Thursday, September 19, 2013

My grandfather had a close relationship with my grandmother's family, and even though she'd been gone for years, he'd often go across the bay on the ferry to visit them on Shelter Island. Sometimes he'd take me too. That day my friend, Sandy, came along with us. Grampa surprised us by bringing a picnic along for us...he made the BEST tuna salad sandwiches, and he brought a whole loaf of them.  Sandy ate as many as she could pack into her tummy that day! We had our day-long visit with my great Aunts and Uncles, and some cousins and their kids. We played on the tire swing that hung from a huge old tree in the front yard, near the stand where Uncle Bill sold bouquets of bright gladiolas that he grew in the field behind the barn. We explored the large yard, and we danced around in the kitchen with old Uncle Charl swinging us around and around 'til he lost his balance and bumped into a big kettle on the stove, dumping all of Aunt Ardis' canned pickles to the floor. She chastised him with a stern, 'Now Charl! look what you've done!"  And she shooed us out with him behind us.  We decided to find something less rambunctious to do, and we went into the right hand barn building to make music on the old player piano. It was dreadfully out of tune, but it didn't matter to us.

After a big supper at the big dining room table, with all the family gathered together, the old folks went to the front room and visited some more. Before long, it was time for Grampa to load us up and head for home. Sandy and I piled into the front seat, with me in the middle.  We crossed the water on the small car ferry, arriving on the North Haven side in 10 minutes. We started up the hill toward Sag Harbor and that's when we ran into the fog.  Grandpa wasn't a speedy driver, by any means, but he slowed down even further to meander through the veil of damp air as the sun began to set.  We made our way along Rt 114, through Sag Harbor, and pointed toward East 
Hampton.  It was 'scary' least to me.  Grampa pressed his foot a little harder on the gas pedal, and then let it up. In a few minutes, Sandy and I were giggling at the forward and backward 'see saw' our bodies did with every push and let up of that gas pedal.  I'll bet Sandy remembers that day, that tuna, and that foggy ride home, even now, some 55 years later! 

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