Aside from the fact that the old line about the best laid plans of mice and men had a bit of an impact on the lunch today with some friends from my high school class plus, the sister of one of those friends too, the lunch gathering was still really great!
Our classmate -Cheryl -who was supposed to be flying up yesterday from Florida to Harrisburg with her Mom -and then, was supposed to drive up from Harrisburg to her Mom's house in Karthaus -ended up with their flight being totally canceled and when she rescheduled it, the only other available flight she could get won't be until next Tuesday, March 31st.
But we still had a great get-together!
I thought I'd share the pictures I took, along with a couple pictures we conned on friend's husband into take of six of us together.
Here's the sisters -Anne Lucas Ryba (from North Olmsted, Ohio) and her sister (and my classmate) Bernie Lucas Kapura, from Carlisle, PA. Anne graduated from our high school in 1958 and Bernie and the others in the group and I graduated in 1962. Anne and I "met" online about 10 years ago while we were both doing family tree research at the time and have become very good, close friends since then. Anne, like me, is also a cancer survivor too. She was diagnosed about a year after I was and had a really rough time dealing with some of the treatments but now, finaly, she's back to her old self once again!
Here's Bernie again along with classmates Linda Wertz Payne and Carol Folmar Nadzom. Linda and Carol both usually attend the regular monthly lunch we "girls" have on the last Thursday of the month. Linda is a retired librarian, Bernie is a retired teacher and Carol is retired from Penn State University where she worked for many years as an administrative assistant. Bernie has two children a son and a daughter as well as two beautiful little granddaughters. Linda is a widow and Carol and her husband, Ed (who grew up two doors up the street from me) have a son and a daughter and three grandchildren with a fourth grandchild due, I believe, in May. (When I went to college in the early 90s, Carol and Ed's daughter was in a couple of the same classes as I had because we both were in the Rehabilitation Education program of the College of Education at the university.
At the other end of the table from where I was seated there was Carol Folmar Nadzom, Helen Walker Kovalick and Kathryn Nelson Eyerly. Helen was in our class until our Junior year, when she quit school and got married. And, would you believe that seeing her today was the first time I have seen her in -get this -48 years!!! Isn't that incredible and to think she just lives a hop, skip and a jump away from me too. Her daughter-in-law used to come to the house and work with Maya the first year that Maya was receiving home therapy. Brenda (Helen's daughter-in-law) worked in a program through the agency that the kids receive their therapys services through in which she came here on Tuesday morning and brought with her either a new book or a toy of some sort, which was given to Maya. At that time, Brenda would show Maya what was involved with the toy, or she would go over the book with her then and she would come back two days later to review with Maya and with Mandy and I how well Maya had responded to the toy or the book. We used to refer to Brenda as "Maya's Toy Lady." Somehow or other, during one of her visits, it came out that Helen is Brenda's mother-in-law and as much as I was surprised to meet her and learn about Helen today, Brenda was equally surprised to meet someone who had gone to school with her husband's mother too!
Kate is the lady who lives about two doors down the street from me and who I have mentioned on several other posts here too that she and her older sister, Shirley (both who are also lovers of the embroidery craft) are my oldest friends, pretty much in the whole wide world, ya know! Kate and I have been friends since we were about two or three years old! Imagine that -being friends with someone that many years, huh?
Here's the last picture of the group sitting around the table. On this photo, there's Helen and Kate (again) and beside Kate is Rosalind Little Wick. Rose's family moved into the house between my home and Kate's family home the summer of 1951, so Rose and I have been friends for a long, long time too -growing up next door to each other too.
Can't you just tell by looking at Rose today that she was the captain of the cheerleaders our senior year and you just know too, don't you, that on St. Patrick's Day of our senior year in high school, she married Durvin Wick, the Captain of the Football team too?
Linda, the LIbrarian, has two brothers and two sisters. Her oldest brother taught Pennsylvania history and Ancient History when my classmates and I were freshmen and sophomores in high school. Linda's older sister taught school too -elementary education -and I know she had my son in some of her classes and might even have had Mandy as a student too. Linda's mother and my mother graduated from high school together too -back in 1927 -from the same school building that Linda and I -and the rest of these ladies -all attended!
Kate, Rose, Bernie and I have known each other since first grade. Carol and Linda, we all met as classmates in 7th grade (although Kate and I had met Linda a couple years before that because we all attended Bible School together for two weeks in the early part of the summer. Helen didn't join us until our Sophomore year as prior to that for a few years, the kids from Karthaus and Pottersdale area, were all bussed to the Clearfield High School.
I think, if I am not mistaken that Helen has two sons and three grandchildren. I know Kate has three daughters -her oldest being a month to the day older that my older daughter. Kate also has four grandchildren -two granddaughters and two grandsons. Rose and Durv had five children and now have I think 12 grandchildren -or maybe it is 14 or 15. I can't remember now how many children each of her children have right now! But she looks fantastic and I have teased her for years that NO ONE should have five children and still look as great as she does!
Rose and I share some relatives too. Her niece was married to my ex-husband's brother so my nephew and two nieces are also her great-nieces and great-nephew too! Ah, don't you love the "small world" flavor that comes from growing up in a very small town?
Linda and Helen had to leave a little earlier than the rest of us so they weren't available for the group picture that we got Bernie's husband, Ed, to take of the six of us out in the lobby of the Philips Hotel 1921 Restaurant. But here's one of the pictures that Ed took of us with my camera.
Here's the six of us -from left to right -Rose, me, Carol, Bernie, Kate and Anne.
Being together with this many of my former classmates and friend, Anne, was just a wonderful time today. The talk around the table often involved gentle teasing between each of us and a lot of wise-cracks from the sisters, Anne and Bernie, directed at each other. What great fun this was!
I am the only one of the entire group who was an "only" child. Bernie and Anne are from a family of twelve children, Rose was one of thirteen. I can't remember now how many siblings Carol has but I think she is either the youngest of five or six in her family -something along those lines. Helen has one sister -Eleanor and Kate had two sisters and two brothers. (Her one brother died in 1976 -a month to the day before my youngest -Mandy -was born.
About nine years ago, Anne wrote a book that was intended to be a family history type thing when she had it published but because a few others -like myself -found out about the book and said we'd be interested in purchasing a copy, not only did she sell all the books published then but she has had the book reprinted now for the fourth time! It's about how her grandparents met in Slovakia and their journey to this country, how they ended up settling here in this little village and then, about her life growing up here in the 40s and 50s. If anyone reading this post thinks they would be interested in a copy of this book, drop me an e-mail and I will send you the information of how to contact Anne and order your own copy of this book. It's really quite an interesting read!
Also, if anyone is coming to this part of the country and would like to dine at a place that has very good food, great service too and in a restaurant that has a lot of history within the building as it used to be THE Hotel in Philipsburg -the Hotel Philips -which when we were kids and for many years before that -was quite the spiffy place! The people who have the Hotel and who have remodeled and refurbished this dining room, as well as the hotel's old ballroom too, have done a fantastic job of making the place very inviting. They're still working on remodeling and refurbishing the hotel and plan to have it functioning once again sometime in the near future.
And that's the story of our lunch today at the Hotel Philips 1921 Restaurant. Here's the website too for the hotel -complete with their menu, information about the old hotel, the restaurant, ballroom -the whole nine yards.
Check it out and if you're in the area, stop and try the food. You won't regret it!
Maybe next Wednesday -when several of us will have a chance to lunch together again -I will get a few more pictures of some of my classmates to share with you then. I hope so anyway.