22 Sep 2010

Visiting Friends

Posted by Sam

September 22, 2010

Our stay in Boston was brief but sweet. We met Susan Vachon L’Itlien, my “cousin.” (My Mother and her Father were cousins.) Sue graciously had us out to her home for home-made blueberry muffins and coffee, and we pored over genealogical records and pictures of the Vachons. A very special lady.

With Sue’s help we found the Bureau of Vital Statistics and located the cemetery where my Mother’s aunt Grace MacLellan is buried, but no one was in the cemetery office so we left Aunt Grace at peace with the other 20,000 souls in that place.

Downtown Boston is like Gotham City. The streets are so narrow, the buildings so tall and so close together, one’s perspective is always a little skewed. Beacon Hill is so beautiful; the ultimate in urban living.

We be tickled and agog at Provincetown, Cape Cod. The real world of sandy beaches and home-made ice cream looks a little pale after you’ve been to P-Town. This old fishing village, with its narrow, narrow roads (one lady coming our way yelling, “It’s two-way, you’re okay!”), and hundred-year-old, tall shingled houses, with lots of outdoor stairs these days, has become a destination resort for gays and lesbians. The local population appears to be artist and old people, so when you throw in the tourists and the gays, it was colorful, to say the least.

Crawling down the street next to the harbor in the car we saw two guys – they could have been suntanned twins, wearing only Ray-Bans and matching briefs. The briefs were an alligator pattern and must have been custom, because they both had this little carrying pouch in front. There are a lot of clubs in town, including Purgatory (“Halfway to Heaven”) and lots of dances, tea dances, theme dances, underwear dances.

The P-Town entertainment guide lists the action for the month. We just missed “Six Naked Guys Singing;” half the club acts are in drag; the photo page was a pinup of a guy with well placed autumn leaves.

We found it incredible that a community with such a history of conservative values & traditions could co-exist with such alternative lifestyles. Part of it is money, of course. These are not street boys, the shops and galleries owned by gays are high end, very posh, a cultural addition. The people themselves are educated, talented and probably bring a little looseness to a town that might be a little tight without them. This is a very health conscious community – Tofurkey & Tosausages?!

We spent an evening with our Bluebird friends Suska and Lou and, as always, enjoyed ourselves immensely. We met at Suska’s house down the  down the cape from where we were parked.

Suska is an artist, currently working in mosaics and mostly on commission, and it was wonderful to see her studio and share a great meal at their favorite pub.

Dave road his bike down to Suska’s on a great rails-to-trails bike path, but ended up on the main drag where a guy in a pickup yelled “Get off the road, Lance!”

From Cape Cod we hit the road for Connecticut to see dear friends Angelo and Teresa. (Dave met Angelo on the bike ride across America 15 years ago.) We stayed at a Super 8 motel in Stamford, CT – no RV parks around – and had a wonderful, bountiful meal with our friends, homemade eggplant parmesan, everything right out of the garden. (Well – not the ribs.)

A day in Noo Yawk will stay in our memory tapes a long time. The four of us took the ferry to Ellis Island; it was a very interesting tour, very well done. Then we had a genuine NY pizza at Waldy’s, a surprising and MOST delicious treat! Doesn’t seem like we would like real healthy stuff on a toasted cracker (fresh basil, hunks of mozzarella) but we sure did. Angelo drove us to and around the city with such skill we were awed and grateful, as we got to look at stuff. Ground Zero is all under construction now, so nothing to see, no place to stop.

Still heading south, we were amazed at how wide the Hudson River is. Signs on the bridge say “Life is Worth Living.” We’re in New Jersey now, getting ready to do a job at the Yogi Bear RV Park in Elmer, NJ. We got here on the New Jersey Turnpike, which is good traveling, but kind of expensive. You take a ticket when you get on and pay by the mile. Before the turnpike we took a loop road around to the west and avoided all the New York area traffic. Quite a pleasant trip. It was Sunday, so that may have made for less traffic.

My face is nearly back to normal from the Bell’s Palsy. Unfortunately, the fall I had in Digby, Nova Scotia (stepped into a hole at the bottom of the bakery steps) is still bothersome. The sprained ankle is okay, the elbow almost healed but the shoulder has gotten worse. Went to the ER yesterday and got X-rays; the doc said he thought it was a torn rotator cuff, and referred me to an orthopedist here in Woodbury. I might not even mention this whole thing but I’m so irritated: the doctor’s office refused to see me! Even after my insurance company approved the visit! They say they aren’t familiar with Clear One Health Plans and “don’t want to start anything,” plus “the injury was a month ago, so you probably can . . . . ..” Can What?!? I called the ER coordinator and suggested she not refer travelers to Dr. Bundens. In the meantime I’ll find an ortho guy, hopefully get a cortisone injection and find its just bursitis. As long as Dave can keep hooking and unhooking my bra I’m okay.

The weather is still sunny with cool nights. The song sparrows are fighting over my feeder, and this morning a huge turkey showed up and ate all the squirrel food!

Life is real.



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