Thursday, August 5, 2010

Desperate Housewife Syndrome

So you know those photos I posted yesterdee? There's a thousand more where those came from.

And if you weren't fully converted to trek by those photos, I can put pen to paper to bring you over to the light side.

But first I should confess that I haven't always had pioneer envy. In fact I've been known to murmur a bit about the whole pioneer-worship, trek-trend dealio going on in these latter dayz.

Why re-enact the hard things, the painful things, for the sake of honoring our ancestors? That's what I always say.

Would I ask my great great grandchildren to honor me by driving uphill both ways in the snow in a ratty old station wagon with the hood duct taped down, the muffler dragging on the ground and the seat belt threaded through the front door handle to keep it from flying open around the corners? Would I ask them to have their parents drop them off at school each morning in that same ratty old station wagon?

Course not!

But then I'm a dummy. And I stand corrected. I totally get it now.

Trek ROCKED my socks off--once I got past the fact that I was sitting on the back of a bus at 4 a.m. getting my brain rattled out of my skull, whilst listening to my trek daughters play I hate it when that happens!

I too hate it when I slice chunks of skin off my shin while shaving, but you won't hear me getting all graphic about it at 4 a.m.

You get me?

But fer real, I would rather be a pioneer woman than a desperate housewife any day.


(I so hope the Universe didn't hear me say that.)

Why? Because desperate housewives have to work all alone.

And they only walk and walk and walk to keep their buns nice and firm.

From my view pioneer life was hard, but it was simple too. Pioneer women didn't have to listen to their kids screaming at each other about who took whose ipod speakers without asking, or who accidentally on purpose smacked who in the back of the head because they wouldn't hand over the x-box controller. Pioneer women didn't have to threaten to take cell phones away to get their kids to do chores. Doing chores for the pioneer kids was not a matter of negotiation, it was a matter of survival.

And they liked it like that.

I bet the pioneers never had A.D.D.

And I bet their kids didn't sit in the handcarts and text while their ma's were pulling them across the plains neither.

And I bet their kids never called them over and over to tell them how much they were suffering and starving because they were waiting in the car for their pa to come out of a meeting in which he was learning how to get cheaper satellite tv, wi-fi, and phone.

The pioneers had a sense of purpose. A common goal. And that common goal forged deep bonds between them.

In short, they fell in lub with each other. I just know it. I know it because I fell in lub with my trek family. Granted, it was a fake, fleeting kind of lub, because our trials were fake and fleeting, but still, I missed them something fierce the morning after.

You wanna know what I did every night? (besides sit around the citranella candle singing songs and looking at constellations.) I laid in my tent and listened. You wanna know what I heard? I heard teenagers talking, laughing, interacting, playing. They were playing with each other.

It was AMAZING! I thought playing was a lost art. (Actually, not to be rude, but I never thought that when I lived in Hawaii. Just saying.)

There was dancing and singing too. I lubbed it. The whole gosh darn thing. I even lubbed wearing the frumpy dress and the apron and the bonnet. Three days in a row as frumpty dumpty with nothing but wet wipes and a river dip in my bloomers to freshen up and I LUBBED IT. No ceramic irons. No make-up. Not a single mirror for miles. It was what it was. No wi-fi, cell phone, game boys, ipods. Stripped of every excuse to separate ourselves from each other like we do in the real world.

Or should I say the virtual world.

Hmmmm . . .

Being outside in Wyoming 24/7 for three days straight felt more real than anything I've felt for a while. The beauty is so much more immediate when you're breathing it in, smelling it, feeling it, hearing it, rather than looking at it through windows.

Besides the fake, fleeting lub and the sense of community and purpose I felt, my favorite part was the hard stuff. It felt SO DARN good to do hard stuff. Physically hard stuff. In a frumpy dress.

But it wasn't hard enough. I wanted it be to HARDER. "Bring on the pain! Bring on the rain!" I shouted every morning as I beat my fists against my chest. But there was no rain. And just before we could feel any pain the stake made us stop for a water break.

Say la vee.

That's what us desperate housewives always say.


孟湖聿軒 said...

It is easier to get than to keep it.......................................................................

val of the south said...

That first comment is really profound! And I can actually read it...yay!

I love what a great experience you had and I love how eloquently you wrote and photographed it so I can experience it vicariously through you instead of suffering myself!


IWA (e - va) said...

So yesterday when going through the trek pics, i thought the one of everyone in the river fully clothed, looked like a regular day @ hukilau! really... (minus the big waves of course!)

Glad to hear you experience was awesome... especially because if you're in (your position) long enough, you'll do it again! and then you'll be a Pro!

Don said...

I think I gotta get my young 'un on one of them there Treks. She could use some good unplugged time.

And some playing.

T said...

bring it on... I think you've swayed me over to the Trek side.

Stephen said...

Very clever and insightful, but I think your experience may be analogous to an affair in a long term marriage.It's a short term fleeting excape. You appreciate some of the contrasts you inicially see but aren't immersed enough to begin to truly feel the negative side of this other world.

Amanda said...

I'm so a Trek kind of woman! I would love it, look forward to it and dread that it had to end.

We often unplug at our house (not that we're all that plugged in) because I hate all the separation that ipods, DS, Wii, computers, etc bring to a family.

When swirl and family were here last month we took a trip to upstate NY where we were fairly secluded. We insisted that the kids couldn't play DS at the cabin which meant they played together. Played board games, card games, volleyball and badminton.

When we got back to MD the DS's came out again and we had to pry the kids away from the TV to get anything done. I'm a BIG fan of not having those distractions in life. However, I'm on the computer a lot during the day trying to research and communicate with others for school, church and my husband's business. So as much as I would like to unplug completely, it's not reasonable and still be able to keep up.

I'm glad you had a wonderful Trekkie experience and thanks for sharing it with me. For an east coast Mormon convert, Trek is something I think I've heard about but didn't really know what it was. Through you, I can smell it :)

Anonymous said...

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Garden of Egan said...

I'm so proud you were a Trekker.
I think Grandma Acrosstheplains would roll over in her grave to think about the things we had to deal with now. She's gladly go back the way she came with her handcart a couple of times just to avoid what we do now.
Sounds like it was a fabulous time. Even your Chinese secret thinks so.