Sunday, August 12, 2007

the past recalled

For over 35 years the Patient and I spent our Thanksgiving holiday with old friends first met during Berkeley and law school days. One couple were always the hosts in Santa Rosa. Each family contributed to the feast. After a few years we fell into a routine; everyone brought the same things so, depending on your other eating habits, you knew that at this particular meal you would always get ratatouille or mashed rutabagas (one of my favorites), Dick's chestnut dressing or Jim's rum pumpkin pie. This all stopped when first the hostess then the host both died. This wonderful extended family -- numbering 23 core members with additions of anywhere from 5 to 10 per year, depending on who was in town -- spent its last holiday together in 2001.

Yesterday the son of the original hosting family and his wife held a reunion of his generation, their kids and some of us old folks. It was deja vu as we watched the 3rd generation run around together, just as the founders' kids had done many years ago. He and his wife have a magnificent spread in the hills outside Santa Rosa. They bought an old barn on 23 acres of land, remodeled the barn into a spectacular house with gorgeous views and plenty of room to grow some grapes. We drank his own wine to toast the occasion.

This beautiful baby is the youngest member of the extended clan. He is Carter Camp, 17 months old, and a charmer beyond belief. He is about the same age now as his daddy was when the group first got together. His grandpa and the Patient were classmates at Boalt; his grandmother and I have been friends for 40 years. I can only wish for all the 3rd geners (there are 14 of them) the same rich and abiding friendships that we, as their parents and grandparents, have had together.


At 6:06 PM, Blogger mary ann said...

A lovely post, you say so much here.


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