Monday, July 8, 2013

Back from a Brief Sailing Trip

We are back from a brief sailing trip.  Those of you who have been reading this blog for a long time know that we often join my sister, her husband, and their son on their sailboat--by often, I mean once or twice a year.  For the past several years, we've gone on more of an expedition than just the afternoon sail.

When we planned this trip, I had no idea we'd be buying a house.  I had hopes, of course, but my timeline was much more vague when I bought the airline tickets.  But it worked out fine:  we left on July 4 and returned late last night.  In some ways, it's perfect, since I don't imagine we'd have been doing a lot of business on July 5, even if we had been home.

And now it's back to regular life, whatever that turns out to be.  Today is the first day of our summer quarter, and hopefully, we're just a few days away from our close date.  Dizzying.

Let me record a few memories from our trip before they slip away.

--Our plane left at 6:30 a.m. on July 4.  We had no problems at all.  The line at security was non-existent.

--What a difference compared to last night.  The security lines at BWI were long, and the TSA workers seemed irritable.  There had been flight delays, which meant our flight was delayed.  There weren't enough seats.  And we seemed to be travelling with every teenage team playing every sport--where were all these teenagers headed?  I never figured it out.

--In between flights, we had a great trip.  We sailed to anchor out for 2 nights (the night of July 4 was too choppy to anchor out).  We had great food.  We had wonderful winds.  We swam in the Chesapeake Bay, braving the jellyfish and the strange smells because it was so good to cool off.  We remembered how little we need, in terms of what society has to offer, to make us truly happy.

--I loved seeing different landscapes:  the Chesapeake Bay, the different trees, the clumps of hydrangeas everywhere.  I loved the various small towns of Maryland that we drove through to get to the boat.  I loved the variety of boats.  It's all so different from my coastal life down here in South Florida.

--I was off the grid for several days--ahhhh.  I got a chance to read a whole book!  Several of them.

--Kate Atkinson's "Life after Life" is as wonderful as reviewers have said.  I've continued to think about it for days.  Michael Pollan's "Cooked" is not as good as "The Omnivore's Dilemma," but still quite fascinating.  More on these books later perhaps. 

--We played Monopoly, which was a bit too close to what I've been doing in terms of real estate for the past several months.  It was better to play Blackjack and Uno or games that we made up.

--Unlike past years, we didn't color as much.  We did create books of puzzles.

--My nephew loves Slurpees, so we had several of them in a long week-end.  I haven't had one since I was about 9 years old.  I remember them being tastier.

--On July 4, I heard the strains of "The Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald," sung by a folksinger at a restaurant at the marina.  I wondered about the wisdom of singing about a massive sinking surrounded by so many boats.

--I didn't hear much traditional 4th of July music.  But everywhere I went, I heard all sorts of music that reminded me of what's out there, available for just a few mouse clicks.  It's an amazing time we live in.

--And yes, like some people, I mourn what is passing away.  And then, I'm reminded I might have been mourning too early.  Throughout the airport yesterday, amidst the data charging centers, I saw people reading.  I saw a book on the control panel that moves the door to the airplane--clearly, the controller chooses to read during downtimes.

--For me, today will not be one of those downtimes, alas.  But I'm glad I had some time away, time to reconnect with family, time to see different landscapes, time to relax and remember that life is good despite the challenges.

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