Two weeks ago…

I was packing and cleaning, foraging in closets for dusty socks and cleaning out long-forgotten cheeses from the refrigerator. I was hauling too many typewriters and book boxes, hyperventilating over U-Haul and thanking my lucky stars for Becca, Caleb and Kevin. Then I boarded a plane to Massachusetts for a week with Kevin’s family on the island of Humarock. After a week’s worth of schlepping, it was indescribably refreshing to wake up to the ocean and the sky. Just the ocean and the sky. We stayed in a beach house oriented for beach-ness, with three rooms filled with comfy couches, giant picture windows that faced the water and five small bedrooms so you could bring the whole clan and lounge around staring at the beauty of summer. I picked up tiny multicolored stones worn smooth from the ocean. I had my first watermelon Slush Puppy from the general store. Kevin made us a campfire on the beach. I read three books in four days, one of which was Harry Potter 4. Every day after dinner, his family gathered to play some kind of board game. Structured competitive activities cause me to panic, instantly. But with enough peer pressure, I stuck it out and began accruing pieces of Trivial Pursuit pie.

Now I’m back in Chicago, and we’ve set up our little hobbit hole. It’s the second floor of a carriage house, and all the surfaces are slanty — floors, ceilings, everything. We’re unpacking and realizing what we don’t own — ground pepper — and finding out what happens next.

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