Greg's Occasional News & Views

3 December 2017

And we’re back, again. And this time we will be back for some time – no further foreign excursions planned for as far as we can see. Nice.

My brief flit to New England to spend Thanksgiving with my mother was excellent. She is still doing remarkably well at 92 in spite of having recently been subjected to the trials of moving home – she moved from one apartment at the finishing school to another. She is now much more in the heart of the institution and no longer has to walk three miles to reach the dining hall. Much better.

Thanksgiving dinner was excellent and we were joined by my two brothers and their better halves, my youngest sister and our Nick. The meal was delicious – I am continually impressed with how well Kendal provides for its inmates. Dinners are always good and even though we were on the third sitting for Thanksgiving lunch, the turkey was tasty and moist and the pecan pie was passable (when you’ve had my mother’s pecan pie the best any competitor can achieve is to be passable. Naturally, Penny follows the same recipe so hers too are sensational).

As usual on these jaunts, I stayed at my younger brother Steph’s house in Canaan, New Hampshire where the hospitality one receives is second to none. Their home is alongside the Mascoma River and the prime guest suite is known amongst various family members as the “Riverside Suite”. Surprisingly, the sound of running water did not precipitate more night-time expeditions to the facilities, but rather seems to have successfully induced a marvellous deep sleep. Splendid.

We did treat ourselves to a sauna on Thanksgiving evening. I’ve written in the past about the fabulous sauna that Steph & Hope’s son Greg renovated – it is fantastic. In the past we made the “mistake” of plunging into the nearly frozen Mascoma River when we emerged from the hot house. This time though we decided against it and merely raced outdoors into the freezing air and splashed ourselves with a facecloth immersed in a bucket of freezing cold water. With hindsight, that wasn’t a lot better than plunging into the river – it was f***ing freezing! Still, back into the sauna for a second dose and then up to the house for a hot shower and a couple of adult beverages which warmed the core. Lovely – I think we all slept like kings that night.

While we were reminiscing over a variety of our childhood (and, sadly, adulthood) misdemeanours, my brother Steph came up with the notion of a book he thought he might write – “Things We Do Not Need to Do Twice.” One of things we don’t need to do twice is to plunge into the frozen Mascoma River following a sauna! My contribution would be to avoid skateboarding down Lake Avenue in Pasadena and if you haven’t heard that story remind me to tell it to you when our paths next cross.

Love to you all,



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December 2017
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