Traces of Okiboji sunburn linger on our faces. Vacation clothes lie in a heap by the bed. The car hasn’t even been refueled. 11 days have elapsed since our last voyage to the Motherland, but now we’re heading south again. Chapter 3 in the summer event saga (Ch 1: Lebanese Cooking Days; Ch 2: Okiboji/DsM Matrimonial Cruise) is Christmas in July—a more somber gathering than it sounds. We’ll see my mom’s brother Herky Klima and his fam at their retreat near Clermont to exchange gifts in lieu of a colder, icier reunion in December. We’ll also plant a lilac bush in honor of my grandmother (the bush was Sarah’s winning idea; a way more uplifting Christmas commemoration than scattering ashes, as my mom had suggested).
I can’t deal with another weekend of crowded quarters and living all over each other, so we made two separate hotel arrangements for our two-night trip (Decorah on Friday, Elkader on Saturday), but it’ll be better that way. Since there’s no particular hurry to get ready, I’m blogging in the backyard over a Beam Rye on the rocks.