Thursday brought with it some much needed respite. My dear friend, Lauren, invited me to join her on an open-invitation to her longtime friends' breezy rooftop, which overlooks the Atlantic, where the sea appeared purplish-green and clouds rolled by in billowy waves. For an hour or more, on an eastward cedar bench, our shoulders and faces became lightly sun-kissed, our hair wound and windswept.

The humble summer dwelling under our high perch, which I've visited on a few other occasions, sits on a granite bluff above a beige Maine beach and is home to hummingbirds and monarchs, which flit and flutter about so many blossoms and feeders. A small creek runs between properties and beside two raised beds of ripe Swiss chard, garlic and other greens. Upon seeing one of its owners, Mary, amble over to the netted plot with pitchfork in hand, my companion, Lauren, asked if I wanted to go down and help her garden, to which I happily agreed.

We carefully padded our way down the steep rooftop, then gingerly took the narrow steps, each adorned with its own potted plant. As we approached, Mary looked up, her pretty eyes wide with happy surprise. We hadn't seen each other in weeks if not months, and while I can't say we are close friends, it is always nice to be in her bubbly company.

To help, Lauren and I reached over the tall netting to receive, one by one, long green stalks bearing fat bulbs of garlic with dirty root beards, which Mary had unearthed. When all of the stalks had been harvested, we laid them to dry on sheets of newspaper arranged on the small garage floor. The three of us chatted about the weather, about the lethal horrors of texting while driving, about Calvin and cannabis, about daughters and sons, rose hips, lupine, peonies and columbine. Next, Mary started in on pruning the wild rosa rugosa when her husband, Angus, our esteemed US senator, sauntered down the driveway having returned from a long walk with the dog. He reached out to give me a hug and, with my arm around his waist, I told him how nice it was to see him.

"When did you get back?" I asked.
"Last night," he said, then swooped in to give his wife a kiss.

I was embarrassed to have invaded their idyllic summer retreat on Senator King's first day back from D.C., yet everything Mary and Angus did made us feel welcomed, loved and relaxed, which is simply how they roll.

We followed the couple inside to visit for awhile before heading home. Angus asked how Calvin was doing so I gave him a quick update, telling him that, in the face of an eighty-percent reduction of his benzodiazepine and since starting him on several daily doses of homemade THCA cannabis oil, Calvin has had only one daytime grand mal seizure in 336 days. He seemed impressed, and I went on to tell him about Calvin's improved walking, sleeping, overall behavior and comprehension.

"Christy, you know, you are the reason I'm supporting medical marijuana," he said, his sincere blue eyes meeting mine.
"I know," I responded, since he's told me that before, "and I appreciate your openness," remembering his initial, self-proclaimed skepticism.

Angus went on to underscore his fondness for hearing the facts and that I'd given him some important ones about cannabis in the year and a half since starting Calvin on the oils. Lauren chimed in and thanked him for his recent congressional votes to continue funding Planned Parenthood and to support the Iran nuclear deal.

"Thank you for being a voice of reason," she said, hinting at her disdain for the band of right-wing ideologues on The Hill.
"Being reasonable ... that's a low bar," Angus replied with a smile, and we chuckled.

We hugged Mary saying goodbye, I reached over from behind the couch and patted Angus on the shoulder. He apologized for not getting up. They told me to say hello to Michael and to give Calvin a kiss. I later wrote to Mary and Angus thanking them for sharing their special place with us and, in their usual style, I got a reply welcoming us back to their ocean refuge any time.


  1. Wow! Thank you, Senator King, for supporting our efforts. And thank you, Christy -- I had no idea you had such influence! :)

  2. It's good to think of centered senators.