Life is strange, isn’t it?
There my husband and I were, a year ago, in a pub in Newcastle, Ontario.
We were meeting with our younger daughter’s future in-laws to plan the wedding.
We were all nervous. The kids were totally in love and getting married. But what if their parents disagreed — about everything?
Then my husband started telling jokes and everyone dissolved into laughter. Loud, boisterous laughter. It broke the ice and everything went well.
There was a couple at the next table. Daughter and I went over to apologize for our loudness.
The couple introduced themselves. The husband also gave me a book and introduced himself as the book’s author.
My daughter said: “That’s funny. My mom’s an author too!”
We all ended up talking. About books. And weddings. And marriages.
Meanwhile, my blog series on Ebor House was a big hit at last year’s Doors Open Clarington tour. The printed version was a fundraiser for Doors Open.
This year, I told co-chairs Marilyn Morawetz and Bernice Norton that I’d volunteer again for Doors Open Clarington: I’d write about another house.
I had no idea it would be the home of someone I’d already met.
Then life went nuts. Over 3 months, Marilyn gently nudged me — repeatedly.
Finally, Hamlin decided to take a break from his busy schedule to help me out: he kindly agreed to drive us there and take the photos.
When we arrived at The Grange, hosts and visitors warmly embraced and laughed together at the coincidence.
Nick and Wendy Boothman were the couple we met in the Newcastle pub!
It was a lovely visit.
Wendy drove us to see Screaming Hill.
Then Nick took Hamlin to photograph the barn and the grounds, while Wendy and I stayed in the house and talked.
It reminds me that one must leave room for the unexpected. And that the thing called serendipity is sometimes, strangely, within our gift.
Thanks to Hamlin Grange, Nick and Wendy Boothman, and Marilyn, Bernice and the Doors Open Clarington team.