It’s rained a lot this summer. Nearly every other day, the sky opens up for at least a few minutes. As a result, our yard is a jungle—tall weeds line the fence, the grass is approaching Amber-waves-of-grain territory, and the bugs are having some kind of World’s Fair.
Part of the reason the yard is so ragged is that we’ve been out a lot. We flew on a plane for the first time in 18 months, with all of us in masks, including Drew. We spent 14 days in Massachusetts with my husband’s family—toddler twins, 3-year-old golf prodigy, and 5-year-old girl boss of the aforementioned boys. My father-in-law made s’mores at his fire pit, my mother-in-law introduced us to that show “Northern Exposure”, we went out for a nice dinner with Thom’s high school friend and took a long drive south of Boston to see mine. Drew made new friends, sat with old friends at a fire pit while taking s’mores apart (he has to deconstruct everything. He peels his sandwiches apart and says ‘I need to see the cheese’), and met dogs at the park. The weather was almost cold—at least that’s how it felt to us, with cool breezes off the ocean. I’d forgotten that when the wind blows in Massachusetts, the trees sound like the sea.
Then we came back home, to a yard the elements had nearly reclaimed, and a visit from my old college roommate. We stayed up late talking until our voices were nearly gone, hung out at Target and made comments about the sweaters, and spent literally hours in bookstores, leafing through Yeats’ poetry and being eighteen for a little while.
And we have more travels to come—making up for a year in isolation. It turns out, things haven’t changed too much as far as the people are concerned. My mother-in-law still outdoes herself with special breakfasts for the grandkids (birthday toast? Pancake sharks? Mimi is a champion), my niece still wears all the sparkly dresses I get her, and our friends are as nerdy as we are. I was so happy to see them all and realize things hadn’t changed as much as I feared. When you have a decade of history, it’s ok to miss a few things.
I found myself worrying, sure—I mentally counted all the people and how close they were to me, and we all washed our hands a lot more than we used to. But maybe good hand hygiene is a small change we can live with.
I haven’t written anything because it’s summer, team, and I don’t expect many of you to read this because you’re outside on the lawn or else just watching TV without caring, but…happy July.
P.S. Yes, everything is cool. This post has nearly no angst. But the Back-to-School sales can chill for a few more days—Andrew’s school clothes came in the mail and I’m having a hard time with it. He can spend a few more weeks running around barefoot in his pajamas, sitting on the porch meeting bugs…he’ll soon be starting school…no. No, I can’t deal with that right now.