Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Overnight Camp

Last night, we had our first out-of-town visitor.  Naka, Willie's friend from his Africa trip with the New York Times, was in town (specifically Cary) visiting his wife's family.  So, we took him out.  Meaning, we took him on our 5 minute driving tour of Durham (the Duke Lacrosse house is included on the tour), and made too many snarky comments about the "booming" downtown. 

Anyway, we had a good time with Naka.  We went to a restaurant in the American Tobacco Historical District complex (that will definitely be on your tour, too), and got burgers and played pool.  (As if I know how to play pool --  I was in the corner playing Ms. Pac-Man.)  The burgers were no Jury's burgers (see, that is the very thing I need to not do), but the fries did have ample garlic on them.

After our first real night out kind of, we drove back to our house where Naka's car was parked.  As we said our goodbyes, I got that feeling in my stomach -- that distinct sleepover/summer camp/how will I make it through the night feeling.  The feeling that cries, "Don't leave me here!"  See, growing up, I couldn't do sleepovers (so sleep away camps were definitely out).  I'd occasionally attempt one, but then I would ultimately call home at about 10:00 PM and feign illness.  I'm not quite sure what my problem was, but it was real, and everyone knew.  In 5th grade, I spent months dreading the one night I was to spend at Camp Timberlee, a sleepaway retreat for all 5th graders.  To my big astonishment, I went and actually survived.  And I made one of those leather cuff bracelets that you stamp your name into.  I may have conquered Camp Timberlee, but I was sure college would be out of the question.  

Well, last night, Naka did leave us here, and my stomach did hurt for a little while.  And then it dawned on me that, in a sense, I am facing a really long sleepover here in Durham.  Granted, I have Willie.  And without a job, I have lots of time to make leather cuff bracelets with my name stamped into them.  With any luck, I'll muster up that Camp Timberlee courage and make it at least through orientation.

1 comment:

Claire Just Claire Like Cher said...

I had the opposite problem. I was happily at camp (with people who were quite homesick and teary), and I cried my eyes out when I had to go home. Sick feeling in my stomach: "Don't make me go back there." I take your feelings on the subject as a very good tribute to your family and home -- rock on Ashland Ave. in Evanston and gooooo Krauts! Now, Chicago homesickness is a feeling I ABSOLUTELY share. (The Jury burgers comment hit me too, and I don't even eat them!) I was on the tube escalator yesterday and the ads along the walls were for some travel service and talking about city breaks, and the picture was immediately identifiable to me as a view down Lake Shore Drive roughly from North Avenue or a bit closer looking at the Hancock and the Bloomingdales Bldg. and such. But they used the Chicago skyline shot to generically advertise all "city breaks" -- which made me proud that we live in the uber-city (Lived!?!) but also feeling that our awesome home needed more credit. I wanted to shout to all those London commuters, "That's Chicago, people! That's my hometown!" This is 3 & 1/2 years on, mind you. But it DEFINITELY gets easier. Hang in there, and I happily await the tour of lacrosse and tobacco sites! We can make lanyards with plastic thread like they do in camp while we visit...