I’ve been counting down the days until our summer family vacation. Seriously counting the days: day by day.
Not just any vacation, but the same exact one we’ve been going on for 12 years or so, and that’s exactly how we like it. Same time, same island, same games, food, folks.
Truth is, I’ve been counting down for 100 days in my mind, or actually with the help of early morning tv. About 100 days ago, the Today Show said it’s 100 days until the Olympics, seemed like forever ago.
It was then I started my own advent calendar of the brain: 100 days until …. nothing. Lake breezes, good books, dancing teenagers, cards, birdwatching, kayaking, fishing, bells ringing.
Keeping it simple and creating a lifetime of wishes.
My kinda friend Ilana Wiles, a LTYM NYC writer who’s a bit of a big shot in the blogosphere, took her city kid to the country, and I can’t help but think, there will be hundreds of vacations in that young family’s future, but I guarantee her little daughter talks about the time they went to that cabin for-ev-er.
It’s finally almost here. Five more sleeps until … vacation.
It’s ironic for the mom who has consistently preached to her kids: “Don’t wish your life away,” as they moaned in the off season, “I can’t wait for snow” in summer, and “I want to go swimming soooo bad” in the winter, and “This Halloween, I’m gonna be ..” in the spring, and “I-wish-it-was” whichever-ball isn’t-being-passed-at-the-present-time-season.
Be present: live in the here and now, and stop wishing for it to be then, because it will be soon enough. Sounds very yoga-mat-ish, touchy feelgood bullshit, but it’s been a constant from my mouth to their deaf ears.
And apparently to mine as well.
Because in 5 short days, I’ll be on a lake with no cell, no tv, no internet, watching life go by. Slowly, with no i-anythings, but plenty of, well, life.
We go old school on vacation, and the best part of all is the predictability of it all. Same order of events, same food, even the same folks (mostly) year after year, for generations. Tie dye, family dance, bingo. Tennis, sailing, kayaking. Bocce, birdwatching and an old time talent show. Or not. I often opt for not, with nothing but a book and the lake.
We’re newbies, first generation to this camp, but we know with confidence our grandbabies will be in the little red school house, and we can’t wait.
Actually we can. And we will.
This is a place where our kids grew up, and even today as the older, scary teenagers on the island, they too count the days to return. To do a little bit of nothing, for 7 days, with the same folks they’ve been doing nothing with their entire lives.
Seems silly to waste so many days waiting for 7 short ones, but those 7 seven days carry me for months on end. And as I look through the photographs of years gone by, I can see firsthand exactly the passage of time, and how one week can reflect a lifetime.