Grandma Joanne has just finished ironing the sheets for the guest bed and is now packing while watching Fox News. I, the sun worshiper, have moved inside to read the new John Irving novel because it is too hot on the porch, but I thought I'd take a minute to share a post card from the trip so far-- from Haines AK to Juneau to Seattle to Middleburg VA. We are about halfway to London. (We leave tomorrow evening.)
Grandma Joanne and I are safely at the farm in Virginia where all the neighbors are very happy about the rain after a dry spell (over an inch yesterday), and the cool temperatures, after weeks of three digit heat it's about 65. The flights were long, crowded and turbulent with delays for thunderstorms at both Seattle and Dulles. There was a lot of puking, but thankfully not from either of us. During one rattling stretch a man yelled for a towel as the flight attend lurched toward her jump seat, and hollered that she couldn't risk being killed over a little vomit.
So sorry I didn't say goodbye, but we were in a bit of a rush today, what with sitting on my suitcase so it would zip with four pairs of size ten shoes in it and the fast trip to buy chicken food and bird netting for the berries before catching the 11:45 ferry which actually didn't depart until almost 2:00, but the sun was shining and it was kind of nice to sit outside and read while we waited. Grandma Joanne and I are in Juneau tonight where Eliza cooked us halibut enchiladas. Grandma has the futon we call the taco, and she'll find out why as soon as it folds up around her.
The next two weeks are about the busiest and most of fun of the whole year in Haines, and I would feel worse for leaving, except, well, I'm going to London? The Olympics? The truth is, I really would rather stay home. I am a reluctant traveler, and the image of the anti-aircraft guns on London rooftops, the tale of yesterday's four hour bus rides from Heathrow-- for Olympic athletes no less-- have me a tad worried.
So, Don Nash came over for coffee this morning, at 5 am. He knew Chip would be up, and of course Chip had to make sure I got up, and we all drank coffee, ate toast and watched a Tour de France mountain stage on TV (Chip recorded it) and listened to the rain and checked the sky. Don flew up from Sitka for Richard's memorial yesterday, and like several other fisherman, planned to fly out first thing and return to work, but the clouds are still low and Juneau is even more socked in.
I just booked an hour at the beauty salon for next week, so that I can gussie up some for my trip to London and the Olympics. (We leave the 19th for Virginia and then onto London on the 24th, to have a few days to acclimate before the opening ceremonies on the 27th, and then equestrian events, featuring our reason for going, my sister-in-law Karen O'Connor, begin the 28th.) The big news at our house today is that it turns out Karen is the oldest US Olympian. "Well, but how old is she?" Pam asked at Morning Muscles today. When I said "54" she was impressed.
I I just had to share these images of the Lynn Canal in all its glory, when the sun came out between the storms yesterday morning on my walk with Pearl to Battery Point.
At church on Sunday we sang the funeral hymns-- Amazing Grace, Love Divine all Loves Excelling - and Jan (our priest) gave a sermon based on the lesson-- sort of-- it was the one about Jesus not being a prophet in his hometown, just a carpenter and someones kid brother. But Jan always manages to bring her homilies around to love, and she did it again, noting that life is fragile, and deaths like Richard's remind us of that, and because we know life is tender and fleeting, she said, our response should be to love each other well, and since she is a Christian, to love God, too.
My last column for Woman's Day is in the July issue (that's why you can't find me in the August issue)-- I'm sorry to say. It's funny that I posted what I thought was the last one on facebook last week, but it wasn't-- I wrote the columns four months ahead, so it gets a little confusing. Also, blog readers will no doubt recognize this story, as parts of it were written here, first.