Berkeley Backpacking Biz - Old School, New School, No School

Nancy Eisen, Susan Smith, Susan Castner - The Crew

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[Note - there is some overlap in this with other stories since conversation tends to intertwine topics.]

Alan Tabor: So, you then you guys start out where you're like just buddies…or was there was like a support network… Do you want to get into this this…is the part we don't want to talk about?

Susan Smith: No, no. Well I didn't actually meet up with these guys until…I don't know…it was maybe a good six months after I had started I'm thinking because I was friends with Karen[McGovern] and then through Karen she introduced me to you guys and to Marilyn [Bishara] and Magi [Raible].

Alan: What's Marilyn's last name?

All: Bishara.

Alan:  I met Marilyn.

Nancy Eisen: You did? We called her the Queen. She was…

Susan:  …she was the Queen…

Nancy: She was the Queen,  yeah, of our little krewe.

Susan S:  I think actually Karen introduced me to Marilyn first before I met you guys. I'm not totally sure. But, I think so…because we were on that side. Because after I had…I took my six week stint replacing Sophia while she was gone…but then near the end of that Dan Castner had been trying to create a position in the production engineering department. And he was…I didn't know this at the time…but, he was hoping that I would be able to pick it up and be that person that he could hire…you know once my little stint in in the design area was finished…and go over to the production engineering side and that's exactly what happened.

Sophia came back, Dan had managed to get a position approved in the Production Engineering with Helen Li and Lydia Lam and Kim Chan. So, I went to work over in the in the factory side…left the Design Department…and Karen's office was there because she ran the lab…so she and I became friends and that's when she sort of took me by the hand and introduced me around and that's how I met up with all of these guys.

Nancy: And Karen and I have been roommates up in Montclair for a while…and then she married Bill [?].

I just remembered one of my first memories of getting to know you we were sitting in your blue, was it a Camaro.

Susan S: Camaro, yeah!

Nancy: Sitting in the blue Camaro in the parking lot…the little parking lot you know in front of the factory…and I remember reaching in the glove box for something…it was probably a lighter…and we were driving somewhere for lunch and I have a feeling we were…like this is one of our first excursions out as a crew for one of the lunches that we used to go on.  We had these lunches and very occasionally they were the ‘lunch of no return’. But, I think the lunches of no return really kind of came later in the later ‘80s and early ‘90s.

Susan S: Yeah, it didn't happen in the early to mid ‘80s.

Susan Castner: There were others who wore that title pretty regularly.

Nancy: Yep!

Susan C: We were a distant second in that.

Nancy: There are a few folks that come to mind.

Susan C: I know you and I am Karen start cycling together.

Susan S: Yes.

Susan C: Did events…Waves to Wine fundraisers. We would bike in the East Bay hills on lunch break.

Susan S: Yes.

Susan S: Karen and I started cycling at lunch and we would…and there were showers in the front office buildings, they put in some really nice showers there…so,  she and I started riding at lunch.  And maybe you and she had been riding before that?  I think I was probably a later entry to that. But, we would we would ride up to Grizzly Peak and back for lunch, take a shower, and go back to work. And that was that was pretty much fun. But, I was always I was always behind you and Karen. They were just relentless cyclists it was all I could do to keep up.

But, those were those were some pretty fun lunches.

Nancy:  and there were some other characters who came along during that time too we had Maggie Redmon, Teresa Muth, and Hallie Shealy all come to mind. Hallie and I are still good friends. She lives up in Boise we still see each other and talk fairly regularly.  There's Michael Temperio who we were friends with…it was easy to have a whole lot of buddies at work in those days.  I think part of it is that we were young we weren't saddled with all of the responsibilities. We weren't as tired as you get, you know,

Susan S: But we also didn't really hold high positions.

Nancy: We weren’t in stressful positions.

Susan S: I was a lowly production engineer and, well, Karen ran the lab…

Nancy: Yeah.

Susan S: But, Michael Temperio, and he was just in [???]. But it was basically scheduling (BOMs, BOMs). So, you know they were they were really important. But they weren't managerial positions.





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Audio: Transcript: Alan Tabor: So, Yeah! So, you said you went to... Read Story
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Audio Transcript: [Note - there is some overlap in this with other stories since... Read Story
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