The Geography of Sunshine

Beginning the fifth week before summer vacation. It has been a long time since I have counted down like this. This summer will be a roller coaster. My youngest is finally able to have the wedding that’s been delayed twice. I can’t wait to see his wife in her gown. It’s been three years since she sent me the selfie in the boutique and made me feel included. I have a speech to write and run by my son’s father – to be sure I am speaking for both of us. I should really get started on that. I am oblivious to these kinds of social conventions. And the fact we are divorced doesn’t make it any easier.

Then off to see B. I have no idea for how long or under what kind of circumstances, but I know I am going. I don’t think there are social conventions for saying goodbye to someone like this. How do I allow myself the grief while acknowledging her family’s greater loss? Her pain? What kind of gift does one bring? She can’t read anymore. I start to jump ahead and think of things I shouldn’t. I want to celebrate her birthday (now seven months late). I want to celebrate her. I am at a loss.

And then E. and I will go somewhere warm. Not warm: hot, really. I want unrelenting sunshine. I want to sweat just sitting on the beach, struggling to read a book despite the glare of the pages and the cheap sunglasses’ warped lenses. I miss the sun of the lower latitudes. Something in my body knows the geography of sunshine. My skin recognizes desert air.

And sometime before the school year’s wheel begins again, I will get to London to take my oldest to a little Bloomsberry pub for one very expensive drink each. We will dress up for it. We will make it an event.

I think I want to make everything an event from now on. Oh, god, I am going to have to get a wardrobe make-over.

Now, though, I am off for a run. The soft Norwegian sun is already up.

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