The scene was Old Sturbridge Village in western Massachusetts in the early 1970s and may have been at Thanksgiving. We enjoyed several Thanksgivings at Sturbridge when we westerners gloried in the colors, tastes and rich history of New England. New England became our true home, the place where we spent thirty years, our children became adults and my restaurant career flourished and flagged till I rode off into the sunset 10 years ago.
Our gambrel colonial home in Ipswich was the Dennis Dodge house built in 1740. Replete with seven fireplaces, a Jacobean staircase and a walk in fireplace with a beehive oven in the kitchen the house was magic to me. My drive home from my office in Burlington was a 45 minutes of freeway travel and never did I regret the trip or stop relishing my return. Garrett was baptized by Edward French at the Episcopal Church down the street. French who had been John Updike’s Harvard roommate drove a 1968 Mercedes convertible, my favorite vehicle ever, and was married to a fiery redheaded Ballantine heiress. Updike had also lived in Ipswich but had moved to Georgetown, Massachusetts with his former mistress and now wife. I could write a book. Oh wait, Updike did that. It was a potboiler called Couples.