On Golden Pond
by Daniel Murphy
It is time for me to start writing again; the best way to start would be to write about the Red Bank area where I have lived almost all of my life. Years ago while working and promoting our town, I coined the phrase that Red Bank was a great place to live, work, and play. It has stood that test of time for me for 72 years. “To live” is the word I am keying on as our area is surrounded by the ocean, the Bay, the Navesink and Shrewsbury Rivers. I have grown up on and in the water and sailed our area for years.
Until the last ten years, I thought of Shadow Lake as a “small” lake in Middletown. It wasn’t until I started catering on homes along the shore line of Shadow Lake that I became aware of the size and beauty of this large lake. It is surrounded by some of the most beautiful homes in Monmouth County. Every home I have worked in has an uncanny beautiful view of the lake in a setting I have always tried to describe. It was not until I spoke with one of my customers, Marilyn Michaels, about her home on Shadow Lake. She used the phrase to describe it was, “On Golden Pond” that I found the description. She said she and her husband are selling their home on Shadow Lake to move on with their lives. She was a bit misty telling me this and I asked her to tell me about her living there. She wrote me the following:
“It was at a time when my husband and I began to think of retirement. I said, in my best grandmotherly way, “I would love to retire to a place on water”—what I really dreamed about was the house from the movie, “On Golden Pond”. My dear husband, always willing to please me, agreed. We looked for 1 ½ years and finally found the perfect place on Shadow Lake. We bought it on the spot and 2 days later, Debbie, the then current owner, and I stood on the deck looking at the lake, crying in each other’s arms—I, crying because I had found On Golden Pond, and she, crying because she was losing it.”
I am sure she will be in the arms of a new owner with tears in their eyes as they both move on into the next phase of their lives. I know I would be.