Home again home again

Posted by on Sunday, August 20th, 2006

A few weeks ago, we left home to go home to our tribe.    We’re back, safe and sound.  And a little sad that we couldn’t stretch the experience out for a while longer.  We had a wonderful time.  I built a village with friends, I cooked for friends, I ate with friends, I laughed with friends, I made music with friends, I traded with friends, I played games with friends, and I taught and learned with friends, and together we strengthened a community that has been sustaining us for years.

Western Pennsylvania is incredibly important to me.  I spent every summer and holiday break there as a child, surrounded by my Mom’s family.  My grandparents and great-grandparents and great aunts and uncles are buried there.  Much of my extended family still lives there.   As a teen, I began visiting the area with friends for this crazy summer camp experience we have shared for so long–this was my 17th year sleeping in those woods.  I met my husband there that first year.  I’ve met many of my closest friends there.  It holds so much love for me.   Many of my fondest memories are set in those forests and lakes.

Last year, the whole covered in bees problem and some tangentially connected stuff (including the fact that no one could hear me call for help while covered in said bees) really threw me for a loop, and Scott and I started discussing skipping the big camping trip.  I’m so glad we didn’t.  This was the best one we’ve had in years.  Our new spot, perched in the trees and surrounded by the ideal mix of friends, was heavenly.

This year, the man who essentially sparked Celtic living history in the DC area came back for the first time in over a decade, and he brought his son, who is now a man.  It was wonderful to see Crinan in the flesh, standing with his son Ciaran, who I’ve known since he was a little kid.  Our founder came home.  His son remembered us all, and I like to think we had some small role in making his childhood good.  We’re well into the second generation of our strange creation, and it feels wonderful.

I’d tell you about it now, but I have to do a lot of laundry, and download many many photos.  And sort through a lot of email.  And sleep.  And then sleep some more.  But here is a snippet to tide you over.  It’s cropped so tightly because it’s a self-portrait, and my arms are only so long. 

I don’t know how other people remember my face, but this is what I look like in my own head.  More freckled than during the rest of the year, sort of tired, sort of sweaty, some woad painted on by a friend, and downright content.  See the white in the background?  The white is important.  I’ll explain later, after I sleep, and after I explain everything leading up to it.   Suffice it to say, minutes later I was singing a song I love with and for people I love, and our actions recreated a scene over 2000 years old.

I know very few people think “Wow, that Lanea takes the kind of vacation I wish I could take!”  But I really don’t understand why anyone wants to lie on a blistering hot beach surrounded by strangers when you can do what we do instead.  And come back in better shape, having spent barely any money, richer in friends and memories, and with a good Krupnik recipe to boot.  Hot damn, we’re smart.

Filed in blather,Celtic,sewing | 5 responses so far

5 Responses to “Home again home again”

  1. rachelon 21 Aug 2006 at 10:47 am 1

    Welcome back! You were missed here, but I’m glad you had such a wonderful time. No, it’s not the vacation I would have chosen for myself, but few people understand the vacations I go on either, which generally involve funny little college towns and lots of bookstores. I love the self-portrait. Oh, and I just read the bees entry for the first time. I’m horrified. Utterly horrified. I may not go outside again for months.

  2. nannyon 21 Aug 2006 at 11:49 am 2

    I never miss pennsic until I hear you wax philosphically about it. It’s never been the soul lifing experience for me that it has been for you. Sigh. For me – it’s always been a struggle, especially in the latter years. I’m so glad Crinan was there. So looking forward to the stories.


  3. Annieon 21 Aug 2006 at 5:00 pm 3

    Welcome back! Sounds like a wonderful trip. I can’t wait to see more photos and hear more about it!!

  4. KnittnLissaon 21 Aug 2006 at 9:50 pm 4

    Welcome back, dear. SO glad that this year resemble last year not even a bit. Love that portrait – it’s how I’ll think of you forever more.

  5. margoon 28 Aug 2006 at 11:26 am 5

    I think it —

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