From the Journal of Mylo Grove:
July 19, 1998
My mom read the pages I wrote. She thought it was perfect. She said that even if she hadn’t known me and picked that up and read it, she would know a lot about me. Well, I did tell practically my whole life history. But, she said it also had to do with my voice, she says that writers have a voice when they write, and that mine was very natural. Whatever that means. She reads a lot so I guess she should know.
I like to read too. I read a lot of Ghost stories and Science Fiction and Fantasy. I also like comic books. All kinds like Batman and Mad magazine. I don’t get to watch TV, because we don’t have one, and there aren’t any stations here if we did. We never watched TV very much. Mom says it kills brain cells. I think she means we should be doing other things.
Blenny is a reader too. She is also a musician. She can play the piano pretty well, but all we could bring to the island was an electric piano, which she practices for hours at a time, but she doesn’t sing anymore. I used to like the songs she’d make up about stuff that happened. She was always making up songs about things she was interested in like gravity and animals. But, I have to admit it did sometimes drive me crazy when she would keep singing the same song over and over until I wanted to put my hand over her mouth. I don’t know if the Squirt will ever sit still long enough to learn to read. Mom says, “She lives in her own world and it’s constantly in motion.” I’m hoping that she grows up soon before she hurts someone or herself seriously, but it’s always on accident even when she meant to do it.
I guess I should get to what happened today. I took a long walk down to the ocean (people call it the water here). There were no waves except when a boat goes by. It’s like an endless lake not like the beach at Santa Cruz. The waves never stop there and the signs all say dangerous undertow swim at your own risk. In Santa Cruz you know the ocean is there all night because you can hear it over the cars and other noises crashing and hissing, and you can watch the surfers out on their boards riding the big ones. Here there are no big ones. The tide goes up and down. Sometimes when we get off the ferry the dock is steep because the water is so low, and the beaches, which are all rocks and pebbles, stretch way out. And, sometimes the beaches disappear and the dock is almost flat. I didn’t notice the tides so much before unless it was very low or high. There are lots of purple and pink starfish on the rocks and little crabs that scurry under rocks. Blenny loves to pick up the tiny ones. They just sit in her hand and wave their tiny claws fiercely at her.
Mom says that we will be living here for a while, but when I ask how long. She says she doesn’t know exactly maybe a couple of years. I think maybe that will be a long while with no t.v. and no stores besides the little store by the ferry where everything (which isn’t much) is twice as expensive as anywhere else in the U.S.. But at least mom seems more relaxed without my father around. I asked mom if we were hiding from dad and she said no that she had work here and it paid well and we got housing free. She said that it was too good a deal to pass up and the work was interesting and she could be with us most of the time while she was working. I guess there aren’t many jobs like that around. Maybe if my dad weren’t such a jerk, she would be working in Santa Cruz at the University and I would be hearing the sound of the waves on the beach. I like sand better than rocks, and I like waves. My mom says that people travel from all over the world to come to these islands because they are so beautiful and full of wildlife and whales and stuff, but I just don’t get it, it never gets hot enough to swim and we have ride the ferry 30 minutes to get anywhere and it only comes twice a day. My mom says that I ought to explore the island to see if there are kids my age, but what are the chances of that.