Saturday, September 02, 2006

Rained In

When I was a kid, we would go away for Labor Day Weekend with The Families--these guys my father had grown up with and their families, who all had kids around my age. Everyone had kids around my age back then. We would spend a long weekend at a resort in the Poconos, or at a lake in New Jersey.

We'd look forward to this weekend for the whole Summer, and once in a blue moon, the weather would have the nerve to rain. We kids would then be trapped in the cabin or the hotel room, playing cards, reading Archie/True Romance/Horror comics and coloring (with my "travel" crayons, the 8-pack, having had to leave the 64's at home.) In these closed-in quarters, we would wait for the slightest let-up in the downpour so we could burst out the door like lunatics and head straight for the pool or the lake again.

I spent this afternoon looking for a picture of me and my honorary cousins in our closed quarters, but couldn't find any in my collection. My guess is that the parents had put away the Instamatics and took a much-needed nap for their hangovers, safe in the knowledge that they didn't have to keep a constant eye on us for a while.

There are plenty of pictures of us actually in the water, or just out of it with big towels wrapped around our shoulders, lips turning blue and hair like drowned rats. This is before puberty made us conscious about our hair.

This weekend in New York is a washout, but rather than playing War! or Gin or Old Maid, I'm writing, reading, listening to Internet radio and making a big pot of soup consisting of garlic and things that can be chopped with a chef's knife. You really don't want to get cabin fever when holding a chef's knife.

I've long thought of Labor Day as the Workaholics' Yom Kippur, so I'm reassessing where I've been since last September and where I'm going in the months ahead. Or maybe I'll read an Archie comic.

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