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reunion and gardening

2006-08-11 - 11:45 a.m.

So I'm back from Humboldt. Seeing my family is wonderful, but getting back behind the Redwood Curtain always carries a special bonus. I miss the trees and the ocean, and I miss the farmers market and all the wonderful strange things that make Humboldt unique. This trip carried a special bout of nostalgia, since I was coming home for my 10-year high school reunion.

We rolled into town on Wednesday afternoon. Surprisingly, we had no trouble getting in, as it was a gorgeous clear sunny day. We had come from a massive heat wave in DC, so it felt delicious to be in cool air. I think we were one of the first of our group to arrive, so I got a couple days to spend with my parents and grandmother.

The reunion was Saturday night, and Saturday a bunch of us got together to wander around the farmers market and grab some coffee. It was wonderful to be back with the gang (Michelle, Garrett, Rachel, Francis and Julie, who was a year behind us). Pretty much everyone I'd really wanted to see was there, which meant we could get caught up well in advance of the official reunion.

The reunion itself was great, but a little strange. Pretty much everyone had gone on to be happy and do some great things. Most people were exactly the same as high school, which is a good thing. A couple people were wildly different, which was also, in this case, a good thing. People I'd had pegged as frat-boy business majors were doing some very different things with their lives--which goes to show me not to judge! But a couple people made me change my opinions of them in a less-happy way. One person went out of their way to be callous and nasty, and one person displayed some behaviours which made it impossible to think they are happy with their life. But on the whole, it was a great time. I was surprised at how many people remembered me. I guess I'm used to thinking of myself as being seen as marginal. But people I'd barely spoken to in high school were giving me big hugs and seemed genuinely interested in where my life had taken me.

After the reunion several of us went up to the beach for a little bonfire. Like our "mini-reunion" earlier, it was considerably more intimate and it was here that I felt I really got to talk to people. At one point, I remember looking around and feeling that I'd let my guard down in a way I almost never do with other people. Still, I was running three hours ahead of all the California folks, and by the end of the night I was mostly just staring into the fire.

One of my favorite things about seeing everyone was seeing my husband interact with the crowd. He and Rachel are old friends, but this was his first time meeting just about everyone else. It's odd--I didn't date at all in high school, but I was one of the few married folk in our class. R got along magnificently with everyone. It was hysterical how similar he and Garrett are. By the end of the trip they had developed special little nicknames for each other. It's nice when important people in your life click.

It was wonderful to go home, and it was wonderful to come back to Virginia, to my other home. While we were away, the heat seems to have broken--at least for the moment. I have tons of work to do in my garden this weekend. I need to weed like it's my job, and my baskets need some major attention. Everything needs to be fertilized, so it's a damn good thing that our worms have been active since we've been gone. Rick was taking out the trash yesterday and found one of hte pumpkin seedlings we'd platned beside the house had grown, and we had little tiny minature pumpkins starting. I'll want to mulch that but good with castings, and I'll probably need to do some research to see what else I can do to ensure we got some pumpkins in the fall. I'm going to try to get R to limb the pine tree, which would allow considerably more light to reach not only the pumpkin plant, but also the tomatoes in our yard. I'm planning on stuffing some tomatoes this weekend, as everything is starting to ripen. I'm also looking at bulbs to plant in the fall for spring bloom, and thinking about next year's garden. If R really does expand the fence, we're going to till a couple rows for veggies. I wasn't really pleased with our pepper plant, but I'd love to try some lettuce and some heirloom tomatoes next year, as well as some cukes and squash.


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