“I am a great admirer of mystery and magic. Look at this life – all mystery and magic.”
New Hope is like a coy lover; revealing its true self through parted blinds, leafy arbors, crumbling stone walls. I feel its heartbeat in the pulse of the Delaware. Scraps of conversation escape partly opened windows. Strains of music mingle momentarily with the steadfast tolling of the bells and the whistle of the steam train. It is a town of mystery and magic…Knowing it is like trying to catch fireflies with your hands.
The touristy main street struts the stage with its wares — bustling with ladies in broad brimmed hats pointing out this and that and red-faced gentlemen aching to sit beneath a bright umbrella with a strong drink. But the heart of town can only be glimpsed on the sly — in momentary illumination.
Little by little, my new companion teasingly pulls back the covers, as I wander the towpath and side streets. And, like couples in the first throes of romance, I struggle in vain to memorize its features in the mutable light. And still, its full countenance remains elusive.