Portugal – Brief Bios

Why Brief Bios? For each of our trips, we have had a Brief Bio Page and it has been especially helpful in getting to know each other and our interests both before and during the trip. Plus, it is a wonderful way to remember peoples’ names.  Who We Are: There are 28 of us so far going on the trip which enables us to have the larger newest coach with recliner seats, a wash closet, and many other amenities. We range in age from 52 to 83 with the median age being 60. We come from both coasts and many states in between with about a third of us married and two-thirds are single. Brief Bios are Private: Although this web page is on the 52Best website, it is private and only we who are traveling together know it is here. Sharing: Any of us are welcome to share this page but only with our friends and family. Updating: If your photo and/or Brief Bio needs updating, please get your updated photo or information to me. My email address is sandy@52Best.com

Note – once you have your Photo and Bio up here and you see someone that you may like as a Roommate, email me and I will put the two of you in touch via email and you two can decide if you would like to be Roommates…then let me know.

onufrakCarole and Jim – Carrollton, Texas – Transplanted from Michigan in the ’70s. Both of us are retired, Jim from IBM after 38 years, Carole from massage therapy working for the state of Texas, and as a school crossing guard. We enjoy wilderness camping, bicycle riding (last big trip was 150 miles), snow skiing and spending time with our family. We have 2 children and 7 grandchildren..



Dan and Rhonda – Denton, Texas –  Dan (60 this month) works as a Chief Engineer for the Star in Frisco. Rhonda (52) works for PBM Labs as a Hematopathology Coordinator. Between us, we have 4 adult children and two grandchildren as well as our fur baby Sophie a schnauzer mix. We enjoy camping and seeking out local eateries and unique spots at all the locations we visit. We toured Europe last year going to Germany, the Netherlands, Belgium, France, and Luxembourg. We look forward to going to Portugal this year with all of you. We love to travel and are looking forward to retirement where we will be living in an RV motorhome and traveling permanently.


Darlene – Little Elm, Texas – Judy is her Roommate – ..I retired as a speech-language pathologist from Florida beaches five years ago. I sub teach, travel and swim often. I have been to Brazil, Europe, Puerto Rico, and Israel. I enjoy meeting people from all areas around the world and look forward to meeting new travelers. Have a friend to roommate with for this trip!




Debby and Dick – Garland, Texas – No kids, no jobs. Dick is retired from insurance and Debby is retired from running a graphics arts/marketing company. We are ready to see and explore the world.





Donna and Paul – Fort Worth, Texas  – Donna and Paul are from Fort Worth, Texas – Paul retired as a Lieutenant from the Fort Worth Fire Department in 1997 and Donna retired as a Captain in 2010. Our 1st trip with Sandy, to Egypt in 2010, inspired us to travel more. Since that trip, we have traveled to all 50 US states and to 22 countries. Looking forward to visiting Portugal.




Gail F – Richardson, Texas – Single Room – I am so looking forward to visiting Portugal. This will be my first time to travel to Portugal and my second time to travel with the group having gone last year on the Costa Rica trip. I’ve lived in Richardson most of my adult life. I am a Chemist and I’m fortunate to enjoy an amazing job working in the Municipal Water industry. I don’t have a roommate yet, however, looking at the profiles, it looks like anyone of you will be amazing to share a room. I speak a little Spanish and very little Portuguese but understand much more than I speak.



Gayle M – Frisco, Texas – Martha is her Roommate –  Hey to all my new travel friends! I am XX years old and retired about 2 1/2 years now. I live in Frisco with a fuzzy white dog and a perfect white cat. I have a son and new daughter-in-law who live in New York (he) and London (she). I have a daughter with 2 kids in Aledo Texas. I have been to Europe 3 times. Had planned on doing lots of travel during retirement but that got derailed last year by an injury. So I plan to make up for lost time this year by going to Iceland, Portugal and who knows where else. Looking forward to this trip. 



Gerry and Iz – Dallas, Texas – Gerry is 83 and Isabella is 78 years young.  Gerry has been retired since 1996 and Isabella continues her holistic healthcare practice (semi-retired) from our home.  We met in Thailand on our first trip with Sandy and have been on 12  52Best Tours together and Gerry went on #13 to Peru.  In 2008 on our 52Best trip to Australia we were married.  We’ve enjoyed these trips immensely and are looking forward to the Portugal on this fall.  Gerry has a son and daughter, four grandchildren, and five great-grandchildren.  Gerry’s hobbies include fishing on his annual trip to Saskatchewan, Canada, hunting, golf, choir, photography travel and wood working,  Gerry received a BS-Business Administration degree from the University of Minnesota and was employed by a Big eight CPA firm in Minneapolis for eight years and then by a savings bank in La Crosse.  He became a Texas resident in September 2007 and would like to spend the summers anywhere but in Dallas.  Isabella worked in the corporate world for 20 years before changing careers. Her hobbies and interests, besides traveling, include:  cooking and entertaining, photography, toastmasters, and choir.  She has a son, daughter and one granddaughter.

Ina – Albuquerque, New Mexico – Marci is her Roommate – Have lived in Albuquerque for 40 years. My husband Bill and I have raised two sons, neither are married. Bill retired a couple of years ago but you never get to retire from being a housewife. I am still cooking, cleaning and doing the laundry. My main hobby is quilting, I also like to read and hike. My roommate Marci and I when on our first trip with Sandy in 2000 to Thailand..



Jim – Palmer, Texas – Has a Single Room – I’m 66 years old and married.I moved from Virginia to Texas in 1976..I started a business in Industrial coatings in 1982 and I’m still running it.I have two grown sons and one grandson.I have been traveling and road racing for 25 years and love them both.I’m looking forward to this trip to Portugal..




Judy – Frisco, Texas – Darlene is her Roommate – I retired from dental hygiene 3 years ago. Since then, I’ve moved to Frisco Lakes and enjoying all that a retirement community has to offer. I have one son who lives in Chicago and a granddaughter. I’ve traveled extensively in Europe and Mexico and looking forward to Portugal and all it has to offer.




Lacy – Sherman, Texas – Susan is her Roommate –  Hi! I am Martha Lacy Price. Please call me Lacy. This will be my first trip with this group. I travel as much as I can. I love it! This past year I’ve been to France and to South Africa. Before that, I went to Scotland and Ireland and I took a Panama Canal cruise. Also, I’ve been to the Galapagos and Machu Picchu. I loved them all! I am a retired educator. I still have a part-time job at Grayson College which I plan to keep as long as they will let me take my travel trips. I love to play golf and I love to garden. I am single now…and plan to do as much traveling as I can. I need a roommate. I am pretty easy-going and down to earth. I look forward to meeting new friends and especially exploring Portugal.

Linda A – Arlington, Texas – Peggy is her Roommate –  I was a former columnist for the Fort Worth Star-Telegram and an Editor-in-Chief of 10 national magazines including the official Collector’s Editions about Mickey Mantle and Selena. I also taught English, writing, journalism and how to produce publications for 20 years. I am working on my fourth book, due to come out soon. I was married for 25 years and had two children, one a doctor doing medical and mission work with her husband and my six grandchildren in Africa, and a son who is the Regional Manager of a Mortgage Banking firm here in Dallas. He just got married, so I am hoping for grandchildren soon who live close by! In addition to my full time writing and editing career, I volunteer at my church, am an administrator for Open Arms Free Health Clinic, am a Program Administrator for the American Association of University Women, and I take care of Gladney Center babies.


Linda G – North Richland Hills, Texas – Would Like a Roommate –  I am a 70-year-old (young) retired French & Spanish teacher from Buffalo, NY who moved alone to Texas to start a new life in October 2004. By December I had met the love of my life, and married him that April! Charles & I were blissfully happy for the 12 years we had together, traveling much of the world until his passing in 2017. I have always been passionate about international travel. While teaching I organized 25 annual trips to Europe (15 for retirees and 10 for my high school students). As a widow, I want to continue exploring the world. I have been to all Western European countries except Portugal (it’s about time I got there!), Guatemala, Costa Rica, Panama, Venezuela, Mexico & the Caribbean, as well as China, Israel, Morocco, Kenya, Australia & N. Zealand. I live in North Richland Hills, work out regularly at the gym, tutor Spanish, love serving at Gateway Church, enjoy bible study & lots of women’s activities with my Southlake Newcomer friends. I often visit my sisters & brother in Buffalo, NY and my son & 3 grandchildren in Chicago. Here’s hoping that traveling with all of you will become an annual event for me!

Lisa – Rockwall, Texas – Would Like a Roommate – My name is Lisa and I live in Rockwall, Texas… I am currently an elementary school teacher in Garland and I’m looking forward to retiring very soon. I am from New York and I lived in Mexico as well. I enjoy traveling and exploring new places. I’m open to all types of activities and definitely looking forward to visiting Portugal!.


Note – once you have your Photo and Bio up here and you see someone that you may like as a Roommate, email me and I will put the two of you in touch via email and you two can decide if you would like to be Roommates…then let me know.

Marci – Highlands Ranch, Colorado – Ina is her Roommate – Marci moved to Colorado from Albuquerque, NM where she was a high school librarian. Marci met Sandy Pofahl in the year 2000, on the 1st trip he organized for a marathon in Beijing. This fantastic experience found Marci joining Sandy for 9 additional trips. Each trip has been a unique adventure in seeing a country and observing the culture. Marci is looking forward to all aspects of the Portugal experience.



Martha – Little Elm, Texas – Gayle is her Roommate –  Hello friends and travel companions, This is me here last April freezing in Scotland and bundled up. Couple hours later in a major snow storm in the Highlands. A trip to remember. I am a travel junkie at heart and try to take a couple trips a year. If my wallet was as big as my adventurous spirit I would never be home. I have lived in Dallas 45 yrs. Was married for 40 and now a widow for 5. Have 2 daughters and 4 grandchildren. Looking forward to Portugal. Happy Travels!


Pamela – Fairview, Texas – Would Like a Roommate – I’m Pam, a 65 yr old widow of 2 years. I’ve been blessed with a fulfilling life of love, laughter, good food, family and friends. Most of my life working as a volunteer with therapy dogs. My passion is performing arts, acting in local live theater, directing children plays and creative activities that make my life more beautiful. I want to immerse myself in other cultures to remain alive & vital, connecting to my humanity. My favorite things are: animals, toddlers, teenagers and some adults, I NEED A ROOMMATE. I’m open-minded and caring. Anyone can be themself around me, I don’t judge others and I keep confidences (unless tortured). I know I sound perfect but I’m a mediocre cook.    Note – After reading the Bios when you see a possible Roommate, email me and I will put the two of you in touch via email and you two can decide if you would like to be Roommates…then let me know.

Peggy – Saginaw, Texas – Linda A is her Roommate – I turned 81 in January and play tennis several times a week.  I was married 62 years, have 2 daughters and a large number of grandchildren and great-grandchildren.  This will be my 1st big trip in quite a few years and I’m excited.




Sally and Tom – Scottsdale, Arizona – Tom is retired and will take his second trip with the group. Tom and Sally have 3 grown children and live in Arizona. This will be Tom’s second bus adventure with the group and Sally’s fourth trip. Tom, Sally and Sandy attended college together. Sally lives in Arizona with Tom, 2 cats, 4 dogs and other assorted critters. Sally went to Italy, Scotland/ Ireland and to Spain and Portugal with the group. We are looking forward to our trip and our children are looking forward to critter care while we explore Portugal again.


Sandi S – Coppell, Texas – Has a Single Room –  Sandi is one of three Sandi.ys going with us to Portugal and is looking forward to our trip and how this whole Coronavirus escaped plays out. Most of us are enjoying our seven Sundays a week but “unfortunately” the company she works for is considered essential infrastructure thus she has to put in her 40 hours a week and is not able to participate in the wonderful “time out” that all of us find in a unique way partially enjoyable.



it-Pompeii-smallSandy P – Dallas, Texas – Has a Single Room – The 52Best stories are my primary hobby which has grown from 250 friends 20 years ago to 9,872 friends today in 72 countries – some I have met and some I have not. This is the 23rd 52Best trip which I have arranged beginning in 2000 with a trip to China in which 14 of us ran the Beijing Marathon. I am active with real estate and venture capital investments as well as my Infinity Kids Foundation which gives $1,000 scholarships to fifth graders in blue-collar neighborhoods as an incentive to graduate from high school. I have a 60-pound Great Pyrenees white fur ball rescue dog named Peaches. I look forward to once again exploring Portugal having visited it originally in 2017.

Susan – Rockwall, Texas – Lacy is her Roommate –  Hello I’m Susan and have lived in Rockwall since 2006. I’m married and have a daughter and son-in-law living in Fate. I graduated from the University of Minnesota and, at age 27, became a “Texan.” I have traveled to Europe, Central America, the Caribbean and a snippet of South America and Africa. I love to experience new adventures and, of course, travel. I’m easy to please and easy going. This is my first time to travel with this group and naturally looking forward to visiting Portugal. I would like a roommate.

Note – After reading the Bios when you see a possible Roommate, email me and I will put the two of you in touch via email and you two can decide if you would like to be Roommates…then let me know.