Saturday, June 23, 2012


It's getting to the campsite, which starts out as a nearly empty plot of land, consisting only of a picnic table and fire pit. It's making that place your temporary home.

It's taking a while to set up the tent, and then throwing everything inside of it. It's making sure the zipper is always shut so bugs don't get in. It's not touching the sides of the tent at night, because the condensation seeps through. It's waking up cold and stiff.

It's smelling of smoke all the time. It's sitting around at night talking to friends of which only orange faces can be seen from the fire. It's roasting marshmallows, and the chaos of making S'mores. It's eating too many, because they taste so good.

It's biking to every location. It's having aches in your groin from newness of sitting on a bicycle seat. It's deciding not to shower because you're going to go swimming later. It's playing beach volleyball with strangers. It's having a picnic by the river. It's wading downstream in water that is just deep enough for the need to hold your shorts up above your thighs.

It's deciding to bike 13 miles with a friend, instead of taking a car like everyone else...just to see a Fire Observation Tower. It's going the wrong way on a One Way, because the path is shorter. It's getting there earlier than those who drove in the car, and walking with your friend, just talking. It's seeing a deer, and becoming silent and still for long moments until it finally moves on. It's having long conversations about life and destinations.

It's eating food whenever you want. It's making dinner for a hungry group. It's alternating dish duty. It's finding creative ways to make clean-up as simple as possible. It's bringing too much food along on the trip. It's making sure the scraps and leftovers are put inside the car, so the bears don't infest the site at night. It's having soggy bread because the ice in the cooler melted.

It's hanging wet clothes on a line. It's having a raccoon visit the site, and naming it Sharon. It's going on spontaneous adventures. It's losing track of time.

It's having a small sight range at night because you can only see what your flashlight illuminates. It's getting warned by the Patrols that quiet time began at 10:00. It's finding out new things about people you thought you knew everything about.

It's being exhausted, but wanting to make the most of the day.  It's cramming everyone into one tent and playing UNO while it rains.It's being giggly from lack of sleep.  It's finally calling it a night, and taking half an hour to get settled into bed. It's having a conversation in the dark. It's staying up late because you have just one more story to tell.

It's waking up early because of the sun. It's realizing you're freezing and not wanting to get up, but having to pee.

It's getting packed up, and not understanding how all that stuff fit before but doesn't now. It's leaving the campsite, and feeling sentimental as if it really was your home. It's driving with a garbage bag hanging out the window until you get to the dumpster. It's making pit stops on the way home, stopping in a small town to play mini golf, and at a giant souvenir shop.

It's having a road trip. It's the wind blowing your hair every direction because all four windows are down. It's blasting music and obnoxiously singing along. It's eating Oreos and chips, even though you had lunch recently. It's being ready to go home, but not wanting it to be over.

It was three days, yet I feel as if it lasted a moment.
It was three days, yet I feel as if it lasted the whole summer.

I just really loved it. That's all.

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Top 10 Things About Bob

10. Optimism. My dad is a "bright side of life" kind of guy. I can always rely on him to cheer me up. One time, I was having a bonfire with my friend Anna. It suddenly spewed ashes, and I stood up to stomp one out. must've fallen on my chair as I was standing, cause when I sat back down, I felt a sharp, burning pain in my lower back. I ran inside and told my mom that I had burned my back. She quickly ran to get a leaf of the aloe plant for me. My dad (who had run to Target quickly to pick up S'more stuff for Anna and I) came in to all this chaos. I explained what happened. Instead of panicking or trying to get me something to soothe it, he says "I know what'll help!", reaches into the Target bag, and pulls out a giant Tootsie Roll. I immediately felt better.

9. Messy. He honestly can't go a day without spilling on himself. He's the messiest eater! Like a baby: food flying in all directions from him while he eats. There's always a stain on his shirt, or a little bit of food on his pants. And he always gets mad when he spills, as if it's uncommon. Oh, dad. You're not fooling anyone.

8. Traditional. Nothing ever changes, for him. It's too traumatic. He had the same pillow for forty years. Okay Kira, quit with the hyperboles. No. He honestly had the same pillow for forty years. It was practically a cotton pad when we finally threw it out. And his glasses? Don't even get me started on those. And every time we buy a new piece of furniture, it takes him months to warm up to it. Even his music taste has been the same since the 70s...

7. Pet conversations. Oh sure, everyone has conversations with their pet. But Dad's are elaborate. Sometimes, I catch him trying to get the dogs attention like,
"Hey Charlie.
Hey Charlie, guess what?
As if he's waiting for some sort of response. And his pet voices are even gooier than mine.
Have you seen Dom's Reo videos? That's kind of how my Dad is.

6. Simple. No one likes complication, but my dad is an extreme. He thinks everything can boil down to one simple answer. And if it's more complicated than that, it doesn't exist. It's not his problem, at least.

5. Hard worker. My dad takes things very seriously. He's what you would call a perfectionist. So much a perfectionist, as a matter of fact, that nothing ever gets done around here. You see, the basement was Dad's project. He was going to build our basement himself. Cool. Very cool. Except that it took over ten years for it to get finished.
But seriously, he's a very hard worker. Like, whenever something important has been lost, you know documents and such, it's never my dad's fault that it can't be found. My favorite one-liner..."I TRY SO HARD TO STAY ORGANIZED!" Classic.

4. Temper. When I was very little, I was playing in the tunnels at Discovery Zone. It's like a Chuck-E-Cheese type of place, in case you don't know. And anyway...I liked the way my voice echoed in the tunnels. So I started saying "God-damnit!" in a bunch of different tones and volumes, for fun. My mom did not approve of this, and later scolded me, asking where I heard such language. Well, from daddy, of course! You know, I took French in high school so I could figure out what the always meant by "Pardon my French". I've yet to come across those words in my studies, however.

3. Interests. My dad likes really boring things. Like golf. Who likes golf? But it's cute, because he gets really excited about it. I wanted to take him out for dinner, today. You know, celebrate Father's Day and all. But he was like, "We have to get home early, so I can watch the PGA!". And then, I went downstairs for a little while to watch it with him. And all of a sudden he says, "Oh boy, this is getting exciting!", as I watch a small white ball roll around on some grass...I'm just a little underwhelmed by it all.

2. Talents. You know what's really cool? My dad is a Software Engineer. I know, right? We have all the latest technology. Like a thirteen year old Dell desktop! Yeeeeeah buddy.
But actually. My dad should be able to understand technology. But he still calls text messages "e-mails", and sends things like "TeMaToCaMe" or "wru" or "fowthfe" because he things that's text slang.

1. Sucker for his baby. The number one thing about my dad, is that I've got him right where I want him. You know how dads can be: they're strict, and they don't take shit from anyone. But if his little Kira wants's done. I'm so spoiled.

Well there you have it. The top 10 things about my dad, Bob. He can drive me crazy sometimes, but I love him.
Happy Father's Day!

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Little Things

I'm finally done with high school. I hated that place.
The emotions I have about it all ending do not exist. Well...

That's not true, is it? Because there are little things that I will miss.
Hearing Jenna's outbursts, and conversations with herself.
Mr. Johnson's comments.
Mrs. Cardona's sarcasm.
Conversations with Sarah during the car-ride home.
Seeing friends in the hallway and making that wide-mouthed-surprised-face at them.
Senioritis, yo.
Making Karl escort me to class for fear of drowning or being trampled or being elbowed in the face.
Having a "secret handshake" with Sean.
Freewrite Friday.
Talking about hot girls with Fatima.
Max irritating Mr. Thompson. 
Discovering tumblr is not a blocked website on the school computers.
Lunch with Ellen Stowe.

Those are the things I will miss. Those were the things that made a difference. 
Those were the little things that made the big thing of Wayzata High School incrementally less awful, each day. 

And summer, which has seemingly only just begun, is already starting to die as we make an "x" on each quickly passing brings me closer to this new big thing of Iowa State University. And what little things are going to make up that experience?

Friday, June 1, 2012

The End?

I got my 8th Grade Time Capsule in the mail today.
It's weird, because I thought, Wow. Eighth grade wasn't even that long ago! I remember all the things I put in here. I didn't think anything about it would surprise me.

But, boy, was I wrong.

First of all: I was a smart little eighth grader. I put a $20 bill in there.
I know. Props to Past Kira.

Anyway. The things I can remember about eighth grade, the big highlights: they were mentioned only briefly in the letter I wrote to myself.
Everything else was about the little details, which I had forgotten already.

But those little details seemed important to me, at the time. Those things which I could not have remembered were the ones I included, the ones I focused on.

How strange, that in a moment, you can think one thing is important. Yet years down the road, even if only four of them pass between then and now, those oh-so-important things are hardly recognized, even upon retrieval.

What made me really think, was that the things I included are the ones that still apply to me: the ones that really changed me.

The most important things about my middle school life, which completely changed who I am, are the ones I have forgotten.

It's the moments that are so simple which affect you the most.
To use a psych term, it's not the flashbulb's not the LTP. Those are the most memorable, perhaps, but not the most life changing.

I made the capsule at an end: the end of middle school.
It's now the end of high school.

What I'm starting to realize now, is that everything that seems overwhelming, unbearable, or like it's a huge deal...they aren't actually defining moments in my life. The defining moments take place in secret. They don't make themselves known, they sneak themselves into your life and they don't have any sort of definition to when they start or end.

For example: becoming friends with someone.
When did you become friends?
There's no moment defining it.
Sure you met at this time. And the first time you hung out was that time.
But the actual becoming-of-friends moment? The one that matters the most?
There's no label for that. You don't know the exact moment it came to be.
But one day, you realize it's happened already. And you can't remember how or why.

It sounds weird, but it's true: the moments that change you are forgettable.