Had a fine time at the Flag Hill Winery in Lee, NH, telling stories to Rotarians. I was a little nervous beforehand — under a big tent, round tables, mic far from the crowd on a short cord. Not ideal. Ideal is indoors (without outdoor sounds and fluctuations in weather — at one point I thought I heard the mooing of cows), everybody close together, and a lapel mic so I can wander the room. Gary gave me this advice: “It’s like winter in Maine. It might not be the most fun you ever had, but you’ll probably survive it.”

And I did.

And so did the Rotarians.

In Hollis Bruce Hardy told this story of family dynamics. He said his dad’s best friend took piano lessons from his mom in the 60s. The spinet on which she taught was in the bedroom — only place in the house it would fit. Hence that’s where the lessons took place. At a dinner one evening Bruce overhead this comment from Dad: “Stub, you been taking a lot of piano lessons from my wife in my bedroom. You better goddam well know how to play.”

In Seabrook Cubby went to Bruce, Supervisor of the Checklist, and demanded a change. He was listed as a Republican in error. He was, in fact, an Independent. Bruce made the change. Come primary day, Cubby showed up at the polls: And asked for the Republican ballot.

Julia was also upset at the R after her name. She said, “I want that taken off.” Bruce complied. Now she would be listed as an Independent. “Good,” she said, “I’m never going to vote again.”

Bruce said: “Suit yourself.”

And finally, a lesson in perspective.

Claire called about an apartment to rent on Main Street. The landlord told her it was about 1/2 block from the five and dime. “On the right or the left?” she asked.

He said: “Depends what direction you’re coming from.”

Yup, everything in life depends on what direction you’re coming from.

Happy spring!