I absolutely LOVE my friend Amanda. We have known one another for over a decade now, she is about that much older than me too. Amanda is also a friend I met in the nightlife when I was that itty bitty baby dyke, wearing my K.D. Lang T Shirt, listening to Melissa Etheridge. She had been around the block and was a part of Seattle's nightlife past that most of 'the kids' nowadays would never believe happened. She has seen me from my little baby dyke stage, taught me to bartend, counseled me through several TRAGIC relationships (listening to the same story over and over and over and over with patience and sage advice), instrumented one of the best birthday surprises EVER (a ride on 'The Duck'), successfully dealt with the 'Scott Common Sense Challenge' AND Ronald McDonald himself. I could go on forever. We have history and I love that. I consider Amanda one of my most cherished friends. Family, really. There are several moments in my life when I was in a panic, not knowing what to do, and Amanda was the one to save the day. If even to tell me I needed to get control of my damn self!
Why am I chattering on about Amanda? Well, I recieved an e mail from Amanda this week that I want to share bits of. She has the most amazing way of putting things into words. It's incredibly poetic. She once shared one of her sonnets with me, in a quiet moment on Guemes Island. It really touched me and I have never forgotten it.
Before I share my bits though, I must give you a little background. Several years ago Amanda decided to sell her house in Seattle and purchase an RV. Head out for the open road. She had goals (hit up Slab City) and she was armed with tons of facts that included everything from how much gas was going for per gallon all over the country to the probable percentages involved in getting into or maintaining a relationship, as a lesbian, with every year that passed (scarily, the later facts are not very encouraging). Amanda picked a date, and once it came, she hit the road. She's been on the road ever since. Has gone back and forth across the country, west to east, north to south, and back again. She spends a good bulk of time at a Lesbian RV park in Apache Junction, AZ. She now has a companion of several years, who also travels around, living out of her RV. Every now and again, I get an update via e mail. I live for the descriptive nature of her writing. How she can really pull you into her experience. This is the e mail I got a few days ago (edited slightly to protect her privacy)....I hope you enjoy this break as much as I did.
September 16, 2010
Greetings from the Midwest where overnight lows have singed deciduous leaf tips – creating not the bright, fiery crimsons of fall yet, but smatterings of burnt orange hints of what is to come. I’m here enjoying the late summer harvest of the heirloom tomatoes I planted in May before I left for Seattle. I’ve been eating at least one BLT a day, every day, since I arrived. Nothing says summer quite like a fat, juicy, homegrown tomato sliced and layered with bacon, lettuce and mayo between two slices of delicious toasted bread. Hot day, BLT, tall glass of iced tea and a big slice of sloppy watermelon, this is heaven.
We’re here loving up the beautiful little granddaughter. She’s got a strong pull on us, but the cooling temps forewarning of sub zero winter have a stronger push on us. So we’ll be heading back to the southwest at the end of next week. We’ll be in Arizona for the month of October. We’re going to the RVW Convention in Mesa the last week of October, and then to Palm Springs for the first 2 weeks of November. In the meantime, we’re enjoying the grandaughter, our BLTs and the bounty of south central Minnesota.
Kasota is a flat, green grass, sky blue, ten-block town nestled in a gentle bend of the Minnesota River. It’s traversed by a rumbling, whistle-blowing train twice daily. If not for the train and the calls of the stellar jays, there might be nothing but long stretches of complete silence throughout the mornings. But evenings are different. Here we have what has become a most unusual sight elsewhere. Children go outside and play here. They ride bikes in the streets, sell lemonade at stands in front of their houses and sometimes get into loud, rowdy fights outside. The whole of it stirs memories of my own childhood and pleasure from the realization that there still are some neighborhoods like this. I didn’t think they existed anymore.