Most of yesterday is a blur of unloading the Penske truck, most of which was done by Spooky and Byron, as my damned feet and knees were giving me the special hell only they can give. We'd hoped to get everything we weren't bringing up those incredibly narrow, winding stairs leading into the house off to our storage unit, but there just wasn't time. Finally —— exhausted, annoyed, dehydrated, sore —— we called it a day. Spooky unpacked some kitchen stuff, and then we headed down to South County, to get dinner at Iggy's, my favourite place to eat in all Rhode Island. I had cod with chips and a side of Manhattan-style clam chowder. We took our food down to the lighthouse and ate to the sound of the surf. Afterwards, we drove the short distance to the long westwardly curving jetty at Harbour of Refuge. I threw rocks at the surf as the tide came in, and Byron took photos, and I think, for the very first time, standing in that cold sea air, this felt real — that I have moved to New England. That I do not have to go back to Atlanta after some brief and predetermined period of time.
Later, back in Providence, there was yet more unloading of the Penske truck, but at least it was dark and the weather was cool. We met our neighbour, a Brown University professor and owner of a completely lovable English Sheepdog named Bosco, who'd actually introduced himself to us earlier in the day. Bosco is dreadfully afraid of cats, so I doubt he and Hubero shall become fast friends.
Today, we got up and out as early as we could, and made the drive across town to the warehouse where we've rented a storage unit. Thankfully, the place was air-conditioned, and we were done unloading by noon. There was a wonderful story that the woman who checked us in told, and I wish I could recall it in detail. But, in her story, there were three cops —— named Elmo and Oscar and Big Bird. Elmo and Oscar were really named Elmo and Oscar, but Big Bird was just called Big Bird for the hell of it. Anyway, most of what's in storage is eBay stock (books), the thousands of fossils that make up the study portion of my paleontological collection, my steel Lane cabinet, an old book shelf, and papers from college. There were a couple of boxes that I packed when I left Boulder (CO) in 1986, that I have not unpacked since. All in all, compared to all that came before, it was a painless experience, the storage unit, and when we were done, we returned the truck to a Penske drop-off.
And then, then it was finally time to let Byron enjoy some of his time in Rhode Island. And where did he want to go first? Newbury Comics in Warwick, which, if you don't already know, is Nerd Heaven. I first went there in August 2006, and barely escaped with my bank account. Anyway, Spooky announced that she was getting me birthday presents (as we pretty much ignored my birthday last week), and so I got two Joss Whedon graphic novels I've been wanting — Fray and Serenity: Those Left Behind, plus a Bellatrix Lestrange action figure. But. It's a bloody dangerous place, and there was much drooling.
And then we drove east, across the Jamestown Bridge and down to Beavertail State Park. Specifically, to the lighthouse and the rocky place at the southernmost tip of the point. This place is holy to me, as holy as any place will ever be. I hesitate to use that word —— holy —— as all the world (Cosmos) is surely holy, but...if Panthalassa ever had a "church" (and, of course, "she" has no need of any such thing), then the place at Beavertail where the land ends and the sea begins would be a better place than most. In my opinion. It was here, in June 2004, that I had what is most conveniently referred to as an "epiphany," or "a moment of clarity," a moment that has led to very many things. Some of which I have written of here, and some of which I shall never write of anywhere. When we arrived this evening, the sun was low, but not yet twilight, and the tide was rolling in, pounding the breakers. There were gulls, of course, and red-winged blackbirds, cormorants, robins, a few ravens. The beach roses were in bloom, and the air smelled of roses and honeysuckle and the sea. We walked past the lighthouse (with its quaint little marine museum) to the foundation of the original lighthouse (destroyed during a hurricane long ago). We sat on the rocks a while, and Byron asked me how old they were, because people always ask me those sorts of questions. I told him that they were Middle Cambrian, about 550 million-years-old. Mostly these strata are highly metamorphosed shales (phyllites) of the Jamestown Formation and the Dutch Island Harbor Formation. Trilobites swarmed the seas where these rocks were deposited, even if plate tectonics have erased almost all evidence of them at Beavertail.
After Beavertail, we headed back into Providence, to College Hill, giving Byron a brief tour of Benefit Street. There was not time to do the "Lovecraft tour" justice. Oh, and I'll post some of Byron's photos from today sometime tomorrow or on Thursday, as soon as I have time to edit and upload them.
And, more or less, that was today. Byron has a flight back to Atlanta tomorrow evening. But we're going to try to squeeze a little more "sightseeing" in tomorrow.
As for business — which I have to get back to ASAP — a number of things. People keep asking for the new address. We do not yet have a p.o. box, but we should on Thursday, and I'll post it then. Also, thanks for all the many well wishes; they were needed and greatly appreciated. Also also, at the end of this week, I'll be sending out a second edition of #30 of Sirenia Digest, which will include Vince's beautiful illustration for "Rappaccini's Dragon" that, in the confusion of packing, I omitted when the issue was mailed out last week. Let's call it #30.1, why don't we. So subscribers should watch your in-boxes for that. Also, I have a mountain of backed-up email, and if I have not replied, you know why. I'll get through it as soon as I can. I promise. Right now, this place is a canyon of boxes. I am typing this entry on the kitchen counter, and the movers probably won't be bringing the furniture until sometime late this week. Hopefully, by then, we'll have figured out which box I packed the platypus in...