Sunday, July 18, 2010

High-Low - California Vacation 2010

I said, Hello?...
Is this thing still on?

Allow me to just clear some of the dust here and let's get reacquainted, shall we?

A long time ago, a dear friend of mine shared with me a family game they used to play each night at dinner. The game was called 'HIGH-LOW'... Perhaps you've heard of it?

The object of 'HIGH-LOW' is for each member of the family to take turns sharing both the HIGH of their day and the LOW. It's a genius way of staying connected and understanding what each person might be either celebrating or grappling with.
Since it's been such a LONG time since I've written, I thought possibly, my own personal game of HIGH-LOW might help put things in a kind of perspective.

I'm rather rusty at this whole writing thing and I have to admit my feeble memory makes it difficult for me to compartmentalize ALL of the circumstances which have occurred in the last... Oh how long has it been? 6 months, 8 months? So instead I'll start with a recent event of which the details are still fairly clear... Our California Vacation.

So, here we go... The HIGH-LOW of our 2010 California Vacation:

HIGH - Seeing my little sister Dena (10 yrs. my junior) for the first time in what we finally determined to be, 18 years. For reasons still not entirely clear, my sister and I became estranged roughly 16 yrs. ago. We hadn't communicated at all since this past September. In fact, it wasn't until I saw my niece (Dena's daughter) singing at a school concert on YouTube that it even occurred to me we needed to rectify this situation. So I reached out and there was my dear little sister waiting with open heart and open arms to bring us close again.

LOW - Gaining obscene amounts of weight partly due to the nervousness of seeing my sister, her kids, my dad, his wife and my new brother-in-law, who my sister married just weeks before our visit.

This picture perfectly illustrates both my high and low, hugging my dear sister whilst the camera does little to hide my weight gain and road weariness.

HIGH - The California Coast.... Seeing sights so beautiful it literally brought tears to my eyes. Even though I was born in California, I was raised in what is known as the High Desert... In the High Desert, everything is brown, there aren't a lot of trees and not a lot of color... Therefore the memories of my youth are hued in sepia tone gloom. However, along the coastal regions there are a rainbow of colors everywhere you look. Flowers in brilliant Purple, Blue, Yellow and Orange. Succulents in soft greens and lavenders. The succulents grow wild right out of the face of the rock walls.

The Pacific Ocean and how it's colors change under the light of different weather conditions... Steel gray on an overcast day. Bright Blue under the Laguna sunshine. Clear Azure along the dizzying cliffs of Hwy. 1. It was all breathtaking and inspiring to my Art loving heart.
The view of CA. Hwy. 1 out the rental car front window - I'm glad my husband was driving for this part of the trip... Scary!

Julia Pfeiffer State Beach... I only remember this because I kept referring to it as
'Julia Roberts/Michele Pfeiffer State Beach'

Currently my favoritist spot in the whole world - China Cove at Point Lobos State Park

This picture reminds me of the 'Not enough hours in the day - LOW'... Because I could've walked this beach for hours on end searching for sea glass with my daughter.

LOW - Not enough hours in a day! Seriously, how can one see EVERYTHING there is to see with only 24 hours and at least 6 hours of that has to be devoted to sleep. It's just not fair!

HIGH - Time spent with my family. Sure the quarters were close.... 2 weeks of 4 people in the same hotel room.... But that night that we spent laughing until we could barely breathe, wiping tears from our eyes, all because of the way 'Nature Girl' talks when she's wearing her retainer... Well, it's a priceless memory, I'll always hold dear.I like to call this pic 'Man on Vacation!' - Taken at China Cove

A BEAUTIFUL shot of my favorite 'Nature Girl'

Computer Boy got bitten by the photography bug.

LOW - This trip was so great, I'm running out of lows.

HIGH - That evening at the laundromat with my sister Debbie.
Doing laundry a high, you say? OH YES!
Firstly, one can complete 3 loads of vacation laundry in one fell swoop at a laundromat. Secondly, it's pure one on one joy, if one does said vacation laundry with a sister one seldom gets the opportunity to talk with for longer than 20 minutes at a time. At a laundromat you're given an uninterrupted period of time to broach the deeper, more meaningful topics and finally get the chance to tell your sister how incredibly proud you are of her on a bench outside the facility. You know, it's kind of a metaphor... As the laundry got clean and fresh, so to did my relationship with my sister.

LOW - Coming home... Okay, not too much of a low... It's nice to be sleeping in my own bed again, without having to hug the edge of the mattress because my daughter is in the midst of her nightly imitation of Leonardo deVinci's - Vitruvian Man. The downside however is coming home means getting back to the grind... Getting re-acclimated to East Coast Time, Grocery Shopping, Making dinners, Doing Laundry without the laundromat or my sister. It means facing my continuing struggle to determine what my place is in this world... Hey, it's easy to forget about heady stuff like that when you're primary focus is, "What's the GPS say?"... "Are my camera batteries charged?" or "Where should we go for dinner?"For you East Coast people... Yes, it's July and Yes, I'm wearing a sweater because I'm sorry to admit to you that while you were toasting your buns at 105 degrees, we were attempting to stay warm with 60 degree temps.... Sorry, but I had to brag!

So for now my primary focus is, What's my place in the world and I wonder what I should fix for dinner tonight? But maybe getting back to blogging will help me figure it all out.

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Blogger lime said...

i'm so glad you're back, even gladder to know the trip had so many highs and the biggest one of reconciliation. just can't put a price tag on that. thanks for sharing the pictures of everyone they are fantastic. and oh do i remeber driving hwy 1 with logging trucks bearing down on me in an itty bitty car...wowsers!

4:53 PM, July 18, 2010  
Blogger kiddiesandkitties said...

Yay! You're back! Glad to see you were doing fruitful and exciting things, see you soon!

7:12 PM, July 18, 2010  
Blogger EmBee said...

Lime, Thanks SO much and yes, everyone at some point in their life, should traverse Hwy 1.

Hey K&K, Yay!.. The fruitiest and yes it won't be long before school starts back... Hooray, only 1 tuition to pay for this year!!!

8:38 PM, July 20, 2010  

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