All excuses aside…Twyla Tharpe would be disappointed in me. Ive been on habit vacation. Which is like exercise vacation. Oh I’ll just skip this one day because I’m traveling, ill skip this day because I’m tired after traveling, then it’s been a week and exercise seems hard. So I’m back, ill do better.
Something about being on Edisto Island makes me think of writing. Maybe because of the books I’m drawn to that are written about the area, or maybe the personal history I have with the island, or perhaps it’s the way Edisto seems to have stopped aging years ago.
As I cross from 64 east and turn right over the railroad track, I begin to count the landmarks. Little markers that mean I’m getting closer to my destination. The first old white clapboard church, the second old white clapboard church, the decorated tree by the Botany Bay turn off, the Old Post Office, the mattress swing. Then I make the turn an see the wide open space that means the ocean lies just beyond the horizon.
It was a long, long drive. In 48 hours I’ve traveled by car from south Jersey to South Carolina, and my backside is none too pleased. Once I crossed into South Carolina yesterday I was hit with periods of torrential rain. Rain so hard I was no longer sure if the truck in front of me had disappeared into the rain cloud or not. Lightning lit up the sky periodically and eventually the storm passed on leaving only the humid heat so typical of South Carolina summers. So the beach horizon was a welcomed sight.
Once I arrived at the house, which I proudly found by memory,the aroma of dead fish hung heavy in the humid air. Tiny black ants scurried on every corner of the hot cement. Inside the preparations were underway for dinner. The two younger daughters greet me with sun kissed faces and droopy eyes from their day on the beach. Dad was trying futilely to sweep a load of sand out of the girls room. Greeting familiar faces with warm embraces the day winds down. Tired from the drive and now full of deliciously icy margaritas I fall into bed.
Morning of the second day starts with my middle daughter standing virtually silently over me at the head of my bed. Someone has lovingly started a pot of hot coffee. Slowly cousins wake and shuffle up to the kitchen, open bags of powder covered donuts, look at the sky. Storm clouds threaten out beyond the breaking waves. The first full day has begun.