- Ted & Debbie (Photographers)
We are over Pittsburgh. I’m in an aisle seat. Seat 3D to be exact. I sat in the same seat going to New York. I usually fall asleep before the plane even takes off but the software salesman sitting next to me just wont be quiet. He’s showing pictures of his 3 daughters on his phone and keeps asking me if they could be models. I say they are all beautiful. In his Queens accent he says, “You’re shitting me right.” Next to the software guy, next to the insurance guy sitting in the window seat, outside the window there’s a lighting storm going on over Pittsburgh. Evey 4 or 5 seconds a big silent bolt lights up the clouds in a display that a bit scary. I’m thinking of getting my camera down from the overhead but the captain turns on the “Fasten Seat Belts” sign. It’s going to be a bumpy flight. The software guy brings out a open bottle of wine and says, “I got this Zin from duty free and it’s pretty fucking good. Bah tenda. 3 glasses see vu play!” The flight attendant says passengers aren’t allowed to pour their own alcohol on the flight. I’m thinking to myself that’s a great rule.Â Â Actually, he’s drank most of the bottle before he even got on the plane. The flight attendant brings us each a half glass of the wine and we toast to a safe trip as the lightning show continues over Pittsburgh. I think about seeing the Hale Bopp Comet in the northwest sky, a smoldering Ground Zero while landing at JFK a couple of weeks after 9-11 and seeing The Green Flash over Bora Bora from my window seat many years ago. The slide show next to me continues. Doesn’t this guy ever download his photos? I tell him I have 5 boys and he says to the guy at the window seat, “This guy has 5 boys. He’s gotta fucking basketball team!” I think to myself, this is going to be a long flight.
It’s Time to go home
All things must past. Good and bad. During the last few days on Kauai both Debbie and I tried to cherish all that we could, hoping that just maybe, some part of it will remain with us till next year. The sound of the wind, the ocean and the rain at night. The way the Na Pali cliffs look when you paddle out to Tunnels. The feeling you have in your arms and soul when you make the long paddle in from Tunnels with your son.
What’s left to say? What’s left to see? More photos of Debbie in a bikini perhaps?
Something about the sea, currents, connections, moves, boards and the gentle swaying we feel each day.
So, it’s over. We are homeward bound. We all know the routine. Return the rental car, take your shoes off when you pass through the metal detector, fight over the window seat and hope the in flight movie is not too violent. The smell of plumeria and the gentle breeze which brought it to our senses are being overtaken by jet fuel and the air conditioner.
Amidst gently falling rain and cool temperature we packed up our wet gear and started home. The sun was shining and the skies were blue for the first time all weekend and we pulled out of the campground. Usually we pack snacks for the car trip home but since we have a new minivan eating is not allowed in the car we decided to stop at the 1st In and Out we saw. As we pulled into the parking lot Sam said that he wanted to eat his cheeseburger in the car because we were all “dressed funny.” We told him that we don’t eat in the new car and that we would eat at the outdoor seating area as not to embarrass him.
You can imagine how dressed up the patrons at an In and Out are in Bakersfield. He refused and said he would wait in the car and not eat. We set his cheeseburger in a grassy area next to the car while we ate with the other finely dressed patrons.We arrived home and set to work on the mountains of dirty laundry and wet camping gear.