Sunday, August 30, 2009

Under Way Again

I thought it appropriate to post an updated photo of my "Sailor's Knots," on this the week of Ted Kennedy's passing. I did work quite a bit on it while at Mom and Dad's (thankfully I had packed my tabletop Daylite lamp). That one big sail is now all filled in, and I'm working my way up the left side.

I loved watching the scene from Boston yesterday, albeit in the rain. From the military escorts pulling the casket out of the hearse with such precision, to the Roman Catholic ceremony (being a New England Protestant, with emphasis on the "protest," I find all that ceremony fascinating). If anyone needs inspiration to conquer tragedy, look to that family. And, since my lovelife took a nosedive this week, I found it quite therapeutic to watch a funeral.

It is time to look to the future, learn from past mistakes, and move on. Stephanie will begin her senior year at UMaine tomorrow and already has a job offer. Nate is making real progress with his finances and has a new love. The air, even here in land-locked Ohio, has a new crispness to it. This is most definitely my season and I throw open my arms to embrace it. Just need someone to hug me back.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

The Game

Most of you know that I am a HUGE Red Sox fan. Most Mainers are. Somehow, through the grace of God, I managed to be in attendance at Game 6 of the 1975 World Series at Fenway. Seeing as I have now lived in Cincinnati for over 20 years, the irony is inescapable. I’ve been told I’m like Dustin Hoffman in “Rainman” about it: “Game 6, Game 6, Game 6….”.

Needless to say, I was literally beside myself when my daughter called me to say she had purchased two tickets to a game on July 27th. It was totally unexpected and a wonderful surprise. Since she has been at school at UMaine , she has become a huge fan as well, and had never been to Fenway. So, we were going to have a great day in Boston. COULD NOT WAIT !!

We decided to take the Amtrak Downeaster from Portland at around 6 am, which would get us down to North Station by about 8:30 and we would have the whole day ahead of us, until the 7:10 game. It worked out perfectly. We did the Duckboat tour, where even I learned a lot. The tour guide did start calling me “Google” for short though.

Here are a few of the best shots during the tour (the first is us on the early-can you tell?- train to Boston):

After the tour,we took the T to Fenway, immediately signed up for the Fenway Park tour at 1:00, then went to get something to eat. We bought a few souvenirs and soaked up the ecstatic atmosphere all around Fenway and Yawkey Way. We were playing Oakland and were sure to win.

It was a hot day in Beantown and the crowds for Gameday were building already. The tour was wonderful, and included the Budweiser Deck, the Green Monster and many many facts. Since we were members of Red Sox Nation, we got to get into the park extra early for batting practice, which we watched atop the Green Monster. Afterwards, we found our way to our seats, just behind the Pesky Pole. They were great seats and we enjoyed every minute of it, as our own video can attest. And, yes, we won !!

Maine 2009

Having “lived away” now for most of my adult life, I tend to romanticize about my home state, the people and places that I remember from my childhood, I yearn for the intoxicating sea breezes, the pungent salty air of the harbor, and the scent of the ubiquitous pine. Just to be in New England!

I think somehow I must have passed this on to my daughter in the gene pool, since she chose to go to college there. Since she did not grow up there, I cannot explain it. But, nonetheless, we now share this bond, along with many others, and for that I am grateful. It is hard to explain to anyone who has never been there. They just don’t get it.

This year’s annual visit with the folks was restful, productive, and tons of fun. Although both my mother and dad are struggling with being on the edge of living independently and making some difficult decisions regarding caring for each other, somehow their stubborn Yankee resourcefulness and determination earned them all the more respect from me. It is this pluck that has gotten them this far, and, although it is frustrating at times to see them cling to the past, I know in my heart that I will be the same way someday.

I managed to pack an almost 50 lb. suitcase full of books, stitching, and family tree research to work on, and just about tackled it all. Top that off with a Red Sox game at Fenway, and a wicked good feed of lobster, and you have yourself a perfect 2+ weeks in Maine.