One of the realities of our marriage is that Varun and I have fairly different ideas of how vacations should look. I think this is partly family-culture, and partly culture-culture. In North America, there’s a pretty strong culture of going places and doing things for vacation. In Indian culture, there seems to be a strong tradition of visiting family and spending time with people. This has been something we’ve had to negotiate over the years. Going on vacation to Maine with my family was no exception…
This is a story about a laid back husband going on vacation with a high energy family who has many sights they want to share.
(Or, as my brother Mark called it, the Varun, Look! Game.)
“It’s only a 12 hour drive. Plus a stop in Boston. But it’s SO MUCH FUN! We’ll talk and laugh and eat the whole way. And you get to go through three new states!”, I said, as Varun questioned me closely about the drive. As you can see, he was beyond excited to spend 28 minutes in New Hampshire.
“Varun, Look! There are mountains all around this lake. Except you can’t see them in the fog. But they’re there!”
Amazing view after a long hike. This is basically what we came to see. My family (and the park ranger at the summit) are all very concerned that Varun take note of the awesome vista.
(Later in the hike) “Varun, the water is balmy! C’mon in!”
[In fact it was not. This is the East coast’s only fjord, with water temperatures about 66 F/19 C]
Varun crept in, looked at us in shock upon feeling the cold, and jumped out, unconvinced. (Please note Mark doing his whale imitation)
“Varun! Look! This is classic Maine. See! The rocky coasts, the pine trees and the ocean!”
Luke, Mark and I spent an hour photographing the clouds and the sunset. Varun read. He did look up though when we yelled that there were whales swimming by. (There actually were, I’m not that obnoxious)
You have no idea how hard it is to convince Varun that 3:44 is a reasonable wake up time to see “the most amazing sunrise ever”.
It’s equally difficult to explain that the sunrise is only beautiful when it’s not shrouded in fog and you can actually see it.
Varun agrees, Maine is beautiful. I begin to wonder if all of these pictures aren’t of Varun looking, but of Varun looking for a distant rock upon which he can get a moment’s rest.