So… you know we moved to Maine.
Well… I know I know I moved to Maine.
No… it’s not the boxes still unpacked in my bedroom (I’m ignoring them, hoping they will go away. But they are not. Dicks.)
And no… it’s not because I can smell that heady mixture of salt and pine and spruce.
Nope. It’s not because I can hear – right now in fact – the bubbubbub of a lobster boat’s diesel engine as its crew drops their traps into the water in the cool mornings (or hauls them up at night).
Nope. None of that.
I know I moved to Maine because every. dang. place we go… John TELLS someone!
Someone: “So…. ya he-yuh for the summ-ah?”
John – and I swear he poofs up like a young tom turkey on the prowl for lady turkey: “Nope. Full time.”
Someone: “Full time ya say?”
John (rubbing nails on shirt, blowing on them (okay.. that may be a figurative description but still): “Yep!”
And then the conversation goes from there and it is always pretty much the same… kind of like a welcome aboard followed by a few sage warnings about the winters.
And I can’t even be exasperated at this oft repetitive happening because my dear, Nearly Perfect Husband has such a happy look on his face.
And I recognize that look and it’s not one I get to see often.
It’s the look we get when we actually get to touch a dream.
So the move actually went pretty smoothly as moves go – other than the whole ‘pack up your rather large house and move in three weeks please’ thing.
I’m telling you, for the first two weeks we had boxes out and took the time to pack them up by room and category and we wielded black sharpies to write things like, ‘LISA’S OFFICE/YELLOW PENCILS/LIGHT BLUE VASE/4 FLYING PIGS/BLOG SIGNS FOR WALLS THAT KIDS GAVE HER FOR CHRISTMAS 2015’. Then it got to the last week and every box and/or container was labeled one of two things: S/T or L/T. ‘Short Term’, Indicating we have to find it again easily within the next month or two, or ‘Long Term’, meaning ‘toss this one in the barn loft to die of neglect.’
And wouldn’t you know that Granny had a birthday the very next day after the movers came with our stuff.
That morning, we put a single candle in one of Janet’s freshly made donuts from the General Store (Granny’s fave), and presented her with that and a silly card as she had her morning coffee. She would choose the meal for that night (a Dingle fam birthday tradition), and that we would be going out to celebrate at the end of the week when Mac and Jack would be able to be there. And so John, Gabe, Granny, and I went through the day talking about eighty-five years of living and unpacking and putting away and cooking and finally relaxing into a quiet dinner.
And, two nights later, Mac and Jack arrived and said very nice things like, “Wow, we expected it to be way worse in here… like a bomb went off or something.” And John and I were so proud because it did look like that, until it didn’t, and we were stiff and ache-y but felt very accomplished.
And sure, in and amongst the chaos, I did get up with the sun and snap some pics and breathe it in – the fact that we’d moved to Maine. I knew it would take time to sink in… probably a lot of time. And there were sure to be cool confirmational moments along the way.
But we were just so busy.
Finally, Granny’s birthday celebration night arrived. And suddenly we were getting dressed and coming downstairs and we all looked rather fabulous (and dirt and sweat free) and headed out to dinner.
We’d made reservations at a brand new super special place. And, when we pulled up, a very nice young man took our keys and Granny was all beam-y and we headed inside for a fantastic dinner.
There were great foods and gifts and stories and laughter and then, at the end of the meal, the wait staff surprised Granny with a baked Alaska! It didn’t even need a candle because it came with a blow torch (which was also slightly intimidating).
And then it happened.
I looked over at my Nearly Perfect Husband, looking at his Mom, and it was like a movie was playing in my head. A history I’d not been a part of, but heard about through stories over time.
Granny and Grampa, with a young family.
Grampa working two and three jobs.
Saving all year for two weeks in Maine.
They’d drive up on a Saturday, drop stuff off at the rented cabin. Head to the beach and pier and build sand castles, swim in the chilled Maine water… watch glass blowers… spend hours searching for ocean critters in tide pools.
Grampa would leave on Sunday, to work during the week, and come back the following weekend… late Friday night or early Saturday morning.
They once had an opportunity to buy a place here. But it wasn’t to be.
But now my Nearly Perfect Husband has made it possible for his Mom to be here, in a place she loves. Here he was with her, and his own family, celebrating her eighty-fifth birthday at a table by the window looking out over the same ocean she and Grampa worked so hard to bring them to each summer when they were young… a place JoHn had also fallen in love with.
He was laughing, she was laughing.
And on the inside, I was beaming.
Which is what happens…
When you see someone you love touch a dream.
Thanks for readin’.
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