Arrive at night and blindly make your way down the uneven brick pathway, the outdoor entry light is not working – add it to the list. Say a prayer to Mariza who made the beds and left the house free of cobwebs, wipe down shelves in the closets and chests of drawers, unpack, remind your children that the floor is not where their clothes belong, rush to Richdales for milk and cereal and over-ripe bananas just to tide you over until you can do a full grocery run tomorrow. Try to fall asleep even if it is only 9:00 pm back home, listen to the thunder and lightening and know you aren’t in California anymore, watch the curtains flutter as the wind blows in hot, humid air, complain about the heat, finally fall asleep. Continue reading
I spend my falls, winters, and springs, wondering why the hell I thought owning a home three thousand miles away was a good idea. First there is the cost. No need to relive that pain here. Then there is the challenge of unexpected leaks, appliance repairs, annual upgrades, garden maintenance, and let’s not ignore the unexpected guests (bugs or bigger creatures). Each off season I convince myself, this is the year I am going to cash out and sell the old grand dame. And then July comes and I arrive back here to the place we spend our Invincible Summers and soon my resolve has melted under the warmth of Annisiquam. Continue reading
Let’s s call it what it is: being a teenager is just damn hard these days. Back in the Stone-age when I was sixteen, I didn’t spend six months planning my summer in order to ensure I was filling the requisite boxes for my college apps. No, I was busy perfecting my tan (grease up with baby oil, wait 15 minutes, turn), chasing down my latest crush (is he at the beach, the swim club, or the movies today?), and reading every Jacqueline Suzanne or Judith Krantz novel I could get my hands on. Sure I had a summer job. I babysat my neighbor’s kids in the mornings so she could go to her yoga class (Yoga? What weirdo does that?). It was a great summer. I was bored all of the time. Bored enough to realize that when three of my friends got pregnant, it was time to do something. I decided to volunteer at Planned Parenthood which lead to a lifetime commitment to ensuring women and girls, men and boys, have access to good sex education. I have taught classes, marched in Washington, volunteered, and given money. I even spent six years on the board of the Planned Parenthood Golden Gate Affiliate. None of this would have happened if my sixteenth summer hadn’t been boring. Sadly, my son won’t be bored this summer. He is too busy planning for his future.
You know summer has arrived in Annisquam when the Yacht Club hosts its first Family Night, a buffet dinner of over-cooked hamburgers and under-cooked cod. Each Wednesday through July and August, we gather for cocktails and let the children run wild. Even jeans are allowed.