We arrived at the main entrance of St. Andrews Village at 12:03 p.m. to pick up John Druce. We found him standing outside at the curb chatting with an attractive young lady, knowing that he had probably been there since 11:45 a.m. It’s a Marine thing.
My father, also a Marine, was of similar disposition — being late for anything meant time in the brig.
John wanted hot dogs for lunch, with lots of onions. We headed for Robinson's Wharf, known for much more than hot dogs. As we entered said establishment, Hugh Thompson greeted us and requested our IDs. I told him that mine had expired and John should be exempt. Hugh suggested a window seat.
We ordered as customers stopped by our booth to say hi. Heidi Davis from Grover's said hello. Then Pam Cunningham from East Boothbay caused John to blush with a flattering comment. The hot dogs arrived. John said, “I don't like red hot dogs.” And just then Keith from the kitchen checked in. He and John were buddies from Brown's Wharf back in the Ken Brown days. John requested ketchup.
Before he could finish his first bite Jeff Teel, fresh from a Florida vacation, popped through the door and headed our way. Jeff's sister, Mary Lou, worked for John and his wife Charlotte at Spruce Point Inn back in the ’70s during summer college break.
We had a short visit just in time to greet Liz and her girls from East Boothbay General Store. Liz was quite tan, also recently returned from Florida.
Lunch proceeded as we recalled a visit with Dominic Garvey regarding early years in Philadelphia. John and Dominic attended rival high schools and John anxiously recalled the Thanksgiving Day championship played at Franklin Field. “60,000 people attended the 1946 Thanksgiving Day game — a high school football game! They charged $4.50 to get in.”
He continued to tell us that Dominic went to a Catholic high school and some fans would arrive early carrying hams. When John's school fans (significantly Jewish) arrived at the stadium, they pushed through the early arrivals shouting, “clear the way “Harps.” Let the games begin!
John finished his red hot dogs while discussing military experiences aboard the Victory ship, Luxembourg, and its cargo delivery to Guadalcanal during World War II.
Time for a nap.