Ah, to be by the ocean! East coast, West coast, a foreign coast - doesn't matter, as long as I can smell the salty sea air I am one happy girl. And this past weekend was a very happy one, not only because I spent it by the seashore but also because it was with people I love.
My mom's side of the family had a big reunion in Ogunquit, Maine to celebrate my great uncle's 90th birthday. Relatives came from places as far away as Seattle, Santa Cruz and Scotland. Starting on Friday night, wine and tears just kept flowing, as they often do on these occasions.
My great uncle graduated from Dartmouth in 1942, and there are several other "Dartmouth men" in the family... enough for my mom to insist on us all posing together for a picture yesterday. She even orchestrated it so that we held old photographs of the rest of the family's Dartmouth grads in our hands for the photo. As cheesy as it may sound, I love the fact that I'm part of this family called the Swensons, of Swedish origin and with the granite of New Hampshire in their muscles and their brains*! I'm looking forward to interviewing my cousins, aunts and uncles this summer for a project I'm pursuing, tentatively called "Growing Up Swenson," to document the family history (or maybe just a segment of it).
The past few days have been like a mini-vacation. I pretty much forgot about schoolwork, kept my cell phone off, and stayed away from computers and the internet. The last thing I did before turning off my phone on Friday was check in on the @iDrevolution and @iDevents handles on Twitter; the 2010-2011 Triabetes team was racing in Ironman St. George on Saturday, and I thought about them during my short swim session that morning, knowing that they've put in so many hours in the pool, on the bike, on the roads and in open waters to prepare for such an epic endurance event. I'm sure they're all celebrating their accomplishments today. Way to go, Triabetes.
Although I didn't get a whole lot of swimming, cycling or running in this weekend, I exercised just enough to keep my blood sugars happy and for my cousins to make remarks about my self-discipline (ha! if only I could be really disciplined and stop wimping out about late afternoon bike rides).
If it had not been for this reunion, I would have been at school and my mom would have been at home in Maryland on this Mother's Day. Instead, we got to walk along the beach and go out for a nice breakfast together. A great way to end the weekend. Now, on to studying for tomorrow's anthropology exam!
* lyrics from the Dartmouth College Alma Mater