2004 Aramco Annuitants Reunion Sheila Stevens, Byron and Kay Taylor
Photographs by Aramco ExPats

After a glorious day of clear blue skies and temperatures in the nineties on Saturday, no one was suspecting that Sunday would bring cloudy skies and rain.

Sally Aslan Sally Aslan

The tennis tournament, coordinated by Sally Aslan, began at 9:30 a.m. Among the team captains were David Bosch, Ray Stevens, Byron Taylor, and Mike Waneka. Players turned out in spite of the rain, but it seemed the rain would not let up. Players returned to the Carolina to dry off and join friends in dryer activities planned for indoors.

Bob and Shari Norberg Bob and Shari Norberg

No Aramco Annuitant reunion would be complete without a bridge tournament. This year, Bill Dobyns organized two different games for Sunday and Monday.

The Sunday bridge game began at 10:30 a.m. with a bridge social, either an individual tournament or a pairs party bridge game, breaking for lunch at 12:30 p.m. and resuming at 1:30 p.m. until about 3:30 p.m. Winners of both tournaments received nice prizes.

Among this year's tournament players were Ben Adams, Jane Archer, Marge Ball, Sue Barracano, Adri Bormans, Marie Chimblo, Bill Dobyns, Dolores Dobyns, Shirley Gore, Diane Hilton, Fred Hilton, Terry Mehan, Rose Mobray, Robert Norberg, Shari Norberg, Mary Pappas, Charles Rush, Charles Sawaya, Tom Swepson and Suki Swepson.

Tim Barger Tim Barger

Several annuitants participated in the Sideline Exhibits. As noted in a display, the original intent of sidelines is to "share activities, interests and accomplishments since retirement. No more daily demands or lengthy conferences. Do what you never had time to do. Bake a cake, paint a picture, collect something, then participate in sidelines. Brag a little."

Here is an idea of just how many exhibits there were this year:

  • The Aramco ExPats booth displayed the homepage of the web site on a large screen. The table displayed items for sale that could also be purchased in The Suq including Aramco ExPats logo wear, books, calendars, and more. Names were collected for a raffle and the winner would be announced at the evening buffet.
  • Tim Barger was available to sign copies of his book, Out in the Blue, and he was also exhibiting Nimah Nawaab's recently released book of poems, The Unfurling. Tim offered a special price on his book at the reunion through Aramco ExPats.
  • The Aramco Annuitant table gave out 2005 Saudi Aramco World calendars.
  • The Aramco Brat table had flyers announcing the 2005 Aramco Brat Reunion in Houston, Texas.
  • Thomas Lippman, author of Inside the Mirage handed out informational postcards on his book.
  • Owen Oxley exhibited information on his book, Saudi Arabia: The Great Adventure, The Americans Who Helped a Remote Desert Kingdom Become One of the Richest Nations in the World.
  • Virginia Maek had a lovely table displaying treasures available through her business, Saudi Arabian Antiques.
  • A display was set up for Eleanor Nicholson's book, Through the Lion Gate.
  • The Fogelquists exhibit was called "Memories" and they had memorabilia on display including a Saudi Arabian Airlines calendar from 1981, a Dhahran Art Group calendar from 1978, and a calendar of recipes by Mary Ellen Arceneaux.
  • Sue Long and her husband held a special pre-publication offer for Aramco Annuitants to purchase her daughter P.J. Long's book, Gift from the Broken Jar: Rediscovering Hope, Beauty and Joy.
  • Aramco Services Company also had a booth with special give-aways and helpful information.

Dhafer Al-Koheji Dhafer Al-Koheji with "Bridging East & West" Display

As more and more expatriates are becoming valued spokespersons for Saudi Aramco, the message of the Aramco exhibit was this: Bring Bridging East & West: Saudi Aramco World, 1949-Present to your community.

Bridging East & West: Saudi Aramco World, 1949-Present is a 90-image traveling exhibit that highlights the best of the magazine's photography. Complete with educational captions, the exhibit shows a changing view of the diversity of Middle Eastern and Islamic cultures. Designed for general audiences portable and easy to set up, it has been shown in more than two dozen venues since 1999 in the United States, Canada, Europe and the Middle East, in public and university art galleries and libraries, and at conventions, conferences and special events. The images have been selected for their artistic and educational qualities. To review them at home and to download exhibit specifications and layout plans, please visit, Bridging East and West.

Janny Slotboom and Curtis King Janny Slotboom traveled from The Netherlands to visit RT friends including Curtis King

We continued to meet and greet friends and neighbors as cocktails were served, after which we were treated to a delicious buffet dinner. As dinner ended, the rock and roll music started to play and everyone enjoyed dancing before continuing the party on the veranda. You would have thought we were all back in Saudi Arabia enjoying ourselves on a fall evening at a patio party!