One day when my grandparents are dead, I will inherit their green snack tin labeled VERMONT CHEESE CRACKERS, but I do not know where I will be living on that day or what kitchen cabinet I will place it in. I've already been given their blue-and-white VERMONT COVERED BRIDGES knit blanket. It lies at the foot of the bed I share with my partner who can point to the bridge closest to where he grew up. Today, a green plate of cheese and crackers sits on the blanket, at my feet, along with an essayist friend. I drink tea with my sister. Actually, I drink tea from a mug my sister gave me, and the essayist friend is only here in the form of his letter which arrived earlier this week. I am comforted by these things. It is why I choose to live so far. My grandparents wanted to bring me to Scotland, wanted to read my first book before they died. I write postcards and search vacation rentals in Aberdeen. In the photographs, I recognize my grandparents' dining room chairs, the same chairs I saw everywhere when I lived in Vermont. Are you listening? Is it the brown wooden chairs I want, or Scotland, or Vermont? I'll give you time to think. I leave for Carolina to see them in two weeks, but I won't write you from there. Only from where we live now, where there are only two seasons—both of them warm.
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