On Saturday, I’ll be driving over to Maine with Quinn, to visit the sister of an old friend who died two years ago. I had been making noises to her about coming to see her for over a year now, and I’ve finally decided to take a Saturday and just go. Quinn’s coming along because he wants to see the ocean, and because he likes going on trips with Daddy. I’ll stop in Portland for lunch with one of my VPXII pals, which will be nice. My friend lived in a town not too far from Bangor, down by the coast, so there’ll be ocean for Quinn to see, and the colors should be popping right now as well.
VPXIII just wrapped up last weekend, and I’ve been reading the blog entries and message board posts of the brand new VP alumni, whose experience seems to have mirrored the one we had just a year ago. (Hard to believe it’s been a year already.) I feel a weird sort of homesickness when I look at all the new Flickr albums taken by VPXIII folks, and I’d love to go back some year, but someone else said that Viable Paradise is as much a “one-time only” experience as your first kiss, and that makes sense.
I get a little more contemplative than usual in the fall, and the imminent visit to the place where my old friend lived his life combines with that odd feeling of homesickness I’ve mentioned to make me a bit more melancholic than usual. I recently signed up at a German web site for finding old schoolmates, and a bunch of my old friends from school are already members. When I look at the pictures they’ve put online, it’s kind of shocking to see how people have either hardly changed at all, or changed so dramatically that I wouldn’t recognize them if they passed me on the street. I think I’ve only now started to realize that we’re all heading into middle age at full steam, and I simply don’t feel middle age-y just yet.
If this all sounds like the heralding of an impending midlife crisis, have no fear. I’m happy where I am in life, pleased with how it has all turned out, and looking forward to the next ten or twenty years, because I’m just now doing what I have always wanted to do with my life. So no, I won’t be getting that cherry-red Corvette to cruise up and down in front of the all-girls college any time soon. It’s just my annual mental housecleaning process.