He had come a long way to this blue lawn, and his dream must have seemed so close that he could hardly fail to grasp it.

Mike and I are on Long Island today. (I wrote “in Long Island” and Mike, the Long Islander, corrected me. I am from the South. I don’t know how to speak here.) We had a great week in Manhattan, which I will tell you about later. It involved a lot of food. And making decisions about food. And planning where we would eat our next meals. We take food very seriously. Which is okay, because we walked approximately 3,000 miles while we were in Manhattan. I wore flip flops one day. When we got back to our hotel, the bottoms of my feet were black. That is a true (and gross) story. I stuck to the Chucks after that. Even when I was wearing shorts. I did not, however, allow Mike to take any pictures of the Chucks/shorts combo. That I know of. I have not yet reviewed the pictures. If there are any, you will not get to see them. Sorry. It was not my best look. I don’t need to be made to look any shorter than I already am.

For the weekend, we went to Long Island, where Mike grew up. We stayed at his “second Mom’s” house and I got to see where he grew up and meet some of his old friends. We get to see where I grew up all the time, since my mom still lives there. We are surrounded by people who know my growing up stories. But Mike doesn’t really have that, and I think both of us miss it sometimes.

When Mike graduated, our pastor said something to his sister about the courage that it takes to reinvent yourself, and how he admires Mike for that. I thought about that this weekend, how different Mike’s life is now than it was twenty years ago when his family left Long Island, ten years ago when we were meeting, five years ago when he was starting to plan to go back to school. But he’s also the same person who lived on Long Island, walked to the grocery store for candy bars, ate pizza at Mamma Lombardi’s. We reinvent ourselves, but the past is still there, too, part of who we are. I enjoyed being introduced to the Long Island part of Mike. Even if everyone made fun of the fact that I say “grilling” instead of “barbecuing.” (Barbecue is a noun, okay? It is a specific food.)

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    He had come a long way to this blue lawn, and his dream must have seemed so close that he could hardly fail to grasp it. – Through a Glass, Darkly