Notes on "Past Time":
This is the only story in this series that I didn't begin writing in real time, and it started out as a short piece of romantic fluff about the New Year's Eve celebration mentioned at the end of "Inn," with the cape and the bracelet worked in, then I thought "what if they actually solve a small mystery during the course of the story?" Next thing I knew, there were letters hidden in paintings, Sybil Ludington galloped in...and it turned into long romantic fluff.
The cape was based on a similar, but lighter article I saw in Cracker Barrel during the winter. I immediately thought of how nice Kathryn Erbe would look in it.
The Waterbury Inn and Hosmer Barclay and his paintings are all fictional, but are based on real places scattered about New England. Anything else historic mentioned by Bobby (and Henry Cattaneo) is all true. And I would definitely go to that New Year's Eve event.
The song Alex picks out is the theme to The Greatest American Hero ("Believe It or Not") which hit the Billboard charts for a few weeks.
I went to a similarly underfunded library as a kid, the old Arlington Library on Cranston Street in Cranston, RI. I bitterly complained to my mother that the most recently published book they had featured a car with a running board. Bobby was apparently more sanguine about it, and I'd give anything to read those old books now.
If you haven't, you must watch Sneakers. Robert Redford, Sidney Poiter, James Earl Jones, David Strathairn, Dan Ackroyd, Mary McDonnell, River Phoenix, Timothy Busfield, Eddie Jones, and, last but not least, Stephen Tobolowsky (one of his favorite films).
Sam is apparently related to my husband's dog Leia (1988-1998), who looked like a half-scale German Shepherd, and was a pro at sucking in her cheeks so she looked like she was about to faint from hunger.
A tip of the hat to two of my favorites: "Early American Life" and "BBC History Magazine." Cattaneo has a typical home in EAL down pat.
Adrienne Doremus is a fictional creation.
And some Robert Goren research links: