At Hope and Olive, a Fine Schmooze It Was

Last year we spent New Years at our favorite restaurant, Hope and Olive.
Last year we spent New Years at our favorite restaurant, Hope and Olive.

The cafe sponsored a get-together for Chamber of Commerce members up at Hope and Olive, a very hip and cool new restaurant that is putting Greenfield on the culinary map. One of their owners, Jim Zaccaro, showed me his selection…more than 30 bottles of wine available by the glass. I enjoyed a crisp Vouvray and waded into the crowd to schmooze.

I met a woman who is a doctor, practicing at Franklin Medical Center. I asked her if being a doctor meant that you got all sorts of solicitations from investment firms, and junk mail by the ton. I also asked her if she worked a lot of hours. She said, yes, she does get approached by these investment sellers, who think she has more money than she does. And she manages to work just forty hours a week, so she’s not burning the candle at both ends as one might think.

Then I met a woman I have met before who runs a lumber company. She said that we should sell these capsules full of coffee because everyone loves this new kind of coffeemaker and that we’d get rich if we sold the little plastic devices. But, they don’t come filled with the coffee we sell, I said. Still, she insisted that I should find these and stock my cafe with them and that many people will come in and buy them.

I moved on to visit with a woman whom I hadn’t seen in years. The memory was hazy—it was a high-tech broadband outfit in South Deerfield. Yes, it all came back. We sold her hundreds of denim shirts, and before that she used to work for my friend Denis who died trying to land his high-performance Mooney plane on a foggy South Carolina runway. One of the nicest things about living in the same area for so many decades is these connections, that come about often and connect you with your past.

Kim now works for her brother’s telecommunications business, and like me, is doing well as we enter 2008. It was a festive and fun gathering, glad to have my good friend Jack there and our cafe manager Liz, who deserved a fun night out watching the old master schmooze.