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Pilgrim Monument, line drawing by Ewa Nogiec
Joanne Colucci and Marilyn Lober



Buddhists believe the lotus, which rises from mud and murky waters blossoms into a beautiful flower...

Here is where the story begins for Joanne Colucci and Marilyn Lober.

After visiting Provincetown from New York every summer for 17 years Joanne and Marilyn decided to pursue their dreams and become full- time residents or “wash-ashores” in P-town.Joanne worked for 20 years in a Fortune 100 company in the NYC downtown financial district across the street from the Twin Towers. Marilyn worked for 12 years in the fast paced NYC theater district as Business Assistant to the Broadway department for the union Actors’ Equity Association. They owned a condo in the historic district of Brooklyn Heights overlooking the Brooklyn Bridge and the Manhattan skyline.

In the summer of 2001, Joanne decided to risk it all and jump into the entrepreneurial world of corporate consulting after receiving her Masters degree in forensic psychology. The real estate market was hot and on their vacation of 2001 Joanne and Marilyn purchased a condo in Provincetown and were on their way!

Then came September 11th--Joanne’s responsibilities as security director put her right in the middle of the catastrophe. She was shushing towards her office as others were fleeing away from their offices into the streets. People were also jumping from the towers and debris was falling from the second plane. Rushing into emergency mode, Joanne helped evacuate the 8,000 people from her office building across from the World Trade Center. Marilyn was frantically trying to get through Joanne’s cell phone every minute while crowding around a small TV screen in her company’s lunchroom. When the towers fell Marilyn did not know if she would ever see Joanne again.

Finally, hours later with a warm loving embrace, Joanne reunited with Marilyn at her offices in Times Square. They had to walk back downtown over the Manhattan Bridge back home into Brooklyn with the rest of the weary and shocked workers of the city as fighter planes flew overhead. When they looked out their windows they only saw the black smoke raising, they no longer had the view of Manhattan just helicopters, fighter planes, police and fire department vehicles speeding by.

Now they also worried about their dream. With the thought of paying two mortgages and starting new careers it couldn’t get any worse.

Then out of the mud, the flower began to slowly grow...

An offer was made for their condo on Yom Kippur, the highest of Jewish holy days. Two weeks later Joanne’s boss called and asked her to stay and work virtual from Provincetown. With the aftermath of 9/11 in NYC, sadly theater sales were down on Broadway but for Marilyn it was the perfect time to follow her dream.

A month later they were in Provincetown with their two cats!

The serenity of the Cape was what they both needed. Having loved the combination of the beaches, sand dunes, and the ever-changing forest they were immediately calmed by its winter charm.

They were so excited to decorate their new home, they became interested in all the inspiring art around them. They spent their weekends in the library and the art galleries along Commercial Street and became friends with the gallery owners who taught them the local history. Marilyn became so inspired she began to feel the creativity around her and is now pursuing art herself, a passion she never was able to pursue while working and living in NYC.

It looks like another lotus is beginning to grow...*The picture enclosed is a picture of Joanne (seated) Marilyn (standing holding Joanne) in their favorite Provincetown restaurant, The Mews. This copy of the photo survived 9/11 on Joanne’s desk found amongst the dust. Joanne and Marilyn were born and bred New Yorkers. They love and feel so blessed living in P-town but will never forget 9/11.

from iamprovincetown exhibit at the Pilgrim Monument & Provincetown Museum, 2003



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Fishing Boat line drawing by Ewa Nogiec

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