Her orders were quite clear.

“Your mission, if you choose to accept it, is to sit in the sunshine and grow fat, like a cantaloupe–to swell with the sweetness of knowing you are loved, that the earth and the universe are conspiring to support you, and that it, whatever it is, doesn’t have to be hard.”

I took them in, these marching orders from my dear friend Kaiya and wondered how on earth one actually accomplishes the task of becoming a melon, sweet, full ripe in the late summer sun?

What I learned on my summer vacation: How to become a Cantaloupe
By Meg Casey

1. Drive a long long way and listen to brand new music. Music you have never heard before and saved, especially for the moment when the traffic is thickest or the road is most boring. Be thankful you have the time to really hear it for the first time with no distractions. Say a silent prayer of thanksgiving for the one who thought to send you the music.
2. When the music is done, take time to listen to this podcast. And then listen to it again. And know that these words were meant for you.
3. Watch the sunset, completely still and almost completely silent with the one person in your life who you never doubted ever loved you.
4. Run along the beach and fly a kite. A pirate kite.
5. Make guacamole for the 3 beautiful people who act as though your guacamole is the food of the Gods. Let the love of your guac sink in and spread out to your toes. Understand that it is really love of you.
6. Sneak into the shed with the cousins for late night giggles.
7. Empty the dishwasher. Fold the laundry.
8. Do a talent show judged by the children. Dance you butt off to really old dance music.
9. Walk into town. Over and over again. Tell your stories while you walk. Just like you did when you were a kid.
10. Dive into the waves. Let them carry you to the shore, then stagger back against the surf to do it over and over and over again–even though the water is cold and salty and you got tossed under a lot. The ride is worth it every time.
11. Learn from the children how to boogie board.
12. Cuddle up in towels on the beach with your boy and read his book outloud.
13. Play board games with the kids. Play blackjack with the kids. Have a light saber fight with the kids.
14. Sit under the stars and listen to stories. Think about all that your loved ones had to go through to get to the place where they could pass on their wisdom, observations.
15. Wake up early to feel the sun on your face.
16. Sleep with the windows open.
17. Walk out into the bay and look for crabs.
18. Go grocery shopping. Make dinner. Make sandwiches for lunch. Make breakfast. Make coffee.
19. Watch for whales. Watch for seals.
20. Watch the sunset, watch the tide, watch the baby explore his world, watch the world wake up. Watch yourself wake up.

7 Responses to “Cantaloupe Season”

  1. Lindsey Says:

    Oh Meg!
    I’m so glad I found your blog. Your words move me – I especially love your ruminations in being quiet, melancholy – grieving but not lost. That’s exactly where I find myself these days, though I’m still a little fearful of it. It helps to hear that you are not – gives me hope I can get through this particular set of waves. Maybe I should learn to boogie board!
    Thanks for being out there.
    Lindsey
    http://www.adesignsovast.com

  2. Eileen Says:

    I am always thrilled to open your website and see a new blog and to take in the gift that your writing always gives me…

  3. Amber Says:

    The tragedy in my life is that no one eats my guacamole except me. Although I love it and I suppose if I have to it myself it’s the price I’m willing to pay. ;)

    I love this list. Love, love, love it. Thank you for sharing a lovely piece of inspiration.

  4. Karen Maezen Miller Says:

    watch, watch, watch, watch. Full, sweet, done.

  5. Trish Says:

    Your writing is as succulent as a plum on a humid Summer Sunday afternoon. I sail on your words to where you are. Your musings tasty and satisfying nuggets of knowledgement.

    Love, Trish
    patriciadolan@comcast.net

  6. condolence Says:

    I really liked your post Meg and I kind of get the feeling that your writing is like a poem even though it is numbered.

  7. In memory - Meg Casey Says:

    [...] light sabers with the little one. I looked through all the hundreds of photos I took over years of vacations together and there wasn’t even one. Not one of us watching the TV show about haunted New [...]