Anyway, Milford. I just love Old Milford. I’m really glad I was “forced” to go back to find John Gaud’s stone. The lighting was different enough at 2:00 vs. Sunday’s 5:00 that I got much better pictures of some of the stones but was able to totally skip areas that were inferiorly lit. There are too many stones there to photograph them all, which is kind of great because it forces me to just sort of wander and notice cool details and photograph what catches my fancy.
There are so so so so sooooo many cool John Gaud stones. So many. I’m not usually into skull stones (vs. winged faces) but I adore John Gaud for some reason. I think it’s mostly because of the weird colorful chlorite schist he used, but, as a consequence, I pick up on all sorts of fantastic things about them.
I found some thin broken fragments of chlorite schist collected up under a tree (probably so the lawnmower wouldn’t hit them), so I purloined a few. They don’t have carving on them (except for a tiny bit of border on one piece), and it’s not like they can be put back together to repair the stone they came from. But they are really cool to look at, all orange and silver and gray and layered.
- I learned a cool new word: panegyric! Mr. Garrit V.H. DeWitt’s gravestone (by Thomas Gold) says his character “requires not the panegerick of a tombstone to perpuate it to posterity.” Thanks iPhone dictionary app, for allowing me to figure out what the heck “panegerick” was supposed to mean! (Mr. Mr. Garrit V.H. DeWitt was born in the Netherlands, btw.)
- I don’t know why, but Old Milford is pretty much the windiest cemetery EVER! I’m glad I came when it was warm. And I’m glad I didn’t bother washing my hair and it was still all messy and windblown from when I was there on Sunday.
- I love LOVE it when the trains go by, although it makes me a little wistful for New York.
On the way back, since it was still decently early, I stopped at Long Hill Burying Ground in Shelton. It was established in 1720 but there are only about fifteen 18th century stones (plus some foot stones) and most are slate skulls. Good, because the stones face east, so they were all in shadow, but I wasn’t too teased since there’s nothing outstandingly interesting. Lots of stones for the Shelton family, though, which is cool. I guess now I know how the town got its name!
My mom grew up in Ansonia, which is right near Shelton and Derby, and not too far from Milford, so this part of the state is interesting to me, even though it’s not nearby or very familiar. It’s a pretty area, along the banks of the Housatonic and Naugatuck Rivers. We used to visit my grandma in Ansonia when I was little, but she died when I was seven, so I barely remember it. But I just feel a feeling of “Nice!” when I’m there that I think comes from a subconscious recognition deep inside.
I avoided 91 by driving home via the Wilbur Cross Parkway and then sneaking across through Middlefield and Middletown and Portland, so the traffic wasn’t bad at all, even though it was rush hour. I was getting tired and really hungry by then, so I stopped in Middletown and had dinner at Forbidden City. I haven’t been there in ages. But EVERYTHING I ordered was SO DELICIOUS. I couldn’t have made better selections! It was relaxing and revitalizing and perfect. I got a Hong Kong Dumpling Soup (unbelievably good!), a Herb Crusted Rack of Lamb (it was served on gorgeous green sautéed edamame and fava beans!), both of which are appetizers, so they weren’t too big, but were just right. And I afterwards I ordered a cappuccino and it actually had good foam! And I didn’t even specially request nice foam. Nice.