Like so many couples and singles of a certain age, Anne and Noel are stuck in a rut. Not a bad rut exactly, but a rut, nonetheless, that spells boredom and complacency. He buries himself in his history books and she blathers on, talking to him even though he barely listens.
Until one dark and rainy night, when young Claudia, a stranger, pounds on the living room window of their comfortable suburban home, bounds into their lives and ushers in changes that will affect them profoundly. The changes continue as Tobin, Claudia's bedraggled boyfriend, joins the merry scene and injects himself into the older marrieds' tried and true routine.
That is the premise of William Donnelly's Homestead Crossing, playing through Sept. 30 at Merrimack Repertory Theatre in a co-production with Berkshire Theatre Festival and Portland Stage Company.
What takes place in this intriguing, intimate vignette is part memory and part reality, part then and part now.
There are no pat answers or foregone conclusions in this play. But one thing is certain -- Homestead Crossing will jog you from complacency and urge you to incorporate more spontaneity into your life. Anyone ready for a road trip to Toronto? Why not? you'll remark, after seeing Homestead Crossing.
Homestead Crossing continues through Sept. 30 at Merrimack Repertory Theatre, 50 East Merrimack St., Lowell. 978-654-4678 or www.mrt.org for tickets.