We have Surf Station nearby. I’ve been working the coast for more than twice as long as these kids have been alive. I’ve never been an employee of the Federal Government, but would have been if not for kidney disease.
So I see myself in these kids who are doing what I would have done, had my plans not been altered by Dr. Ma at seventeen. The doc saved my life and put me on the road less traveled. “Wait and see”, he said, after cutting me up and putting me back together. No one was optimistic. But a year later I was racing out to the Sandy Hook Station at ninety miles per hour in a Tbird to deliver pizza. That would be as close as I got to the Coast Guard for many years.
I made a big batch of meatballs, and drove carefully to the station’s holiday party. This year it was a pot luck, and it was good. There were as many of us old people as there were these very young men and their even younger children, some of whom I have watched grow up.
My great uncle was Captain Amazon Littlefield, so my father was no stranger to Coast Guard stations as a child. His aunt had married Captain Amazon...who may have been instrumental in Grandfather James’s successful prohibition.
So the meatballs arrived warm and hot, and were mostly gone before I snatched up the pot and headed home early in no hurry. When I got back up in the hills I put the three balls and gravy into a container and washed the big pot.
Dr. Ma saved my life, I deliver the goods, the kids run the boats that I might have run, and I’m ok with all of it, now. The meatballs went over well, and I slept good. I’m not driving, but I know that these kids are learning to. We watch them and the coast, us old folks. It beats playing golf.