Monday, April 6, 2009

I’ll call you tomorrow when I get somewhere

This is the fourth entry in the journal I’ve been keeping since my youngest son left for San Francisco and other points unknown:

April 5, 2009 — That somewhere was Florence, but it wasn’t a bus ride that got him there. After a night in the mission and his trip back to Eugene, he was told that the Saturday bus to Florence wouldn’t be leaving until five-thirty in the afternoon. Since Greyhound had shipped his luggage back to Eugene, he decided to hitchhike instead. After walking about an hour and a half he reached the west side of town. Then he stuck out his thumb and was picked up within a few minutes by someone headed to the coast for a day of clamming. He sounded tired. After walking the streets of Roseburg for several hours the previous day and visiting the local library, he endured a religious “session” before the mission served dinner. He said the woman who led it “was out of her mind.” He also said the weight of his backpack is ridiculous — a fact I had mentioned the night before he left. Well — in life, one of our most important missions is to see just how much we can do without. We are all travelers. He is learning. So am I. I am learning that having a son out wandering the world is a lonely, strange, and inspiring thing. His mother worries about him, of course, and the fact that he has almost no money. And my mind seeks him in a different dimension. I miss his music. I understand his quest.

Added yesterday to Songs and Letters.

Elsewhere: My thanks to Lola Koundakjian for including my poem, “Desire,” in the Armenian Poetry Project.

In the Forum: reasonable expectations.

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