Tuesday, May 20, 2008

The east coast swing

Here's all of the gang, or most of them... and a very fast update.
Asheville, NC was a blast! I got to spend days with Constance Ensner, whom I've known since junior high school (many years ago... ). She now owns three high-end clothing boutiques in Asheville and seems to know everyone in town. Her son Ian was around, and we even got to have dinner with her ex-, Ray, as well as her new beau, Peter. (Got that?) Asheville seems to be in a time warp from the Deco years, but it's an incredible city of only 68,000. Home to the Biltmore and the Grove... it's all groovy.
Then I took a 13-hour bus ride to DC, where Chrissy and Charlie Sabatino picked me up in a drenching rainstorm (bless them!), and I was then able to spend three days at their home in Arlington, Virginia. They've been there for many years, so it was interesting to hear how the place has changed. I also got to see my ol' pal Stephanie Mumford and her husband Jack, where we toured the newly remodeled National Portrait Gallery, and had an amazing tapas lunch at a restaurant Steph chose that was close to the museum. I also had a dinner with Michael Ribar, who I wrote a story about years ago when I was at the Rocky Mountain News in Denver. He's quite amazing, and now works at George Washington University in graduate admissions while studying for his Masters. And then I had time to have a lunch with Sue Toma, the mother of my great friend Becky Toma. She lives very close to Arlington, so it was easy and then she kindly dropped me off for the train to Pennsylvania.
Then it was train time up to Philly, where I stayed with my brother Dave and his new wife Diane. Dave and his son Grady and I took off for the Mutter Museum in Philly. It was finished with an awesome steak and lobster dinner prepared by Dave. What a treat, and I'm blessed and spoiled!! Up next: Cape Cod.