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Celebrating Independence

“The 4th of July ought to be celebrated by pomp and parades, with shows, games, sports, guns, bells, bonfires, and illuminations from one end of the continent to the other.”
By John Adams

Hubby is proud. He loves the Fourth of July so he has brightened our home with some patriotic decorations. On our rose trellis, he has fastened a beautiful electric flag. Then he has tied tiny red, white, and blue lights all along the porch railing. He has timed the lights to go on at sunset and go off about midnight. On our metal pole in the front yard, he has fastened a wooden flag, with the saying, “God Bless This Home.” We will get out our DVD of the movie, “1776.” It is one of Daughter Sue’s favorites so she will watch it with us. I brought down from the attic my two Fourth of July blouses that must be at least 20 years old. One has parts of the flag all over it. A tolltaker on the Mass. Pike saluted me on one Fourth as Hubby and I went through his tollbooth. “I never saw anything like that,” said he. My second blouse is one with hot–air balloons on it. Most are red, white, and blue, with stars and stripes on the balloons.

Back to our mini-vacation down at the Irish Village: The next morning we decided that we would have breakfast at Friendly’s in Hyannis. It was there two years ago that I tripped over a cement car-stop and fell, breaking my wrist. I usually never look down, much to my sorrow. After that incident, I now hold Hubby’s arm from the car to the front door of that restaurant. Almost every time we go to our dentist, we treat ourselves to breakfast at the Friendly’s on Hancock Street in Quincy. We really like their breakfasts so we know what to order. (Bacon and scrambled eggs, what else!). We learned when we got home and spoke to Cousins Margie and Janet, that a vehicle went into the Friendly’s building in Hyannis. Thank goodness, it was later in the day from when we were there. Then it was on to the Christmas Tree Shop in Hyannis. The first thing I picked up was a bag of tomato food. We would need that when we got home. Into my shopping cart it went. I also bought some birthday cards. It wasn’t until we arrived at the Job Lot Store near the airport that I remembered I should have stopped at Trader Joe’s next to the Christmas Tree Shop to get Daughter Sue some of her favorite cereal. In the Job Lot store, I picked up a pair of eyeglasses that I could leave at work in case I broke the ones I was wearing. We then stopped at the Christmas Tree Shop across from the old Irish Village where we discovered plastic flower-pot trays. We ended up buying four of them. We use them before we get the time to repot the plants into larger flower pots. We stopped at McDonald’s for a quick lunch. We had bought a couple of Diet Cokes at the Dollar Tree Store, next to the Family Dollar Store, set back from Route 28, near the Pancake Man. (That’s the only way I can remember directions—food stores and dollar stores.) Hubby has to investigate each dollar store, especially the Dollar Tree stores. He bought Super Glue and batteries.
Back to the Irish Village we drove. Some in our group were telling us how nice the indoor pool was. We had to try it out, so we changed into our swimsuits and down to the pool we went. Our pal Sarah was there. So was our friend Eileen Collins. Hubby immediately immersed himself in the hot tub. I eased myself into the big pool. I like going near the hot tub because the water seeps over the edge of the tub and falls into the big pool. I love the warmed water. The pool was as good as our friends had told us. After an hour in the pool, we went back to our room to shower before dinner.

On this evening, our dinner was not provided. Eileen suggested that we go to the Super Buffet down the road a little ways from our hotel. Hubby had found some of the Cape coupon books and saw one ad for a dollar off at the buffet, which the restaurant honored for all the members of our group. The buffet offers both Chinese and American food. If you aren’t filled when you leave the restaurant, it’s your own fault. The place offers about six flavors of ice cream. I had to taste a couple of them “to make sure they weren’t poisoned.”

Back we went to the Irish Village. We went to the dining room and heard Tom Lanigan, Jennifer Wheland, and Kate Chen entertain us for the evening. The group found out that two members of our group were celebrating their 31st anniversary that day, Walter and Carol Belmont. We clapped as they danced around the floor. It was then that the band asked Sheila Glynn to the microphone. We have heard Sheila other times we had been there and her voice is lovely. Sheila sang a few songs for us and we applauded. The music trio also asked Gregory Ashe to sing. He always amazes me when he sings in Gaelic. Then they asked another member of our group to come to the microphone, Mary O’Toole. She sang beautifully also. I could tell that our singers were wonderful. The following morning, a man came over to us from the bus group from Pennsylvania. “Are you people going to be here this evening?” We said, “Yes.” “Oh, good, we love the singers from your group.” We even took credit for having Sheila Glynn in our group. I saw Sheila sitting alone and went over to chat with her. I had heard that her husband was in the hospital. I asked how he was doing. We chatted for quite a while. She is very nice. I told her that I was going to buy her CD, which was for sale in the gift shop. She kindly said, “Don’t bother. I have a few in my car.” Back she came with a couple of CDs. “Give them to your friends,” said she. Sheila sings in my lower range so I enjoy singing along with her CD.

For the final two days we were entertained by John Connors and the Irish Express. His fellow musician was Greg Kerry. I had a chance to chat with Greg and he was very pleasant. I told him that Hubby and I would be attending the fundraiser for Sister Elizabeth’s Montessori School on Saturday evening at Florian Hall, where they would be playing. John and Greg played such good dance music down the Cape that we knew they would be terrific at the fundraiser on Saturday night.

On Friday morning, our group all met for breakfast. Eileen Collins presented Tom, the dining room director (and now one of the owners), a gift from our group – fudge from the Stage Stop Candy House in Dennis Port. There were some chocolate truffles in a little box on top of the fudge boxes. “The staff is not getting any of the truffles,” said he. He took such good care of us during our stay that we thanked him. When breakfast was over, Hubby and I hurried back to our room. We were mostly packed because we wanted time to stop at the Market Basket Store at the bridge before it became too busy.

We should have stayed in the dining hall. Tom was saying goodby to our crowd. No one saw Tom put some silverware into the pocketbook of one of our group, as the bag was hanging on her shoulder. Tom then told the group that some silverware had been stolen. He went over to his “victim.” “Would you please empty out your pocketbook.” She thought Tom was daft but she did as she was told. Out tumbled the silverware. She almost died. Then everyone began to laugh and she realized it was all a joke. Tom is such a devil! Our group’s organizer Eileen Collins told us before we all left that she had already booked our rooms for the fall. I put the dates in my date book so I won’t make any other plans for those days.

On the way home, we did stop at the Market Basket Store at the bridge. How Hubby locates the store in that maze of streets, I’ll never know. We grabbed the store’s bulletin and the Shopper’s Guide to tell us the product’s aisle number in the store. We got milk for daughter Sue and for us. We were out in about 15 minutes and back on the road to Boston. There were very few cars going in our direction. We were home in a little over an hour. We saw all the mail we had to go through and realized we will need to have a little vacation after we get through the mail. We are looking forward to our October vacation at the Irish Village.

I was sorry to read of the death of actor Eli Wallach. I loved him and his wife, Anne Jackson. He was such an evil person in “The Magnificent Seven,” one of Hubby’s and my favorite films. The last time we saw Eli was in a cute little film called “The Holiday,” from 2006, with Cameron Diaz. Watch for it on TV or rent it. He is wonderful in it. Thank goodness we still have his films. He was a remarkable actor.

This saying by Ben Franklin is perfect for the Fourth of July: “Where liberty dwells, there is my country!”