Saturday, November 07, 2009

Quote It Saturday 11/7

My family is very important to me, and I love traveling and taking my kids to new places. One of my favorite memoirs combines these elements: 12,000 Miles in the Nick of Time: A Semi-Dysfunctional Family Circumnavigates the Globe by Mark Jacobson. Mark is a writer who, along with his wife, scraped enough money together to take their kids on a no-frills trip around the world, both to show them world and to bring their family closer together, as their kids grew older. I filled many pages of my quotes journal with excerpts from this wonderful memoir. Today, I'd like to share some quotes from the book that perfectly mirror my own feelings about family and how travel brings families together:

What remained was us. Little us, nuclear us. For the moment, the entropy that inevitably flings things and people apart was suspended. The force field of our own making ruled the day, a most favorable kind of gravity. We were together. The will by which we created life in our family, this fleeting passage during which we lived under the same Brooklyn roof, rode in the same Toyota Camry station wagon, and got on the same airplane to go on this trip that had landed us, currently, in the city of the Hindu dead, remained in control. That's what this trip really was, a grand, somewhat nutty gesture, a tribute to the ephemera of our lives together. Even if everything went perfectly, in the middle-class way of thinking of things - them doing well, going off to college, getting really swell jobs, etc. - we'd never be as close as we'd been over the 16 years since Rae came on the scene, followed by her sister and brother. Arrows on the dartboard; for now we'd landed here.

...You had to get it while you could, put aside a million mixed feelings, because those moments were irretrievable. It had been a big, juicy chapter, this time of us being together, this invention of us. In no small way, we were all just passing through, tipping our hats like any Lone Ranger, here today and gone tomorrow. It was hard to say where we would go next. With the next lightning strike, it could be over. Sometimes, things just fell apart.

The deal was to horde the here and now. What was known only to us. The shared knowledge, the inside jokes.

Wow. I can relate so well to all that, even better now than when I first read it, as my older son is now 15 and quickly burning through high school. These passages ignite my own urge to travel, to enjoy these fleeting years together, just the four of us. It also makes me want to read this book again!

Thanks to Leslie at That Chick That Reads for starting Quote It Saturday, my favorite weekly theme.

1 comment:

  1. that really sounds amazing. I like what it says about how we are just passing through tipping our hats because it's true. My friend and I were actually just talking about something similar last nite! Great Quote! Thanks for sharing =)