Alone in the crowd

Year after year I do this to myself: I go to Cortes Day, the annual island shindig at Smelt Bay. There is the much-contested chicken poop lottery, the Nail Sail and Bail competition, homemade pies and horshoe pitch. I eat my annual hamburger to raise money for the Seniors Center, and I place a bet on a square for the chicken to poop on. I schmooze and cruise and and meet and greet. At the end of the day I go home with a heavy heart.

Small communities are all about families. There are lineages and dynasties, scions and scandals. Every woman over puberty has a new baby in a sling. Couples couple and split and recombine, but at days end most everyone has someone to go home with or home to.

When I am all by myself in my green bus, with the thrushes and the waves for company I am not lonely. It is in the crowd that i feel most most alone.

Photo by Richard Trueman

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