Tip of the Month: September
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W.A. Coolidge Company
W.A. Coolidge Company is a full service construction company serving the Seacoast of New Hampshire, Maine, and Northern Massachusetts. The owners, Wayne A. Coolidge and Wendy A. Wentworth Coolidge have been partners for over 30 years. We specialize in high quality residential and commercial building, renovations, and restorations.
The Coolidge Company is about flexibility, innovation, and results. Our company will focus on your precise wishes in order to deliver cost-effective solutions to any project. We strive to offer superior quality by using and overseeing the best and reliable subcontractors and suppliers in the area. We believe that every project that we undertake will be completed within a timely fashion as if it was our personal home. We offer first class craftsmanship and attention to detail from start to finish. We want to make your dream project a reality along with providing a fun and memorable experience.
A renovated dining area to go with the kitchen we had renovated, featuring custom built columns and open shelving. (Rye, NH)
Written by: Wayne Coolidge
As I write this article, it is my anniversary, which makes me think back to my wedding day so many years ago. Wendy and I got married at Saint Thomas More, in Durham, where we had just finished our freshman year at UNH. Two young lovers with no money, but deeply in love. Our reception was held at the parish hall because that is all we could afford. It was an alcohol-free party, since it was at the church, and we were underage – but everyone still had a great time. During the reception people kept asking us, “Where are you going for your honeymoon?” Our response was, “We don’t know.” We really didn’t. We didn’t have any money, so a honeymoon would probably have to wait. We were just happy to be married. They would reply, “Ahhh, I get it, it's a secret.” It was easier to just nod our heads, wink, and smile.
After the reception, we gathered up all our gifts and brought them back to our new apartment before attending the after-reception gathering at Wendy’s folks’ house. But curiosity got the best of us, and we started opening the presents and envelopes. In one of the envelopes, which was from my grandfather, we discovered $600 in cash. We looked at each other in surprise. We can have a honeymoon! We quickly decided to go to Nova Scotia. We packed our bags and headed to the post wedding party to share our destination plans. When we got there people said, “That took a while, we know what you were doing.” No, they didn’t, but again we just shook our heads, winked, and smiled.
When it was time to go, we waved goodbye and smiled to our friends and family as we began our married journey. We filled up the old Chevy Biscayne and hit the road for Nova Scotia. We made it as far as Bangor, Maine when we decided to stop at the first hotel we found with a vacancy sign. We commented to the clerk that we had just got married and were checking in for the first time as Mr. & Mrs. Coolidge. Something impressed her because the next thing we knew, we were upgraded to the honeymoon suite at no extra charge. We thanked her profusely and headed to the suite, smiling.
The next morning, we filled up the Biscayne, charted our course on the AAA road map, and set off on the next leg of our adventure. As we were entering St. Johns, New Brunswick, we saw a ferry service to Nova Scotia. What? A ferry? That would save us lots of travel time. We quickly pulled off the freeway and up to the ticket booth, all in under 30 seconds. The attendant told us we were just in time because he was about to close, and it was the final boarding call for the ferry. Surprised with our good luck and timing, we were all smiles as we boarded the boat.
A few hours later, we offloaded in Nova Scotia, again found a hotel with a vacancy, checked into our room, and collapsed on the bed. What a whirlwind it had been for the past 24 hours. After dinner we went to the hotel bar to discover that we were the only ones there. So, we sat at the bar and started talking with the bartender. Once he learned we were newlyweds, he insisted that the first round was on him. Luckily for us, he never asked to check our ID’s, just our wedding bands. Three hours, and many Tom Collins later, we bid our new best friend adieu, and staggered back to our room, smiling.
We spent the next couple of days touring around the island until it was time to head home. We retraced our steps, took the ferry back to St. Johns, almost got arrested at the border for illegally picking flowers and trying to bring them into the USA, got safely back to Dover with the Biscayne almost out of gas, $10 in our pocket, and wearing big smiles.
That was 42 years ago, and not much has changed. I am still flying by the seat of my pants, my truck needs gas, I only have $10 in my pocket, and I am still smiling!
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