We have now gone through FL, GA, SC, NC, TN, VA, WV, MD, PA, NY and CT so far on our trip. Sunday we will drive through MA into VT and as a treat Susan told Christopher that we would also slip into NH. Christopher looked horrified and asked how much driving would this entail. Susan explained it would be like MD, just a short drive from VT into NH, so that will add 3 more states, with out that much driving. Monday we will drive down to NJ to pick up OB. Where we are going is just a few miles from DE, so for Christopher's first big car vacation he will have stepped on the soil of 16 states. Pretty cool
Also because he is working on his citizenship award for boy scouts OB is taking us to Philly to see the liberty bell and the highlights of American history. OB is an eagle scout (was? or is? I would think once you are an eagle scout, you always are) and so is enjoying taking Christopher through as much history as possible. I love this kind of stuff so we will have a lot of fun.
It was hard travelling yesterday, mostly because our butts were sore. I have Christopher doing yoga with me to stretch his back. But we still used our travel time for some good educational fun. Christopher looked up on the Internet all of the Presidents in order and where they were born. I had no idea that more then half of the presidents have come from VA and OH. VA I understood. After all during colonial time some of our most affluent men, capable of leaving their homes and being involved in politics lived in VA. I guess OH also makes sense, although I would not have guessed it. After all the mid west was the bread basket of the US at one time, also oil and of course industries likes cars and appliances. Anyway like 6 out of 7 presidents in a row were from OH. You go OH!
We also looked up about John Brown and Harper's Ferry and after the history lesson we discussed the issues of slavery, motive and methods and discussed how it relates today with various issues. We also learned about the mason-dixon line, which actually dates back to the beginning of the revolutionary war. When we got to Susan's we were discussing what we had learned and we looked up the mason-dixon line again and learned even more. Susan likes these kind of things also.
The ride was nice through the various mountain ranges, the weather was gorgeous to ride with the top down. The vista's of farms and silos just filled my heart with such sweet memories of childhood and car trips across the country. I was so glad to be sharing this with Christopher.
The travel was easy, well until we got to NY and CT. In one spot it took us more then 15 minutes to drive about a half mile. It was stop and go half way through NY and into CT. But we made it. The GPS worked great and kept up with us as we changed our route with out discussing it with her. And she took us right up to Susan and Jim's front door.
It was like coming home seeing those beautiful faces. And then James came in with his sweet beautiful Emily and my heart expanded until it burst into a giant puddle of ooze and I just held on to that gorgeous, sweet, talented young man while we just hugged and hugged. I love these children, Annie and James. Susan and Jim had 3 children. John died so very very young of SIDS, and his birthday was just a few weeks ago. He is as much a part of this wonderful close family as any of the other four members, or the three dogs, or the significant others of Annie and James. This is one of the great families. Christopher fit right in. After all he comes from a very similar loving sweet precious family.
We stayed home and ate pizza and watched the opening ceremony of the Olympics. It was so great being here with these precious sweet people that I have loved for my entire adult life and to share it with Christopher. It was magical to see a family expand and add another heart. The opening ceremonies was amazing, but I admit to being a bit confused by some of it. I was also confused as they worked their way through the decades of music where were the Rolling Stones? Where was Sir Elton? Well, we had a lot of fun. Christopher stayed up with Mr. Jim and James to watch the entire ceremony, I gave up in the "G"s and called Dad and then went to bed. We are all sitting around watching the Olympics now.
Dad is starting to say goodbye. This is new this week. He is so very lonely and he hurts and he doesn't really understand what is happening, but he knows that he is loosing control of his life and decision making. He begged me not to put him in a home because he would loose who he was. He cried and told me how lonely he was, but all that is left of his life is his memories, please, he begged, don't take away all that I have left. I asked about moving the living room into the dining room to make it easier on him getting around the house. JongAe had thought of this, and I thought it was a great idea. Dad said it was a good idea, but said he really didn't want to do it because it would mean moving his paintings and memorabilia on the living room walls, and he is afraid that if they are moved, he will not remember them. He knows he is loosing his mind at times. And I understand that taking his life and memorabilia will be very confusing to him. So that idea is out. I am trying to be supportive as he starts to say his goodbyes. I know how hard it is to live everyday knowing the end is coming. To look forward to relief from the pain, the threat of death, and yet, he is not totally ready. It more that he is giving up. I want him to be okay, whatever that means. I hate to see him so sad and confused. It is hard getting old. It is hard getting old and watching your father grow old and loose his mind, his freedom to master his own world. To watch as he struggles with life and death. I miss him, but he is really enjoying hearing about Christopher and my trip. And he is happy that I have this time with Chris. I think he is also a little relieved that he knows that he will go before me. That is a huge fear of his, my death. He does not want to face it. Who can blame him.
Later today Susan, Christopher and I will drive to downtown West Hartford and walk around, maybe have lunch or ice cream. It is a beautiful little New England down town and I am so happy that Christopher will get to experience this very different part of the US. He and I are Floridians, and it is always so much fun to go to other parts of our great country and see how similar and how different we are all. Especially as we come together as a country for the Olympics. I am so glad to be here!!!!
Tonight or tomorrow night we will have a family dinner out, and Sunday I get to throw my arms around that tall beautiful fairy god daughter of mine. Life is so good.
Monday we will head down to pick up OB and the adventures will change, and can it get any better? I mean really!?!?! Surrounded by precious beloved ones and travelling and learning and seeing new and old things. It is just great.
Oh, before I left I found out that my adopted daughter, Amanda Street, married to the adorable Falcon, will be leaving in October as they move on to start their lives post school. Amanda is a librarian and Falcon a computer security specialist. They will have a wonderful life wherever they go, because they are just so great. But I will miss them terribly. I was just getting into my stride of having an adopted grown daughter. I bought her sunflower canisters and she loved them. I loaned her my white Gatsby dress for some acting she was doing for Goodwood Museum for one of their fund raisers. She looks fabulous. Much better then the dress fits me. Gorgeous baby, really gorgeous. Hmmm, maybe you should just keep that dress.
Another shout out this morning is a "Break a leg" to Jessie Moon and the Cicada ladies for their debut of their first CD tonight. You rock ladies!!!!!!
And one more shout out to Jessie's mom: Love you dearly, you know why today is a special shout out day for me to you.
Well, time to get up and get going. Their is a beautiful summer day in New England to enjoy. We are here. We have made it to CT!!! and it is amazing and there is so much more fun left to experience.