Monday, May 25, 2009

Doings

A great number of events to report on this week.

There are foxes in the neighborhood and Julie and I spent an hour watching them play in the yard across the way.  It was like an episode of Wild Kingdom.  Running and tackling each other, on each others backs and down into holes.  I am told foxes are all over town now but none are having the fun these had playing last Monday.  Enviromental regulation and financial shortfalls combine to handcuff the Town from policing them.  No one would have wanted to had they witnessed the show these four put on for Jules and I.

I had a group of third graders from the Jenkins School here on Wednesday.  What a blast!  The girls had wonderful questions and knew a great deal about their local and national history.  Haley helped out by telling the story of the legendary drum and by leading the girls up into the tower. The parents picking up the kids got to take a look as well, and there were popsicles ,which improve every event.  The highlight for me was speaking with a Mr. Murphy who remembered being on the Point on Thanksgiving 1956 when Etrusco came off the beach.  This could be apocryphal, but I don't think so.  This guy was the real deal and had no reason to snow me. Another one of the dads remembered being brought to the Point to see Etrusco when he was only four or five.  That is a story which goes on and on and on.

This weekend saw the neighborhood come together to clean up and plant all along the Lighthouse Park.  Organized by Betty Kincaid, The Point threw off winter and brought summer in with flowers of all makes and models.  The sore muscles the next day were worth it as each of the islands is rich in color and who likes weeds anyway.

The number of boats in the harbor has multiplied and there was quite an image here Saturday when a sudden thunder storm sent a long line of craft steaming back from fishing or cruising.  I was listening to the Red Sox on the radio when Fenway was bombarded by hail.  Twenty minutes later the parade began as the brief storm moved our way.  Tim Wakefield was pitching again as boats sought the harbor and the docks before we got hit.

Another exciting moment of the weekend was an engagement.  A young man from New Hampshire had contacted Town Hall and round about he got in touch with me in order to ask if he could propose to his girlfriend at the top of the Lighthouse.  As we do not want a parade inside the Tower, I pressed him a little but he was determined.  He and I had to act a bit when they arrived and we managed to fool Katie enough that she thought the old Lighthouse keeper was just being a good guy when he let them tour the Tower.  Ethan and Katie were engaged on Saturday at 2:00.  Julie took a number of terrific photos when they came down stairs and we have emailed those to them already.  Ethan also made a generous contribution to the Lighthouse maintenance fund.

Another one in the books.  Summer is about to begin and the stories will multiply.  The fun is only starting.

Monday, May 11, 2009

Limos

There are a lot of limos.

Ruth Downton had told Julie and I that there would be a large number of wedding parties here and we had believed her as once upon a time Julie was a wedding photographer who took her couples up on the rocks or down on the beach for photographs. Ruth understated the case all the same.

There are wedding parties seemingly every day. As few as three (bride, groom, photographer or minister) and as many as twenty five. On the first weekend of the April vacation there were two weddings Thursday, two Friday, one Saturday, one Sunday and one Monday. Most groups are only here a few minutes, then it is back into the limo or van they all go.

Pastels are in for the bridesmaids dresses. We have also seen a deeeeeep purple, silver, oxblood maroon and several colors not found in nature. You would need the big box of Crayolas to cover the palette. The groomsmen are far less ornate. Black is safe, lightweight gray seems like a climber, and a very sharp tan set of tuxedos were on display here just the other day. One bride kept her fur coat on for the pictures but it was a Saturday in February and who could blame her. There was snow in her hair.

Some bring champagne; others, beer. There is always one guy who is a little louder than the rest. We always hope he is not the groom or the best man. There have been some very cold days which probably explains why the groups don't stay all that long. Most of them do not get the light quite right either; clouds come up and you will see the photographer reach for the flash attachment or the reflector. This is the place for pictures when the light is right. A woman I work with told me she had her wedding pictures taken here and came back each year after for a few years to have an anniversary picture taken as well.

So follow the limos. They might be bringing you out to the Point.

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Ticket Stubs

I am a big sports fan and this week has been a treat.

The Celtics just finished a tremendous first round series with a ten point win last night. Every aspect of the series had a spectacular nature. Ben Gordon made shot after shot. Ray Allen, Paul Pierce, and Brian Scalabrine of all people, were clutch. A steal at the end of Game six by Joakim Noah and a block or two by Derrick Rose were among some of the finest plays I have ever seen made against the Celtics in a playoff series. It was edge of your seat stuff all the way through.

I have seen some historic games and been able to attend some memorable sports occasions. In September of 1978 I was at the last regular season game of the year for the Red Sox when Luis Tiant defeated the Blue Jays with a three hitter while the Indians defeated the Yankees in Cleveland. For the profound total of $42.00 I was able to run downstairs to get 5 tickets to the playoff game the next day - the Bucky Dent game. The idiotic baserunning of Rick Burleson late in that game infuriates me to this day; Pinella never saw the ball Remy hit and Burleson stopped at second anyway. We were in right field - right in line with the play - there was no way Pinella was ever going to catch it.

I was also able to go to Yastrezmski's induction to the Hall of Fame. The people of Cooperstown welcomed us and I get chills remembering the introduction of Ted Williams that day. I did not know that all the living members of the Hall are invited to each induction and that those who attend get introduced. We had arrived at the very last minute and were cut off in the crowd from the front of the podium. Nonetheless, when the introduction began, "From San Diego, California ..." I got this rush of adrenaline - I was within in 100 yards of the Greatest Hitter who ever lived. Later, my brother and I went to the Mother's day game when Ted Williams finally tipped his hat to the crowd in Boston.

Larry Bird Night was a last minute invitation for an astounding event. The AFC champtionship game against the Jaguars saw me coming out of a 24 hour flu that had cleaned my clock. James Taylor was just finishing the National Anthem when the Air Force flyover happened, seemingly 8 feet over our heads. Thrilling moment. A Celtics game against the Pistons that I get reminded of when I walk by the kiosk in the mall with the panoramic sports photos. A bird got into the Garden that day and the Celtics made this amazing comeback. There were all sorts of visitors in the crowd, Shaquille O'Neal was there right before he was drafted. In the panorama you can see my brother and I sitting over the runway that was used to take the Bruins to their locker room way back when. We are blurry but we were there.

Bo Jackson hitting a homerun off the despicable Wes Gardner at Fenway Park on Patriots Day. The wind was so fierce that no other ball made it past second base. I was viciously wind burned sitting behind home plate but he crushed it to deep right center. Bledsoe throwing 70 passes against the Vikings in that unlikely comeback. Kevin Turner in the corner of the endzone for the winning touchdown. The longer I sit here the more that come back to me.

The Celtics Bulls series had me thinking of these opportunities. All of them bring back a spirit of celebration after all this time - even those that at the time had worn me out. I was a long time getting over the Bucky Dent game but now I am glad to have the story, glad to have had the chance to be a part of something you might see on ESPN classic, glad to have those particular ticket stubs.