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October Eves

“Listen! The wind is rising and
the air is wild with leaves.
We have had our summer
evenings; now for October eves!”
by Humbert Wolfe

You would never have believed it was October if you were standing in the 87-degree sun at the Irish Festival at Adams Corner last Sunday. It couldn’t have been a more beautiful day. I only wish it had been a little cooler. Hubby had already put the watering hose in the garage but had to take it out again when the temps were so hot over the long Columbus Day weekend. He also took advantage of the warm weather to put the electric jack-o-lantern on the rose trellis. He also put the Indian corn lights all along the porch railing.

Back to our vacation at the Indian Head Resort in Lincoln, NH: After the Yankee Swap was finished, Marty Allen, the coordinator for our trip, asked us to come down for dinner and then to be ready for Russ Peterson, a terrific entertainer. The dining area at Indian Head , the Profile Room, is positively beautiful. We met our pals Gregory and Sarah Ashe and sat together right near one of the big glass windows. We could look at the nice outdoor pool or look just a little farther out and see the magnificent hills and mountains. It was just a little early for the bright foliage to be evident but we could see some colors. We could order anything off the menu. The first evening Hubby splurged and ordered the roast beef. I restrained myself and figured the turkey dinner was the best for me. The food was scrumptious. Gregory and Sarah were pleased with their meals also. The dessert menu was obscene-lovely calorie-ladened desserts. Hubby succumbed and ordered one of the fancy desserts. I ordered ice cream. I did share some of my ice cream with Hubby, who enjoyed it with his cake and coffee.

Then we moved into the Thunderbird Lounge for the evening’s entertainment. Out came Cecile “Cile” Bilodeau and her brother, Norm Coulombre, known professionally as “Soft Touch.” We remembered them from last fall when we had our vacation with Marty Allen at Indian Head. Cile and Norm sang so many songs that we knew that we were able to sing along with many of them. Some of our group got up and danced. That is when we first saw our wonderful dance couple, Nunzie and Barbara DiVito. (They were the Arthur and Kathryn Murray of our group.) They could dance to any type of music. They danced so well that Cile jokingly asked that the “rest of the wedding party” join the couple on the dance floor. By the way, Barbara is the sister of our friend Irene Duff.

Once Cile and Norm finished their set, out came Russ Peterson. Never have I seen an entertainer with more energy. (He must lose five pounds per performance.) He sang like Engelbert Humperdinck. We laughed when he changed the lyrics from Engelbert’s hit song, Lonely is the Man Without Love to Lucky is the Man Without Love. He also sang If You’re Young at Heart, just like Jimmy Durante. He imitated Ray Charles, Tom Jones (My Delilah), and Elvis with Don’t Be Cruel. Russ had people out dancing to The Beer Barrel Polka. He next began to sing When the Sox Begin to Play, to the music of When the Saints Go Marching In. His second last song was “What a Wonderful World” in his Louis Armstrong voice. His final song was Proud To Be an American; we all sang along with Russ who was wearing a “flag” jacket. While we were singing, Cile was holding a large American flag.

Then it was time for Norm and Cile to return to the stage. Cile sang La Vie En Rose, in French, beautifully. They then played a jitterbug so Mary and Sarah got up and danced. They played more songs for dancing and singing. I think it was just about 10 p.m. when they finished playing. We found our room very easily. We plopped onto the bed. It had been a long-but fun-day.

The next day, we took advantage of the buffet breakfast although we could have ordered from the menu. The buffet had almost every kind of breakfast food that anyone would want: scrambled eggs, bacon, sausages, home fries, pancakes, with syrup, toast, bagels, and breakfast pastries. The wait staff served us our juice and plenty of coffee. (Most of our table ordered decaf.) Some of our group went to the line dance sessions. Hubby went into the outdoor pool (heated) and then into the indoor pool. I found the large gift shop and bought a few things. We had our ham and cheese sandwiches in our room, along with soda from the soda machines. After having such a big breakfast, our “home-made” small sandwiches were more than adequate.

That evening, we met pals Gregory and Sarah for dinner. The food was wonderful. By 7:30 p.m., we were back in the Thunderbird Lounge for the entertainment. Once again, Cecile and Norm came to the stage. They sang and performed beautifully so many songs that we all knew. Cile invited pal Gregory to the microphone to sing some Irish songs and invited other men to join him. There were probably 10 men in our group who joined Gregory. They were Bill, Norm, Nunzie, and Jack, to name a few. Hubby has some great photos of the group. I loved seeing Helen and her daughter Janet dancing together. Jack and Jan, my former co-workers, were a pleasure to watch on the floor.

Following Norm and Cile’s segment, we were treated to another terrific act, Rick Larrimore, who did “The Ultimate Tribute to Rod Stewart.” I thought I was safe from participating in the entertainment but Rick even came up on the elevated part of the floor to involve the audience. We have a photo of our friend Cissie, with “Rod” singing in her ear. I didn’t escape. Russ came up to me and had me sing along with him on the microphone. Thank goodness, I knew the song because daughter Sue had bought Hubby and me one of Rod’s albums that featured old songs that his mother and father had danced to when he was young. To thank me, Rick gave me the key card to his room. (Of course, it was an old one to a different hotel in a different city.) I laughed.

The following morning, our bus driver Joanne kindly took many of us to shop in the town of Lincoln. We anticipated having a wonderful shopping experience. The center was very quiet but it was early so we didn’t think a thing of it. We pulled into a small mall. My heart did a little leap when I saw that the Innisfree Book Store was at that mall. Thank goodness it was because it was the only store open. Most of the other stores had signs on the door saying that they would be open on just the weekends. I loved the book store. So did Hubby. We saw a book with the capsulated versions of 1,000 books. We were going to buy it for the World’s Greatest Grandchildren but it was just too heavy to put in either of our suitcases. What a great buy it was – just $10. I did get quite a few greeting cards at the book store. There will be more about our trip to Indian Head next week.

I must mention that Ed Geary Jr. attended the evening reception at UMassBoston on Convocation Day. I always enjoy seeing him.

Here is a date for your calendar: Friday, Nov. 25. That is the day when Macy’s in downtown Boston will hold its holiday tree-lighting ceremony. It will also unveil the store’s holiday windows that evening.

The archdiocese of Boston will celebrate the Feast of Blessed Pope John PauI II with a Mass (with Cardinal Sean) at the Cathedral of the Holy Cross on Sat., Oct. 22, at 10 a.m. The Mass will be followed by a talk on Blessed John Paul II: A Saint for Our Times. All are welcome.

I was delighted to read, in St. Brendan’s Bulletin, that Deacon Kevin Heery, who spent the summer with Fr. John McCarthy working with the Irish Pastoral Centre and St. Brendan, was ordained a priest on Sun., Oct. 9, the same day as the Irish Festival at Adams Corner. Fr. Kevin is from the diocese of Meath and was ordained in the cathedral of Christ the King in Mullingar, Ireland. Hubby, daughter Sue, pal Eileen Burke, and I had a chance to meet Deacon Heery at the Irish Pastoral Centre’s luncheons at the Irish Cultural Centre in Canton.

Did you know there were magnificent meteor showers last Saturday afternoon between 3 and 5 p.m.? They were the Daconid Meteor Showers that only appear every six or seven years. There are from 500 to 1,000 meteors per hour! Unfortunately, for those of us in the United States, the peak of the Draconids occurred at 4 p.m. If we had lived in the Middle East, North Africa, England, Turkey, or the Greek Isles, we would have seen a spectacular show. Maybe next time!

I loved this saying which I found in a Building 19 ad: “Middle Age is when you’re faced with all kinds of temptations and you pick the one that will get you home by 9 p.m.”