Sunrise on the beach at Provincetown
John and I first met in Provincetown Massachusetts at the A House. This is a very old establishment on a side street in the middle of the town. It had gone through a number of changes over the years, from post stop, to bar to mostly gay disco and bar. It has been frequented by authors and artists for more than a century. Tennessee Williams tended to write there.
I had worked all day, as usual, from 11 AM to 11 PM, and went out to dance. I was on the dance floor in over-alls(they were somewhat popular at the time.) and very long hair. John, at that time very blond and having just quit his job at the bank, joined me on the dance floor.
John looked very much like one of Dick Van Patten's kids with the longish blonde hair.
John was a few years younger than I was. He had rented an apartment for a short time in the east end of the town on Commercial Street. His birthday was two days earlier on June 5th and was, I guess, there to celebrate it.
John just before we met on his birthday.
John and I on a whale watch.
My apartment on the far left and John's Thunderbird in the foreground.
What John got. John's apartment.
I think that that was the beginning of a long slow decline for Provincetown, our business and our financial life together. At least we had several years of prosperity after this, but the seeds of decline were sown that day.
We spent plenty of time on the trails.
I tended to ride 19 miles each morning, often stopping to swim to the jetty in the harbor before heading to work.
Bike trails through the dunes.
John was very unhappy that I went off to Europe and the Middle East that fall, especially just after 9-11. I could not convince him to join me. I went to Greece, Turkey and Egypt.
Sunrise on the beach in Provincetown. The only time when the town was not crowded.
When I returned, we decided to move in together. John's house on Sagamore Ave. in Chelsea had to be sold if he was going to move in with me. When he decided to sell the house and move in with me, the tenant in his apartment refused to move and created all kinds of problems and delays before he was finally ejected from the house.
Vincent Strom was a close friend of John's long before he met me. He has spent time with us off and on and rented a room from us one summer in Provincetown. This picture was taken inside Simply Silver, the shop I ran for a number of years there. Harry's tush below.
John is pictured here, in his Summer mode with Harry at Simply Silver. We spent several years driving home to Mansfield each week to do yard work and shop etc. The first couple of years we lived at 71 Cross Street in Randolph above Dick and Zafa's apartment courtesy of Simply Silver. When we got Harry, we had to move, so we bought the house in Mansfield.
The house in Mansfield has three acres and a barn. It was used as a dressage school for a number of years, but the woman who had the horses was washing one down behind the house and a train spooked it. She was kicked in the head and died, leaving two young kids and her husband.
It is not a very special house, but the community is good, as is the access to transportation. We have tried to add nice features to it, and the gardens have been fun, even though the soil resembles talcum powder for much of the summer.
When Dick and Zafa decided that they needed income from the Condo that the company owned in Provincetown, we lived in an apartment that was very difficult to deal with. The owner was a real problem. The following year, John and I bought a 31 foot trailer and set it up at the North Truro Camping area on Highland Road.
Setting up for the season.
John's birthday in our trailer in Truro.
Need I describe this?
The trailer was plenty of room for us and offered us easy access to the beaches and bike trails. I got into wonderful shape by biking into the National Seashore every morning and riding around the park twice before riding back home. The campground offered easy access to John's job at the Truro Vineyard for several years.
The economy and especially the luxury trade folded up in Provincetown and at South Shore Plaza(where the second shop was). The shop in Provincetown closed first, and a year or so later, so did the shop in the plaza.
Dick had me try to work the shop, both Simply Silver and Simply Gold on line. It took a long time to get it set up with the web designer, and then did not really catch on. Gold and silver were very high, and we could not replace what we sold with fresh stock, and sales were non-existent.
John found work with Holiday Inn Express five nights a week. He liked it, and seemed to do well with it.