#532: Minivan in the Background

This is Memorial day Weekend,
the official beginning of summer
on Nantucket.
Every summer for the last decade 
I’ve packed kids and towels into the car
for beach time.
I didn’t drive on the beach (I don’t like the parking lot effect)
 but I’d drive there and back.
No more.
My car is done.
says so, right there on the odometer.
 The background of my life, bashed in on all four corners by the teens we’ve taught to drive.

Full of memories: confidences that couldn’t be spoken face to face. Piles of sand and wet towels. Watermelon, BLTs and cheesecake stashed in the ‘way back’ for  Fourth of July feasts. Threats to pull over “Right Now” and make the whole crew get out and walk if they didn’t stop fighting. Lots of loud singing which didn’t seem to bother me at all. Being quizzed on the artists and names of whatever song came on the radio. Getting better at it.

Bumper-stickered for my son’s campaign:

first in 2012, then again in 2013. No point in getting new bumper-stickers when you can re-use the old ones. Sustainability was a big part of his platform. Sustainability is also a big part of my decision to go car-less. The island is only 16 miles long. What does anyone need a car for? It’s much quicker to bike. No traffic jams, no parking problems. No dumpy figure from not getting any exercise. No filling up the tank with gasoline for $70 a pop every two weeks. And no exhaust sending pollutants into the air every time the engine is on.

Come and take it away, Harry.
Harry Larrabee takes anything metal away for free.
and if you need something brought over from America,
his flat-bed truck is available.

Good-bye, minivan.
Hello, bicycle.

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