So here we are, about a quarter after six in the morning, and I am running on about 2 hours of sleep. We took the train to Portland, Oregon, spent a few days there, rented a van, and travelled south to my Mom and Dad's place, before driving all the way home. But that's not how I want to tell the story, or remember our journey. I want to write down all of my impressions, the funny incidences, and best meals, favorite sights. I wish I could have posted from the road, but the Blogger app doesn't work any more. I posted some pictures to Instagram, which I enjoy doing.
I wish I could have posted from the road, while we were in the middle of our trip... to keep it current and fresh, to stay on top of the details I love so much, to feel caught up, and not fall behind. Now I am home two days... the first day home we were sort of exhausted and turned around, having spent two long days driving, and I was feeling like I was between three worlds... the redwoods, and rose gardens, and the 405 Interstate during rush hour. That is disorienting, for sure. But today is our second day at home, and I am feeling melancholy, and to be very honest... kind of sad. And I want to be clear: I am not disappointed in our trip or about being home, but there's just this transitional phase, where I miss what we had, where we were, what we left behind. And I am a bit loathe to jump back into laundry, cat litter, bureaucratic flaming hoops, spam email, post election analysis. My sweet peas are mostly dead, and I have a garden of things that need attention. In fact, everything needs my attention, and... well, I need a vacation.
What in the...
Well. It's true. I did that to myself. It wasn't an agenda, outlined and deliberate. It was just beneath the surface, a feeling, a wish. But I think it was pervasive, nonetheless. Bits of the scheme and hope, prodded me on, and led me to believe, to lean in, optimistically. And, naturally, things didn't quite work out as my ambitious psyche aspired.
But now, in this little pity party mood, I think... The best horchata I've had in ages, is 1,062 miles away.
This is not the best time for me to blog.
I'll need some time, a little space, to get through this funk. I started the laundry. There are a few last things to dig out of the rental van, which I return in a few hours. But there's already a long list of things that need to get done, and I have this doleful foreboding that blogging will fall further and further away from my focus and I'll start to lose track of our days in the PNW, motivation to write it all down. I still haven't finished sorting our New England stories. Sigh.
I love Portland. I love Oregon. We walked a lot, and there are well over 2,000 new photographs on my computer... pictures that will remind me of the flowers, the smiles, the amusing moments, and beautiful ones, too. Nonetheless, I have not reversed time, or reduced the miles between here, and there. There is where my Mom and Dad live, where the drivers are friendlier and neighborhoods feel like small worlds, that can be sampled on foot, met with a smile. Here... well, for now, here is where I am face to face with "real life" and the things I have not managed well, the stuff I gotta do, and issues I have not resolved, which is why I really shouldn't be blogging right now.
Max, Maria, William, Alex, Delia and Ron, Natalie
I was going to mourn and grieve and let it all out... there. That's a big truth, or hope. I am afraid a lot of hard things, and losses have been bottled up inside me, and pushed down for later, and I thought, or believed, that this would be the time when I could talk, and cry, and release, heal, understand. I still have not poured my heart out, opened up, made a ritual or gesture of... I don't know. My grandmother's death still feels so recent, so unreal and tender, that even there, with my Mom, in her home, so close to all of it, it felt too soon, too raw. And I am sad, because of those thousand miles that make it near impossible to try again, to take small steps, linger again over a cup of tea and let the conversation flow.
Sometimes I feel guilty, apologetic, for not accepting that life is unfair, that we can't always get what we want, for hoping I can have more. I know life is unfair. I know we can't always get what we want. But that knowledge does not take away the sorrow, or make me any less frustrated, disappointed. And I see that this applies to many things... even the blessing of my grandmother's long life, 95 years, does not make me "happy" or "thankful." I want her. I want more. I love good things, beautiful moments, meaningful relationships, views, train rides, art supplies, and I want more. And I feel kind of guilty, a bit apologetic for saying so, and maybe this isn't such a good time for me to try to blog about this.