A journalist observes life in the far north.
After five days crossing four counties in two states to visit 25 people, mother and baby are fried. I am sitting on my dad’s rooftop balcony typing this post. Dad is cleaning the boat for our jaunt on Lake Michigan today. Lucky is confined in the living room—alone—and not happy about it but I need a few minutes to myself. Both of us are sick or maybe reacting to pollen plus Lucky has a nice sharp tooth blooming from her bottom gums. I have a gazillion pictures to post. The weather has been sublime for the most part. I was surprised one night when a thunderstorm blew through and the noise didn’t frighten the baby.
I would say the highlight of this trip so far is seeing my nieces and nephews. I am a little sad that I am not here to watch them grow. My nephew Ryan graduated high school recently. He got into Southern Illinois University but his mom won’t let him go, fearing that he would be an alcoholic within a year. His sister, Jessica, is starting a new job waiting tables and pondering a major in counseling. She attends community college. Luke, my sister’s youngest, remains quiet and reserved. It’s especially been a delight hanging out with my brother Joe’s daughter, Andrea, an 11-year-old who is fun company and good with the baby.
My Aunt Lynne, who is approaching 50, is preparing to join my brother in the Merchant Marine after waiting tables for a decade. I can’t wait to hear about her adventures and pretty much everyone who attended a cookout at my uncle’s on Saturday felt pangs of jealousy over her impending travels.
I saw in the Milwaukee paper this morning that there was a riot downtown over a rumor about free food vouchers. Stories like that make me wish I worked at a large metropolitan daily.
Alec has a surprise for me when I get home, he said. I hope it’s not a puppy. Everyone keeps asking about Monique and I am sad to have to report that she is gone. It will be weird to go home, and she won’t be there for the first time in 14 years.