Monday, August 29, 2011

Into The Arms Of America
By Michael

According to this sign, if you want a bigger pompas, you should
wear Tequila jeans (Note the before and afer pics).
I don't have a song or album that will help me to later recall this.
I like to listen to a lot of music, but I will often focus on a single song, album, or band for a concentrated period of time. While this can drive Windy mad, I develop auditory associations. Every minute of every hour I spent building the basement bathroom in our DC house, I listened to Modest Mouse’s Good News For People Who Love Bad News album. Years later when I hear a song from that album, I am transported to that time and place. At my consulting job, I wrote proposals with headphones on and the Jack White and Alicia Keys duet “Another Way To Die” repeating. I no longer listen to that song.
And so it goes. Tom Petty’s Full Moon Fever puts me back on my first motorcycle. I hear Rush’s “Tom Sawyer” and begin to see disco lights reflected around me and four-wheeled skates on each foot. Tori Amos equals scuba diving lessons. The Steve Miller Band is transiting the Panama Canal on our first Del Viento. One listen to the Dead Weather and I see every bit of the streetscape from my DC office to home, through a bus window. Nirvana’s In Utero and Bush’s Sixteen Stone are most of my life in Ventura harbor.
When we arrived at the villa, we listened to a lot of the CDs in the owners’ collection. But the girls took a liking to U2’s The Joshua Tree after we talked about a few of the songs and it has been in heavy rotation. I know years from now, when I hear any song from this album, I will return to these past six weeks in the Puerto Vallarta villa.
The exceptional highs and lows notwithstanding, our time here is defined by a focus on the mundane: boat work, hydration, child care, Spanish communication, airport pick-ups/drop-offs, and grocery shopping. Our mindset is incongruous to the seeming exaggerated intensity and urgency in Bono’s delivery of politically- and socially-conscious lyrics. Yet the weight of this album is strangely suited to this significant time in our lives. This is it. We are on the eve of completing our monumental upheaval, a complete change of our priorities, lifestyle, and future. It’s been quite a journey from the genesis of our plan five years ago to this week. Yet unlike Bono and his band mates, as we countdown the hours until we move aboard, Windy and I are convinced we have found what we are looking for.


  1. Smile. I cannot hear Gillian Welch without hearing Michael Robertson's voice saying "I love this song."

  2. Congratulations. You will soon be entering the phase where you sit around with goofy smiles on your faces, saying "Look at us! I can't believe we did it!" Our first six months on the boat found us doing that at least ten times a day.
    Enjoy the fruits of your labors!
    Laura, s/v Just a Minute

  3. As a fellow music lover, this post resonates with me. Very cool you are sharing this love and discussing lyrics and music with your daughters!


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