Vince has been off the grid for the past week canoeing in the Boundary Waters in Canada. I sent him to the Northern Tier high adventure scout camp with a troop from Atlanta who was willing to take on an extra scout. I never spoke to the troop leader – we arranged everything via email and text. As I was dropping Vince off at the airport on the last day of school, I was thinking I hope it all works out as I have never spoken to the grown up in charge and maybe it wasn’t the best parental decision. Vince sent us a text when he left cell service and he sent us this photo when he got back into cell service late this afternoon. “It was the best” was the short, descriptive text we got. I can’t wait to hear about it when he gets home at midnight tomorrow via a 5-6 hour drive and flight home from Minneapolis.
I have been enjoying a tremendously reduced work schedule. During the summer, I’m working about once a week at the hospital and I’m still part time at my regular gig for another 4-5 weeks. On the one hand, I feel like I’ll get out of practice with the nursing skills, but on the other hand, who the hell cares? It is so luxurious – granted the $ is no good at this rate, but I don’t care very much. I’m sleeping a lot, I’m puttering around the house eating cheese and wasting time by watching TV. I also enjoy such things as watching the grass grow tall and then think about mowing it and then pretending that I am going to mow it, but then go scrounging in the fridge to look for interesting things to eat instead. Edda and I hang out in companionable silence which (I think) indicates the depth of our relationship and make outings to eat Swedish meatballs at IKEA where the most difficult decision is whether to get gravy on the french fries. Excitingly, I pay the water bill on time. It makes me realize how hard the past year has been on me which was caused entirely by my own doing.
As I relax into a blob of contentment, Jeremy’s anxiety is ramping up (I have this theory of all things in a marriage where there is a finite amount of anxiety, stress and/or happiness or whatever property that is constant in the marriage between the two people, it’s just that the amount in each person shifts all the time. So if one person is super happy, the other person inevitably is happy for them, but really super pissed about all other things – the same hold true for anxiety). It’s less than 3 weeks until Philmont where he’s responsible for hauling a busload of kids into the NM wilderness and back. He loves the hiking part (as evidenced by his 7 mile hike this morning with a 20 pound bag of rice to test out his new backpack), but the admin part is killing him. He just had a phone call with the troop treasurer to account for all the money and now he has to manage all the paperwork – permission slips, insurance, frequent flyer miles, health forms, medications etc, etc.
Edda starts camp on Monday. There is already a slightly ominous (ominous is too strong of a word) beginning to it all. We get an email from the camp saying – come this day to meet Edda’s counselor and then we get another email saying – oh! don’t come, Edda’s counselor is quitting and then another email saying – oh no! she decided to stay, come and meet her! So it’s going to be that kind of summer. Now we’ve been through so many summers at this camp, you know that some years, it’s fantastic – the kids and counselors are well matched and everything goes smoothly and other summers there is shifting of staff and kids and schedules and no one ever gets into the groove. It’s all OK, Edda seems mostly happy no matter the swirl around her, I’m not worried. I hope she enjoys the swimming and gets a bit of a tan. We’ll see.