Sunday, July 22, 2007

Vacation Eyes

Freshly back from a week of vacation. Summer vacation. Recreation. Good for the soul. Good for the mind.

Old friends. Old stomping grounds. Some time with my bride. Make the old feel young.

A cleansed aura. A cleared mind. A freshened perspective.

Good stuff.

Coming back from a vacation should be a new experience in itself. One should see things differently. One should be able to see the forest, at least for a while, before getting back to work on that one troublesome tree.

We vacationed on a sailboat. Crazily, it had tv's on it. But we managed to go all week without turning them on once. The best thing about this type of vacation is learning to slow down the mind's emailed, voicemailed, internetted, conference called pace, and instead to take the long, slow time needed to contemplate, and enjoy, a slow, foggy sail through the sound.

But one feels those persistent time-management anxieties creeping up one's back, harping on the brain. You should be reading that good book! You should be talking with your old friends! You should have a drink! You shouldn't be drinking this early! You should be learning about the boat! Do something! And make sure it's the right thing!

Hah. I've been through this before. So, I know. The one important thing to do on vacation is to set worry aside. So aside it went.

Talking with old friends is great. But just being with them is enough. So, sometimes we talked. Other times we just sat, and looked at the water, or read a book. It was nice.

A week is too short a time for a vacation. As our friend and shipmate Lauren related the European view to us, a week is just enough time to get relaxed, then you are ready to start a vacation. My body tells me to agree.

But a week is what we had, so a week is what we spent. And it was a delightful week.

And then our vacation was over. We said good byes. Not really knowing when we might see each other again. No doubt we'll be grayer and fatter then. At least I'm confident I will be. But nobody cares about that stuff. I just hope it's not too far away.

Airports are especially effective at jolting one out of a vacation induced serenity. Homeward bound on a busy Friday afternoon with all of the business travellers trying to get home for the weekend. I like the business travellers. They tend to roll with the punches and be polite, while executing a kind of pedestrian efficiency in the busy corridors and long lines.

A disembodied, robotic sounding, female voice repeatedly told us that the Department of Homeland Security had raised the risk level to Orange. Well, good for them! It reminded me of a movie set in the old DDR. "The Department of Homeland Security" just sounds like too much security for me. I liked the old FBI and our local police department.

I found myself surprised at the Condition Orange Security Alert. Not because I know what Orange means. I was just surprised that all of the silliness was going on, as strong as ever.

Confession time: I'm not terrified. Not in the least. Osama can kiss my big white butt. He just doesn't scare me.

At the airport, I'm much more concerned about the plane being struck by lightning, or ice on the wings, or the pilot being drunk, than I am about terrorists.

I'm glad they x-ray all the bags. But making such a big show of it strikes me as a multi-billion dollar, permanent PR stunt, put over on us by the Bushies, to try to smokescreen their ignoring of the Osama iceberg on the horizon six years ago. Enough already. This goofiness has gone on long enough.

Saw the tv's in the airport. Iraq is still being hotly debated. I guess we haven't had enough time to figure out what to do there. The Foxies were discussing it in urgent, loud, and solemn tones. Keeping straight faces the whole time. Hooray for journalism majors. Our Fourth Estate at work.

Keeping my vacation perspective intact for one more day, I spent part of my morning today teaching my 4 year old son to shave. He solemnly told me he had a boo-boo on his face and he needed to shave it off. We shaved together. It was, in fact, the most important thing I could think to do.