They say everyone has a doppleganger. I think I’ve just discovered mine.
This is Getty Anne Horton Hoke at a wedding around 1960.
And this is me in 2001.
As far as I know, Getty and I are not related in any way. Her family is one of the oldest families in North Carolina (settled Hoke County) and my family’s from Canada and Pittsburgh But this resemblance has me rattled. That’s my face, my expression (when I’m determined) and I’d recognize it anywhere. The picture has my mother baffled, too. She’s wondering if there’s an Aunt out there she doesn’t know about.
Now on to the story of how I happened upon Getty Anne Horton. The whole day is so fantastical that I can barely believe it myself. It was just another weekday (I think it was Wednesday) when my partner in crime, Steph T. and I decided to venture out of our homes in hopes of landing an interview with a local resident for our blog, The Bombeck Sisters.
Only the resident wasn’t home. So we decide to visit another home that has a big chair in the front yard when Steph T. says: “Turn here. I’ve always wanted to go down this road. I think there’s a bed and breakfast there.” So I turned. Good decision.
Just as we turned right, we noticed a beautiful woman walking toward a mailbox at the end of the road.. Steph T. hollers out her window.
“Is there a bed and breakfast down this road?”
The woman replies: “Yes there is and I am your chef!”
“Can we see it?”
“Sure! Follow me! Is it too early for wine?”
We screamed in unison: “Nooooooooo!”
And with tha,t we followed her BMW down this twisty-turny drive that went on for awhile, laughing at ourselves and our latest adventure for The Bombeck Sisters and perhaps a little nervous because we had no idea where we were going with this complete stranger. Ok, not really nervous at all, but we should have been. When we arrived, this is what we saw:
This is Hamilton Scot Inn of Cary! I was speechless. So was Steph T. Honestly, all I could think of was that we must have stepped through the wardrobe from Chronicles of Narnia and right into the Great Gatsy’s palatial estate. This bed and breakfast is but two miles down the street from my home and yet it’s like I stepped into another world. I never knew it existed. Nor did I know I was about to meet my doppleganger.
When the proprietor turned the corner and saw me, I said hello and was struck by his expression. I figured he must be wondering why the heck his girlfriend is dragging a couple of minivan moms out of the subdivision for a fun tour of his inn on this busy morning. He was working and moving things outside with another man. Yet, after I practically shouted we’re just a couple of crazy moms with a blog, blah, blah, blah…he smiled and welcomed us. We followed Sue, his girlfriend and fellow innkeeper, inside.
It was beautiful. Stunning. Steph and I were giddy. What an adventure we were having while our kids were in school. Just what the doctor ordered.
“You look exactly like my mother.”
Not the kind of thing you want a 54 year-old man to tell a 48 year-old woman, but after hearing about the loss of his mother when he was only two, I realize my appearance must set him back, too. . She had a pulmonary embolism. He only has pictures of her to help him remember her. He said he’s never said that to anyone, but if his sister saw me, she would say the same thing. So I showed it to my mother. Instantly freaked.
I’ve heard people tell me I look like so and so a lot through out my life so I didn’t put much stock into his comment. I politely nodded with raised eyebrows. “Really? Do you have a picture?” “Follow me, and I will show you her. I don’t think I need to point her out.
It just so happens that my hair is parted in the same way that day and I was wearing my signature red lipstick. Even so, the resemblance is uncanny. A little later, during a tour of this most beautiful inn, another strange moment occurs. I happen to enthusiastically share my love of one room when Eric tells me the room is named after his mother. Of course it is! Some of her things are in here.”
It’s taken me a week to process this and write about it.
I have all kinds of questions. I just called Eric to find out more about his mother.
What do you think?
It would make a great novel. Stay tuned.