Monday, March 1, 2010

I used to think those tropical screensaver photos were retouched. Now I just think they were taken in Abaco.

Back, back from the Bahamas.

Trying, trying not to cry.

What a silly thing, wanting to cry when you’ve just gotten back from a vacation.

We were able to take a trip to one of the most beautiful places I’ve ever seen, spending hours of TV-less time with Brian’s parents, sisters, and brothers- (or soon-to-be) in-law. We were able to walk on sandy beaches and watch palm trees wave against an intense blue sky and sip coconut milk from freshly-harvested coconuts, husked by Brian’s brawny strength and a Henckel’s bread knife found in the drawer of the rental. We were able to eat good food, snorkel in water that was unearthly bright, and experience the heady rush of cool waves and hot sun. We were able to watch a full harvest moon rise above Atlanta, big and gold and intensely bright, mirroring the brilliant orange lights of the city as our plane touched down at sunset.

And most memorably, we were able to watch Kelly and David become husband and wife in an intimate ceremony of friends and family gathered, barefoot, on the sand. The bride was breathtaking, bright and tan and beaming as she walked toward us along the beach to the soft music of a guitar. Their vows were written with care and said from the heart, perhaps not word-for-word as they’d practiced, but perfectly, as the wind blew over the water and whipped their hair toward the tiny town they’ve claimed as a second home. The wedding was a perfect blend of everything they wanted, a fusion of loved ones and laughter and the Bahamas, a place that’s grown into the very bones of their love. Saturday, February 27th, was a happy day.

And so I’ve been able to add all of these things to the storehouse of my memory, a file of images and smiles and soundbytes, ready in a moment to retrieve and enjoy for the rest of my life. So to cry at this privilege is beyond silly, except perhaps if the reason is that I’m afraid I’ll forget something, or that I didn’t enjoy it enough while it was all swirling around me in reality.

Brian expressed this feeling too, this morning, in his Brian-ish way. When the alarm sounded, I don’t think either of us realized where we were for a moment. I sat up in confusion as Brian reached over, pressed the snooze, pulled me into his arms and prepared for eight more soft, warm minutes. But we lay there for no more than a second or two when his phone rang loudly to signal the start of the workday and the urgency of the job. The light outside our window was gray as we abandoned our eight more minutes and climbed out of bed.

Brian reached his arms toward the ceiling in a fierce stretch, leaned back his pillow-spiked head and said with conviction, “Ohhh, CRAP.”

But another reason not to cry, I am sure, is that we can both sit in front of the fire tonight and pout together. Me and my coconut lover.

(Just a few pictures from our trip. Click to get a closer look.)

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