Book Details


This story is a humorously fantasized account of the real-life experiences of the author. It is an account of a woman, raised and educated in the midwest, whose passion for great art leads her to a very successful position at New York’s Metropolitan Museum of Art. Her other passion in life is fishing in the wilderness lake country along the Minnesota/Canada border. A unique and rich autobiographical sketch is woven out of the humor found in human behavior in such widely differing cultures. In Book I, Elizabeth, our protagonist, fresh out of the Midwest, joins the staff of the Great Museum as Conservator of historic clothing in the Costume Institute. With a combination of midwestern sense of egalite, passion for her profession, and good humor, Elizabeth throws herself into her work, which involves an unending variety of strange situations and people. In time, as a great variety of events happen (all of which have a basis in fact), Elizabeth gradually develops a malaise in which she seems to lose her focus and starts to malinger around water and silvery objects. Elizabeth knows she must bid good-bye to the Great Museum and return to the wilderness area of Minnesota. In Book 2, once back in Ely, Elisabeth reverts to the name Betsy, and becomes fanatically involved with fishing, canoeing and other outdoor activities. She becomes obsessed with catching a rare, almost mystical fish and asks many of her New York friends to come and accompany her on this quest. Meanwhile, many of the Ely townsfolk become concerned about tales of strange sounds experienced by some visitors traveling in certain areas of the wilderness -- sounds that mesmerized them, leaving them "tetched", in the vernacular. The town organizes what becomes a dysfunctional committee to investigate these reports. Finally, the New Yorkers arrive to help Betsy. They become quite enamored of the healthy outdoor environment. Betsy catches and releases her prize quarry. As the New Yorkers leave Ely to return east, they state that they all feel "Ely is where it's all at!"


About the Author

Judith Jerde