Who knew, when we married, what the years would bring? We didn’t.
We didn’t know about newlywed bliss or falling off pedestals, about financial pressures or gracious provisions, about grad school and working nights and going to class by day and never sleeping enough and babies coming willy–nilly. We didn’t know what the candidating after seminary was really going to be, or taking jobs just to make ends meet,or learning to do without and learning to wait for things we’d always taken for granted.
We didn’t know about the absolute joy of becoming parents, the sheer delight in a little person outside ourselves and yet somehow of us, about rediscovering life again through a little one’s questions and insights. We didn’t know how enriched we would become by enriching those little lives, or how their dependence would produce maturity in us.
We couldn’t imagine our aging, not really, and though we believed our love to be forever we couldn’t know how precious years later would be the little kindnesses, the toe touches under the covers, the words of affirmation, the forgiveness. Whatever drew us together initially, whatever sense we had that we were a good match, whatever we saw that was pleasing in the other has been tested and tried. The cementing of the years has been as effective as years of weather on a stone cairn. The stones settle into one another, dips and hollows subtly grinding and creating a place for themselves within the confines and allowances of the other. Nestled together.
And so we celebrated our anniversary with a getaway trip to Maine and North Carolina.
We flew Portland, Oregon to Portland, Maine by way of Albuquerque and Baltimore. Because of delays we reached Portland at about 2 AM and picked up our rental car. We had a 2 hour drive ahead to Rockland but decided to nap in the car first rather than get a motel room at that hour. Ron had the idea of going to photograph Portland Head Lighthouse at sun rise (since we were in the neighborhood), which we did with comic details of trying to find a place to park in the middle of the night in a strange town where we would be both visible for safety’s sake and invisible to troublemakers, and trying to find a public restroom open before sunup. We decided in retrospect that we are not as young as we used to be and this kind of adventure should be left behind. We did, however, find a wonderful bakery with very delicious doughnuts which we thankfully purchased in exchange for their facilities. We spent the rest of the day groggy after our short night and exhilarating start at Portland Head.
v Pemaquid Point Lighthouse v
v Camden, Maine: Used bookstore, views from Mt. Battie where Edna St.Vincent Millay wrote
“I will be the gladdest thing under the sun” (Afternoon on a Hill, Renascence)
v Early morning at Owl’s Head Point Light (trying to find it)
You can hear the hum of boat motors before the break of day, lobstermen going out for their catch. The air is still except for the sound of motors and waves slapping and faint voices calling to each other across the water.
V At the Farnsworth Museum, where 3 generations of Wyeths are honored, and Winslow Homer: v
The Olsen farm, where Andrew Wyeth painted Christina’s World
Other random Maine scenes:
For our actual anniversary we had scheduled a cruise from Bar Harbor to nearby islands, lighthouses and homes of the rich and famous but it was so foggy that the Captain had to cancel for safety’s sake. [We had gotten up early and driven the 2 1/2 hours to Bar Harbor before we knew. The Captain just decides 20 minutes before departure.] We weren’t too sad because this is what we would have seen:
v As close as I could get to Edward Hopper’s Nighthawks painting, though I tried at night and several other times. Too many cars! and people! But you should have seen it glow at night! v
v Hawkers to the cruise ships in Portland. Yes, they caught me even though we weren’t cruisers. v
At Two Fat Cats Bakery in Portland, Maine, featured recently on PBS. Outstanding blueberry pie!