Two classics at the Goodwood Festival of Speed
Karen (KR as in Karen Rutherford) is a woman of many, changing passions, of which there’s only room to touch on a few of them here.
KR is first and foremost an adventurer in life and travel. She’s always wanted (indeed insisted) that we try new things, move to different places, go over-there! Thirty-two years ago she persuaded me to get our first motorcycle and we’ve been traveling on them ever since. Nineteen years ago, she said let’s buy an RV and live in South America for a couple of years. On our twentieth anniversary she insisted we get on a plane and fly to Puerto Vallarta and buy a palapa in a jungle preserve. In 2011 we spent three months riding through parts of South America on a motorcycle. We’ve been through 25 countries on motorcycles since.
Independent to an extreme. When I took yet another unexpected job, KR had to go to Puerto Vallarta supervise the construction or our home, mostly by herself, without speaking any Spanish, and working with an ever-changing cast of architects. The Corona Adobe B&B, now almost constantly booked, is the result.
Karen has four passions: her dogs, animals in general, gardening, and using a room as a canvas to create something beautiful. Bogart and Squirt are undoubtedly the most spoiled dogs in the world. They are also the best kept. In Africa this past summer or in Australia a couple of summers before, all one has to do is see Karen’s eyes light up to feel how she feels ab
out animals of all types. When we moved to New Mexico, she had ten bird houses up and running before I could say, “why?” An
d then there is gardening. A few key facts will illustrate the point: within six weeks of moving from NYC to LA, Karen had 60 plants growing on beach balcony; the only job that Karen ever loved was as a licensed Nurserywoman in which she she built here nursery department into the leading one in all of the chain; she’s had gardens of various sizes, configurations and plan
tings in every house/apartment we’ve ever lived in; and, who came home from Thailand with her suitcase full of exotic cacti?
Finally, no one, and I mean no one, would have stuck with a man who’s made chaos and change an everyday
thing. For years it was normal to pick me up from the airport every Friday as I worked in S.F., and we lived in L.A. She never blinked when I called her one day and said, “How do you feel about starting a company in our house?” Six months later we had twenty-five people working in every room in the house.
I’ve been “unemployed” more times than a GM factory worker and just one more bad month away from working in the Home Depot paint department. She’s said, “sure” to all the companies I’ve tried to start including the fast
-food chain, the chain of motorcycle dealerships, the buyout of the RV company, and all the Internet ideas. Standing by your man is not just a slogan for KR.
Fred describing Karen
In South Africa
Somewhere in Croatia