East Meets West

A career with computer giant IBM brought John Crawford and his wife Suzy around the world, with assignments in exhilarating cities including Paris and Tokyo, but when they realized retirement wasn’t too far off, they had to consider where they would plant roots. “For a number of years we started taking our regular vacations to places people retire to down South, here and there, and each time we’d come and see my folks here on the Cape,” explains John. “Then we said, ‘You know? We find the Cape to be the place we like the most.’”

John and Suzy had visited his parents in Orleans since they retired there in 1970. The couple started looking at properties in 1991, leading them to casually explore Hyannis, Falmouth and Seabury. “We were looking for a specific kind of thing,” explains John. “We wanted a nice location in terms of town and all, but we really didn’t want waterfront or oceanfront…we didn’t want the overhead and the operational expenses over the long term, and we wanted something that had a residential feel to it, but not an exclusive community.” After an exhaustive search, the two found an undeveloped plot, once a working farm that overlooked a serene pond and abutted conservation land which coincidentally, was just down the hill from where John’s parents had once lived. The land was purchased, but the real work had just begun.

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Andrea E. McHugh, a former editor at Newport Life magazine, is a freelance writer living in Rhode Island.

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