Leaving Jacques

A Trip to Rhode Island

As the week began, our illustrious Peter loaded us into his jeep and drove us to Providence, Rhode Island. The baby got carsick and vomited all over the back of his car.

Sorry Peter.

We went into the Providence Performing Arts Center to see the Les Mis load-in. What a beautiful space. It was built in 1928 and was so over the top, it reminded us of the Palais Garnier.

G and I took a side trip to Newport to check out some Gilded Age mansions.

The Breakers—>photo: Scott Dunn

I LOVE the town of Newport. It’s a real New England summer town with little shops, churches and bed and breakfasts. We missed the Newport Cliff Walk since it isn’t stroller friendly…it’s a cliff walk after all. But you also can’t bring strollers into the mansions either, which is fine, but imagine…as you stand in the foyer of The Breakers, the Vanderbilt family mansion, and right in front of you is a set of fabulous furniture from the 1800s with signs all over it that say…


The only thing separating you and your 18 month old’s sticky hands from a potential disaster, is a thin, velvet, rope about the thickness of a garden hose.


So I held him through the whole tour. This hindered my ability to listen to the audio guide because it looked like a remote control (the baby’s favorite thing) WITH headphones attached. He must have been in heaven.

When we returned to NYC, I stopped by our (hopefully) new apartment on the Upper West Side for a tour.  It will take longer than they thought to have it ready, so we have to leave Jacques’ for a friend’s apartment on 110th & Broadway.  We’re getting closer! Soon we will have lopped off 38 blocks of our journey downtown.

The Kindness of Strangers

To take my mind off of all that needs to be done in the next few stressful days ahead, I took the baby to Central Park because I think it’s fall. I know we had a nor’easter the other day and today it’s 70, but I thought there might be some changing leaves to see…and what does the baby love more than a remote control? A fountain. So I took him to the mother of all fountains, The Bethesda.

Behind the Bethesda is The Central Park Boathouse, a very lovely restaurant where you can rent row boats and take them onto the pond for a romantic ride. It was a gorgeous day and as the sun set about 15 photographers tried to catch the beautiful light on the boathouse.  They  stood at the section of the pond that has no wall, the edge is actually stairs that descend into the water so ducks and geese can waddle in and out. Naturally G spotted this chink in the armor and man, did he beeline it over there. I pushed the stroller away and ran as fast as I could to catch him while I yelled out…’i’m-so-sorry-i’m-ruining-all-of-your-photos!!!!’

A woman came up to me a little bit later and said…

‘I hope you don’t mind, you and your son were in my photos and they’re just so cute…I’d love for you to have them. Can I email them to you?’

photo: Alison Burke
photo: Alison Burke

Before We Say Goodbye

I will miss the tall ceilings of d’Amboise Manor, I will miss my weekly shopping trips to the 125th street Fairway. I will also miss what we can only assume is Jacques’ furniture. Upon close inspection, we gathered up a montage of what we’ll miss the most.

The Kennedy Center Awards
The parfait glasses which were the only drinking glasses
The cloisonne rabbit family on the dining room table
The magical, expandable, antennae spoon—>the baby’s favorite

Finally, the Electrolux 2001—it’s a vacuum. G likes to ride on it.

Jacques also gave us a keepsake, a signed copy of his autobiography.  He went into his room and brought out a copy for us.  When he went to sign it, he realized it had already been signed to someone else.  No matter!  Jacques improvised…see the final result below…

I would also like to note I cannot figure out the settings on Michael’s camera.  I think something is up with the ISO which is why I have all these brightly lit photos.  I’d like to say it’s an artistic decision, since I honestly think this is how the whole world is lit to Jacques.


  • God bless I love your writing. You are a much better Nomad than me. I think you rock. Here’s to your new place being finished sooner than later…
    I love you.
    Your writing makes me pine for NY.

    • Right back at you kid. Thank you for being a cheerleader for me. You have NO idea how much it helps. Especially your response to my crying fit down on Jane street. X

  • Another fun ride on Betsy & Grady’s merry-go-round. (no one but you and I will know who you are).
    You are going to have to paper a wall in your new place (if you ever get it) with all those great autographs you are collecting/
    I was worried when cutie pie was standing so close to the edge of the water but I know you can move fast so I let it go.
    You are doing a good job with your camera and I look forward to the next chapter of this fairytale life you are leading.I know there are stressful moments (or days)but you are definitely truly blessed to live this exciting adventure you are on.
    Love and Hugs GG

    • GG! It looks like he’s so close to the edge doesn’t it? But what you can’t see is there are steps there…so it’s not nearly as precarious as it looks. And yes…things are a little stressful over here, but writing it down reminds me that it’s also magnificent. Love you…

  • Betsy!

    I am really enjoying your blogs as the Homeless O’s. Hope you have a permanent place to live soon! Uncle Jack is here to visit for a few days. We have some business to attend to, too. Winter is definitely on it’s way. There is snow on the deck and Gpa is starting to think snowmobiling! Hope he gets to enjoy it another year anyway. He’s definitely slowing down.

    Give our congratulations to Michael. Sounds like he is doing a wonderful job. Love to you all. Ggma

  • I’m confused as usual,Is this the latest one? I thought we saw this one. but it’s always fun to see them over. I’m praying really hard that you will actually get into a permanent home soon. Hope you can keep your cool in your tiny little temp apt. You are doing great and as long as we can see some humor in your blog I know you are ok? Luv Ya, GG

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