by Judy Tilson
About 30 years ago, Hugh and I bought a house in Bath, Maine, to be used as a simple retreat where our 4 children, their spouses, and any future grandchildren could meet during the summer. The house grew as did our family; and during the past 25 years, Hugh and I, at one time or another have spent all 4 seasons in that house.
Upon moving to Carolina Meadows, we have chosen to spend only three or four months during the summer in Maine. The summer of 2020 officially ended yesterday, when we packed up the car and made the drive back home in one day. It was a very long day but it was wonderful to sleep in our CM bed last night. Just five minutes after we drove in, Chris (our neighbor) returned “Miss Daphne”, the plant she had over-summered for us. Then when we entered our Villa, we found a note from Joel, our CM Security friend, documenting each weekly visit he’d made to check the Villa in our absence.
This morning we were up early – no jet lag but just excitement at being home. And just as we had for the last three months in Maine, we took part in the CM zoom exercise class. As an aside, thanks to zoom, we were often in touch with our CM friends, committees, and classes throughout the summer. We even discovered Zoom Mahjong.
After having sat in the car all day yesterday, I felt the need to walk. I put on my mask and headed out to our street. It felt so good to see how the individual gardens/lawns had fared during the summer and to know that I was really back home.
Another neighbor, Giles and his friend Bill drove by on their way to the dog park so Katie (a sweet English bulldog) could get her much needed exercise. Giles asked if I had lost weight – don’t I wish – but they both said how nice it was that we were home. Nearby, Dan was watering his garden but took the time to tell me how his milkweed bush planted from seeds had attracted many butterflies including Monarchs who laid their chrysalis all around his garden. Karen drove by on her golf cart on her way to a Golf meeting, saw me and screeched to a halt. We both said how wonderful it was to see each other and off she went. Don was sweeping his garage and reported that he was seeing much better since his surgery.
By now I had reached the road which leads up to the new labyrinth being constructed in the woods. I had to walk by the raised garden beds and smiled at the signs on some of them that said, “Community vegetables” and “Community Flowers”. This is a giving community!
Just beyond those beds I came to the new labyrinth. What an exciting yet peaceful place this will be when it is completed. Hugh and I were fortunate to be on the Resident Committee that designed and raised the funds for the Labyrinth and Sculpture garden to become a reality. It really will be special.
“The Park” beckoned and down the path I went. It is magnificent and what joy to see the Park committee sitting under umbrellas in the Park discussing what new plants will come in. Like many activities and spaces, The Park is totally resident driven and financed.
The rain started coming down in earnest, so it was time to head home. It feels so good to be here. Carolina Meadows is a very special place and while, Hugh and I were sad at leaving our wonderful Maine, we feel so lucky to be able to come home. This is where we belong.
As a P.S. My first call was to dining to make sure we could order our dinner this evening. Let’s just say that it has been a long time since we have had a choice of 6 entrees at our dinner table….