If anyone had told me I’d be living in the country with a pie-eyed dog and
a highly eccentric man incapable of the sort of logic I pride myself on, I’d
have said, “No way!” After all, I had a somewhat successful career in
the Hollywood film and television industry and had learned to navigate within
that peculiar and specialized environment. Life was good. But it
wasn’t enough. That’s why, one night, after a long, grueling day of work
on the Warner Brother’s studio lot in Burbank, I came home, poured a
huge glass of good, red wine and opened to the “personals” in our local, alternative
His ad flew off the page. It
“FUN, 52, RECENT NYC transplant, sexy, successful, attractive arts entrepreneur,
child like, sensitive, open, honest and well therapied........”
That’s how it happened. That’s
how I found myself loving a water man. I, who had always
been a forest woman, began to live by the water. First, at
the Sea Castle in Santa Monica. Not simply facing, but
with only a promenade between us and the ocean. A big,
green monster of a building. Polynesia. Waking up to
white sand, palm trees, blue ocean beyond, all that in 320
square feet we shared with my two, large spotted mongrel dogs. That
ended with the earthquake.
Not long after, fate brought
us back to the East Coast, where we lived in Bob’s amazing
river view West Village condo. Here we were, drinking
coffee on our terrace while big, white steamships floated past,
throngs on deck waving to us as we nonchalantly waved back.
I remember thinking what a perfect place to retire. No need to drive,
a doorman building with an elevator, and lots and lots to see and do.
But 9/11 came along, and
all that changed.
What a culture shock to move
to Saugerties! Imagine living in a place where you have
to drive ten minutes to get a good cup of coffee. Worse
yet, no New York Times on the doorstep in the morning! Slowly,
though, I came to appreciate what the country had to offer. Seeing
deer, wild turkeys, rabbits, even an occasional
bear, became thrilling moments to be savored. Gradually,
deep friendships formed, and I realized how lucky I was
to be part of a community where the pace of life allows for
true, unhurried human contact.
While my career in film
has drifted away, I find myself screening films and writing
reviews for the Woodstock Film Festival. If you haven’t been,
don’t miss it! This is a Festival that grows in stature every
year. It is an intimate, exciting and “fiercely independent”
event where filmmakers and film lovers mingle in a casual and
less formal setting than larger, urban festivals.
And I recently published my first novella, "Feeding Mrs. Moskowitz and The Caregiver," (Syracuse University Press), in collaboration with my sister, Fran Yariv.
I suppose we could call
our Waterfall Rental a career, as well. I prefer to think
of it otherwise.
To me, our Waterfall Rental
is a way to share what we love with others. My joy is in
creating a welcoming, comforting home for our guests. You
will always find food in the fridge, and art on the walls,
books to read and movies to watch. You may well find yourself
mesmirized by the sounds of water and be content to merely
witness the miracle of continuity the waterfall teaches. Or
you may choose to immerse yourself in the cool, invigorating
waters of the swimming holes, sensing, perhaps, all the others
who have gone before and found comfort and healing in these
Some day, we will live here.
We will sense the happy memories left behind by you who have
shared this space with us. Until then, we hope you will return
whenever you crave the serenity and beauty of our magical waterfall