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A Sense of Dirction

Life on the wild side

June Donohue
Posted 6/18/21

I finally got to my house in Callicoon Center. Every morning I eat breakfast on my deck and thought about all the things that needed to be done. I didn’t do many of them but remained outside …

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A Sense of Dirction

Life on the wild side

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I finally got to my house in Callicoon Center. Every morning I eat breakfast on my deck and thought about all the things that needed to be done. I didn’t do many of them but remained outside most of the day, enjoying seeing and listening to the birds and some of the wild life.

Since my eyesight isn’t as good as it once was, I called my son to come outside to see if what looked like a bear in my blackberry patch really was a bear. Before he could verify it he rushed to warn my neighbor who was working in her garden nearby.

Much to my disappointment it was not a bear but just a huge flower (the face) plus some brush in the back which seemed to be the head and ears. I’ve just missed seeing a bear in the area a few times.

Once near Weissman’s farm I was returning in my car from a Shandelee concert. Friends that were also returning from the concert just a few minutes after me said, “Did you see that bear?” It had crossed the road right in front of them. Another time people in town saw a bear crossing Main street, coming from the direction of my property. They do like blackberries.

Once as I was walking back on the road a woman stopped her car to warn me that she had just seen a bear. Luckily I missed seeing that one.

My dad lived in Callicoon Center all of his life but had never seen a bear, and I had only witnessed one in my imagination.

The next day I saw what looked like a baby bird or small animal on my lawn right below the deck. This time I was determined not to be fooled. It was probably just a clump of dirt. A few minutes later I saw a ground hog going under some of my bushes AND the clump of dirt was gone so it must have been a baby woodchuck waiting for its mother to return for him.

One thing I wanted to do on this visit was go to, what once was Hill’s Villa, for a meal. The place was closed for awhile due to the pandemic. But now they were once again in business, which I learned from Claire Stabbert’s column in the Democrat. I read that the chef had once worked at the North Branch Inn so I knew it was bound to be good.

The place is closed on Tuesdays and Wednesdays but open on all other days for breakfast and lunch at the Rise and Shine Coffee shop from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. and for dinner at the Conover Club where drinks are also served, from 5 p.m. to 10 p.m.

My son and I went there on Saturday night for dinner and invited Michael Scullion and his girlfriend, Kelly to join us. Reservations are recommended on weekends’ and I could see why because there were many there to enjoy.

We met other neighbors of ours, Steven Margolin and Rick Dinihavian who had just finished their dinner. My son had pork chops with butternut squash, and I had the New England shrimp roll.

I had a choice of french fries or salad. I chose the salad. Both meals were very good.

We definitely will be going back many times. At the Barn, which is on the premises, The Delaware Valley Opera will be appearing on July 10 - 8 p.m., July 11 - 2 p.m., July 24 - 8 p.m., July 25 - 2 p.m., Aug 14 - 8 p.m., Aug. 15 - 2 p.m. On Sept. 4 and 5 there will be a Maker’s Market featuring local artisans.

Special events can be booked there. Their website is callicoonhills.com.

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