Ricky, Little Chrissie and the Baby pulled up in the middle of a perfect, seashore, winter afternoon. The sky was deep blue and crisp as only a coastal sky can be. Jimmy was out on the patio beaming and nodding as they got out....... 'I did good?' he said...... They both agreed, since neither had ever lived in surroundings such as these. Bare maples lined the curbside. Small, mauicured flower gardens lead up to the very well maintained domiciles. Here and there designer canines yelped and barked. Each driveway featured somewhat costly representatives of contemporaty automotive arts.
Ricky said, 'So, Jimmy, how much?'...... 'For me to know,' came the reply. ....Little Chrissie said' ' Where's Mommy?'.... But just then Marge came outside too. They all simply grinned and smiled. Dreams occasionally do come true.
They saw all the highpoints... the exterior niceties, the multi-paned windows, the flagstone paving and inside everybody 'oohed' and 'aahed' over the gleaming hardwords and requisite granite finishes. Marge served iced tea and snacks in the kitchen... mostly just cubes of Velveeta cheese and supermarket pepperoni, but she'll learn.
My name is Gloria. I'm the 'ghost' telling this part. Their house used to be mine. My husband bought it in nineteen fifty six. We were newlyweds. He was a lawyer. Worked for all ther big hotels in Atlantic City. Back then we had The Chalfont-Haddon Hall and the Dennis. Fine, old places that the Downton Abbey crowd would have felt right at home in. Each town had a certain profile. Cape May was upperclass Protestant. The Wildwoods (new in those days) attracted Catholics. Atlantic City's inlet section was for the Jews. The neighborhood surrounding Convention Hall (Boardwalk Hall, now) housed mostly Italian Catholics. Ocean City began as middle class Protestant, but quickly gentrified, augmented by a sprinkling of new money Irish, such as Philadelphia's Kelly Family..... the progentitors of Princess Grace, incase you don't know.
My new roommates, the older couple, the younger ones and the baby, have some work to do. People around here are accepting... to a point. Some will ask polite questions. Oh, the days of religious segregation are gone, but people still like to know where the money comes from.
Ricky senses this. He's worried. Not that he doesn't like what he sees, but he thinks... He's concerned. What will he do? How will he present himself? What will he say?
The others haven't gotten to that point yet, but they will. Hope none of the old retired gentleman around here recognise the grandmother, or whatever she is. That would be so sad. You do know she 'serviced' a rather select clientele?
Money changes everything.... Now it's time to learn some brand new rules...