What can you say about place that feels like home to your soul and about people who feel like family when you visit them? And what can you say about the importance of things that feel familiar? Of tradition? It's late on Sunday, we just got home and I'm tired, so I'll try to muster those deep thoughts for another post. I have more to share, I promise.
I will say this, however. Joe Biden was following us around. We weren't following him. It started at the Cold Turkey Plunge, Nantucket's annual fundraising craziness on Thanksgiving morning. Cal had been waiting all year for his chance to see Uncle Joe, as they call him on the island, and we just happened to be standing near where his security detail brought him into the plunge. Seemed simple enough to wait around for him to get out. Sure enough, here came Joe (barefoot!). The picture I took was just after Cal shook his hand.
When the kids went out to pick berries for our Thanksgiving table, the Secret Service detail, including Joe Biden, blew past them, headed to the house where they stay. The next day, the same detail followed us into town. And then the Vice President followed us to Brotherhood of Thieves, where we just happened to be having a rum and cider (Cal was having a cider, straight up) at the bar. After that Cal and Neel ran into him again outside Murray's, a local clothing shop. That's when Cal said, "Look man, I don't know what you want from me. I'm just trying to enjoy my vacation in peace." Even as we were leaving Saturday for the ferry, I looked over and said, "Gorgeous German Shepherd." (Cal has a thing for German Shepherds.) Oh, it was just Champ, the VP's dog, hanging out with the Secret Service while the VP went shopping again.
I kid, I kid! It was all incredibly cool. Regardless of what you think about his politics, Joe Biden has remarkable and genuine charm. He stops for everyone. He loves the little kids. He takes picture after picture with them. He walked barefoot from the Cold Turkey Plunge (water temp: 48º, air temp: 38º) to his car, and stopped time after time. My friend Megan and I had stepped into the restaurant to grab seats at the bar while Neel and Cal waited outside (and our poor friend Jon spent forever looking for a place to park the car). When Joe showed up, he smiled at Cal and then said to the crowd, "It's cold out here; we've got to get into some shelter!" He sat with his family in a little room inside the restaurant and we sat at the bar with the secret service guys. That was cool too. One sat at one end, watching the door. One, at the other, eating lunch. Before we left, they traded out with some guys outside. Dressed in jeans or baggy khakis and Carharts, they all looked like regular dads on vacation, if you factor in the clear earpiece and, well the BIG GUNS.
Oh, and wait? Have you heard? Megan Trainor, of All About That Bass fame, is from Nantucket! Well, of course she was home (after stopping by Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade) to spend Thanksgiving with her family. My friend Megan got word that the other Megan was at her parents' shop, so we alerted Cal and Nat, my friend's 16 year old, to head over and check it out. Of course they were in there with a bunch of screaming 10 year old girls (and their screaming moms), but Cal still managed to snap a couple shots. Most of Nat's friends already got pictures with Megan because, of course she used to babysit them all. How cool is that? Even cooler? When her song came on in her parents' shop, Megan said, "Oh turn that down, it has bad language, and there are little kids in here!"
So now, of course I'm her biggest fan.