WiFi is a marvelous thing.
I'm sitting on the porch of a beach house on Tybee Island, Georgia; just east of Savannah. It's early evening and the tide is coming in with the sunset. We're about 50 yards from the beach. There's a great breeze blowing in, and my brother Chris is sitting here at the table recovering from a simple dinner of burgers on the grill. It's a little jarring actually being here after the last week.
In addition to getting the hearing aids, I've left the employ of the Club. In fact, you could say I've simply left employ of everything for the time being.
Frankly, after 20 years, the Chef thing has gotten real old. I've decided to drop the whole concept of cooking for a living, and try to move on to something else. Let's call it a midlife crisis, wherein I'm totally aware that the crisis is going on, and I'm not screwing the secretary and buying a Ferrari. Not that I've ever had a secretary or could afford a Ferrari, but you get the picture.
Now Chris has gone off somewhere, and Mom and The Lady have sat down with me. Susan is behind me on a bench with Suzie the cat, who lives next door, but seems to have adopted us for the duration.
And this is the secret of me having a midlife crisis. Getting to know my family again. I haven't seen Mom in ages, and The Lady has had to deal with my stress on an ongoing basis. I'm down at the beach getting some of the best therapy available, surrounding myself with those who love me. They've been incredibly supportive of my without-a-net act. They've been watching me go a little nuts for awhile now.
The plan, as it stands, is to chill, enjoy two weeks here at Tybee and Savannah, visit with friends up north and breath easy for the rest of the summer. Come fall, I'm going to enroll in a viticulture certificate program at the local community college, and see where that meanders. Mostly, I think it's time to go back to school and try do deal with some unfinished business. Why not? I'll have some time on my hands. I'll supplement with a few part time jobs, but who knows what I'll be doing.
I'm just tired of worrying about it.
My last day at the club was pretty difficult, nonetheless. Laura has been a great chef to work for, and I truly did hate to leave such a good kitchen staff. But I think they understand that I had great issues with the Women Upstairs, and that I could no longer abide the craziness. So, Friday was the last day.
The Lady and I spent the next few days packing and preparing. We went to a fantastic B-52's concert Sunday night, and left C'ville from there, driving through thunderstorms as far as Rocky Mount, North Carolina, where we holed up for the night in a a rather poor motel room.
We got here yesterday afternoon, and brought some brutal storms with us. I did some cooking on the grill last night - I was determined to use a grill, dammit - in a torrential downpour which turned into a king hell thunderstorm which lasted for hours. We all went to bed with it raging around us. I slept deeply and dreamless; the sleep of exhaustion and relief.
I got up around 4:50 this morning and realized the power was out. My cousin Susan couldn't sleep, either, so the we walked down to the beach in the moonlight in the hour before dawn. The whole island was out and dark and still, with the exception of a couple of early walkers like ourselves, we had the beach to ourselves. The only lights where the moon, the stars, some ships out to sea and the Tybee Roads channel lights to the north of the island. More new sounds for the the Chef. Surf fizzes. I heard the flutter of gulls wings as they suspended themselves above us in the breeze as the dawn entered our awareness. Sound is so detailed and immediate. Susan and I talked a bit, but mostly we enjoyed the moment; looking out to sea with Tybee behind us, dark and silent.
Well, I think I'll move inside. Getting dark out here, and some of Tybee's fabled sand gnats have decided that I'm pretty tasty.
While I'm down here, look out for some food and drink blogging. I've got the camera, and I'll post some pics here soon.
In the meantime, y'all take it easy. I know I will.