Author: Nora H. Caplan

Riding the Rails Home for the Holidays

I’m sorry to say that my experience on Amtrak just isn’t the same as the B&O and the Frisco trains were when I used to take them in the late l940s and early ‘50s. Part of my pleasure of being…

Wings of Wonder

Just beyond my patio garden there is an abelia bush that is bursting with pale pink blossoms. This year it is especially eye-catching because of a host of yellow and black swallowtail butterflies that flutter, dip for a moment into…

Being Dr. Stonestreet

In appearance, Clarence Hickey in no way resembles the historic personage he reenacts — the legendary 19th century physician Dr. Edward E. Stonestreet of Rockville, Md. The famous doctor had mutton chop whiskers, a receding hairline and a serious gaze.…

The Fourth of July at Half-A-Hill

It was July 4, 1935, in southwestern Missouri. The restaurant/nightclub my parents owned, called Half-A-Hill, was five miles south of Springfield, “the heart of the Ozarks.” Motorists heading toward Branson, Mo., (in those days, it was a tiny center for…

Small Blessings

I became intrigued the moment I heard about small dresses made from pillowcases, sent as gifts for little girls in Third World countries. I obtained a few color photos of the dresses from Jessica Disney, a volunteer for this church-sponsored…

Honors Long Overdue

I’ve only met a few “living legends” during my life. William T. Fauntroy Jr., one of the legendary Tuskegee Airmen and a Congressional Gold Medal of Honor recipient, is one of them. Consequently, I couldn’t miss the opportunity to hear…

Growing up Victorian

Each April I’m reminded of three events: Abraham Lincoln’s assassination and two family birthdays — my second grandson’s and my mother’s. Though I think of Walt Whitman’s “When lilacs last in the dooryard bloomed …” and the sorrow that poem…

Off-Camera ‘Lincoln’

Until mid-November, I was afraid to see the film “Lincoln.” Even though I’d heard advance favorable reviews, I reserved judgment until I arrived at the annual Lincoln Forum symposium in Gettysburg, Pa. I’d missed the private viewing of the film…

A Good Day

My best friend B. is 96 years old, very deaf and almost blind. She lives with her daughter in Germantown. Each Friday I visit her, taking winding, rural Brink Road from Laytonsville almost all the way to Germantown. B. and…

Ghosts of Christmases Past

There are actually some advantages of getting older. I can finally not lay a burden on myself about Christmas. I can do as much or as little now as I feel like doing. The most important thing to me is…