I've been away quite a while. I've been on vacation and haven't read emails and haven't blogged and haven't watched much TV. I even lost touch with the American League East pennant race for a while but the Yankees are inexplicably 4 games ahead, so what could be wrong with that?
I've been catching up on the Republicans since I got back. Could the last sensible person leaving Texas please bring the American flag? Am I wrong, or didn't Rick Perry suggest, not so long ago, that it might not be a bad idea for Texas to secede from the Union? And now he wants to be President of the nation he wanted to leave? And his campaign promise about making the federal government 'irrelevant' in our lives--isn't that a bit like saying "make me Pope and I'll get Christianity out of your lives"? Maybe I've lived too long but Rick Perry makes Barry Goldwater look like a liberal.
We vacation on Oak Island, NC. There are three beaches on Oak Island--Yaupon Beach, Fort Caswell Beach and Long Beach. We go to Long Beach. I've tried to figure out how many times we've gone to Long Beach. Some 20 years in a row from the mid-70's to the mid-90's and perhaps 7 years since then. A long time, anyway. Five years ago our daughter Mimi called to find out where it was we dragged her most of her life until she graduated from High School. She and Tim, her boyfriend we love, went that year and then she suggested we go each year. We go in September since Long Beach is virtually empty after Labor Day, being a family beach. Our friend, John has gone with us the last 4 years and our friend Sherry went last year.
The biggest decision facing me each day at Long Beach is whether to walk East or West on my morning 'beach walk'. Long Beach faces South so the sun comes up on the left and sets on the right.
We eat and read and read and eat and Mimi and Tim go in the water, then there is reading and eating and this year ping-pong because the house had a table and then some reading and eating and sleeping. Naps are optional but often taken. If it rains, which it hasn't much the last four years, we go to a movie just off the island. No movie this year--just endless sunshine, 20+ mph winds off the ocean, and the ocean breathing its remarkable breath.
(There is, when you sit staring at the ocean and listening to its roar, a moment every once in a while when the waves break almost simultaneously and a deep Silence descends. It only happens once in a while on a beach that is almost seven miles long (LONG Beach isn't a misnomer!) but when it does it is magical, wondrous, spiritual, contemplative. Deep Silence is the gift of being by the ocean. The roar and whisper of the Ocean's breath is wondrous, but more wondrous by far are those rare moments when the Ocean inhales and there is Deep Silence. It happens about once every five minutes--and it is glorious....)
Fredricksburg, Virginia is about half-way to Long Beach. So we stay there on the way down and the way back. Mimi and Tim fly from NYC to Raleigh and rent a car. Bern and John and I are above 60. We deserve to make the 760 mile trip a two day thing. And staying in the Hampton Inn in Fredricksburg is a joy. We drive about 7 hours a day--always that or less from Fredricksburg to Long Beach--all Interstate until the last 30 miles and little traffic. From Cheshire to Fredricksburg and back is an adventure since we go through DC and Baltimore and NYC. Could be 6 1/2 hours (as it was coming back this year) or 9 hours if the GW Bridge and the Washington Beltway are uncooperative....
But that's what we do. And we've put the house on hold for next year--the same great house with the best kitchen equipment ever and 6 bed rooms and a ping pong table. What could be better?
Someday I'd like to go to Oak Island with my grandchildren, since we were there so much with our own children. It is a place of great beauty and great simplicity. Not a bad combination.
(Rick Perry makes Michelle Bachman look sane.....) But then I'm a 'tax and spend' liberal from way back....
Good to be back.
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