Melon Collie

Well, not any more. I was a little wee bit Melon Collie for quite some bit of time today. Oh, don’t worry about me. In part it was because I have been stuck in the ON position for a number of days and today, I hung around at the moomincabin almost all day. So it was high time for a wee bit of a mood crash. I was telecommuting to my work (thank you very much jamadots, you guys absolutely rock!) but, at the moment, my current prodject is winding down. That means I am doing the kind of stuff that I don’t have to think too hard about, so I can work while my mind wanders. And so it wandered back into the Jurassic Age…

I looked next door at the cabin of my late doctor-uncle Don and his beautiful wife, the White Tornado. I remember waking up as a child when the loud outdoor ringer of his phone (only phone on the beach in those days) rang, then the Doc faaarrring up his TBird (roight?) to head to town. The White Tornado? Oh man, the most efficient moom, cook, and housecleaner on earth. I have been told that when I stayed with my cousins over there while my brother was being born, she cleaned behind my ears. I think The Commander was a bit embarrassed.

And then there were the mornings when we were young and still spent summers at the Old Cabin. I remember sleeping on the front porch and I could hear crows cawing and The Engineer cawing back at them. We still have crows but now we have ravens too — grok grok grok. I guess Frooggy groks back at them.

My dog! Tigger. Tiggers don’t jump, they bounce, roight? And she did. And she barked. At the milkman. At our friend Kevin. Y’know, she was the best dog. Got me over a ridiculous fear of dogs. As much as I loved her, I’m sure she was totally obnoxious when she was young. But Grandroobly did not put up with any crap from her. She loved him anyway. By the time she got old, she had learned that if she walked sedately up to people with her tail wagging, sometimes they just might pet her. Good doggie. Yes. Haven’t ever had another dog.

Back when we all used to use outhouses, I remember sitting in the moomincabin watching the Grand Poohbah stopping in her nightgown on her morning trip to the outhouse to examine something on the path. Probably a luna moth. That woudda sent me screaming in those days. I can handle luna moths now but there are a couple of lepidoptera species that still do that to me. Guess what? It is a documented phobia.

Then there were the more recent days when my own Beach Urchins would make their way down the stairs on cold mornings and “turtle” in their baby blankets in front of the heating stove here.

And when the Shermans with their five kids would park their VW Bus and pop-up camper here for a couple weeks and Esther (my second mom!) would say things like, “Sherman kids, go play on the highway!” She once reported a dream in which she died and St. Peter assigned her the job of making peanut butter sandwiches.

Speaking of dreams, there was the morning when I was a tween and Jeep & Pan were newlyweds. I was sleeping in my bunk in the back of the moomincabin having a horribilous dream about bombs going off back in the swamp. And then. Someone started whistling Simon & Garfunkel’s Sounds of Silence. I woke up and realized it was Jeep, who was coincidentally walking past the back of the moomincabin, probably to visit his friend aka my old coot. I’m sure he doesn’t remember this. I’m the only one who could. But I was a child who was comforted out of a bad dream and I will never forget it.

There were all the community dinners at the Old Cabin, all of us and sometimes the Shermans. I can remember The Commander and/or an aunt dashing out to Aunt Jane’s What a Pickle Market on Six Mile in the late afternoon to snag something to cook for dinner. Just like I do nowadays, although not to Aunt Jane’s ’cause it isn’t there anymore, although the pickle sign is.

There used to be an Air Force base not too many miles away from here. B52 bombers flew outta there, among other things. I’m not sure if the B52s that flew from somewhere behind our beach over our heads were really, truly, at the proverbial treetop level but they were flying pretty damn low. If my old coot and the legendary Duke, who were both old WWII pilots (Duke also served in Viet Nam), hadn’t been so excited that they ran like hell outside and down to the beach to watch, I would’ve been terrified!

Those are very random memories and that’s enough for today. I didn’t say anything about Radical Betty but that’s because I haven’t totally processed Radical Betty yet. For one thing, I have too many memories of her. For another thing, I do not think I will be able to fully process her until The Commander leaves the earth and *that*, my friends, may be a while. I just hope she doesn’t end up spitting frosting into my hair any time soon…

I have a whole lot more moominbeach memories but those are the ones that surfaced today. Thanks for listening to my unintelligible ramblings. Goodnight. — Kayak Woman

6 Responses to “Melon Collie”

  1. Margaret Says:

    I can understand the moods. I’m a mass of them too. I love the memories–outhouses, old stores, and lost relatives. What is a luna moth??

  2. Sam Says:

    Not at all intelligible. Loving you. Best on the reset; I’m in sympathy on that (especially today).

  3. l4827 Says:

    I remember those B52 landing flights too. They would block out any sun, and with a terrific roar they flew overhead. Really neat watching those 1960’s slow bank turns over the bay and then looking at the landing tires directly over head…

  4. Pooh Says:

    Thanks for sharing some of your memories. Yes, I would have stopped for a luna moth, or twin-flowers in bloom. I haven’t seen a luna moth in ages. Do you remember the summer your cat had kittens? Tigger took on the role of guarding those kittens from any and all, sometimes including their mama cat. Was her name Twinkles? Jay and I each got to pick a kitten, and so Shelly and Butterscotch came home with us.

  5. jay Says:

    And Butterscotch stayed.
    I don’t remember stopping, just leaping to get over the forming cobwebs.
    Strange as it may sound, I like the outhouse.
    I remember Grandma pointing out the leaves rustling and other things you could see.
    (Yes we had the door open – mostly to keep some renegade from shutting and locking us in! Although I doubt anyone would have locked Grandma in.)

  6. gene Says:

    I guess our insect book is at the cabin but the Luna moth is fairly big with swallow tails and spots that are probably supposed to suggest eyes. It is a beautiful shade of light green.

    Love, Mom