I grew up in Bayside, Queens, Long Island, New York on a lovely tree-lined street with two and three story homes. When I went to college in Boston and discovered Beacon Hill, I saw the row houses that, if George Washington didn’t sleep there, Paul Revere probably did. That’s when I first said to myself, “I could live there.”
After college I moved into Manhattan just a few blocks from Beekman Place… a street filled with colonial brownstones and row houses that date back to the Revolutionary War. Yup, the first thing I said to myself, “I could live there.”
But it wasn’t until I was working as a press liaison for the ’80 Democratic National Presidential Convention that I visited Georgetown. Oh, I’d been to D.C. and done the tourist thing, but that did not include Georgetown. Not even for lunch. Not until my boss at the Convention, who lived in Washington, invited my husband and me for a D.C. weekend. This time we did lunch in Georgetown.
It was love at first bite. I fell in love with the shops, the restaurants, the very power-charged air we were breathing. After lunch, I insisted we walk the residential streets so that I could fill my eyes with the Georgian, Federal and Classical Revival homes, row houses and townhouses… all that old red brick and high-gloss black shutters. I saw wrought iron street lanterns even though they weren’t there. I saw men in powdered wigs come out of these homes and step into horse-drawn carriages for meetings at the White House. I pictured deep burgundy-colored leather club chairs in mahogany-paneled rooms where slightly tarnished silver equestrian “first place” cups casually adorned library shelves. I could definitely live there… just like Jack and Jackie once did.
I imagined having Bob Woodward or Ben Bradlee and his wife, Sally Quinn, as my neighbors. I could actually bump into Sen. John Kerry walking out of his home or run into ABC’s George Stephanopoulos at the dry cleaners. Maybe I could borrow a cup of sugar from NY Times op-ed columnist Maureen Dowd, or have a gossipy coffee-klatch with Kitty Kelley. Georgetown is a town filled with movers and shakers and, like the Hollywood bus tour of movie stars’ homes, it has its own “Celebrity Georgetown Walking Tour.”
So, even though I now live and write in Los Angeles, it was no surprise to me (or anyone who knows me) that, when I wrote “Freeze Frame,” my political thriller, I moved my ATF hero, Jefferson Leeds, into a townhouse in Georgetown.
My heroine may be a girl from Bayside living in a loft in Manhattan, but Jefferson has the home I covet... one that I envisioned with a tinge of jealousy because I didn’t live there.
By the time Jefferson got home to his Georgetown row house, the sun had set. He hadn’t been there in months and it felt good to be surrounded by his own things, even if they were relics of his family’s history….
…The lights from the street lamps shined into the room, highlighting his possessions... his French antique desk, the antique lamps and framed architectural renderings…
…In the past, his agency friends had wondered how he could afford such pricey living quarters on an ATF agent’s salary. His flip answer was always the same: “Privileged DNA.”
I hope you’ll check out Jefferson and Lorna. Click onto my Amazon site (link below) and take a peek inside the book’s cover where you can read the prologue and first chapter, as well as the book’s synopsis and reviews. Hopefully you’ll be hooked and want to know them better. And if enough of you do, I could rent a little pied-a-terre in Georgetown!