If we were having coffee right now, you’d ask me if I was really having decaf because my words would be tumbling over each other in a jumble. I’d be eating a whole-wheat raspberry scone, trying to channel my recent vacation experience drinking coffee under the trees at The Flying Fish in Wellfleet, Massachusetts. I wish I could teleport us both there just for the vibe. And of course, you’d be joining me in the gluten fest, knowing we’ll pay for it but loving the moment.
I’d tell you my vacation was great. And not great at the same time. The “not great” part has nothing to do with Cape Cod, which was gorgeous as always. Rather more to do with the fact that my youngest is soon to turn 14. When I made our vacation plans, he was still sweet and in love with his mom. By the time we hit vacation, Dr. Jekyll had joined Mr. Hyde. Sweet one moment and moody the next, I realized the teenager attitude is slowly seeping in. We were having a marvelous time one minute, and then the hormones would kick in. (His, thank God, not mine. It’s always fun to be raising teenagers with rising hormones as you become middle-aged and yours fall. I consider it a chemistry experiment. Don’t try this at home, kids.)
If I was still married, I’d sit across from my husband on the patio of our hotel room. We’d roll our eyes over the teenaged attitude and exclaim about how we could make such a child. We’d add wine or a stellar cocktail to the mix. Instead, I call my friend and catch up as Dr. Jekyll sleeps so Mr. Hyde can take his place again in the morning. I’d exclaim to you that I thought I was going to have the Diane Keaton mom life in The Family Stone but am worried I’m heading more toward the Patricia Arquette life in Boyhood. Not really, you’d reassure me. And I’d say, “You’re right.” Then I’d hope you really were right.
I’d tell you that Long Pond is balm for the city soul. That as Dr. J complained, I drove down Long Pond Road, soaking in how gorgeous the forest is. That I pulled into the parking lot, marched him down to the pond and immediately not only stuck my toes in the water—but also did that annoying thing mothers do. I—horrors—struck up a conversation with a dad sitting on the steps with his feet in the pond, reading a book that made my English major tome look like cotton candy. He was a teacher at Choate, as was his wife, who was in the water with their two sons. Only in New England can you happen upon a pond replete with its own resident English teacher at Major Boarding School. I love it.
After insisting you tell me more about your latest exciting adventure/meal/date/trip over yet another cuppa’, I’d ask you for advice on the mean girls. Long ago, I realized I live out loud. I’m probably strong coffee as opposed to chamomile tea. But, I also let others be. I recently ran into a woman who I know does not like me. She has been embarrassingly rude (and I mean embarrassing to herself) in the past and this time lacked social graces yet again. I’m zen enough to feel good in my own skin, but wonder why the Universe brings her ‘round. Is it to test my zen? What do you think? And really, a small gentle smile is pretty effortless. It’s what I try to do around those I’m not crazy about. I feel like she expends a lot of time and effort in disliking me and showing it—while I really don’t think about her at all. Doesn’t seem to make sense. I always wonder how mean girls find the time. So many other things to get to in life, really.
I’d assure you I’m keeping the art of the chat alive. On this trip, I met oodles of gorgeous souls. The older couple who moved to Brewster, Mass. from the Catskills—the ones who the waitress at the local fish joint could just say, “The usual?” to–and they only had to nod to get steaming hot chowder in a matter of moments. Also Stefan and Oscar, an Austrian and a Panamanian, who were waiting for their wives with a lovely bottle of wine on the hotel terrace. Stefan and my son had an exchange in French in which I can only hope my son was not saying, “My mother is driving me crazy. Send help soon.” Mon dieu. J’espère que non. And besides calling you my “little cabbage” or wishing you goodnight, you’ve just exhausted my French. Which probably makes you want a café au lait. Go ahead—live a little.
And after we laughed over your latest funny story, I’d make you get serious for a moment. I’d tell you that the cure for any malaise is to be had in the Atlantic Ocean, watching a humpback whale execute what looks like an effortless fluke, despite weighing roughly 79,000 pounds. I’d say that in a week when I was feeling ill over children separated from their parents and I wanted to scream—“THIS IS NOT WHO WE ARE”—seeing Hancock the whale just feet from our boat gave me hope. And it is not the same, seeing it on video—go find a gorgeous creature to learn about and see in person. We should be better stewards of our earth and its creatures, I would proselytize while mopping up the scone crumbs. To which you’d say, “Preach sister!” as we clinked cups. We had way too much coffee yet again.
But that’s one of the reasons I love you so very much. Let’s do it again soon. For those of you who couldn’t join us, please let me know what you’d tell me as we had coffee. I love hearing about what is going on in your corner of the world. Truly. If you’re new here, welcome—let’s start the chat.
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I love this!! Truly… mine now are (almost) 16 and 17 and it does get better.
I love how you make me laugh and your amazing wit/wisdom/writing style. And I’d need to upload pics/wish that was an option in comments- some beautiful beach time here.
It’s so nice to share this journey with you. ❤
Thank you, as always, for the kind words:). Beach time! Oh, how I love that. I’m not a huge beach person (as in sunbathing) but I do so love to walk a beach and hear the waves. The world might be a better place if we each got to do that every day . . .
The World Cup (soccer). You’d soon remember an important engagement 🙂
Maybe not! Maybe I’d be riveted 😉
Also, have you seen this? Made me laugh😂 https://www.facebook.com/COPA90/videos/1750178648400602/
Totally 🙂 Reminds me of my married days.
I think you had plenty of coffee! Room for more please! How can you have too much?
But if you feel that words tripping over the tongue means too much, so be it. 😀 I enjoyed your post.
I’ve been there with the teen angst slowly making it’s appearance. It is quite the heart stopper, but the off guard conversations that arise out the young ones mouths when they shine their wonderful light and start to be aware of the world in a new way. That is priceless. This Dr Jekyll/Hyde it too shall pass.
Wishing I could see that whale, feel I could use that too. All the best and keep posting.☕🍫(choc)
Oh, do get yourself somewhere that you can see a whale. I don’t know why, but seeing something that has been around so many more years than humans have is soul soothing. 🐳 And thank you for the kind words.
Never too much coffee from you. Just enough to get everyone else’s brain percolating a bit. Thanks!
Thanks! Hope the percolating kickstarted you this morning☕️
First I have to LOL. And I would probably tell you, that you should feel real special if we’re having coffee together since I love being alone and don’t like to share my time with anyone LOL . and Ahhh those teen age years, I remember them well but, don’t worry it all will turn out just perfect. Oh no, but wait than come the girls… Cheers!
Oh, the girls are here! At least for my oldest they have been :-). We will see with my second. I figured if I survived them once, I can survive them again! You did, right?
LOL yes, survived 3 times, I have 3 boys. 🙂
Bless you! 😮
I’d tell you that I’m finally finding my mojo after an unexpected layoff that happened at the same time I had to stop drinking coffee because of a tummy issue. And that my son’s language of love is farts at age 5 and I am hoping it morphs into something less, well, farty, when he’s older.
And that I love your story.
And that summer is finally here in SoCal which means swimming and laughter as we try to convince our dog that the pool is okay.
We have the same with our dog! Crazy mutts😉. As for boy gas, it stays. I speak from experience. Oy. Gird your loins😩. Thanks for stopping by my blog. Come on in—even the dog—the water is fine.
Jeez, what would I tell you? Hmm, probably I would ask first if we could trade in the coffee for a glass of wine. Then tell you that I feel awake again, for the first time in a while. That every day is a battle, but so worth it. And then we would laugh about the lady who doesn’t like you. Because that makes no sense and is oddly fascinating. Or something along those lines. Love this post, so much, Kay. Don’t know what its like to watch your children grow and change, I don’t have any, but it does make me wonder what I was like to deal with for my parents. Enjoy the moments, right? That’s what everyone says. I guess that’s because its all you can do. And enjoy the coffee.
I love that you feel awake! And I love that you to ask to trade the coffee for wine. And I would gladly acquiesce. The older I get, the more I understand that we are all here to help and challenge each other. I truly feel at this woman’s reaction to me has more to do with the things in her life that she must face than me. We could wax philosophical about that :-). And, we would definitely enjoy the moments. I am realizing that those are really-in the long run-all we have.
Here’s to your Cape Cod days, Kay, every second of them.
Thanks, Mark! Wishing I could freeze time a bit ⛵️
I so feel you, Kristine. I sometimes long for the little boys who loved me and hugged me. These young adults are is.breathing my air most times (sorry… doesn’t necessarily become.easier after hormones – theirs – have stabilized…
This was a fabulous coffee chat.though! I have yet to visit Cape Cod, though if love to. Seeing whales in.the wild is.on my list!
Oh no! Don’t tell me they will stay this way. My one string of hope is that he will revert to sweetness when it’s all done :-). And you absolutely should visit Cape Cod. I have a couple of friends here who have made it a wonderful trip. Both by their presence and by recommending all the right places to go. Let me know if you’re planning a trip!
Speaking for myself, it still ain’t all fun and games. But there are bright spots. And you may be luckier and have done a better job than I.
Cool! I will… whenever that happens…
I’ve No doubt you’re doing a stellar job. It is so easy to doubt ourselves, especially when we are doing this alone. But all we can do is the best we can do.
That is the truth there, Sista!
I would tell you I’m exhausted. Maybe I shouldn’t have switched to decaf… I feel like I am single parenting our teenagers and some days I wish I was because my husband is creating more chaos than necessary. Is MANopause real? Then it is the four of us having a field day here.
Are, yes. I can complain about having to sit alone on the patio-but the alternative might be that we would be arguing over how to parent. I guess sitting alone is preferable in that situation :-). See Steve’s comment above re: prescription for wine and coffee. I think he’s onto something :-). 😉
‘Oh, but they grow so fast, so enjoy this time…’. Whoever gives that advice doesn’t have kids. You agree, right? To get through it, go heavy on the wine before you reach the point where the doc tells you to back off the alcohol. The coffee comes later in life when you’re so tired that caffeine won’t bother you and you’ll sleep like a log, even in the day. But, ours are hours and hours and miles and miles from us. Sure do miss them. By the way, a big cop woke me up in Wellfleet on summer morning…something about sleeping on the beach and liquor bottles. Not smart, but fun… life is that way.
I swear that our parents smile at us from heaven-laughing as they watch us go through what they did when we were young :-). Payback time. And now I have to ask-how old were you when waking up on that beach in Wellfleet? It seems a great place to summer as a college student.
Following my freshman year. Two other knuckleheads and I spent a weekend on some secluded spot, drinking beer, running into the ocean and being goofy (immature). We were underage and had a stash of beer/liquor. The beer was hidden in a cooler in the car, the liquor buried in the sand. Went to sleep under a beautiful starlit sky and was kicked awake before sunrise by a big, burly cop. The first thing I thought of was ‘how do I tell my parents’ who thought I was an angel. Fortunately, after we appeared before the judge in town, we were lectured and told to quit doing it. I’ve not returned to Wellfleet since. I wonder if the booze is still buried there…😎
I would bet my house that some other about to be college sophomore has found your beer :-). Every generation brings them!
I got some whales over here too Kristine. The hump back whales have done their trip up north to the warmer waters to calve, and strangely I have not heard that they have sited our resident albino whale. Each year he comes past and the world stops to check him out. One day we may see a new generation of his offspring, the waves dotted with his pure white skin dancing in the waves.
I hope so, it only goes to show that it makes no difference what we look like, it is how we dance in the waves that count 😀 ❤
As for babbling over coffee, I'm a professional…and I drink decaf…what does that really mean? Do I need real coffee? Actually I tried that, a friend (accidentally?) gave me a truckie's coffee and they said I didn't shut up for 40 minutes after it. They never let me hear the end of it and laughed at me for days. When I came down all I wanted to do was sleep. Maybe that's what you need, an upper first to clear the cobwebs of thought so that the peace of sleep can descend more easily ❤ 😀
Great post my friend, may your slumber be built on decaf otherwise you too may be dancing in the waves 😀
Oh, I hope that your albino whale is OK. I hope his lack of an appearance doesn’t mean that anything is happened. We are so careless with these great piece. And as for caffeine-my friends usually ask me not to have it :-). So I completely relate to your babbling incident! Although, I do have it in small doses to help me get super focused when I’ve got a large piece to write. I just have to promise my friends that I won’t call them after drinking a large mocha :-).
lol. Yes, I might keep my caffeine at a distance until work beckons too. The whale was named Migaloo, it is the aboriginal dialect for ‘white fella’…go figure. And he even has an offspring called Migaloo Junior (nicknamed MJ for short) 😀
Oh dear, this hit home in many ways- especially Dr J and Mr H, except I have a Dr J and MISS H…let’a have coffee soon and compare notes. Loved it!
Amen, sister. Here’s to getting through the mood swings (theirs, not ours😉).
Yes, yes and yes — all that, and more. And then, somewhere between a bewitching hour and dawn, we’d each still be awake. I don’t know what you’d be doing, but I’d be tossing and turning. Of course, I’d be fixating on those awful scenes — the kids crying, the president lying, the sycophants hiding. I’d roll over onto one side. Then I’d sigh, curse under my breath as I punch the pillow, straighten out mangled sheets, turn to the other side. With any luck, I’d fall asleep counting the minutes until I could get my hands on another latte. Loved this. And thanks.
Aw, thank YOU. I’m tossing and turning exactly as you described, btw. Only morning is hours away.