Monday, May 18, 2009

The ghosts of vacations without your parents, feeling a bit sheltered and then immediately unchained...meeting other families with uninhibited personalities. Beers in canoes. Cigarettes tossed into bonfires. Nothing like the sober, historical tours of your family's excursions. Your father never wore a cut-off muscle shirt or frayed jean shorts. He dressed for business on the beach...a quiet poke-around through Roosevelt's Little White House, pressed trousers, a yellow polo...perfect for a casual stroll through the nation's largest running Victory Garden (Yes, the one on pbs). Towards the end of your vacation of known and common normalcy for most young Americans your age, you find yourself aching for the calm, the fancy breakfasts (even if your father could barely afford them, they're always a guarantee). While it's a lark to remove sand from your bathing suit and compare tans with your favorite aunt, the one who never hesitates to unroll a twenty so you can buy an outfit at some eversofamous swim shop...while its fun to guffaw and inhale multitudes of fried things on a soggy miss the narrative that would have told you who settled this island, and what Native American tribe they stole it from.

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