Tag Archives: columbia county


Up until recently I had a weekend home up in Columbia County in the small town of Old Chatham. This is a particularly beautiful area in upstate New York, nestled in the foothills of the Berkshires. Although I have given some Mah Jongg lessons in the area, I recently learned that some of my dear friends up there have been playing Mah Jongg for many years – who knew?!

I have had several speaking engagements in Chatham and Hudson, talking about the the art and history of the game along with selling my book, but had no idea that Mah Jongg was becoming the thing to do up there. Last week I received the following email from my dear friend Maynard – I must say that I am thrilled to see the sweet little town of Chatham has caught on to our addiction!

Maynard wrote, “See what you have inspired in Chatham? Mah Jongg at the Chatham Public Library!” 

Tiffany Window Chatham Public Library        
Chatham Public Library
Week of June 1st–June 7th  
Programs for Adults
Memoir Writing   
Tuesday, 10:00 am – 12:00 pm.;
Thursday, 11:00 am – 1:00 pm
Peer led writing groups gather to provide comment and review one another’s memoir writing. New writers are welcome!  If interested, contact Al Stumph at 392-2618, or astumph@fairpoint.net 

Monday and Wednesday, 10:00 am to 12:00 pm. Mah Jongg players meet downstairs in the Teen Room. Beginners are welcome. Join the Mah Jongg renaissance! 


First Sunday Book Group
Sunday, June 7th, 2:00 pm
The Group will be reading Two Old Women: An Alaska Legend of Betrayal, Courage and Survival, by Velma Wallis. The selection for this meeting is “Two Old Women: An Alaska Legend of Betrayal, Courage and Survival” by Velma Wallis. Based on an Athabascan Indian legend passed along for many generations from mothers of the upper Yukon River Valley in Alaska, this is the suspenseful, shocking, ultimately inspirational tale of two old women abandoned by their tribe during a brutal winter famine. Books are available for loan at the library. Meetings will be held at the Middle School Library, adjacent to the Chatham Public Library.  


The OMs are scattered all around the world right now so we didn’t play Mah Jongg today, even though it is Mah Jongg Wednesday. I am also leaving town to head up to beautiful Columbia County for a few days and then further north to celebrate my friends’ 50th anniversary (wow!!!) on a cruise on Lake George. So, this will be my last posting until next week. Until then, I hope you all have lots of Jokers.

Enjoy these pictures – Mah Jongg is everywhere!


Mah Jong was especially popular with fashionable young women. Here are three bathing beauties playing Mah Jongg on Venice Beach, California in 1924 (Photo: www.lukehoney.co.uk/)


Actress Fan Bingbing shoots new fashion photos with the founders of the world famous brand D&G, Domenico Dolce and Stefano Gabbana, for the July’s Men’s Uno Magazine. The pictures are filled with Chinese flavor. [Photo: sina.com]


Every three or four months our Mahj group – made up of six very good friends (alternatively known as “The OMs” for original Mahjettes…or “Mahj Chicks” by Jim) – take off for parts unknown. Well, not really unknown…we have gone to S’s home in Sag Harbor, K’s home in Buck Hill, a home in Old Chatham and most recently, a home belonging to X’s relative in upstate New York.We spend three days and two nights really never leaving the host’s home, just playing Mahj from early, early morning to late, late night and cooking up a storm.


We arrive! All the OM’s but me – I’m taking the picture! Continue reading