My family is getting better at taking one another as we are. Which helps, when there are seven of you living on a sailboat for a week and a half—even on a fine sailboat, slicing through heaven, or the West Indies as it's called here.
Tuesday was our last lucky night, and we sang songs in the salon and then talked and talked, about whose parents influenced whom in which ways, and why we all are, all day long, the way we are. Everything we said, we had said many times before. It was a ritual repetition of long-earned insights, and it lasted past midnight. Everyone wanted to get everything in.
As I plummeted down a sleepslide slathered with Presidente beer, my last thought was: Tomorrow we'll return to a world that couldn't begin to know and has no time to care about any of these byzantine, contradictory, sometimes corrupt family facts that rule our inner lives. But we know. And we don't forget. And we don't tell our people to "get over" the past, because we know Faulkner was right when he said, "The past is never dead. It's not even past."
No, it's not. So Susan, Lewis, Dan, Monica, Cristie and Scout—I'm still with you. We're doing nine knots on a beam reach, everyone's feeling fine, and I just looked at my watch and it's coming up on oh-beer-thirty.