This past Sunday we were invited to a FOURTH OF JULY PARTY ON THE FIRST at my bosses home. She has a lovely farm where she boards several (count that 17) horses. Every year she hosts a party for the fourth of july. This year she chose to host it on July 1st- being on the weekend.
She sets up croquet and bocce ball for all to enjoy while having cocktails.
I had the pleasure of playing with Julian Stein. A more charming man I have never met. I actually met him one other time at a dinner party at my boss's home.
Julian is 80 years old and the cousin of Gertrude Stein, American poet and writer.
At the dinner party he regaled us all with stories of his dear older cousin. Recalling times when she and Alice B. Toklas (Gertrude's lover) would pop in and turn their household upside down. For those of you who don't know- Alice was a world-class cook AND, most importantly, known for including a cannibas brownie recipe in her cookbook.
Gertrude and Alice at St. Marks in Venice
Here, I have chosen to include her brownie recipe, should you be inclined to try them
"Take 1 teaspoon black peppercorns, 1 whole nutmeg, 4 average sticks of cinnamon, 1 teaspoon coriander. These should all be pulverized in a mortar. About a handful each of stone dates, dried figs, shelled almonds and peanuts: chop these and mix them together. A bunch of canibus sativa can be pulverized. This along with the spices should be dusted over the mixed fruit and nuts, kneaded together. About a cup of sugar dissolved in a big pat of butter. Rolled into a cake and cut into pieces or made into balls about the size of a walnut, it should be eaten with care. Two pieces are quite sufficient. Obtaining the canibus may present certain difficulties.... It should be picked and dried as soon as it has gone to seed and while the plant is still green."
At the time of her parent's death Gertrude, along with two of her siblings, lived with her aunt and uncle in Baltimore. She then made her way to Paris, where she kept company with the likes of Pablo Picasso, Ernest Hemingway, Henri Matisse and Ezra Pound.... Oh, to be living in Paris in the 20's...sigh!
Gertrude Stein by Pablo Picasso
Julian is dating a beautiful and charming woman 20-some years his junior. Some have called her a gold-digger-(He does take her on extended vacations to Mexico, Paris, Spain and even Maine). I, too, would date this man! He has more vibrancy and joie de vivre than most men I have ever met. So, he's 80- who cares!
And besides- he let me win at Bocce.
We are always the same age inside.