July 20th, Yes Meet Day 10



I woke very early, restive over the emotions the day would bring. I would have to take leave of these friends to whom I'd grown unexpectedly and hopelessly close. I would soon see my children again, be reclaimed by these little humans to whom i belong wholeheartedly. To distract myself from the impending tidal wave of tears of sorrow and joy, I did laundry and crept around quietly packing up the van for my departure. I found a place in the van to keep my painting of "Mountains" from Wendy safe on the way home.


I phoned Yann and arranged to meet him for a goodbye-over-breakfast. He just quaffed coffee, but I ordered a full meal, in no hurry to have our last moments in close proximity draw to an end. We couldn't muster much to say, however: too much feeling obscuring clear words on my part, and Yann would only ever get talkative after a bottle or two of wine. So I just smiled at him, near to tears, and stacked up my empty cream containers into a tiny pyramid.


At Wendy's. I had Curt set me up with a sound in the keyboard room again and began playing, just to do something constructive with my sentiment, until my family appeared in the doorway. The moment arrived. I picked up my 4-year-old and held him close, petting his head, while the other three children assembled around me. I smiled to see my usually clean-shaven spouse sporting a three-week beard. The tears were flowing, of course. Jonhe, being more together than I, thought to shoot some random videotape of the surrounding countenances, none of them quite as simultaneously happy and sad as my own. Yann scanned the faces of my kids, their mushed mugs making us laugh on Wendy's computer. He was humming "Where Will You Be," in his stirring low register. *Sigh* It was hard for me to stop staring at everyone and hugging them and holding them. We lingered languorously on the front lawn, saying goodbye.


yann, chris, curt


I admired the sporty red Isuzu Rodeo my family had rented while I'd absconded with the green family van. We had to return it in Reno, a three-hour drive away, late that afternoon, so we didn't have much time to dally. Jonh and I said our final farewells, divided the kids between us, piled into the two vehicles and sped away.


we hear a sound and alter our returning

we drift the shadows and course our way back home

flying home

going home


I was glad in the end and still feel privileged, really, to have been an agent in the overseeing of some important, character-building, initiation rituals endured by Chris and Yann. The disgust of pit toilets, dearth of water, 120-degree (F) heat in Death Valley, the tinkle of nickels in slot machines, and a first hotel/tent stay with a married woman are, I hope, experiences the two of you will always remember with a fleeting, faraway feeling for merry *me.* AND SO, Paul, Brad, Chris, Yann, Jeff, Bill, Derek, Wendy, Curt, Dawn, Sandy, Darrel, David, I would like very much to *thank* all of you for enduring my exuberance which often reached it's enthusiastic heights due to the pleasure of being in the presence of you all. Yann said he'd remember the spark in my eyes and I said: YOU put it there! My love to all of you.


high the memory carry on

while the moments start to linger

sail away amongst your dreams

the strength regains us in between our time


my merry tale **** see you later