Wednesday, August 11, 2004

gee but it's great to be back home

... home is where I wanna beeeeee, I been on the road so long, my friend...
[With due credit given to Mssrs. Simon & Garfunkel.]

But it's true. We were on the road for 2 weeks solid, and then for a week before that Seattle was blasted with a wicked nasty heat wave [can you tell I've just been in New England?] that basically turned all our brains to mush and left us gasping around flapping our fins in search of water to fling ourselves into. So I've been remiss in my self-imposed blogging duties. I wonder if any of my huge [maybe 6 or so by now?] readership has jumped ship over this lapse. Well, I will just keep typing into the void, in hopes that one day this message in a bottle will be found, ideally by someone with the same taste in crappy '70's and '80's music references [RW is continually amazed at the number of obscure song lyrics I can pull out of the mental file cabinet, but all I can think of is how I could have used all those brain cells for more useful and/or impressive things--like actual poetry, or the names and locations of countries, or what Communism is anyway. That kind of thing.]

A few brief statistics will give you the idea of the whirlwindiness of our tour: In the course of 14 days, we visited 4 states [I'm not counting New Hampshire, which we only drove through, though we did have some excellent pizza there], stayed overnight in 6 different places [though for 5 of those we slept in Putt-Putt the adorable if somewhat indisyncratic VW camper van we rented], and visited 34 [I think] people, mostly though not entirely relatives and old friends. It would have been 35 or 36 if we'd had another hour or so to visit Jessamyn & possibly her boyfriend, but we were late to get to RW's aunt's house by dinner time and Sarah was asleep in the carseat, which made us reluctant to stop driving. There were a few other misses but mostly we managed to meet up with a miraculous number of folks we wanted to see and almost never get to.

We swam in 1 ocean [The Atlantic! My home ocean!], 2 lakes, and a river. Really we just waded around in the river because it was starting to rain but we did watch some kids dive into it out of a doorway in a covered bridge. Sarah rode in 3 different boats, but RW and I only made 2 each of those-- she skipped the Swan Boats in Boston for a chance to catch up with her friend Susan L, and I skipped the motorboat tour of Panther Pond given by Susan P's dad. We all got to go on the tall ship Liberty.

Two of the friends we saw are named Susan. Two of the relatives we saw [both writers with female spouses who are also writers, go figure] are named Ellen. We hooked up with several charming children, most of whom have names that could be [and in some cases were] their great-grandparents'. Viz. to wit: Claire, Lilly, Sophie, Isabelle. [of course, Sarah and Claire etc. will probably name their kids Ellen and Susan and maybe Debbie and Jennifer, thinking those names terribly elegant and classic and their own names hopelessly trendy.]

Some things I got to eat: maple sugar candy, the aforementioned excellent pizza, lobster the way it should be eaten [outside, at a picnic table, with no worries about making a mess], assorted other fabulous shellfish, Greek takeout, pie for breakfast, Burnt Sugar ice cream, root beer floats, toasted marshmallows, blueberry pancakes, and Pop-tarts. And a fair amount of peanut butter and hot dogs to round things out. There must have been some vegetables somewhere, but I don't remember them much except for the corn we had with the lobster and the grilled zucchini on the last night.

Things Sarah got to do: Go fishing; watch hermit crabs; slide down an actual cellar door over and over; belly-dance in a real coin-encrusted belly-dance belt; pick blueberries for the blueberry pancakes; become an expert in climbing up to the bed in Putt-Putt's pop-up top; and pull RW's backpack off the security conveyor belt her very own self , in a frenzy of helpfulness.

Expensive things RW and I want to do now: Buy our own camper van; visit Maine every year; eat more lobster.

Tomorrow Sarah goes back to day care and RW and I have another suppposedly-productive Wednesday in which we will unpack and I will get started on my newly-minted list of Things to Do as well as working on the Things to Do backlog that didn't actually get done before the trip. Based on my Getting Things Done track record this summer, and how late I'm up at this moment, I am already kind of despairing. We shall see.


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