You know what I like about vacation? The jittery feeling I get when I feel like I should be doing something, but when I look around I realize that all I really need to do is sit my rear end in that deck chair and read. It’s that brief moment of stumped awkwardness before I start to relax, and, like that moment a roller coaster car pauses at the crest of the hill before starting its exhilarating free-for-all descent, it is awesome.
I was sitting on the deck of our rented condo one afternoon, drinking a Corona (a beer I think I have only accepted happily on three occasions: a) on vacation, any vacation, any summer, b) while camping in Key West during my spring break senior year, where I was dirt poor and Corona meant living large, and c) any Jimmy Buffett show I’ve attended at any point in my 20s–I’d like to admit here that I was dragged, kicking and screaming, to these shows, but alas, I went by choice and tailgated with the best of them. Shhh. Don’t tell anybody). As I drank this beer, reclining in my (well, for the week, anyway) Adirondack rocker, I could smell the wonderful saltiness of an ocean breeze blowing through my wildly not-sexy beachy hair (why do all the magazines think salt-soaked hair is soooo gorgeous?! Have they seen my mop?), and I was very aware: my kids were sleeping inside, the sun was shining, I was outside, and I had nothing to do.
I got to sit out on a deck and listen to the seagulls and not worry about laundry and dishes and scrubbing the toilet.
I got to wear my swimsuit, around, all day long. Take that, proper etiquette!
Happy Independence Day, everyone. Waking up today (at 8:30! How did that happen? More importantly, how did our children let that happen?), I was thinking about my summer break between my first and second year of college, when I was working in the misses department of our local JCPenney. What a mind-numbingly awful job. I still distinctly remember closing up the store after hours at night and having to walk past all those creepy mannequins lining the dark aisle. Brrr. I still get the heeby-jeebies thinking about it. But back to what I was saying. I remember that summer particularly because I woke up early on July 4. I woke up cursing the sun, the bright sky, and all the evils of the time card, let me tell you. I had to put on some tanned-colored pantyhose, my professional-yet-comfortable heels and work that golly awful job. It was my first real taste of the bitterness of adult responsibility. Granted, that job was paying for my books for fall semester, but that July 4th all I was concerned about was declaring my independence from price tags and returns without receipts. That was a long time…