There are two bits of news that I am happy to share.
The first may not seem like a great announcement, but it has taken years for me to be able to make it. And it is that the mountain laurel is blooming. These are plants that I brought with me when I moved here from Connecticut eleven years ago. It grew wild on the many acres around my house at Partridge Hollow. It was thick under the oak trees and every spring it would bloom its white or pink blossoms, turning the woods into a spectacular garden. Mountain laurel is very hard to transplant and some of the new little plants met with unfortunate accidents. I could not find a commercial source so it all had to come from the wild. It took several trips from Connecticut, many replantings, and lots of nurturing to get several plants to survive. I planted them all on the lawn in front of the Governor’s House near Main Street where they would be seen from the village. I thought of the children’s book by Barbara Cooney, Miss Rumphius, and secretly hoped the children of the village would remember the lady who planted the mountain laurel like the lady who planted the lupine in the book. I hope the plants will grow and bloom and spread to be my permanent addition to the charming village of Hyde Park. Lot’s of people have told me, are still telling me, that I have given something to the town by saving the old Page Mansion and when I hear that, I think that they haven’t even seen how spectacular the mountain laurel should be in years to come.
The second announcement is that TripAdvisor has awarded The Governor’s House in Hyde Park the TripAdvisor 2013 Certificate of Excellence. It’s great to hear that they think I’m doing something right. But it’s even better to know that it is generated by what my guests have to say since the part I like best about being an innkeeper is taking care of all the details and extras that make a beautiful inn and make the guests feel welcome and pampered. Thanks to TripAdvisor for noticing and thanks to my guests for appreciating my efforts.