Tuesday, August 3, 2010


Last week we grappled with why we couldn't make the break, leave our home waters. No matter what we tried, something prevented us from leaving.

"The universe took one of our spark plugs," I told Chip about the dinghy motor landing in the shop for 10 days. We can't leave without it.

It's now clear in hindsight why we were waylaid here in Manteo. This impending trip to New Mexico would have been so difficult if we were already in the Chesapeake. We would have to find a safe place to keep the boat, find people we trusted to keep an eye on her. And then we would worry.

One of the things we like about cruising is that we are able to help our aging parents. The last five years with the wine shop, it was not possible to leave on short notice or stay indefinitely. Now we can. Sooner than we thought.

We monitor mom's condition from afar, judging the best time to make the trip. Our hope is to arrive when she goes home so we can be there to help her get back on her feet.

The struggle we face is her continued life-threatening complications. My sister and I confer on the phone, but she is the one who is there to make the life and death decisions, to listen to the litany of hideous things that could happen as a result of the procedures she approves, spending her nights on a recliner in ICU.

One thousand eight hundred and eighty-five miles seems infinite.

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