Travels With Dad: London, March 1991 (Part II)

March 17, 1991
Dad’s 60th Birthday!

We picked up Aunt Jeanne [Dad’s sister and only sibling] at 12:15 pm and came back [to Wimbledon] for lunch. We went to Richmond Park in the afternoon and saw some of the Queen’s deer. We had tea in a Georgian house in the Park. There were daffodils, hyacinths, pansies and camellias blooming. Jeanne and I talked a great deal about Grammie and Grandpa. She is remarkably perceptive in many ways and I am saddened to think how her life could have been.

[Note: Jeanne was mentally handicapped and lived at home until the deaths of her parents, after which she moved into a home. She died a year before my father.]

We had salmon poached in white wine, butter & fresh herbs, with new potatoes and peas for Dad’s birthday dinner. We had Louis Roederer champagne with dinner, a first for me, and sauternes with the birthday cake. The cake was fruitcake with white icing, reading “Happy Birthday David” in blue icing, with 6 blue candles, white doves, and blue chiffon butterflies with rhinestone wings. Margaret gave Dad a slate blue cashmere pullover [which he wore for the rest of his life] and excellent walking shoes [ditto]. They both looked so lovely that I had to take a picture of them.

I spoke to Bob Scott [an old friend who had moved to London with his wife] and he mentioned how young Dad looked. He may be 60 today, but he looks 10 years younger. As Bob put it, “Sometimes you just have to save your life,” and I think Dad did. Finally, his life is his own. I wish him many, many happy returns from the bottom of my heart.