August 27th, 2009

get critical

Poem for Thursday

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We got up early for breakfast so that we could spend time on the beach before we needed to check out of our hotel. It was a beautiful morning -- bright but not too hot, water nearly as warm as the air, with lots of little fish in the ocean, and seagulls, sandpipers, pelicans, and a ruddy turnstone on the sand and flying overhead -- waves moderate-sized, tide about halfway in. We swam a bit and collected some whelks and snail shells before we headed back to the hotel to pack up and drive out of Kill Devil Hills. North Carolina students went back to school on Monday, so tourist season is pretty much over, and we encountered very little traffic driving toward Norfolk.

We stopped for lunch at Yorktown Battlefield, which is actually not in the same area as the Yorktown Victory Center; the latter is part of the Historic Triangle under the administration of the state of Virginia, including Colonial Williamsburg and the Jamestown settlement, while the battlefield is part of the National Park Service. We had sandwiches at the picnic tables in front of the visitor center, walked around the earthworks and cannons nearest the visitor center, then drove the nine mile circuit past the siege lines, earthworks, and onetime encampment sites for Washington, Lafayette, Rochambeau, and their soldiers. We saw deer, a groundhog, turtles, lizards, and vultures in the park.

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We avoided DC rush hour by getting off I-95 for a quick dinner at a Popeye's near Dale City, then got home before 8 to unpack, do laundry, console neglected cats, etc. At Daniel's request we watched the last episode of the second season of Due South, which made me sad because it's the last episode of the second season -- and blah, a flashback episode, guess they were short on money -- but made up for everything with the dialogue ("Ah, Fraser, I could kiss you." "But I thought we were just friends, Ray.").

I'm glad Teddy Kennedy's life is getting a fraction of the attention paid to Michael Jackson's, though I also feel a bit distanced by every single politician and public official seeking publicity by giving a television interview -- not sure I believe all these tearful tributes -- I just wish the senator was going to be around to fight for health care reform the way he fought for civil rights and equal treatment of women.