Sunday, October 28, 2007


“Nothing’s lost in truth”. This is what mother, “Dudie”, would say whenever something was misplaced or had gone astray. It became an incantation’ in our household that could mysteriously reveal the presence of these things eventually.

But life in faith over the years has revealed the deeper meaning of this statement. None of us are truly lost from each other by distance or time or life circumstance or death. Reunions are a celebration of this truth and a metaphor for the cosmic communion of God’s love. This trip is allowing us to engage in this reality in such wonderful ways. The Landers, the Kempfers, the Jays, and Jim Akeroyd are reunions we’ve reported. Since our last ‘blog’ entry, there have been more!

Lil, Joel, daughter - Whitney (daughter - Emily in California), Judy, Peter

Judy and Joel Kimmel, life long lake friends, have another retreat they frequent in Maine. “Giggleswich” is a cottage high on a hill looking out upon Potter’s Pond and the Longfellow Mountains (an Apppellation range which includes Sugarloaf) where Judy’s parents and another group of friends have summered since early in the 1900’s. As avid Penlakers, we could not have understood how anyone would give up vacation time to another place. But now, we understand! Have an autumn look below.

Giggleswich (1) and view from the front deck (2)

Thank you, Joel and Judy and Whitney! If the fates are with us, we shall see you again next spring in your home state of California!

After farewells, we headed west on Route 2 through the White Mountains to Meridan, New Hampshire. This is the home of one of Lil’s favourite cousins, Gretchen Eberhart and her husband, Michael O’Leary, who are in the midst of finishing the building of their own fabulous hill house. Here it is near completion:

Gretchen’s daughter, Molly, is the closest for Andrew and Tim Moffat to a real sister, all of them having traveled around the world together in 1903-04. (Currently, Molly Cherington, is moving from Denver to New York to seriously pursue her already budding singing career.) The weather was overcast during our visit, somewhat diminishing their own wonderful view. But can you imagine coming to the dinner table to feast on this scene?

Lil and Gretchen and Michael

Wednesday night (October 10th) Michael and Gretchen took us out for tappas and to a play, entitled “How the Other Half Loves”. It is a hysterical British comedy involving the mistaken understandings of three couples, in which two scenes are being simultaneously enacted on stage – keeping the audience constantly on their toes. What a great tonic. Thank you, ‘cuzins, for a great time in the midst of your busy working schedules.

Gretchen, we are finally writing this blog after weeks of internet difficulty. It is Sunday, October 28th, and your beloved Red Sox have just won the World Series. Wow! Congratulations! (Gretchen's son, Ben Cherrington, is Manager of the Red Sox farm teams and recruiters). We have been within the boundaries of the "Red Sox" nation for the last few weeks and know that all the fans will be glad to finally have your sleep back!

Here are some neat scenes from walks around Gretchen and Michael's place:

Just over an hour drive from Gretchen & Michael, down Rt. #91, we arrived for a week with Eloise and David at their home in Vermont. In this case, we wish to thank all of you who have known about Eloise’s brush with death this spring (a 3 month heart infection that led to two open heart surgeries and parts replacements) and have continued to uphold her in your prayers. She is a sister over 30 pounds lighter than I last saw her and still gaining energy and strength. But definitely, she’s on the slow journey back to full health. We are so very grateful that we have yet been given retirement time to share with her and with David. “How can we keep from singing!”

Eloise back at her piano and about to begin teaching again!

David at the door of his garage office. The sign reads,
"No one gets in to see the wizard - Not no one - Not no how!"

Peter with Eloise in front of Chevrier's 200 year old home

"Sisters, sisters, there we're never such devoted sisters" - on the cottage deck

In our jammies in front of the fire with pillow reading, "Believe in miracles"

The past week we have been on the islands of Martha's Vineyard and Nantucket and biked around Cape Cod. More reflection on this later. But in the meantime, .. our most recent serendipidy .. another reunion, this time with Lil's high school buddy, Mardee Strahorn Xifaras. Though we spent time with Mardee and her family here in New Bedford, Massachusettes over 30 years ago, we have all been too busy with life to attend school reunions or keep in touch. In the intervening years, Mardee (and husband John) have raised three young adults, while maintaining a law practise in conjunction with a lot of active political work for Democratic hopefuls. How great to close the gap with many stories revisited, while cheering on the Red Sox win. Mardee is due in court by 8 AM .. so if I ever hope to be up to say goodbye .. better put the wrap on this. Mardee, John and Mary ... "Thank you!"

Lil and Mardee - New Trier Class of '63 - looking ever onward

If you are still reading this, 'thank you' for your patience .. not only in waiting for this update .. but for wading through it! We believe ourselves to be back in business as far as the blog is concerned. Hope this finds you all upheld .. and 'Happy All Saints'!