Tuesday, August 21, 2007

You CAN go home again, my mom says so!

I'm just back from a week in LA. I go to LA to hang with family. It's really hard to capture in words how much I revere my family (i've started this post, in my head, on paper, and scratched it out and started again...i want to do it justice).
This was an especially groovy time 'cuz it was Camp G&G: That stands for Camp Gramma and Grampa. My nieces stay at Camp G&G for two weeks. On their own. It's pretty big--on all counts.
So I got to hang with siblings and spouses, mom and dad and nieces. And my Uncle P. He's like this wonderful sage and I love thinking about how he's my mom's brother-- like the way I have these brothers--and they're good friends and their choice of time spent is time spent together.

Whenever my family is around each other, we get melancholy, we know it's gonna have to have an end. Someone will have to get back in their car, or get on a plane...it all amounts to the same thing: leaving each other.

One of the greatest things that went down while I was there: My brother J. built our nieces an amazing fort.

Uncle J. (my brother, as he is to the nieces) brought home tons of cardboard boxes one day and announced, "these are to build a fort!" And a fort was built.

It had separate entrance and exitways, windows cut at the requested height for each niece, and a multitude of items velcroed to the walls (sofia's room had a pack of cards--cuz, it's true, you never know when you might wanna break into a game of old maid or gin-again. And, we did, actually, two or three times) Did I mention how much time we spent hanging out in there? Yes, all of us, at one time or another, got down on all fours and crawled into the cardboard comfort that only a fort can bring. I think it's why my mom agreed to get on in there and play SkipBo with us. Uncle J. had made it so there was so much room, and so much head room, that four of us could get in there at a time. One day SkipBo, the next a nap. Syra decided she'd better keep a schedule of comings and goings. She likes to run a tight ship! So, one pleasant evening I strolled out there with my glass of wine to see whats doing in the fort and that's when I got talked into making a future date at the fort.

"What do you want to come the fort for?" Um, drinks
"And what time did you want to come by?" Um, 6:00pm
"Name?" Molly
"And, finally, who are you bringing with you? You're allowed to bring people." Um, everybody?

During the early mornings, when the sun was just warming up the cardboard, that's when I liked it best. Although, the night both girls decided to sleep outside in the fort (simple but comfortable "beds" were set up in the fort--and the "floors" were carpeted. Uncle J, he's a good finder!), I read them a book until they fell asleep. I turned off the flashlight and listened to them both breathing. It was a really warm night, the doors to the house were open, and I listened to my parents and brother and Uncle P. talking around the kitchen table. Just barely. And I took my time leaving the fort that night. I breathed in the cardboard and I closed my eyes and imagined I was little again...and my parents were young bucks and we're all back before life seemed so complicated and yet so simple it was crazy.

So, while life seems to be passing by like a speeding car, it's good to be able to experience not only the company of kids, but to grab the opportunity to experience being the kid again. But, this time, with all the nostalgia and all the beauty that it holds experiencing it with three generations of family.


Ellen Zachos said...

This is lovely Molly. It makes me want to go home.

Kaari Marie said...

thanks for taking me there - even though i wasn't in the fort with you guys - i felt like i was!!

Christina said...

ok, first off, i want a fort. just like that one. second- i love this post.

comfies said...

i love when you write about your family. i love this fort, this family of yours, everything. i'd never want to leave!

slh said...

So good to imagine being a Meng. You and Family are amazing!