The beach was good. My garden ate New York. That's OK, New York will grow back, it always does.
Last Saturday night, that would be eight days ago, not yesterday, I packed Lucia, Lucia's friend and Little Girl into the car and headed South. We arrived at Captain's Quarters at about 2:30 and the nice lady came to let us in when I called her. She came in her jammies and bathrobe and there is something about that part of the country that is so completely un-contrived it often leaves me speechless. I loved her cranky self instantly even though I don't think I'm ever going to be able to bring myself to go back therebecause even though it's my favorite fleabag ever the carpeting has finally gotten too greasy even for me. I'm not being facetious either. I really do love fleabags, they are what they say they are and that's that. It's nothing compared to the Ramada Inn we stayed at on our way off the island during a hurricane. When I woke up the next morning I saw that my kids were sleeping in a bed that somebody bled out on. Well, just the box spring, the top mattress was changed. And I do, unfortunately, know what bled out on looks like. Not somewhere I ever want to put my kids.
We had breakfast on the bridge in the morning and arrived at just about the right time to check in because we stopped and did touristy things like taking pictures on the Bay Bridge fishing pier:
And taking pictures in front of the flying saucer that used to be a beach house and then was a hot dog stand at Scotch Bonnet and now it's just kind of sitting there holding stuff.
We stayed in a cabin at a campground called Frisco Woods. I recommend this cabin highly if only for the clientele although the facilities were really very nice. We 'lived' in a really cool 'neighborhood'. We lived across from a family from the mountains of North Carolina and that's all you really needed to know. If you kept your loud Yankee mouth shut and smiled and payed attention you got to learn all kinds of things about people who might as well have been from another country and they got to know things about you. Hillbillies are grounded and lovely people and not all Yankees are heinous. Seriously.
Little Girl made a friend named Summer (really) and was heartbroken leaving her. By the end of the week Summer had learned to say FINE! and Little Girl learned to say WOMAN! Snap out of it!!! I wish, and Little Girl wishes, that they were old enough to write but Summer is only six and not quite ready for that.
Our campsite was organized chaos. I couldn't find my underwear. It was with the hot dog rolls that weren't where they belonged anyway. I lost track of EVERYTHING at least once during the week. I got over it pretty quickly because I think my attitude got adjusted on the way out of town and pretty much stayed that way.
This is what a Hatteras sunset looks like from Hatteras Landing:
This is all of us, me, Cielo, Little Girl, Lucia's Friend and Lucia. I am NOT having a baby so don't even ask. It's the dress, I swears it. Maybe you should only look from the boobs up. OK?
Here is another picture that I'm posting because it's really funny but also kind of spooky. A good part of the week I was feeling like we were so completely removed from our lives that we might has well have been in another time altogether. We cooked outside, we had one small cabin, we had a spigot on the side of the cabin for which I was eternally grateful and with all that time spent cooking and eating and sleeping and being there wasn't any time for tired or discontent. There was just this being in the business of being and being alive. So this picture was taken by a complete stranger at about 6:45 the morning we left and it was taken by my D80 set on 'anybody will take a really awesome picture' and we got four of these anyway. I don't think it was the photographer. I think it was the truth.
Ethereal, isn't it? It felt that way and I miss it but I'm pretty sure I can remember my way home this time. With my eyes shut. Home doesn't much involve a rental house on the beach I've discovered.
Anyway, here is my Daddy. He's cute as hell, isn't he?
OK, that's not really a fair picture because normally he's grinning ear to ear at the beach but I'm thinking he must have been saying something when I took this and of course I wouldn't have been listening because that's what I do (take pictures of my daddy and not listen to him when he's speaking, why start now, right?). Also, he kind of looks like he might be missing some teeth here but I promise you he's not missing any and oh God is he ever going to be annoyed with me for posting this but I couldn't help it and he does live 300 miles North so I've got a pretty good head start. Right?
Here are the girls holding a beach chair over the grill because it started to rain about ten minutes before the chicken was done. It rained quite a bit last week and I didn't mind in the least, as it turns out.
This is completely gratuitous. I would NEVER in a million years have ever let my kids do something like this much less have suggested it (which I did) but like I said I must have had an attitude adjustment on the way out the door because I figured it was worth getting in trouble if we got yelled at or anything and we were very, very careful and it WAS for sale and it ought to be tried out, right? There was a side table off to the left and it was for sale too but I drew the line at sitting on a table since that's not what we do with tables anyway.
Here is another gratuitous shot of Little Girl because she's eight and just precious (having only recently learned to say FINE!).
And I can't very well leave out this precious Lucia moment now can I?
Listen, I have plenty of things for which to get even with Lucia for so don't even start in on me. This is only the tip of the iceberg that kid owes me. Speaking of which, she owes me money for books. Again.
There is a lot I can write and hopefully will about this trip that deserves more from me than a quick writing on a Sunday night when I'm dog tired and just wanting to go to bed early before work tomorrow. Living out there like that the way we did with the people in that space was profound and served as a very insistent reminder of who we really might be if we could let go of what we think we must have.