Hi, how was your weekend? Mine was fancy. On Friday night, the boy and I attended an art show. Perhaps you’ve guessed that this isn’t my normal Friday night entertainment (that would be painting my nails while watching “Fashion Police” and drinking Pinot Grigio). I know the artist, so that’s what I was doing there. The trip there was pretty awful, because I hate driving, especially at night, especially on bridges, and especially in Rhode Island (their highways are terrifying). And I had to do all of those things, for two hours, with a slightly hungry child kicking my seat.
|I took a picture of this thing at the venue, though. |
A house made out of nails! That's neat.
The show itself was rad, but I didn’t take any pictures, because I wasn’t sure if that was appropriate or not. You can see some of the art at www.FredLynch.com. There were two series of journalist art showcased: drawings done along Paul Revere’s route as it looks today, and drawings of Viterbo, Italy. Some had signs posted next to them explaining the story behind the drawing. Apparently, whenever Fred is drawing out in public, old men flock to him to tell him interesting tales. Reading about what went on “behind the scenes” as he drew really made me feel like I was there. The boy even enjoyed it, mostly because there was a drawing of a slide and there were free cookies.
After the show, I drove over some more terrifying bridges and met my husband at his aunt and uncle’s house, where we spent the night. Guess where we went the next day?
|On a sailboat, not a yacht.|
I said fancy, not pretentious.
|This bitch be yar as hell, right?|
Sailing! I told you it was a fancy weekend! I gave the boy some pre-emptive Dramamine and he thought it was delicious. He kept asking for more. What a weirdo. We got a late start, so we set sail soon after unpacking and reached our destination just before sundown. We stayed the night off the shore of a tiny New England island that has about 50 residents and zero cars. The boy spent the evening feeding Goldfish crackers to the fish (and by that, I mean that he threw food overboard against my wishes). He didn’t seem to mind that he had one toy and no TV. He went down to sleep easily, and the grownups stayed on the deck drinking and talking about Kris Kristofferson. Another boat set off fireworks, yay! I tried my best to keep up with my Facebook account and my brand-new Twitter account, which was hard because tiny islands don’t have 4G, and I’m not allowed to tell you guys that I’m on vacation because my husband thinks you’re all burglars.
|Breakfast on day two: Bloody Mary for him,|
diet go-go juice for me, and water for the boy.
The next morning, we decided to take the dinghy to the island to explore. A dinghy isn’t designed for four and a half people, so Captain Uncle took my husband and the boy to the island first, and planned on coming back to pick up the ladies. Watching my baby float away was pretty terrifying. Captain Uncle came back 20 minutes later and told us that the weather wasn’t really conducive to dinghy rides and walking around on cliffs, so he left us on the sailboat and went back to get the others. At least the boy got to go; we’d already promised a visit to the island the night before, and we never would have heard the end of it if he didn’t get to see it. When they came back, it was brought to my attention that now he had been somewhere I hadn’t. That really freaked me out.
A little while later, I was below deck when I heard strange voices. Boat people are all pretty friendly, since they’re automatically members of the same club. A middle-aged couple in kayaks had apparently paddled up to the boat to meet us, and more importantly, the dog. My aunt and uncle have a Pomeranian who accompanies them everywhere, and let me tell you, he is a stranger magnet. You know when you go out with your kid, everyone wants to stop you and talk to you? It’s ten times worse with a tiny dog.
|My husband took this artsy shot of our aunt |
consoling me as Captain Suzie kidnapped my son.
So, I’m just climbing up to the deck when I hear the boy ask Kayak Lady (whose real name was Suzie) about her kayak, and she offers him a ride. A stranger wants to take my kid in her tiny scary deathtrap in the sea. Everyone says “Um…” and looks around. They all look at me. Me, the one who almost couldn’t stand to watch him take off in a much more reliable boat with two family members. The boy says he wants to go. I was so bewildered, I couldn’t come up with an excuse. I allowed it. I’m crazy, right? That’s what I was thinking the whole time as they were handing my kid down into the kayak, into some stranger’s lap. At least it was the lady and not the man. She took him for a very slow and careful lap around the sailboat, letting him “help” her paddle while the four of us followed with cameras. He told her he wasn’t done, so she took another lap. Then he turns to her and says, “Captain Suzie, your kayak is slow.” Highlight of the weekend. She eventually returned him and everything was fine.
|The boy spotting land... Yes, his hat is attached to him.|
Last year, the wind swept his hat out to sea,
and we had to buy a new one.
We got going a little while later and made the two-hour journey back to the marina- excuse me, the yacht club. I got to raise the main sail and drive the boat myself for maybe half an hour. No autopilot- I made the wind my bitch. Okay, the wind made me her bitch at first, but then I got the hang of it. I didn’t hit any markers or bells or other boats. The sea is a cruel mistress and all that.
When we got back to land, we were walking up the dock to the parking lot, and guess who we met up with. Captain Suzie. What are the odds of that? My husband chatted with her for a bit, and it turns out that she lives a couple towns over from us, and works in the town where my husband grew up. So that’s interesting.
The boy fell asleep in the car and stayed asleep even as we removed his shoes and hoodie and put him to bed. We were pleased to discover that the cats didn’t pee or poop on anything while we were gone. We had a delivery race (Chinese for my husband, Papa Gino’s for me- he won) and I watched the end of the Emmys while he watched stupid football. I would live at sea, if it wasn’t for my beloved TV. I guess I’ll have to settle for one weekend a year.
|Yes, we dressed like pirates. Wouldn't you?|