Good, Old Things

I never had air conditioning growing up.  (A/C is for the faint of heart!  And so is raising the heat above 64 degrees in the winter.)
But this fan from the early fifties still does a number to keep the place cool.

I've been watching the PBS Masterpiece theater series Foyle's War since I've been out in Connecticut.  (Confession:  Yesterday was rainy.  So all I did was watch Foyle's War.)  It's a mystery series on par with Downton Abbey that takes place in the years and the dramas surrounding World War II.  The costumes are fantastic.  Yesterday I watched an episode featuring the arrival of American troops to Britain and the Americans were wearing these overcoats that were just fabulous.  They were heavy and beautifully cut and the buttons were real tortoise shell.  It would cost thousands of dollars to find the materials and have a coat made like that today.  Or what about the pilots' leather helmets?  Or the way women used to set their hair?  I love the internet and cellphones and I'm not so sure that WWII would have been a great time to be young, but damnit! ...Someone point me to a beautiful, classic coat and I'll get over it.

Somethings are beautiful because they are old.  Well, not because they're old.  But because fifty years ago things were made with a different sense of durability and an enduring sense of style.  My grandmother's house hasn't changed much in the 27 years I've been alive.  And it hasn't needed to.  There are treasures everywhere that havent aged a day!

A wing chair covered in rust velvet, a painting picked up at the Church art fair (fifty years ago), and a water color of the house in Winter.

 

An antique barometer hangs by the front door; a wooden mallard keeps cotton branches company.

 

My grandfather commissioned this painting of my grandmother.  The painter came to the house on a few occasions. 
See the picture in the background of the painting?  Grammy, Grandpa and all six children.


Grammy told me that when the kids were growing up she would go to antique shows with her friends.  She happened to mention the other night that she was at an antique show with her friend Edie on the day that President Kennedy was killed.  Even the antique pieces have had time to make new history.  

Being out here feels gloriously like time has stopped.  Back to the daily grind in Manhattan next week!

x.