Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Sentimental Journey

My father would have turned 100 years old today.
... and I'm frightened, because somewhere along the road I've forgotten his voice.

Daddy passed unexpectedly in 1981 ... long before the Internet became a daily fixture in our lives, before cell phones and video cameras were as commonplace as Kleenex.  

Since beginning my "cyber-journey" some 12 days ago, I've happily discovered that some tourist spots we visited in 1956 still exist.  In fact, I owe a BIG apology to those attractions in the Northeast which I carelessly labelled "lesser-known."

So, I've learned a few things about my folks through mother's journal ... including the fact they'd lived in Portland, ME at one time.   How they anticipated -- and enjoyed!!! -- revisiting a favorite restaurant.  

Regretfully, Boone's has shuttered its doors.
Isn't this menu a hoot?   ...anyone up for a plate of no-neck clams or seaweed greens?   
I especially love the footnote: "Visit our CLEAN, modern kitchen.  OUTSIDE our kitchen door we have some of the thinnest flies in Maine."

Perhaps, on account I've been in a 50 year-old time warp, their story of Boone's sparked a memory of my own:  
After moving to Florida in the 1980's, this "little voice" kept nagging me to locate a certain favored   restaurant ... the same one where (as family lore has it), I returned to the dessert bar for a THIRD banana split -- prompting the manager to bellow, "Someone, call a doctor!"

Wolfie's has since shuttered their doors in St. Pete.   But what fun, to find on-line comments from other enthusiasts!   I get the feeling this BIG old world isn't so big after all.

... Which makes me wonder, have you been blessed to revisit a favorite restaurant or hang-out?  
Or, do you think some things best left in our memories?  

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Pretty Babies

As some of you know, we just learned that DH's son and DIL are expecting this Fall ... our 9th grand!!!
I'm doing the happy dance over here because "it" is a SHE!   Not to take anything away from little boys ... but grand-daughters are the best since sliced bread!

I never was blessed with a sister (or brother for that matter), but used to fantasize about belonging to a large family ... especially if "multiples" were involved.   

You see, Grandma Hanson kept a special scrapbook devoted to Dionne Quintuplets.  Any time we'd visit the farm, I used to make a bee-line for that book  ... spending hours devouring it's nearly 100 pages. 
"Lucky ducks!" -- that's how I used to refer to Marie, Emelie, Cecile, Annette and Yvonne.

Obviously, I was too young to grasp the tragic circumstances surrounding their early lives.  Even their mother, stunned by the premature arrival of 5 babies was quoted as having said, "People will think we're pigs."    Isn't that sad?!?

When Grandma passed, she had little in the way of material things to bequeath.   But, she'd remembered my fascination with the "pretty babies" -- making sure that book would go to her only granddaughter.   
Love the bonnets!

  ... yes, 41 years later I can still be found on occasion, smiling and remembering time spent with Grandma and her "special" book.      

Emelie ... still my all-time favorite girl's name.
Do ya think it might have had anything to do with this picture?
Those eyelashes!!!

Thank heaven for little girls!    

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Road Trip!

Oh, but I wish we were preparing to hit the road!  Unfortunately, a get-away's not in the cards this year.

Instead, I thought it might be fun to take a Sentimental Journey.

56 years ago tomorrow, my mother's journal began: "Left the hill at 7:10a.m., a beautiful morning!"

UNbelievable, isn't it?????

 600 mi. later that evening -- her lovely penmanship recounts our having enjoyed steak dinner ($2.35) in Oklahoma City, then driving downtown "to see the stores."

(A Google image look-alike.)
... and so it goes.
The cost of each breakfast/lunch/dinner, motel and toll-road are dutifully noted.

Throughout the Midwest ... Washington, DC .... New York City ... New England  .... Nova Scotia and PEI before before having to turn around.  

Unfortunately, I remember nothing -- but take a ridiculous delight in reading the menus, ticket stubs and pamphlets carefully scotch-taped to these yellowing pages.

So, I've this crazy notion to see if any of the lesser-known attractions still exist!  What fun to rediscover The Flume at Liberty Gorge or New Brunswick's "Magnetic Hill."    Wouldn't it be coincidental if our paths had crossed way back when?

I'll let you know what I find!  
Meanwhile, I'd better do some "virtual" packing!

Friday, June 8, 2012

Just wondering ...

So, I'd recently concluded a visit with my Nurse Practitioner, when I summoned the nerve to ask,  "Ummm.  I know it's been a few years, but, er ....what am I supposed to call you?"
Then, there was a sweet smile and a reassurance, "Just call me Ermese."
Just like that?   OK, that wasn't so hard.

Am I the only one who struggles from time-to-time ... trying to toe that fine line between over-familiarity and "Miss Manners"?     

There's a given:
Thou Shalt Not greet one's cardiologist, "Hey, Mitch."    
Others are obviously, well.... less obvious.   

For instance?   Part of my job duties includes responding to guests' comment cards.  As some of you know, one of my BIGgest pet-peeves are form letters beginning, "Dear valued blah-blah-blah."    
So, I attempt to personalize each note -- given what information's available and, of course, their observations.   

My go-to instinct is, "Dear Mr.(Mrs.)(Ms.)."    
But, that's toooo easy!   
Off the top of your head, how many unisex names can you recall?   ...Not to mention those which beg for a vowel! .....   Have you ever heard of a man named "Erin"?   (Yes, really.)

I may never forget the Nasty gram I received a few months back, in response to my "Dear Mr. and Mrs.".    As it turned out, "Pat" and "Chris" were not he/she -- but two wedded "shes" -- who, as my mom used to say, "let me have it."

Ya, I should have bigger things to worry about.:(   
But it's not without a little misgiving, I'll address a stranger by their first name, without first being invited to do so. 

Let's play, "YOU be the judge."
How you feel about being called by your first name by a stranger?   Would you be offended? .... or am I busy collecting mole-hills?

Have a great weekend ... stay COOL and stay SAFE, please?