Sunday, August 02, 2009


My month away in Nantucket was a treat-and-a-half. But not totally devoid of frustration, lack of sleep, high-maintenance child-wrangling, bugbites, unwanted sunblock applications, and girl drama... you could call it a "vacation" to a degree. I prefer to think of it as "Time away from husband feeling kind of single-mom-ish but supported by my family-cation".

Nantucket is a fantasy world. It doesn't surprise me that 13 years ago I fell in love there. There is such a sweetness in the air - cultivated no doubt by ocean salt spray and creepy old spirits from the whaling days. Wild sunset skies... dunes... evening swims. Shadows and crickets. Falling asleep to the gentle sounds of rowdy vacationers and lonely foghorns. The rain on our rooftop was worthy of a relaxation podcast - and at that, it only rained at night or in the early morning. Fog burned off to give us mostly beach-worthy days... the kids were in paradise.

Penelope turned 2 on July 3rd, my mom turned 66 on July 4th. I feel like I'm 45, lining up for a turn in the Mid-life Crisis Circus. So I chopped about 8 inches of hair off my head... a trendy low-maintenance bob, I guess. I went to a bunch of incredible yoga classes taught by one of my favorite teachers from Providence, I rode my bike, I ran 2 road races. I went out and drank too much on more than one occasion. Got my swerve on. (I love the drunken illusions when your belly's full of gourmet treats: the ebb and flow of beautiful humans groomed like polo ponies, walking arm in arm, tiptoeing across the cobblestone streets, stumbling on the brick sidewalks. There's always a sunburned booze-hound sailor guy somewhere who laughs so loud that he rattles the glasses behind the bar. Oh, and those goddamn late-night fish tacos. I would kill for one right now.) There were these moments that felt really really good, yet somehow I thought that every second away from my kids was a huge burden on my mom or a detriment to my girls' mental health. I know I know. Silly. But feeling guilty is my great talent.

Leaving the island hurt like punches. I mean, for the first time in ages I had to blink back a couple of tears while we all tossed pennies off the ferry deck (local tradition: toss a penny from the boat as you round Brant Point Lighthouse to insure that you will return to the island again). And I'm not one to get sad. Shocking.

But we are home to the new rainforest of Vermont. Pests have devoured many of our garden delights... and perennials. Fucking slugs ate all the marigolds. The local organic food is spectacular however, and I'm pretty inspired in the kitchen. The twins got their Kindergarten class assignment and fortunately it's the teacher that I got the best first impression from. She has a guinea pig in her classroom, which will do her huge favors in the likability department. Ruby and Eloise begin gymnastics/soccer camp tomorrow - leaving Penny and I to do what we do best in the mornings: errands. (Poor portable Penelope...) As for Myles, he's in the pediatric intensive care unit this month, and then he gets a week vacation (that he'll spend half of tiling our bathroom). I'm relatively solo-momming yet again. Almost like Kate Gosselin, minus 5.

Well, one of these days I'm going to sit down to this fucking blog and tell you all something uplifting - I swear. Something monumental and enlightening. Something joyful.

Just you wait...

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