While they’re off duty: Bryan Harrison

Another installment in our occasional While they’re off duty series, in which we talk to City of Burlington staff and the books they love.  This week we’re featuring Bryan Harrison, the Burlington city administrator.

I was born and raised in Michigan, graduated from the University of Washington, and have lived in Washington State for thirty four years.    Prior to our move to Burlington two years ago, my family and I lived in South Bend on the Washington coast for more than twenty years.9780061671784

Last July my family and I had the opportunity to visit Michigan and show the kids where their dad grew up.  While there, I perused the used book section of my favorite childhood bookstore (the Michigan State University Bookstore) and purchased an enjoyable book written by Michael Zadoorian titled The Leisure Seeker.

The Leisure Seeker tells the story of John and Ella Robina, a long married elderly couple, one suffering from advanced dementia and the other from terminal cancer, that embark on an “against medical advice” adventure across America in an old RV.    In addition to being an easy and engaging summer read, this book is filled with adventure, and sparked more than one family conversation about complex health care issues and end of life care decisions.    All this, plus a somewhat shocking and thought-provoking ending!

I don’t know whether I enjoyed this book because I read it in my home town, because we were on vacation, because I purchased it on sale from my favorite childhood bookstore, because of the book itself, or, most likely, all of the above.   Regardless, The Leisure Seeker proved to be a quick, enjoyable and thought-provoking summer read.


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