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Grandma, Poppy & Mommy

Our childhood house; home.

My Mothers' family home slipped away during the oil crisis/ mortgage inflation of the 1970's. Gas lines & hysteria. Yea, I was little, 6 years old. My Poppy died without planning for the future. He owned what would now be millions in waterfront property. Alas, he was a slumlord, which I only recognize now & understand why it was sold at rock bottom 70's pricing. All that was left for Grandma was enough to set her up in a one bedroom rental apartment.


It's bitter for me to reconcile this fact of Poppy because my earliest childhood memories are sitting in his lap on the porch you see above. He had beautiful, leather bound Art Books. Illuminated Manuscripts. Poetry. I was sucking my thumb in diapers when I was given this gift. I'll never forget my Poppy for this. It has informed the rest of my life to this day, and my memories are in vivid color. I can remember some of my 3 year old selfs' conversations with Poppy.

These pictures are the Homestead 2 years after Hurricane Sandy. The house is on blocks, pitched forward in to the street. Behind, pile driven poles with an elevation of 12 feet. There is a small Bungalow in the back with its own fieldstone fireplace that as a child I always thought was mine. I always hoped I would live there someday. I still want to. And, as a child, the upper bedrooms on the marina side made wavy reflections on the ceiling that suited my toddler sensibility. Fascination & fixation.


My sisters & I still refer to it as "The Pink House", even though it was painted otherwise long ago.

My Father was a summer boy from NYC & my Mother was a beach Townie. They met & married when she was 18 & he was 22. They made a modest life for us; He as a laborer at the Lily Tulip Paper company & She as a waitress. That is a story for another day.


The pictures here were taken today. My whole childhood heart & soul. We used to catch Stripers on the bulkhead out front. Today, our homestead is in ruins. It is on blocks in the middle of the street; getting lifted & rebuilt. The beautiful people who own it now let me & my sisters in to ruminate & remember. They are lovely. We are so glad they welcomed us to bring them history & love.


2 years later. It's all still such a sad mess. But the people who love the house are doing the best they can & we love them for it.

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