Camera Talk


A week away

As we descended over the 405 and its unusually light traffic back into LA last night, I was struck by how unfamiliar this city still feels after eight years living here. It probably didn’t help that we returning from Lebanon – where I lived for 17 years. And while we hadn’t been there for a full eight months – the longest I have ever gone without going home to see my family – it felt exactly the same with its comforting albeit sometimes irritating predictability.

We spent ten days in Lebanon, Illinois. The flight both there and back were unremarkable – except of course for the mask wearing, desolate airports, and the three hour flight versus four when the skies are busier. We were reluctant to go with the increase in cases, but knew that this was a narrow window. And to be honest, I needed the break. I was also nervous about how my family would be practicing social distancing and adhering to mask wearing. But other than Jake being asked why he was wearing a mask while picking up a to-go order at a restaurant, both my family and the community were doing a pretty darn good job at adhering to all the guidance.

We had a family get together our first weekend there. My immediate family and my aunt and uncle were supposed to be in Cancun this week. Of course, that was cancelled, so we had a pool party instead to celebrate the many big moments of 2020 – our marriage, milestone birthdays, anniversaries, and graduations. The rest of the time was spent going on long walks, sitting out on my parents’ patio talking, swimming, bicycle rides, and HGTV in the air conditioning to escape the 110 degree heat.

I feel, like I imagine many do, that the events of 2020 have made clearer what is important – what I want to work on, who I want to spend time with, what to fight for and against, and where we want to go. I know it’s not Lebanon where we want to go, and I also know it’s not Los Angeles where we want to stay.

Group of 13 people - eight adults and five children sitting on a diving board smiling at camera.
The family
Group of nine people squatting in front of a banner smiling at camera. The banner reads nine messages on birthdays, anniversaries, and graduations.
Marriage, birthdays, graduations, and an anniversary
Man and woman standing in front of a white fence smiling at camera.
Girl standing in corn field smiling at camera.
Lily Bean
Boy standing in corn field looking to the side.
Jack discovers corn “hair”
Girl smiling at camera with flour on her face sitting behind an unbaked pizza.
KK is a little chef’s helper
Man putting vegetables on outdoor grill.
BBQ pork steaks – my favorite
Woman reading book lying on couch on an outdoor patio.
Man smiling at camera.
Small boy sitting on the shoulders of a man in a swimming pool. Boy is smiling at camera and has hands over man's eyes.
Untle Jake is his favorite :)
Man holding laughing boy in swimming pool.
Man, woman, and small boy smiling at camera
Woman sitting on skateboard rolling down hill. Small boy watches from the side looking worried.
Big person on a very small board
Boy on sitting on a skate board rolling down a hill
Boy swimming towards woman floating on a raft
Pool time with gramma Robin
Boy smiling at camera in a swimming pool
Child running down sidewalk

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