America, why are your libraries full of tears? -Allen Ginsberg: The Howl
When Island people go to the mainland, they often refer to it as "going to America". This is because America has many things the Island does not; things like highways and freeways, franchise restaurants, Indian casinos, and military bases. There are Walmarts and Costcos, gun shops, and un-familiar faces, the endless crawl of traffic, the speed limits our car can barely make. Because of these things going off Island, and into America, can be at times kind of intense.
But then there are the music shops, the movie theatres, the museums, the strange wonderful roadside diners and antique stores, the mountains and rivers, the endless Zoo of the New, that draws us to cross the water.
This week we visited America for one of my favorite reasons: to see C's family. We had a lovely time, visiting with them, hanging out in Port Townsend, a Victorian town on the Peninsula, and even entering the dreaded Wmart, to buy me a sewing machine. Still, driving off that ferry you always feel suddenly lighter. The car enters a tunnel of trees, but even over the engine, you can hear a kind of silence, and you're home.
I honestly don't think I could quite handle living in the "real" America. The Island of course, has many things that America has not. Read all about them here.
On our way back home.