Monday, September 5, 2011

a case of the gypsy blues.

When Sadie woke up from her nap today she asked to go bye-bye.  My one-year-old gets cooped up too.  Since the boys were out in the country, I didn't have a vehicle, so my bye-bye options were somewhat limited to where our chevrolegs wanted to take us.  We went for a walk on middle beach.  Sadie was perfectly happy to run around there and pick up rocks, and roll in the sand, even though that meant I had to pick a cigarette butt out of her hair (gag) but on the walk home through Front Street I felt bad for the first time that this shabby looking town is all I have to show my kid.  Sadie points her pudgy little fingers at a pile of decomposing refrigerators that are lined up in a litter-strewn alley between two falling down houses.  I'm trying to give her some kind of an adjective, because she wants to know what everything is these days.  "Junk." That's the best I could do. Front St. in Nome is decaying.  The ever-prevalent wind is scouring the exterior off the buildings, the sidewalk is streaked with hawked loogies, spilled beer and expired cigarettes.  Even though it's 5pm on Sunday there are plenty of people staggering around more than a few sheets gone. They are laughing really loudly, and ridiculously, which Sadie then immitates in her childish way, which is sad because she is trying to comprehend funny, and that laughing really isn't funny.

I know this is part of my love-hate relationship with Nome... as in I LOVE the surrounding country, and the awesome friends we have here (truly some amazing people) but I HATE the town of Nome itself. Seriously. I cried the first time I saw it.

Dear Sadie, If I could redo our bye-bye this afternoon I would have us wake up in Edinburgh, or somewhere else like that.  Somewhere old, but clean.  We would stay at an inauspicious pension, or maybe a tiny bed and breakfast owned by a sweet snowy haired lady with a thick accent that's just a little to hard to understand. We could go for a walk on old cobblestone streets that are so worn from foot traffic that you wouldn't trip over them too much.  When our legs got tired we would pop into a cafe and I would be so delighted to find a really strong cup of espresso, and a raisin scone for you.  We'd take our snack to a park, where there would be a fountain and some grass for you to run around on. You would feed the crumbs from your scone to the pigeons.  If we were lucky, we might even see a police officer on a horse. You would probably really like to see a horse. I don't know what else we would do...admire the magnificent, towering castles, maybe just walk around and people watch--look into shop windows at all kinds of different curiosities, go eat dinner in a place that has comfy vintage chairs and warm yellow light filtering through prismatic lead crystal.  When our eyes had finally seen enough new things for one day, we could retire to our accommodations and fall fast asleep under a fluffy, white feather-down comforter that still smells just a little bit like the sunshine soaked up on an afternoon clothesline.

Now that would be a bye-bye I could feel proud of. So it's midnight and I am travelocity-ing tickets from Anchorage to Edinburgh, and guess what? $345! That is less than a plane ticket from Nome to Anchorage.  Maybe when Loren gets home from this most recent hunting excursion I'll convince him that Sadie and I really need to go bye-bye to Scotland.


  1. dearest blue gypsy, your yearning to share beauty, refinement, cleanliness and order with sweet Sadie is admirable. The trouble with seeking these attributes afar is when you return, you will again find yourself in the dregs of human weakness, misery and bondage. An ideal place to practice and to teach the beautiful virtues: grace, compassion, humility. Look through the eyes of unconditional love and let your spirit be lifted and vitalized. Bloom where you are planted, aphids and all. Much love, Mom.

  2. ^^ your mom is amazing!

    no wonder you are an amazing mom yourself. we all want those things for our kids but home is home and you live in one amazing place; drunks, old fridges and all.

    but defitely hit up loren for a potential vacation in scotland! ;)

  3. Your post is exactly how we felt about Nome. Loved the wildness of the country and have never found nicer people anywhere but wanted more for our little one. I often worry that we took the "easy" way out by leaving and missed a wonderful opportunity to teach as your mom said "grace, compassion and humility."

    Thanks for yet another thought provoking post!

  4. Thanks for the words of encouragement you guys. That's a pep-talk for the books right there mom!

    Erin, I totally know what you mean. I get worried that if we spend too long here raising Sadie that she will become jaded and start to view dysfunction as the "norm." I don't think there is an "easy way out" per se when it comes to parenting. I am thinking there is nothing particularly easy about parenting. period. :)

  5. What!, Why are tickets to Scotland so cheap?? That can't be a normal occurrence!
    Sorry to hear that your days in Nome are less than ideal. I guess living in the arctic so long made you forget the difference between a noun and an adjective. LOL. Or maybe that's the exhausted parent coming through. Do you have plans to move elsewhere, or are you going to raise your family in Nome?

  6. oh gosh. I think living in the arctic might actually cause major grammatical erosion. Usually its the prepositions that slip first...bad if I'm confusing nouns and adjectives. Can I just get a pass on the grammar until Sadie turns 7? No real immediate plans to move elsewhere, especially not after that awesome pep talk from my mom about blooming where I'm planted:)

    I seriously think the cheap tickets to Scotland were a fluke. I went back and priced them out again the next day and they seemed more reasonably expensive.