July 30: Epilogue

The trip ended at 4:30am on July 30 when I dropped Mico off at the Seattle airport. However, at the risk of being a walking cliche (a millennial who blogs), I think I’m going to keep up this blog for the time being, at least until it a) becomes too time consuming, b) is no longer fun, or c) reaches a point where it’s barring me from employment opportunities. Mico hasn’t decided if he’s going to continue posting. I think our lives would make for an interesting contrast (one of us is putting a Yale engineering degree to use in a maker’s space at our alma mater. The other is making good on the promise of a film degree, an aspiring barista living with her mom in Los Angeles. I’ll leave you to figure out who’s who). If Mico decides his blogging years are behind him, I don’t know how unsubscribing works, but I hope all you all who’ve been following this blog for the sole purpose of keeping tabs on him (with such dazzling good looks and quality personality, who can blame you?) find a way to make that happen. I bear you no hard feelings and would contemplate doing the same thing if it were not my own life.

Here’s where the first day of the rest of my life begins. Calm and composed, I dropped Mico off at the airport and spent the next half hour driving into downtown Seattle, sobbing. I’m not sure of it’s safe to drive while crying that hard, but luckily it was 4:45am on a Sunday, so not too many people were on the road. I was crying for a number of reasons. I was going to miss Mico, of course, and likely wouldn’t see him for a long time. But it went beyond that. Mico boarding that flight marked the severence of my final tie to college. With the end of this trip and his return to Yale, I could no longer pretend that I would find myself in the same situation in a month’s time–boarding a flight to JFK–that this was only a short vacation from the life I had built over the course of the last four years. I was pretty dry eyed during graduation; the finality of my sentence to life as an adult hit home in this moment.

I consoled myself by spending the next five hours blogging about the end of our trip in Starbucks Heaven–the largest Starbucks I have ever seen. For reasons I never found out, it had three separate espresso bars and an enormous gift shop. The staff members spoke to you of their products in soothing tones using words like “floral,” “bright,” and “awesome.” The awesomeness of the beverages was reflected in prices printed neatly on the steel gray menu cards they passed me. I got a 12oz cup of coffee for over $7.

Hopped up on caffeine, I collected my mother and sister at the airport. I was excited to see them, especially because it meant I’d finally have the opportunity to show (disgust) my mother with my hygiene habits over the past two months. Camping with little access to showers had given me the perfect chance to experimented with what happens when you go 55 days without shaving your armpits and without washing your hair. My mom is accepting of many things (during my teenage years, she routinely offered to raise the products of any unplanned pregnancies I might have), but she has made no secret of her opinions concerning women and shaving. She once told me that it looked like there were little ants crawling all over my legs after I participated in “no shave November.” I’d never in my life had this much hair under my arms, since I’d started shaving as soon as the first hairs started growing in and my elementary school friends started making fun of them. So I guess, I was more or less excited to goad my mother with my relatively hairy, unwashed body. Her reaction did not disappoint. She was appalled that I hadn’t been washing my hair, and nearly puked in the street when she saw what my sister poetically referred to as the “dead animals” under my arms. My sister was almost equally appalled, but to her credit, gave my mom a lecture about how the idea that women should have hairless bodies was an image promoted by razor companies during the 40s when they needed a new market with the men away at war. Both agreed that the hair needed to be washed immediately. Below is a video of my hair the following morning (still unwashed). I’m kind of starting to think it has the potential to look good.

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