Belated Cruise

Before my father died he wanted to take one last vacation with the family.  Unfortunately he died just a few days before we were supposed to leave.  So this year, during school vacation, my family and I decided to take our “Last Cruise” as a family of four.  Like the slightly morbid and irreverent family we are, we decided that everyone should go—so we brought Dad.  He is small and doesn’t take up much room, so we didn’t have to buy him a ticket. We did bury some of him next to my brother, but he was a wanderer and explorer, so we wanted to honor that too.

So the whole family went on a cruise, and we had a great time.  It was really special to just be together, with no distractions or work.   We didn’t take too many photos because we were just having so much fun!

We were active most of the trip, trying to avoid the consequences of the open buffet!  Mom and I jogged each morning, and twice we climbed the Rock Wall.  The first time my mother didn’t make it to the top, so she dragged us back the next day and she rocked it! (Bad pun intended!  Sorry!)  She made it all the way to the top and rang the bell!

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Doing it another time allowed me to try the harder path the second time around.

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Elliot and I had lots of sib bonding time.  Though I kept getting the evil eye from the single girls because they thought we were a couple.  Apparently we don’t look alike as much as we did when we were young!

(Example A: Stone Cold Fox)

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Elliot had picked out a shore excursion in Cozumel Mexico that included ATVs and wild animals.  I was a little wary at first, but we had a lot of fun.

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They were raising money for conservation efforts and we were able to meet some of the species they were trying to help.

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In Cozumel, I passed a store named “Deniz”  and HAD to stop in.  Of course, the owner was Turkish.  He had moved to Mexico five years ago.  He thought his path in life was set, he was in his fifties and had never been married.  But, as it happens, he fell in love with the woman he hired to help run his store.  They married a couple years ago–he is 60,she is 35, and they have the most beautiful baby, named Deniz!  So I got to practice my Turkish, and he was excited to speak it.

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It was a lovely trip, which sounds a little like bragging after hearing about that cruise ship that had to be towed in from sea while the passenger reenacted Lord of the Flies.   It was a vacation, and a time to let go and say good bye.  As I mentioned previously, we had brought some of my father’s ashes with us.  We used this time to scatter his ashes around the Caribbean Sea.  We thought he would enjoy it as a (partial) final resting place.  So we returned to NH with one less corporeal family member, but some good memories of all four of us on vacation.

Another Month Gone

I am still having trouble posting regularly.  I feel like it has something to do with the intrinsic nature of sharing and blogging.  With blogging so often you give up pieces yourself, you share your experiences, share your thoughts, and share yourself.  I still really don’t want to go out much.  I just don’t feel social.  Getting together with good friends is one thing, making small talk is another.  I will attempt to post more, as I am now back in Turkey and taking trips.  It just feels like I have blogging inertia.  Fellow bloggers, do you ever feel blogless?

My Roomie’s Wedding!

My sophomore roommate from college was great.  Katie and I were very different.  She was organized, I was not.  We had a line down the center of the room, as long as my things did not escape the line, it was not an issue.  She was an art history major.  Her side of the room was always lovely, as was she.  She had a talent for putting together outfits.  Once, I was going out on a date.  She asked me, “Oh, is that what you are wearing?”  My response was, “No, apparently not.”   She dressed me like a doll, and I encouraged it.

So she got married in February.  I had a very complicated relationship with her wedding.  Not her—Her wedding.

1) I got the wedding announcement and was totally depressed. One of my BFFs was getting married and again I was out of the country.

2) My dad was terminally ill.  I was going to take care of him, so I would be in the country for the wedding.  I could GO! Yay!

3) My dad was SO ill I couldn’t plan on going because his death was imminent.

4) My dad died way before I thought he would.  So…Wedding was on.

My friend asked me to be her bridesmaid.  Through out the entire #1-4 she was awesome.  She told me she would love for me to be in the wedding.  All she asked was to let her know when I knew, a few days before the wedding would be fine.    Katie is amazing in that way.

While I wanted to be there for her I had hesitations. I hadn’t done anything social since my dad died.  But I had already bought the tickets.  It was hard for me because it was only a year and a half ago that my parents walked me down the aisle at my on wedding.

But I went anyway.  And I had an amazing time.  I saw some of my friends I hadn’t seen in five years.   While I was a little sad, I was also so happy to be there for my friend.  Also, it was not my wedding.  It was Katie’s.  Katie’s wedding.  The weekend was not about me—It was about Katie (and Pete).  A woman who we all wanted to celebrate, and share in her experience.    Every moment of that wedding day, I was fiercely glad I could be there with her.

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To start the Wedding Weekend, I flew to Nashville,  from where I made the road trip to Memphis with my friends Kate and Ben.  The weekend started off on an interesting note.

First, waiting for my flight to Nashville, I recognized a woman in my gate.  I knew her from some where, but could not place her for a few minutes.  Waiting for my flight was made much more interesting by sneaking peeks at this woman and racking my brain for where I had met her.  Then I realized, I hadn’t met her…I knew her from her blog.  Yes, at the Charlotte airport was Mr. Lady!  An auspicious beginning indeed!

I got off the plane, and Kate jumped out of her car, there was hugging and shrieking and then Kate started doing both as well.  Then, we got a call from our friend Ben.  He had dislocated his shoulder right before he left for the airport…What should he do?  Well, because the theme of the weekend was “Everyone Loves Katie!” he sucked it up, got on the plane and asked the flight attendant for ice.  We had a sling waiting for him when he got off the plane.  113.large

Every aspect of the wedding was a lot of fun. Seeing old friends, making new ones. Blind Mississippi Morris performed at the rehearsal dinner, blowing us out of the water. Also, it was at Fire Museum of Memphis, where they served martinis that smoked.

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The whole weekend was amazing, and really a journey.  There was time with friends, a beautiful wedding, and I think some healing too.