Well, here we are. Again. Another April 27th, another birthday for me. Things are significantly different this birthday than they were last year. Ronnie did not take a new contract last July; instead, we loaded up the tent trailer and hit the open road. The girls are staying in the house with their boyfriends and continuing their quest to graduate from University of Washington.
Today is our 294th day on the road. Generically. We did go home for the Christmas holidays, Ronnie only briefly, but I stayed through February so I could test for iaido and kendo. I was VERY pleased to achieve the rank of shodan in iaido. Given my age and bad knees, I’ll never be good in kendo but I enjoy it and I at least now have a rank, not a high one, but a rank!
Since leaving home last July, we’ve covered a lot of ground and are currently in the East. Our last few weeks have been spent visiting Boston, where we saw Mange (my old high school and rock ‘n’ roll buddy), New York, where we experienced all we could during our few days there (including a Yankees game), and D.C., where we saw the sakura (cherry blossoms) at their finest, plus a lot of government-related tourism. We are currently resting and recuperating in Prince William Forest Park in Virginia and back to our camping/nature style of travelling rather than urban exploration.
I’ve also been working on the novel I started as a NaNoWriMo effort in 2010. During that hectic month I cranked out 20K words, which is an amazing amount for me, given my default (SLOW) writing style, even though it’s less than half the hoped-for 50K of NaNoWriMo expectation. I was happy with it, nonetheless. But now I’ve started back on it and am currently at about 70K words with approximately 10K more to finish. I wanted to finish by today but it was not to be. Soon.
This year is the 50th reunion for my high school, which is scheduled for early June. I thought about going; but, after churning on it and a recent email thread full of the same Elite White Man, we’re-so-awesome bullshit which marked those years, I’ve decided that a Fall trip to New Orleans would be better. Why drink again a poison which you’ve (barely) survived once before? New Orleans in the Fall will be lovely.
So, I’ve made it to 68. What are my distillations about life having reached this point? Don’t take any shit from anybody. Ever. Yes, it’ll cost you. Overall, I believe it’s worth the price. YMMV. Be true to yourself, even if yourself is a very odd thing compared to the dominant culture. Mostly, have fun. Fun seems to be overlooked or completely forgotten in Puritan-derived contemporary American culture. Fun is pathetically underrated. Embrace it. Cherish it. Nurture it.
FUN - it does a body (and a mind) good.
These are the words from the writings of Cap’n Franko, Book 68, versus the world. Err, I mean, Book 68, verses n to nx.
Can I get an “AMEN!”? Or a “RAMEN!” from the Pastafarians?
Thank you, bretheren and cistern. (Yes, I meant to spell it that way. I’m funny, remember?)
Ite! Missa est!