Whew. Nothing like returning to the scene of one's childhood!
We spent part of every summer on Orcas Island, once a hippy backwater, now Martha's Vineyard West.
We returned. My parents, sister, and one year of myself, having lived there in adulthood. And thanks to those lasting relationships, we were able to stay on the beach, kayaking at will, swooning over orange and hot pink sunsets, bubbling in a hot tub, noshing seafood including a $100 salmon! and sardining ourselves into a cabin.
As usual, in my total and absolute excitement to arrive, I babbled endlessly. And hopped around like a puppy chiwahwah on five cans of Jolt (or the modern equivalent). Some of you have seen me do this. When Kate visited the hovel in Rock Island I ran aroundaroundaround nipping at her ankles until she barked, "DOWN! SIT! STAY!" (not really, but she should have!)
Unfortunately, I was so tired of my parenting job that I didn't play much with the kids. I took them out kayaking, and cajoled them around the lake, and kissed their booboo's but I didn't really play. This is sort of sad. But understandable. And now they are in Salem and so I will be ready to play again when they get back on Thurs. And we will play together all day, every day, for two more months.
And then, there's the family "of origin," as those feeling alienated always call it. Anyway, this is the revised version, because after all this, I'm still actually worried about feeling further alienated from them. You'd think I'd get over it. You'd think I'd LIKE to be alienated from them. But I'm apparently not completely ready for that.
An inexplicably sudden and strong emotional reaction to my emotions not being taken seriously was, without irony, met with laughter!
And also, the collapse is coming in the clouds to gather up the righteous. I will not be among them because I love ketchup and have an irredeemable tomato addiction, me and Pol Pot. This will hasten the collapse, obviously. Which is okay, because the righteous are looking forward to it. The only path to redemption is to skin a porcupine.
And also, when everyone trots off to their various entitlements and I suddenly discover myself alone, abandoned with my kids, I need to relaaaaaxxx and enjoy my usual responsibilities as a stay at home mom, on vacation, while the others are off kayaking, jogging, walking, and sipping coffee with friends and will return whenever, that's not important.
Okay. Okay. That's not ALL that happened. There were also crazy good times around the camp fire. Matt's hilarious stories about chopping wood (he chops A LOT of wood... and carries A LOT of water). Cocktails in town with my sister/confidant. My mom stumbled across a new band name: OCDC. A return to the classic family photo atop Mt. Constitution. And good times. I love my family. Sometimes it's an obvious thing and sometimes I don't know why. They can really confuse and infuriate me.
The last magical night, we were up late at the campfire fraternizing with our pseudo siblings and hosts Grant and Ronna, when we were interrupted by a strange cloppity flap flap below us on the beach. Further investigation found a swarm of miniature sharks (dogfish). The high tide crammed them against the shore. The summer's phosphorescence sparkled where the Sound flopped against the rocks. As far as the flashlight would shine, it was fins, flat glowing eyes, and tails plonking the surface, the song of shark infested waters. Enchanting and metaphoric!
Of course, no journey to Orcas would be complete without a psychic striking up a conversation with me while I waited for the departing ferry. Suddenly, she went into a reverie, and sheepishly mumbled things about my aura she could suddenly see. Things I'm learning to hate about myself. I'm a listener (when not overly excited to see you!). I'm listening to the background, to the things behind the visible.
She forgot to mention that to my family, however.
On the way home, I met up with Big Rachel. She's not actually big, but is older than my sister, Lil' Rachel. She's the neighbor girl from my childhood who constitutes 50% of my memory, and with whom Facebook reunited me. Despite epic communications problems including the death of my cell phone battery and the constant failure of the Orcas Internet, we did actually meet up. I was, again, as excited as possible and nearly jabbered my head off! Huck was there, however, and noticed it dangling at my feet, a few strands left to show where it had come from. And he handily popped it back on the neck-stand, and I was actually able to ask some of the questions I really wanted to. That was the first person that I've seen from high school. Except for the one I was briefly married to.
And now: Here I Am. In my house. On my land. I've lived here for all eternity. It makes me feel like a ghost. I'm Home. Alone. Finally.
update: for pics of the dogfish check out our hosts blog: http://myles-era.blogspot.com/