I haven’t been anywhere in a long time. A LONG time. Pandemics will do that to you. I had tickets to see Hamilton on Broadway and also to go to Mexico in March 2020 when everything stopped. Oh well. After a while you think that staying home is normal. At least I never got COVID. Plus, I never ran out of TP, yeast, or anything else that was subject to fits of panic buying last spring.
But, in 2020 I was invited to a summer wedding in Massachusetts...the daughter of old friends. Of course it didn’t happen. Alas. I got a 2021 invitation—looking just like the first one—for the second try. Do rescheduling brides and grooms drop their B-listers? Yes? No? Maybe? I was glad to be spared that case of social leprosy.
Plus, I get a charge out of taking my new/old (as in 2007 Mercedes) car on a trip. A sport sedan is so much faster and more comfortable than my Ford pickup truck. And it’s kinda sexy. I try to ignore the fact that it takes premium gas. I had the oil changed, got two new tires, and washed and vacuumed it right before the trip.
As you might expect, the hotel was perfectly nice. Not exactly an architectural gem and a world apart from that old fave Wynn Las Vegas. But it was clean and quiet. The towels were fresh, if not fluffy, and the TV had a bunch of apps that I didn’t have the patience to sign into.
Friday evening I had dinner with high school friends who live in the area. We went to a hip and trendy Mexican place. It was a great time with plenty of laughs. We’re old, so it never occurred to us to take a photo. So, you’ll just have to take my word for it that they looked great and haven’t aged a bit. We even found our car in the parking garage without too much trouble. As Charlie Sheen would say, Winning!
Saturday morning I skipped the hotel’s “Grab and go” breakfast, which sounded way too much like a high fiber cereal and a banana for my tastes. I braved the rotary intersection, passed the weed store and Suboxone clinic to get a McDonald’s coffee. I told my GPS to point me towards Lexington and Concord, to see the spots where the American Revolution started. I’ve done a jillion historic sites, but somehow I’ve missed that corner of American history.
There were plenty people around but I’m not sure how many were bona fide tourists. It looked as if lots of those folks were locals out for a jog or bike ride. Fancy strollers, techy backpacks, and lots of moisture-wicking athleisure wear.The Midnight Ride of Paul Revere, and when they weren’t quoting that, they were quoting Ralph Waldo Emerson, talking about the rude bridge and the shot heard round the world. Longfellow and Emerson certainly saved the Park Service a lot of money on writing museum text panels.
Hartwell Tavern, a restored 18th century place staffed by what we used to call costumed interpreters.
Mrs. McCave who had 23 sons and named them all Dave.
Daniel Chester French’s Minute Man sculpture and the North Bridge were the place to be—I had to drive around the parking lot twice in order to find a place to park.
OK, it does kind of take my breath away.
Then my phone rang and my history geek reverie ended.
Which was a good thing since I didn’t have time to waste at the rude bridge since I had a noon reservation for the nearby Walter Gropius House in Lincoln.
Walter Gropius founded the Bauhaus, the German design school, in 1919. The Nazi party thought it “degenerate” and so it closed in 1933.
Helen Storrow, provided the capital and land on which the Gropiuses built their house.
Historic New England, formerly known as the Society for the Preservation of New England Antiquities.
Mix flower (Wondra) milk etc. with wire beater and pour ½ of mixture on a well heated Teflon pan (10”). Check by pulling up the edge with fingers until nicely browned. Lift to brown other side. Take out and keep warm. Repeat process with other half of mixture. When done put leftovers on pancake and cover with other pancake.
Sprinkle with grated Parmesan or Swiss cheese. Dot with butter and put under broiler.
After a dinner of Leftovers for Two I have no doubt that Mr. Gropius wished that his wife would get a job in a munitions factory as well.
As she showed us around the master suite, the docent told us that Mrs. G was a bit of a fashion plate and was known to wear a skein of yarn on her head and call it a hat.
The museum has lots of 18th C artifacts including one of the lanterns hung in the steeple of Old North Church to signal to Paul Revere that the British were going to Lexington and Concord "by sea".
I wished that I had more time to explore the area, but I had what promised to be a fun wedding to go to.