Recovering - Summer 2019 | Notes Archive »

After a year of seeking solutions, and my finally having hip-replacement surgery on July 9, our summer has morphed into a peculiar mix of home therapy, friendships solidifying, animal love, simple cooking, surprising business encounters, and spiritual refreshment. I enjoy the gardens from our backyard deck and through the front parlor windows. The work we did in the gardens for preparation has yielded tremendous pleasures. Right now the silly back garden is exploding in pink coneflowers and garish orange dooryard lilies, and the front is bursting with tall, waving blooms, which, blissfully, I can enjoy as I sit at the laptop. A robin, rejected by all manner of decoys by our next door neighbor (“…mess on porch…”), has nested in our espaliered apple. We cheered — Literally!

Bird House Bird Nest Garden Flowers

The nest has 3-4 baby robins in it. Mom doesn’t seem to mind our company.

Believe it or not, the church bells are ringing in song next door at the Congo Church, calling Sunday worshipers. Well… Walpole casts her spell once again. The people have been kind and loving. One very busy neighbor prepared a feast for us, and, instead of dropping it off, she sat down and enjoyed it with us.

The surgery and aftermath is certainly not “a walk in the park” as some had described it before I had it, but it is such a necessary inconvenience, if kept in perspective, and common as sparrows in our town. Keep in mind that this is Antiques Week here in NH, and this dealer isn’t yet approved for driving. I will count on the postmortems of my pals in the business and hope that one or two treasures will make their way to our door, with one or two profits graciously paid. Eno and I are extremely proud of our acceptance of our respective age-related shortcomings. Accept and laugh.

My first foray into the world was to The Inn at Saxtons River for a wonderful al fresco dinner served on the front porch. The Inn is the quintessential town epicenter, surrounded by the 19th c village houses and the general store. The innkeeper, Sarah Campbell, is the perfect host, and we had a fabulous time with Steve and Doug and Steve Sherhag - show promoter and dealer from Ohio, visiting Steve and Doug just before NH Week. We were served great food, and had many laughs. Although my house bound hiatus is in the best home one could wish for, being out was such a treat.

Meanwhile, the internet feeds the search, and there are surprising discoveries. The eye we are gifted with seems to operate with the same discrimination as we look on the computer. There have been some truly wonderful finds, and new people to know about. Dolls turn up all over the country as we Americans can’t resist the urge to move from one place to another. They never would leave their precious, homemade dolls when they left. Recently, I learned of one found on the top most shelf of a pantry in Craftsbury, Vermont — way, way back, out of reach, but found by dealers cleaning out the house. Saved !!!! And….beautiful to boot. At 78 years old, home bound with a major surgery, limited in every possible way, I am still able to explore and discover.

Lest I forget: Reading… During this peculiar time, I am re-reading favorite books, kept over the years. Finish one; go to the shelves and pick another. Thornton Wilder, Elizabeth Taylor, Ivan Doig, Robert Begiebing (he wrote 3 historical novels about early New England). After culling the library here ruthlessly in the past few years, it’s wonderful to re-acquaint with the books I have truly loved and kept during the purge.

These are lovely days - as summer begins to wane. Please enjoy them.

Gardens in the Rain