Well, we're back in good old Ontario. I had hoped to spend a day or two lolling around in the Carolinas, before we headed back from Charleston when the cruise ship docked, but it was just too darn cold and wet to do any sightseeing. As we headed back towards Canada, we encountered in West Virginia the fringes of the big snowstorm that was pounding the east coast. Saturday night, we camped out in a cozy motel with stores and restaurants nearby, and prepared to wait it out. By the next morning though, it appeared safe to head on out, so we did. By Sunday night, we were home.
It was a nice trip and we all enjoyed it. My son enjoyed running on the deck ( 4 times around the ship = 1 mile) and usually ran between three and seven miles to keep up his training. Because he was skipping school for nearly two weeks, he actually did some homework on the cruise ship, all without too much haranguing by his parents. And he even spent time talking to his mother and father.
I enjoy those times when my son and I can speak with each other, free of distractions that beckon to him at home. You know, video games, TV, his movie collection, the cats, that sort of thing. Sometimes it is great to get away from home to have more of that vaunted 'quality time' that we hear about so much.
We had a lot of quality time on our trip. Our conversations roamed from those during which I had to be careful not to let my eyes glaze over, to ones which were challenging and interesting. There are many things that we talk about where, during the conversation, I realize that he knows more about the subject than I did in my twenties. He is only thirteen. Then, I realize that his mother and I have always tried to talk to him about anything and everything, and have done so for years. I have discussed religion, war, politics, philosophy, business, human interaction and much more with him. I wonder sometimes if what I say actually registers somewhere in his brain. Months later, he will comment on something and I realize then that he likely heard about the thing from me in the first place. That is rewarding and makes me feel good. It is interesting to me, how much we as parents live vicariously through our children. I guess that is a good thing, as long as we don't stop living our own lives altogether.
Now, what do I tackle first? Hundreds of emails in my inbox, a large stack of unopened mail, or the reports on my desk awaiting my attention? I could spend a few moments remembering the sun, the warm breezes, the crystal waters of the Caribbean, the... Yes, I think I will do that. The other stuff can wait.