September 30, 2013
If you take a little boat (baaa-teau! - according to Colette) from Newburgh or Beacon, about an hour north of New York City, you can get to Bannerman Island - where the ruins of Bannerman Castle sit. First built circa 1900 by Francis Bannerman (obsessive hoarder of war supplies/stock - made a fortune), the castle is now largely ruins. Shall we say a certain Frenchman was less than impressed with the staying power of American castles. There are so few and it was such a shame that I took him along (to be very honest). He was smirking at the castle from the moment the boat pulled up to the leafy shores of Bannerman Island. What kind of castle tumbles in 100 years? (I could see the judgement in his sneering, superior look). He kept French guffawing on the tour as the guide told the tale of this chateau; I was convinced at any moment he would point out the number of 1,000 year-old French chateaux there are in existence in better form than Mr. Bannerman's abode (Quelle grosse blague, said he, repeatedly under his breath). Apart from the boat, Colette was focused on just one thing: attempting to locate and gather all the acorns of Bannerman island and rescue them, to bring them safely back to New York City. I am sure they were grateful. I guess I was the only one who was really impressed by a simulated Scottish Castle in the middle of the Hudson River.