as the adventure ends
November 3, 2009 2 Comments
Our youngest daughter is sleeping now, after her whirlwind trip in Switzerland and Slovenia with her dad. Lyndsay will leave in the morning to drive back to Bend, where she lives. Totally exhausted, her initial comments focused on the negatives, getting lost, stuck in traffic, no sleep, so much time in the car, language barriers, and lousy orange juice.
Then there was the disappointment that when they arrived in the village of her grandfather’s family – there was a huge event taking place for All Saints Day – and everyone was packed into the tiny church cemetery – from everywhere – and they were all dressed up – in suits and jewels – while Lyndsay and her dad were in jeans and sneakers….
I was at this church cemetery last summer and it was quiet, beautiful. Two grave sites were being tended with new plantings by family members. The tiny memorial gardens and markers listing all the names are charming. I have a picture of myself, with a woman only a few years older than me, from last year, who is now a new name on the stones. I still feel this cemetery as a happy place. A tribute to those that have come before, contributors of who we are now, deserving of honor.
Lyndsay’s comments about her visit to the same place didn’t diminish my feelings. She’s only 20, and it’s her first connection with a bigger world, that is part of who she is and the heritage that she’s thrilled to claim.
After those first bursts of releasing personal responsibility of being an international traveler – once she saw me, mom, at the airport waiting to take her to a good bed – Lyndsay was then able to relax into the babble of castles, villages, views of cloud covered alps, going past the Starbucks and eating a meal in a hard to find bistro only the locals know…
She has stories of tossing francs, euros and pennies into the dishes for using toiletry facilities. She has experience with driving on the wrong side of the road. She’s navigated with maps in different languages. She’ll return to her current home with a new set of skills, a new perspective.
But tonight, she liked what I did with the bathroom while she was gone this past week, the new curtains and rugs. Then she wanted the dog to sleep with her, in her bed.
And I’m sort of giddy in the feeling that – as a mom – I’ve done good!