Stories from BAR36 continued

group showing up on Wednesday, and the bulk coming on Thursday/Friday. At this one, by Wednesday night almost everybody was there.

The Stemples arrived on Wednesday morning; then Smoller and Pfeiffer; after them came Mad Dog and his wife Carolyn. Late in the day, we got a call from Dan that he and Heidi and Sparky and the McCowns would be there that evening.

We all decided to go to the Log Cabin Inn for dinner and the Cotler/McCowns found us there.

Several of us who had attended the first Gaines reunion in 1998 tried to remember going to the Log Cabin Inn then. None of us remembered much about it, but I think we might after this one. The food was delicious and well-presented. The place looks so funky with giant deer heads on the wall that good food wasn’t exactly expected.

Thursday Pat and I ventured out a bit to Wellsboro and checked our email at the library The library was an early favorite with the group….Hayden, Hobens….because of the free Internet connection. We were still waiting for Hannan and the Hobens and in fact, just missed the Hobens in Wellsboro…coming and going from the library. We got back to Rough Cut in time to welcome all of them.

Hannan didn’t feel well during the reunion. Often there was Bonespain on his face. He tried, bless him, but he was a little subdued. However, his knees didn’t stop him from playing a mean set of bones over the weekend.   

Everyone looked a little older but not too much. Grayer heads; larger bellies on many. It felt good to be with all of these lovely, quirky people once again. I just felt so blessed. I’ve known them for so many years, and they’ve known me….there aren’t that many people in the world that I can say that about and have such affection for.

Pat and I cooked spaghetti for Thursday night dinner with a beautiful salad and garlic bread and red wine for the table. It was the first time we all came together at one table and felt like a big family. Heck, we are!

Thursday night was the night of “The Twins” presentation to Hannan. Brigitte had discovered fans with the likeness of the twins on them. (See some of the fans in the group photo). She passed them out to the group, and when Hannan came in, we all fanned ourselves uproariously.

By Friday, we were all in attendance. During the day, per forma, we went on various day trips. I believe that was the day that Doug hiked the Grand Canyon and brought back a souvenir T-shirt for the Balta shrine. Doug gets the prize for the most active Baltan, in spite of many nights of consuming bottles of tequila!

Some of us met up in The Finger Lakes for lunch….Carrolls, McCowns, and Cotlers. The views were breathtaking, overlooking Keuka lake. 

Keuka Lake

And we had scored some wine, so the day was good.

The meal Friday night was catered. The menu was stuffed chicken breast with trimmings and it was good. By now, Kathy Hoben had her laptop set up and she was uploading various photo files from the group.

On Saturday most of us went to an 1890s festival in Mayfield, which was near Wellsboro. It rained off and on. We wandered the festival grounds until someone got a schedule, and we discovered a book sale at the library in town. Our group walked there and perused the books and made purchases. I realized another thing about our group … we’re almost all big readers.

Saturday night we got all out the Dunns’ goodies – mugs and beersteins – and spread them out on the table for people to take. Lots of appreciation expressed, and everything was taken!

We had another catered meal…this time it was ribs. But it was a near disaster….the ribs weren’t cooked through or so we thought.

We gathered them all up and did some quickly in the microwave and the rest in the oven. Turns out that the ribs were parboiled, said the caterer, so they were cooked …just looked like they weren’t.

Pat told her that it doesn’t take much to cook ribs til they’re done, and she should in the future. None of us were very happy about that meal, but we all made the best of it and everybody was gracious to us about it. I was so glad that nobody got sick.

Sunday the Stemples and Shea and Hayden had to leave. We packed up the Balta shrine and passed it along to the Stemples, as the standard bearers for the next reunion. The day was a relatively quiet one. Some daytrips were taken. Don showed up with photos of the land he and Dottie bought in Wisconsin.

And suddenly it was Monday morning. We asked people in various cabins and loft to clean up and then we all went out for breakfast and parted there.

Pat and I and Doug went back and cleaned further. Actually, we cleaned a lot. But we were motivated by getting back our $250 deposit also (which we did).

I can’t speak for those who slept in the headquarters cabin or the loft, but we had a nice cabin: Carrolls, Cotlers, McCowns and Sparky. Many mornings we woke up quietly together in the living room, reading and talking…Heidi and Geetz made several breakfasts and Doug often stopped in for a cup of coffee or some cereal. It was peaceful. And a nice get-away.

Heidi and Dan bought a house in Benicia and as it turned out, it’s next to the Haydens! Brian is doing some work on it for them.

Brigitte made a lovely apple torte for the Balta group with the many apples that we brought from Adams County. Sparky played guitar for us, and Heidi bossed us all. (You know I love you!) Dan was his kind, twinkly self, and he and Larry kept us laughing.

Bill Shea was steamed about politics, as were many of us. We allowed everybody their moment to shout their political frustration, and then let it go. Dan Hayden was a quiet surprise after his bombastic e-mails! We enjoyed meeting him.

It was lovely to spend some time with Mad Dog and Carolyn. Mad Dog will go down in infamy for his remark one day…..”How much longer do we have to be here?”

Smoller turns out to be a champion horseshoe player, although Sherri held her own and was the woman champ.

Mike Stemple has turned his mighty collector’s eye to saws, in all shapes and sizes. As Sherri tells it, “This is a good thing.” We certainly heard and learned much about old saws and their stamped imprints.

Brian had given up cigars but couldn’t resist trying one or two or three during the nighttime hours out on the porch as did Sherri, Dee and Pat.

Ed and Kathy are talking about empty nests and moving out of the city and building a house in a more rural setting. They and Don had much to talk about regarding building houses.

No biggies occurred. We did take a 21-bun salute photo for Sam, who had asked for one. Sam is fostering two young boys from his family. I believe that they are 4 and 6 years old. We called him one night and passed the cell phone around for all to give a shout to him.

Doug Gitt supplied the music and brought tequila. He said he had a great time at the reunion….wishes he had been a part of it for all these years, and has talked Anne into going next year.

By the way, the Stemples are hosting next year….they live just over the Ohio border in Michigan, so it could be in either state. Everybody….once they give us the price for it, get your money to them quickly, so they won’t have to worry about how they’re going to pay for things that come due in advance.

Pat and I thank you all for coming and making the experience such a good one for us.



No Responses to “Stories from BAR36 continued”

  1. Stories from BAR36 « Bad Aibling Lawn Tennis Association Says:

    […] This was the first reunion that I remember where so many people came early. I had initially planned on a small …more.. […]

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