About ARW

My sister and I in a candid moment at the tip of my Uncle's Island on the St. Lawrence River, 1945

My sister and I spent many candid moments at the tip of my Uncle’s Island on the St. Lawrence River, 1945

I’ve had a fascinating, occasionally interrupted life, which induced me to start writing my memories in two forms: poetry and autobiography.

The autobiography started when I was approached by a few of my children who insisted that I begin to write down an account of my interesting and zany life. I was given a deadline, which I surpassed by about fifteen years. Ill health then forced me to be semi-immobile, so the memories of important moments (or what I thought was important) encouraged me to write brief accounts of snapshots of my life.

The poetry was bursting out of the creative portion of my mind, and I was forced to sit and type (albeit poorly, I intentionally flunked typing back in the early 40s to avoid a doomed life as a secretary) these words that rushed forth, and when seen on paper, seemed to make sense.

You will learn more about me and my life through these pages, but here is a preview:

Comfortable early life; two year exposure to the grand aristocratic life of relatives; descent into the edge of poverty and a brief bout of homelessness; fantastic summer vacations on a private island in the St. Lawrence River; wonderful education at St. Casimir Academy; the honor of achieving the lowest sales record at the Gift Court at Marshall Fields on State Street; college postponed; entrance into the wonderful (and martini-fueled) creative world of advertising; holy and happy matrimony; five children; five acres; numerous animals in an idyllic country house; started college at 39; masters degree in Anthropology/Archeology at 51; seven seasons at a 10,000 year old archaeological site in southeastern Turkey; sixteen fantastic grandchildren.

I have an insatiable lifelong curiosity and fortunately see the humor in almost everything that life has brought me, starting when I was born dead.

Enjoy the verbal ride.





5 thoughts on “About ARW”

  1. Lynn Hanzakos said:

    You aren’t going to believe what You are about to read….so you better sit down!
    My parents are the folks who bought Maple Island from your uncle! Yes, it’s absolutely true! Also Kip/Buck Island! I was 14 years old at the time and have many very fond memories of the time I spent there. By boyfriend, who still lives in the Bay, and I would make out on Heart Island! And on the boathouse roof!

    There is way too much to attempt writing so I’ll end now. I hope this reaches you and hope we can talk soon. I live in New Jersey and look forward to hearing from you!

    Lynn Grochau Hanzakos

    973-223-4283 cell…will take messages
    973-427-5859 house phone….can NOT leave a message. Best to try this number first.. Best time early evenings.

    • Dear Lynn, What a joyful and happy coincidence! I am Andrée’s daughters and will track you down via phone soon. Can’t wait to learn more about Maple Island! xo

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