Monday, May 2, 2011

Fiddlehead Tanning Booth

(This will be one of those jump-around, what-the-hell-is-she-talking-about posts. Warning you ahead of time.) Just getting in from a nice hike and Fiddlehead hunt. Those things just TASTE like spring to me, strong and musky and fresh, sauteed in butter, melting in your mouth. Yum! Can't wait! We got a basketful, and wham, we got all tan too. I'm not a fan of tanning just to tan, I think that's gross. But I'm not into keeping out of the sun either. I love the sun. I wear a hat, but the rest of my body doesn't seem to care either way...I've only gotten a sunburn a very few times in my whole life, so I don't feel like it's a huge deal. I just brown up instantly in the spring, and then nothing else happens. Must be genetics. (Although genetics have dealt me a weird hand, what with the yeller hair I've got going on...Summer finds me looking like some creepy, tropical Barbie doll, minus the boobs and permanent high-heel-shaped-foot. Whatever.) Mom and Dad spent part of the weekend visiting cemeteries because Mom was looking to fill in the blanks of some genealogy research. They went up North somewhere to find the grave of her Indian Great Grandmother, who was a chief's daughter from Canada, married off to a Quaker. Growing up, I always envisioned her as some sort of Pocahontas-glamorous-princess type. Finally seeing photos, and finding out she was short and squat, (nearly as wide as she was tall, really) was a bit of a letdown. Of course, there's other Native American heritage in the mix, and I'm sure some of them may, more or less, fit my romantic childhood ideals, but that one was, you know, ROYALTY, sort of. Oh well. At least her tan was pretty sweet. Anyway, there was some sort of mystery about her death that Mom wanted to clear she turned Nancy Drew for a day and made all these little hand-drawn maps for Dad to follow, I saw them, and they were literally two squiggly lines across a piece of paper...and a star. That's all. Which, apparently, she would study intently and then turn upside down and study some more, while directing Dad where to drive. Native American navigation skills? She also got Poison Ivy on her knuckles from somewhere in their travels, rooting around in old graveyards. Native American oneness with the earth? It's cute, my Mom's occasional, adorable cluelessness. (My recent favorite example was when she and I were on the computer, zooming in on everyone's houses with Google Earth...It was a few months ago, and we were looking at my aunt's home, also in New England. The Google Earth shots were from summer, everything was sunny, green, lush and blooming. Mom, always astounded by technology, said: "Wow! That's amazing! I can see my sister's house, RIGHT THIS MINUTE?! Her garden looks amazing!" It didn't occur to her that there was three feet of snow outside. just wonder, is all. "Mom? It's February".) Anyway, of course the 'rents eventually found what they were looking for, they always do, it just takes twenty times longer than it ought, but that's half the fun, I suspect. They like to go for drives to "find things"...usually they come home with lots of stories about meeting strange folks, and a digital camera full of shots of I-never-can-tell-what-it-is: headless people, blurry trees, sideways barns. (The photography gene skips a generation.) So, that's what they did for weekend fun. And what a beautiful weekend it was. Sun galore. Flowers. Peepers singing in the pools at dusk. Ferns, starting to poke up. Just perfect. Spring, spring, SPRING! Hope everyone got some sun on their shoulders this weekend, not by tanning, but just by LIVING. Finding Fiddleheads, ancient cemeteries, talking a walk, raking up all those pesky leaves from last fall, getting ice cream, whatever floats your boat. It's SPRING. Live it up.

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