edited on 2/28
I worked half a day today then left to trek to the town of Lenox, MA at the far west of the Commonwealth. My friend's Dad passed away and I wanted to pay my respects and be there for my friends during this time. I found a room at a place called the Wagon Wheel Motel. I'm not a motel type of person but it was really the only option for a number of reasons so I made the reservation which would allow me to attend the "wake" and the funeral services tomorrow morning.
When I arrived at the motel, I just resigned myself to it being a room with a bed and a shower and that I will get past it. It was odd though to enter the room from outdoors and to have a key that was, well, a key - as opposed to a card with a magnetic stripe. I swear I just got itchy typing this!
I only had a few minutes to drop stuff off and brush my teeth before heading to the church. I know, typically wakes are held in funeral homes, this one was in the same church that the deceased and his wife were married in in 1951 and 40 years later, my friends John and Jane (the daughter of the deceased) were married there as well. Aside from that, Mr. Farrell was clearly a popular wend well oved and respected man, the place was packed for the duration. the reception line never let up once until the very end.
During the course of the 3+ hours I chatted with a number of folks, admired how John and Jane's teenage son has taken to bow tie's (in honor of his grandfather), and later, other mutual friend from Brooklyn arrived after a long journey that included getting a bit lost on the small country roads in the small country town in the middle of somewhere.
After the viewing hours ended, many of us retreated to the church hall where there was some food and socializing. After eating and chatting, John and Jane mentioned a place called "5 Chairs" and that they were going to stop in for a drink. The place is not only on the way back to the Wagon Wheel but very close, and I hadn't spent time with my friends in a while so I agreed to go as well. A good initial crowd came over, we laughed it up a bit, told silly stories and just as another group came in, I called it a night and came back to the room to tell you all about it.
My friend John tells me that this Wagon Wheel Motel once had a reputation similar to that of the "Golden Gate Inn", a place in Sheepshead Bay, Brooklyn (where we grew up) that had a reputation as one of those places you went for "the humpty hump"; I got itchy again from that - grrrrrr!