19 May 2015

The Day I Drank the Gin

In a nearby town, just a spit from the ocean, there is an elegant restaurant called "Butlers at the Mansion".  The restaurant is in what was c 1914 a stately home, in it's time visited by the likes of Bing Crosby, John Wayne and the King of Siam. We go there for our anniversary dinners.

The name reminds me of the days when my grandparents, Herbie and Sadie Mavor, went to Old Orchard Beach, Maine for their summer holidays.  Grampa would drive and they always took Granny's sister Stella with them. They would always get their same rooms at the "Butler House", a once beautiful old rooming house just up from the ocean and boardwalk. Grampa liked to do his own cooking, so they got a suite of rooms with a kitchen and a bedroom.


When I was 9 years old they took me with them.  I had a wonderful time being spoiled by my grandparents and great aunt.  Another girl my age was staying there with her grandparents too (in-laws of my grandmother's other sister Bessie), and we had fun playing in the ocean, eating hot caramel popcorn, and trying our hand at skee ball on the boardwalk. I collected all my tickets so I could get good prizes before leaving for home.

At the Butler House, summer 1959


Besides doing his own cooking, Grampa also liked to bring his own drinking water from home whenever he went anywhere. "Verdun has the best water" he would tell you. He would keep some in a bottle in the fridge. He also liked his gin.  Knowing nothing about booze I mistook the gin for water and poured myself a glass.  I was so thirsty I gulped down half of it before I realized this wasn't water!  I was at the sink spitting for a good half hour, then had some ginger ale and crackers to try and take the yucky taste away.  
I never could drink gin, or stand the smell!

After lunch Granny would read and have a nap, Aunt Stella would visit with friends, and Grampa would take me to the boardwalk to go on the rides, or play skee ball.  Then later all four of us would go for a swim in the ocean. 

It was a special time with my grandparents that I would always treasure.

Herbert James Mavor b1893
married 1919 to
Sarah Myrtle (Sadie) King, b1894
my enate grandparents.

Stella Pearl King b1900 (sister of Sadie)

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