Thursday, July 19, 2007

Jenny Tiger

Elizabeth was about seven or eight when she came home one day from school to tell us there was a new girl in her class—Jenny Tiger. I was pretty sure that wasn’t her name, but it was close enough. Jenny and Elizabeth became best friends. Jenny’s dad was a lawyer and her mother was in Law School, so a nanny presided over the welfare of Jenny and her sister Anne. Liz accompanied Jenny home every day after school and over the years I discovered why. After-school snacks in our house consisted of sticks of carrots and celery and lovingly cut-up fruit. Maybe juice. The Tiger household was a veritable stash of cookies and Hostess delicacies and chips and coke.

There was a second reason Liz loved her visits to the Tiger home. The house was stunning: a stone building that looked like an English country parsonage. There was an extra lot for the kids to run in and the house was up-dated and comfortable.

Anne and Jenny went off to college, the lawyers Tiger sold their home and moved to smaller digs. I would look affectionately at the house as I passed. The adjoining lot was spruced up by one set of owners and I think the house changed hands a couple of times. Several months ago a “For Sale” sign appeared on the lawn. I checked the real-estate section of the paper. The asking price was $1,000,000. Later I noticed that the price had dropped below a million, but didn’t pay much attention. Houses, once such a precious commodity in Grosse Pointe, are not selling thanks to the terrible economic situation in Michigan and the competition from other, more vibrant, suburbs. The Tiger house, scene of so many happy memories, must have gone into foreclosure. It will be auctioned off this weekend with a starting bid of $100,000. I told Liz about it, but I hope Jenny Tiger doesn’t find out.

No comments: