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TOPIC: The Family Reunion that Happened!

The Family Reunion that Happened! 6 months 3 weeks ago #3654112

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Ginger spoke with Grandpa Jake a bit ago, and he indicates
that 170 relatives will be attending the family reunion!
He also said Grandma Tilly is fussing intently over bed
linens in the guest houses, and does she have enough.

I think that a Reunion Survival Guide should be available
in paperback throughout all rooms of the Kettleton Ranch
Home just in case...

Well anyway Grandma is excited for this reunion, and it
is drawing near with relatives arriving by car, plane, train,
and one by horse who lives just a few miles down the road.
Grandma, I hope, is careful with sipping the brew. Last reunion
she starting reminiscing saying she may have burnt down a
competitors business back in the day!

Grandpa can't drink because of the medicine but I trust he
will keep a close eye on his darling wife of 50 years.

The last family reunion of a few years plus ago, Aunt Lizzy
fell down in the grass of the ranch gardens and couldn't stand
up! She has been feeling dizzy so she said after being in the
sun a bit too long...




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Last edit: by AntiqueLace1.

The Family Reunion that Happened! 6 months 3 weeks ago #3654163

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There are 11 small guest houses on the Kettleson Ranch. Occupancy can accommodate three people each.

Also the Cedar Bed and Breakfast 2 miles South of the Kettleson Ranch has available rooms. Book now!

The Pecan Inn has three rental rooms left. Book now!

The Wickwood Inn is farther out in the countryside, about 10 miles West of the Kettleson Ranch. They currently have a large number of rooms available. Book asap!

Otherwise relatives are on their own to find a place to stay.....

Bring your tent if you prefer, and camp out on a piece of the Kettleson acreage which is
available for your convenience...
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Last edit: by AntiqueLace1.

The Family Reunion that Happened! 6 months 3 weeks ago #3654188

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Polly needed to get sample menus for the reunion party over to Kettlestone Ranch a.s.p. It would be interesting to see Jake and Tilly again. She tried to calculate how old they were. Jake was great, a war hero, Tilly ….well , she was always known for being a bit flaky, even before the ‘accident’ . She liked a drink or two…or three… or four. She was lucky not to have been locked up back then. Round these parts it ain’t what you know, it’s who you know. Still the same today. The wall of silence kicks in. Someone needs to start telling the truth about that family….Brick by brick that wall is gonna come down.
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The Family Reunion that Happened! 6 months 3 weeks ago #3654202

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..Charlie was thinking through who was likely to be at the reunion…..reunion? more like a family bust-up..he thought...
‘Geez’ I hope that moron Rupert and his brain dead wife Norah aren’t going to be there this time….one more of his sarcastic comments about uncle Frank this time and I’ll lamp him one….
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The Family Reunion that Happened! 6 months 3 weeks ago #3654239

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I put my seat back and stretched out my legs. Closing my eyes, I recalled my discussion with Beamer. As expected, my boss was not too thrilled with my request for a week off during the middle of the season. But I pointed out to him that Mikey Davis (our Bench Coach) was highly qualified, and could undoubtedly handle my job as Assistant Manager for the Sacramento River Cats Minor League baseball team during my absence. Besides, I told him, our parent ball club, The San Francisco Giants, were very healthy and were currently sitting in first place with a 5 game lead over the second place team. Consequently, the Giants would most likely not be relying on the River Cats too much during the next week for contributions from any of our players. Plus, the team's schedule for the next week in the Pacific Coast League was fairly light. Just five games against the worst two teams in the league. Beamer caved. I thanked him immensely.

"Sir"? I heard. It was the Flight Attendant bringing me my drink: Jack Daniels and 7up on the rocks. I took a hearty swallow. Ahhhh, as good as the last one. Nothing beats my favorite drink while sitting in first class, cruising at 35,000 feet over America's heartland.

Yeah, I know, I know. It was still just 9:30am California time, but I had been awake since 3am, so it felt like mid-day to me. Plus, with the time zone changes, it was 11:30am in the Midwest. I convinced myself that it was lunchtime.

I had boarded a 6am flight out of San Francisco International Airport, and was on my way to Pittsburgh (PA) International Airport, with a short layover and plane change at Chicago's O'Hare International Airport. From Pittsburgh, I would be taking a short flight to Harrisburg International Airport. The total trip time was expected to be around 7 hours. So I would be landing in Harrisburg about 4pm Eastern Daylight Time.

As I had planned, arriving then would give me plenty of time to pickup my rental car at the airport, check into my room at the Staybridge Suites in Harrisburg, and enjoy a nice dinner at The Millworks, an awesome restaurant / brew pub in downtown Harrisburg.

I would get a great night's sleep tonight, sleep late in the morning, and then drive to Gramps' and Grams' place early tomorrow afternoon. I'm sure my Grandparents, as well as Gin, would be a bit upset that I chose not to stay in my boyhood bedroom in the main Ranch House. But that was something I just was not in the proper frame of mind to handle.
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The Family Reunion that Happened! 6 months 3 weeks ago #3655297

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It was dusk and the first stars were visible as Polly made her way through the cemetery along the mossy path to the grave, inhaling the musty earthy smell of a graveyard in early evening. It was right at the end of the path, a simple stone with a simple message next to the name and dates: Accidentally Killed.

She knelt down and brushed away the leaves that had gathered at the base of the stone with her gloved hands. She removed the dead flowers, changed the water using clean water from the bottle she had brought with her and was about to arrange the pink carnations she had purchased from the florist when she saw it lying there : a single beautiful white rose tied with pink satin ribbon

As far as she knew she was the only person who visited the grave and tended it. She had never seen flowers other than her own there before. Who had placed it there ? She picked it up carefully and examined it as if she were seeking the answer, then put it back in place. It was a fresh perfect bloom.

She finished arranging her carnations and stood back to check the effect, still puzzled by the presence of the rose.
“ Whose been here, Auntie Meg,” she asked, and made her way back along the path , “ who was it put the rose there ?” .
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The Family Reunion that Happened! 6 months 3 weeks ago #3655334

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It was just about a 15 minute drive from the Staybridge Suites in Harrisburg to the Kettleton Ranch in Good Hope. I was cruising along Interstate 81, crossing the bridge over the Susquehanna River in my rented 2021 BMW M3, with the convertible top down. It was a beautiful, sunny mid summer day in the heavily wooded area of Cumberland County. It was not too hot, and the humidity was at a decent level. The wind swirling around me as I drove felt glorious.

I had called ahead before lunchtime, so Gramps and Grams were expecting me. I was told on the phone that I would be one of the first attendees to arrive at the Ranch. Even though the Opening Ceremonies for the Family Reunion were scheduled to begin at Noon tomorrow, strangely less than a dozen invitees had arrived so far. Ginger was not there yet, but she had called, I was told, and would be arriving early tomorrow morning. As for the rest of the family members and guests, it was a mystery. Well crap, I thought. With that bunch of people this kind of situation was par for the course.

I exited West from Interstate 81. Then I took the Good Hope Road offramp and headed South towards the heart of Town on Good Hope Road. Man, the memories were running through my head: many very good, and some quite awful.

I passed through "Downtown" Good Hope in the blink of an eye, and continued South on Good Hope Road, crossing Creekview Road and running along the Conodoquinet Creek for a couple of miles. Slowing down, I turned East off of Good Hope Road and onto a long paved driveway that wound its way back North till it flowed into a beautifully landscaped parking area, big enough for several dozen vehicles.

As I exited the BMW and slammed the front door shut, the side entrance to the main Ranch House opened, and Gramps came rambling towards me, as well as he was able. He was calling, "Nate! Nate! Welcome!" I had told Gramps a million times I wanted to be called Nathan. NOT by his childhood nickname for me, "Nate". But, what the hell? Why make waves right away?

Gramps reached me and we hugged heartily. He even kissed me on the forehead. "Dear God Almighty," he exclaimed. "It's so good to see you again. It's been such a long time." I told him the same back, and we chatted for a few minutes. Then he said, "Well Son, let's go on inside. Grams had been practically jumping our her panties with excitement, waiting for you to get here." So we headed towards the Ranch House.
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The Family Reunion that Happened! 6 months 3 weeks ago #3655357

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Ginger is held over at the Chicago airport! Due to technical issues it is told
us passengers, mechanics are addressing the problems. "Oh good grief, says Ginger!" She finds a comfy place in the crowded airport restaurant and simmers.

Making several calls meanwhile to Grams and Gramps, and my brother Nathaniel! I am so anxious to see everyone, and can hardly get my wits about me! Flights make Gin nervous and coupled with her excitement of the reunion, she toasts herself with a Rum and coke (spiced rum).

My brother Nathaniel, having a younger brother had been a good thing for these two over their years as siblings. A match made in heaven with lots of comradery! Hope your flight was amazing, now rest up so we can visit soon!

The small rural town of Good Hope (10 miles due West of Harrisburg PA, just across the Susque River, with Conodoquinet Creek winding through it) was always an area Grams and Gramps found such allure and comfort in, so they moved and settled there over 40 years ago....built and structured the Kettleton Ranch bit by bit, remodeling and expanding, such a lovely home, a forever home...

Cousin John Banner, well oh gosh, I am stunned he has decided to join the reunion and I will want to spend a few hours catching up, that is for sure! Black sheep of the family, nah it was not his fault what happened those years ago.

Charlie Spencer, so glad you can make it! We must meet up and toast to our past situations of those years ago, after all it worked out better in the long run, did it not? We have most always shared some good laughs, well most are laughable, except those two in 2010! You know how much I enjoy schmoozing away the evening with good chat between us!

Charlie was hoping more women would show at this family reunion, some pent up frustrations and a bit of anger has lingered between several female cousins, this would either be resolved or flare up again, time will tell....

Poly Carpenter, known for her quality catering company will have her hands full with this family bunch, but her reputation is top notch, she and Ginger will have to have a long chat at the reunion! Polly knew the family pretty well, Jack and Tilly were quite fond of her. Curious who put the rose there, yes there, I heard about this only yesterday!

Ginger is jet lagged already, too much activity the past few days, and anticipations of so much, all these relatives together, and now talk of a water balloon competition, what next, thinks Ginger! Just hope this aircraft gets me to
my destination safe and sound.
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Last edit: by AntiqueLace1.

The Family Reunion that Happened! 6 months 2 weeks ago #3657869

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Polly was confident her food ideas for the gathering would please Jake and Tilly.
It was to be an informal buffet style meal which would enable guests to circulate, talk and catch up on the years that had gone by.
She was planning to serve :

Sticky baked chicken wings
Devilled eggs with country ham
Hogs in blankets
Platters of deli meats and cheese
Caesar salad, green salad , Russian salad, endive spears
Various breads
Apple pies and pecan pies with cream for dessert, plus ice cream
Followed by coffee or tea with Oreos

She gathered up her menus and price list, put them into her briefcase, picked up bag, then stopping briefly to check her appearance in the hall mirror, she picked up her car keys and headed out of the door.
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The Family Reunion that Happened! 6 months 1 week ago #3658709

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“Come in Polly, dear,” Tilly exclaimed as she looked Polly up and down.”My you do look well!”
She took Polly down the hall and into the state of the art kitchen at the back of the house. Jake was nowhere to be seen.
“Take a seat, dear, Coffee ?”
Polly nodded and as if by.magic a young Mexican girl appeared and began preparing it.

Polly sat down and got out the menus from her briefcase. Juanita brought over the coffee and a plate of Oreos then discreetly left the kitchen.

“I thought we would offer a buffet of traditional American fayre. That way your guests can circulate and generally catch up with each other on all the past years. Informal, but high end . How does that sound ?
Tilly looked at the menus and ‘oohed and aahed’ over the food suggestions.
“Wonderful, dear, just wonderful,” she said approvingly.

The coffee was good. Just how Polly liked it, hot and strong. She nibbled at a cookie
They sipped in silence for a while until Tilly asked, “ So my dear, how is business?”
“Good, very brisk at the moment, actually.”
“You’ve done so well dear , given your circumstances. Your Aunt Meg would have been so proud of you.”
Polly swallowed back the lump in her throat.
“ I like to think she’s looking down in me, I sometimes feel her presence, urging me on when I get bogged down with things.”
There was a sadness in Tilly’s eyes. For a moment Polly wondered if she had misjudged Tilly all of these years.
She finished her coffee in silence. Tilly left hers unfinished.
“Can I take it you approve of the food choices and the costings? “ she asked.
“ Oh yes, I think we can go with that.” Tilly stood up signalling the meeting was at an end.
Polly gathered her things together , looked at her watch and saw that it was 11.30 . They headed out if the kitchen down the hall to the big oak door.
“ I’ve left you a menu and a price list for Jake to see. If you have any queries or want to change anything give me a call.”

Tilly opened the door to let her out.
“Ginger will be so excited to see you again,” then she leaned forward and kissed Polly lightly on both cheeks.

It was then that Polly caught the smell on Tilly’s breath. The unmistakable whiff of Bourbon and it wasn’t yet lunchtime.
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What will survive of us is love.
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