October 31, 2019
Dear Mr. Pinkwater:
One evening I hosted a dinner party for some colleagues of my husband from the law school where he teaches. Upon hearing me explain the reasons why, after many years of operation, I had decided to sell my small restaurant in rural Pennsylvania, one guest looked at his wife, winked, and together they simultaneously said, “Blue Moose!” I had no idea to what they were referring, but a couple of weeks later I received your book as a thank-you gift for the dinner. I must say, the similarities between my interactions with the rural townspeople and Mr. Breton’s exchanges with the villagers is uncanny! I was curious about your inspiration for the book, and I wondered if you had ever worked in a similar sort of eatery.
No one has ever asked this question. Let's see if I can answer it in a few words. My wife and I arrived at a rented cabin on Moosehead Lake for a vacation. We brought with us a bag of brown rice and some spices. We were going to live on local produce and fish we caught, never considering that we might not catch any. The only restaurant anywhere near was one of those quaint Ye Olde places, looking a little deserted. We stepped inside, and met....Mr.Breton! The real live one! His actual name was...Breton! And...he was a marvelous, magical chef. He had grown up in the town, and left to live in California, inherited the nice old Victorian house, and decided to move back and open his restaurant there. He hadn't counted on the local population who kept asking for french fries, and when winter came he remembered why he left in the first place. We ate all our meals at his restaurant, never saw another customer, and enjoyed Mr. Breton's company as much as the food. A year or two later, he was back in California, and I had written the book.