I have just returned from a very pleasurable five-day visit to California. (Did you miss me?)
We visited my husband’s cousin and his wife (also our friends) who moved there nearly two years ago from Boston. They have a stunningly beautiful and comfortable home and are gracious hosts.
This is what I learned on this trip:
- That I can survive a six-hour flight with prayer, lots of interesting reading,* Jet Blue’s satellite television, skillful pilots, and smooth weather.
- That there are wonderful and delightful people whom you can meet without strangeness every where
- That the diaspora is indeed a powerful connector so that each of us from various parts of the world – USA (Boston and St. Louis), Trinidad, Ethiopia, and St. Vincents have much in common, having shared variations of the same experiences in our various home communities.
- That I can survive without computer connection for five days. (Okay, I went online once, but only once.)
- That I can relax.
- That lemons can grow to be the size of small grapefruit!
- And that, there’s no place like home especially when kind neighbors keep a look-out for you; the newspaper and postal service hold your deliveries; and technology allows timed lights and alarms to give a measure of security. Mostly, though, it was the people who looked out for us and we are so grateful to them.
I was glad to go, glad to be gone, and am now so glad to be back home!
*I read The Brief Wonderous Life of Oscar Wao by Junot Diaz – took me a couple of chapters before the book seized me but then it did. It is witty, breezy, intricate, scholarly, irreverent and tragic all at the same time while throwing down knowledge about Dominican history and attitudes in-island and out. The Miracle at Speedy Motors – the latest in the No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency series by Alexander McCall Smith. Another delightful book in this series; this one gives Mma Ramotswe more “warts” and humility than previous books. Also read the 2nd volume of the new journal Lapham’s Quarterly. It’s the Money issue and has words from scholars and other thinkers including Aristophanes, Virginia Wolf, Ralph Ellison. Henry Ford, W.E.B. DuBois, and Biggie Smalls. “It’s all about money…ain’t a damn thing funny”..a song that they didn’t quote in this issue but may well have. I’m diggin’ the journal and will have to get the first issue which was all about Time. (I have to thank Richard Wendorf of The Boston Athenaeum for turning me on to this journal.)