At some point in the run-up to Irene we thought the hurricane might make landfall here in the small hours of the morning, and I was quite worried about what might happen — while we were sleeping — to the huge, old tulip tree in our side yard. In 2007, our favorite tree was estimated as 104 feet tall and as having a spread of about 70 feet. At the time, we also learned it was already in decline, or “overmature.”
The grandfather clock is ticking again. A clock expert, an East Hampton summer resident, cleaned and adjusted it this week and set it going for the first time in three years.
It had stood with its pretty old face askew all that time after some hapless housepainters, clearing the furniture before setting to work on the living room, had laid it down, flat, on the floor. We were dismayed that it had been damaged, but hadn’t acted to get it fixed till now.
Our house has been full of kids this summer, or at least it feels full when, say, three grandchildren are around.
“Three?” a friend asked with what sounded almost like a snicker. “All 11 grandchildren were here,” she said. “We’ve got a big house, but you have no idea what shopping for food, which we did every day, was like.”
One of the surprises in growing older, at least for me, is that you have trouble recognizing people you’ve known for ages. It’s not that you start forgetting who your friends are — again, at least in my case — but that they no longer look like the person who is lodged in your visual memory. Only after a double take do you realize who it is, and only after the encounter is over does it occur to you to wonder if you have become unrecognizable, too.
Because one of my friends wants to lose a lot of weight and recently asked whether I had any recommendations about how he should go about it, I’ve been thinking about diets. We had discussed counting calories and the Weight Watchers system of food points, but I had seen a new documentary called “Page One: Inside The New York Times” and knew that Brian Stelter, a reporter, had lost 90 pounds in a relatively short time. The question was, how had he done it? The answer was easy to find.