff and I grabbed a quick breakfast and then headed to work for what was sure to be a long day. While powering through development revisions for the Transit Issue items it was great to learn more about the personal story of our technical designer, Geoffrey Edwin Rittmeyer.
Forty-four years ago, Geoff was born in Connecticut on Vietnam Independence Day, April 30th. In 1975, he clearly recalls watching the choppers depart from Vietnam on his eight year old birthday, and to this day Rittmeyer is convinced that Americans are more effected by the war than the Vietnamese. Growing up in Maine, Geoff’s natural humility and years of experience are traced to being a lobsterman’s assistant, log cabin carpenter, retail associate for Ralph Lauren & LL Bean, freelance designer for Jcrew, director of hardgoods for K2, and senior director of technical product at Patagonia. His American upbringing and appreciation for integrity came from a creative mother and a hardworking father, principles Rittmeyer has shared with his family and anyone he starts a project with. A unique balance that enables his creative side to succeed on a commercial level.
After hours of revisions we enjoyed a dinner of anchovy soup, vegetables, kimchi and shrimp. We then loaded up for the two hour commute back to Ho Chi Minh City. The city was beautiful, as we had arrived just as the Moon Festival was winding down. Bright lights, lanterns, and squared moon cakes were everywhere as Ho Chi Minh's citizens celebrated the end of the summer and retold the legendary stories of their ancestors. Despite the madness of the festival, we are looking forward to a good night's rest, as tomorrow we will be taking the 1950s Russian Minsk motorcycles for a test-drive.