Summary: The Cliff Walk is a brilliantly written memoir of one of the most wrenching experiences a family can endure -- a story of losing a job and finding a new way of seeing the world.
Don Snyder was a professor of English, married, with three children and another on the way, when he got his pink slip. He was sure that it would be only a short stretch before he found another teaching job and was reinstated in the bright life he had come to expect -- after all, he ...show morehad published several books and won praise for his teaching over the years. But the wait stretched on, unbelievably, past a year, until his money and his prospects were gone. Jobs once his for the asking were suddenly far out of reach.
The Cliff Walk chronicles Don Snyder's journey from privilege to desperation to a new sense of hope. With each dispiriting change in his life -- selling the family's house, standing in line for food stamps, scrawling new budgets each night inside the covers of his kids' bedtime books -- he came to see his previous assumptions about work and money and America as naive dreams. His life took increasingly painful turns before an unlikely turnaround: he found a job as an unskilled laborer on a construction site, working outside through a punishing Maine winter. As he slowly learned a new skills and let go of old illusions, he found grace and dignity in a kind of work he had run from all his life.
Written with a novelist's eye for searing details, The Cliff Walk is a startling, sometimes heartbreaking story that celebrates a family's love and the resources that sustained it through an economic and emotional free fall. It is a powerful and inspiring story that will speak to all those who have ever wondered how they would measure up if their secure life were to turn into an uncertain one. ...show less