Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Ketchum Hemingway House Benefit

I spent last weekend in Ketchum, Idaho attending the third annual Hemingway Festival there and being the featured speaker at the Nature Conservancy's one thousand dollar a plate benefit dinner. The proceeds will be used for the upkeep of the Hemingway house which was bequeathed to the non-profit conservation group by Ernest's widow, Mary Hemingway in 1986.

Drinks and hors d'oeuvres were served on the newly paved patio after which the twenty-four guests partook of a very elegant dinner in the large diningroom overlooking the Big Wood River, with a view of high mountains and sagebrush hills. I think both Ernest and Mary would have been proud of the feast, an elk tenderloin, preceeded by slivers of smoked wild duck and partridge filled pastries. Soup, salad and pear tart completed the meal which was accompanied by a variety of wines. The house was open to the guests for inspection and for photographs.

As I drove back to Bozeman, I noticed the changing of the colors in the trees, yellow, red, orange and rust. The fleeting autumn season, gone before it hardly begins, was apparent as the first snows descended on the distant mountains. All I encountered on the highway was a heavy rain but I have lived in these parts long enough to know it could turn to snow at any moment

Sunday, September 16, 2007

9/11 in Denver

On September 11th I spoke to a very appreciative audience of about five hundred people as part of the Town Hall Denver lecture series. The unflagging interest in Ernest Hemingway's life and work never ceases to amaze me. The questions are always stimulating, After the talk and booksigning I was taken to the beautiful Denver Country Club for lunch with the dialogue continuing throughout the meal.

A couple of days ago I saw the film: 3:10 to Yuma, the latest western with its fine photography, spectacular scenery, and complex characters. Apart from the excessive shoot'em'ups, the story is one that gives much food for thought. What do you think?

Next week I shall drive for seven hours to Idaho to speak at the Hemingway House in Ketchum. The $1000 a plate dinner sponsored by the Nature Conservancy is a benefit for the preservation of the house where the writer spent his last year and where he took his life. Often our first big snowstorm of the fall occurs at the equinox. Fingers crossed that this year it will hold off till my return.

Saturday, September 8, 2007

On the Circuit

September has come and I'm back on the road giving talks. On Tuesday September 11, I'll be the featured speaker at the Town Hall luncheon meeting in Denver. The subject will be my memoir, Running with the Bulls: My Years with the Hemingways. There seems to be an inexhaustible interest in Ernest Hemingway, his life and work.

On September 22nd I'll give a talk to a private group at the Hemingway House in Ketchum, Idaho. The occasion will be a special fundraiser dinner to benefit the Nature Conservancy and the Hemingway House which will take place during the Sun Valley Hemingway Festival.

In August I gave my memoir writing workshop to a group of forty in White Sulphur Springs, Montana as part of the Meagher County Bookfest. The workshop was so successful I was invited to give similar sessions in Great Falls and Fort Benton.

The second weekend in August I spoke at the Irish festival, An Ri Ra, in Butte. It is one of the more colorful Montana summer festivals, covering all aspects of Irish culture. Particularly endearing are the Irish step dancing performances by children from three years up. The music, much of it imported from Ireland, was fabulous.