Monday, August 25, 2014

What We Did On Our Vacation (in Pictures)

         This is what we did on our summer vacation this year -- at least these are the parts that go with the photos I picked out.
          We packed the car very full for the start of the week-long trip to the Stockbridge summer cottage where Anne's parents Jack and Marian have spent the summers for 40 years. With our adult children Saul and Sonya paying us a visit (see second photo), we crammed ourselves and a few wholly necessary items (top photo; note the plants) into the car for the start of our journey. 
         First we stopped to attend 'Grandpa' Meyerson's 90th birthday party, which was held in Lincoln, Mass., at the home of Anne's brother Joel and family.

               Family were gathered at Joel and Daphne's house from all over: Sonya from Lebanon, Saul from Cincinnati; their cousins Will from Europe and Andy from San Francisco; Anne's brother Michael and his wife Leslie from Baltimore; and a contingent from New York City. People filled all the spaces, including (in the third photo down) two fathers, two sons, two uncles, two nephews, two cousins, two inlaws -- and yet when you count up the bodies, it only comes to four. (Ask Will the family mathematician to explain).
              The party moved to another room. Some of the grandchildren were caught conspiring (fourth pic down). Saul is being entertained by Will. His brother Andy, to Will's right, looks down. He may have heard this one before. Always with the jokes, these young people! What's so funny, anyway?
            We had another party after we got to Stockbrige, after having spent a whole day without one. This one celebrated the somewhat recent birthday of Sonya and the more recent one of Saul. We went to the Barrington Brewery in Great Barrington, where we might as well be on the meal plan this summer. I conferred with Saul over the extensive beer menu, and nobody went away thirsty. In the photo (fifth down), Grandpa Jack Meyerson, hardly looking a day over 90, sits across from 'Grandma' Marian Meyerson.
           Other things we did. We went to Tanglewood and to Shakespeare & Company a lot. In the sixth photo down, Grandpa and Sonya sit on a picnic bench, waiting for the laughs to resume in the company's boffo version of "A Midsummer Night's Dream."

          We took a lot of walks too. In the next photo down, Sonya picked flowers along the roadside on the road down to 'the bridge,' a favorite spot for decades where discerning people engage in contests of 'Pooh sticks' in the stream that flows under the bridge. Later (or maybe earlier, who knows), Saul, she and I hiked up to a summit in the Mt. Everett state park, then back down to a loop off Appalachian Trail which circled a scenic pond. This worked fine until we came to a fork in the blue-marked trail. I chose the path less traveled by and that immediately led us into a swamp. No photos of this experience have been included here, because for some some reason I decided to show only photos with people. Several score (or maybe hundreds) of photos of trees, mountain views, lakes and, well, more trees are available upon request.
           Also during this period Grandpa Meyerson walked all the way to the bridge (remember the bridge?) and later Grandma Meyerson walked "halfway" to the bridge. No photos, unfortunately, but these accomplishments deserve recognition. 
           We listened to music. In the next photo down, Saul, the family musician, plays guitar on the deck of the Stockbridge cottage.
           Anne, Saul and Sonya (so I am told) then walked to another favorite spot, a shady piece of shoreline besides the lake called the Stockbridge Bowl, where trees and shade and water meet. Sonya took this photo (which is really good), as she did the one of Saul and most of the photos in the Berkshires.
          Back in Quincy, someone took a hand in the berry-picking in the backyard garden. I'm pretty sure the hand is Sonya's and that she took the photo also, so that makes this image it a kind of unique 'manual' selfie.
          Naturally no vacation is complete without a visit to Boston. We walked through the Boston Common and the Public Garden. You can never have enough of the Swan Boats. We paused on the bridge for a family photo, minus one person, since Sonya took the picture.
           Anne took the last photo, of the younger generation by the swan boat pond. We made them stare into the sun. Saul says it's the backpack that makes the photo. It's fitting. The weather was almost always sunny on this vacation, and we did pack around a lot, including some places not pictured here... Such as the really nice Iranian restaurant on Beacon Hill where we went after circling the Swamp Boat pond a few times and, what the heck, had a party.