Travel Blog

3 Jumbos in Scandinavia

Hi all,

Sorry for not writing in a while but I’ve been busy in my worldly travels and have not gotten around to writing in SO long… hopefully I get to crank out some good, reflective stuff this summer, so stay tuned.

Anyways, this email comes to you from a Tauck Tour bus in Sweden, after living what I believe to be one of the most epic small world stories of all time!

So, here goes. For those of you who forgot or don’t know, I’ve been traveling for the past 8 months all around the world – to Israel, Cuba, Nicaragua, Spain, Peru, Germany, Italy, and Holland. My final trip is a 2-week group tour (38 people total) to Scandinavia with my grandmother. I am the only person on the trip who is under 60 years old, so I have been doing my best to socialize despite age differences. On the second day of our trip, I began talking to a man named Steven who was sitting in front of me on the bus. He was wearing a Red Sox hat, and I asked if he was from Boston. When he said yes, I exclaimed “I’m going to Tufts next year!” to which he responded, “I went to Tufts for vet school!”

Later that afternoon, I was in the lobby and a woman I hadn’t met yet tapped me on the shoulder. “Excuse me,” she said, “but did I overhear you say you were going to Tufts? My husband was a professor and assistant dean there.” She introduced herself and her husband, Carolyn and Bryant Tolles. We got to talking about his positions at Tufts, he pointed to the Jumbo logo on my shirt, and said, “I knew Jumbo personally, and very well for that matter!” (Circus showman P.T. Barnum was an early trustee and benefactor of Tufts and he donated the stuffed hide of an elephant named Jumbo to the university. Jumbo is now the Tufts mascot).

This morning, I got on the bus wearing a Tufts shirt underneath a sweatshirt. Steve said to me, “Sofia, I’m wearing my Tufts shirt today!” I took off my sweatshirt and grinned as I showed him that I, too, was wearing mine. We promised to take cool pictures together throughout Scandinavia with our Tufts swag, and send these photos in to Tufts to hopefully get featured on some sort of social media or in some publication (first pic is below). Fingers crossed! 🤞🏽

On only the third day of our trip, three generations of Jumbos – Steve, Bryant, and I – sat and ate lunch together. Meeting the two of them as I head into my first year at Tufts was truly inspiring and amazing. And who knew you could find elephants in Scandinavia? 😋

Steve Sahl Vet Class of ‘85 and me, Class of ‘22


2 thoughts on “3 Jumbos in Scandinavia”

  1. That’s a Mona story!! You’re catching on. Hope all’s great. Love you both.

    Sent from Mark’s iPhone



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