Posted by: karenparmer | April 26, 2009

The Swan Ball & the ugly duckling


Last night Dan and I went to the Swan Ball.  It’s the Atlanta History Center’s biggest fund raiser of the year.  We have never been before.  I really was not in the mood to go.  I was tired because of work, Grandparent Camp all week, and a sore back.  I never even went shopping for a dress.  (Thank you, Gail, for letting me wear yours!!!)  I also wasn’t excited about putting on stilletos and smiling for HOURS!!!

 But once we got there, we had such a good time that I forgot all about hurting feet and my bad attitude about the whole affair!  The cocktail reception was outside in the front of the Swan House.  I have never seen so many beautiful dresses!  Old Guard Atlanta turns out “big time” for this social scene.  There were musicians all around the entrance to the mansion.  It was like beautifully dressed people were just floating around the grounds.  We were able to go into the main level of the Swan House. 

Front Entrance and Portico, Swan House, Atlanta by StevenM_61.

 This is the front side of the house.  It was built in the 1920’s by the Inmans (same family as Inman Park)  The house sits on about 20-30 acres of the most beautiful land ~ in Buckhead!!  ~ where a quarter acre lot can be a million dollars!!!!  Anyway, it was acquired by the Atlanta History Center in the mid to late 60’s.  It’s beautiful!

Back view, Swan House, Atlanta by StevenM_61.

Here’s a picture taken of the back side.  When you walked out and stood on that landing, it was all so green, fountains, beautiful flowers, ponds, etc. etc. (reminded me so much of our own lovely home…..NOT)


Here’s a pic of Dan and me just before we left.



Here’s me, the ugly duckling, about to go to the Swan Ball!!!  Gail’s dress is beautiful and I so appreciated her letting me wear it!  It was actually like wearing a nightgown~it was so comfortable!  Now those gold HIGH shoes, that was another story!!!






Here’s my handsome date for the evening.  After the cocktails, dinner, auction, etc, there was a fabulous band playing great Motown hits~so much fun to dance!  It was great fun till it was almost Cinderella’s clock striking twelve and my feet were screaming!

The tables at dinner were  so pretty.  In the center of the ballroom were hundreds of flowers and the platform where speakers stood.  The whole platform rotated round and round very slowly. And in the center of all the plants was a white baby grand piano and a pianist!  She serenaded us all evening with beautiful music! 

 At our table was this couple who had been married for many many years.  He was corporate counsel for a big Atlanta company and he was stricken with ALS fifteen years ago.  She was a beautiful woman (I would guess they were ten years older than me????)  AND there sat her sweet husband, in his wheel chair, in a tux of course, and actually unable to communicate.  BUT he was there!  And I admired them so much.  I didn’t know you could live with ALS (Lou Gehrig’s disease) for that many years.  His mind was fine, his body was just breaking down.  It put lots of things in perspective about whining and groaning about trivial things!! 

 We sat in round tables of ten people each.  To my right was the most interesting, FEISTY little lady. She said she had never missed a Swan Ball.  AND she was a hoot, with her politics, her opinions, etc.  I would guess she was 80!!!  She had an opinion about everything and she wasn’t bashful about telling it!  Got to love old rich people…(actually I wish I had one in our family that was leaving me her fortune!!!!)

We were standing outside at the cocktail reception talking to one of Dan’s brokers.  And up walks Roy Barnes and he’s talking about he’s going to run for governor again, yatty, yatty…..He’s kissing all the women, smiling and working the crowd….and all I could think was….”You are a democrat!!”  He rode over in the same car we did to get from the reception to the dinner and everyone was calling him “Govner”.  That’s the southern way I guess.  Once a governor, always a governor!! BUT you have to pronounce it as two syllables !!! Gov-ner!!!

The theme was

“A Midsummer Night’s Dream” and it was sort of a fairy tale for five or six hours one April night in Atlanta when our fair city seemed far removed from the real world!

Right in the middle of a song we were dancing to, my feet screamed out,

“Take me home or lose me forever!!!”

….and the duckling woke up in the morning and was still a duckling…but she had dreams of dancing with the swans!!!





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