I met Don when I was 10 years old. He was a graduate of Duke University and was living in Greenwich Village, New York City in an apartment building where my beloved sister also lived. He was a chemical engineer working in the city. My sister was a school teacher also working in the city. They got married when I was 12 years old and they lived happily ever after. Well almost.
When I was 15 my father died and Don was my surrogate father. He even walked me down the aisle when I got married. Don and Ann, my sister, took my husband, our children and myself under their wings. They and their three children have always been so kind to me.
Don and Ann’s young married life was lived on Long Island. Don was a very successful perfumer and created new fragrances for clients, one of which was for 7Flags. He was very proud of my sister when she was crowned Mrs. Long Island one year. He traveled into New York City every day. They moved from Long Island to Connecticut which was called the bedroom state for New York City workers.
Their next move while he was still working in NYC was to Bucks County, Pennsylvania to a farm. By that time Don and Ann had three teenage children.
It was a gentleman’s farm although they grew vegetables once, raised sheep once, raised pigs once, and had horses once. It was not destined to be a working farm. Don said he always wanted to be a farmer.
It was an estate that boasted an Olympic-size pool, lakes used for fishing, blinds for duck hunting, a grand barn, spacious grounds for walking, and a gracious “farm” house. The house was huge and beautiful.
I will never forget the fabulous fortieth birthday party my sister threw for Don in that house in Bucks County. Although he still worked in NYC, by the time he was forty he was the president of a French perfume company that had an office there. The “surprise” birthday party was impressive. Don found out about the surprise when a friend of his called and told him they were sorry they could not make his party!
Don and Ann had an apartment in New York as well as the farm. I have some wonderful memories of visiting them there and the experiences they shared with me including going out on the town with them!