Sunday, March 27, 2005


In Which Chaos Reigns...

My dad plans trips like a World War II O.S.S. operative. He acts like every city of larger than 1,000 people is Berlin and every interstate clogged with Panzers. He puts the "ack" in "back way" and looks for every scenic route, local road--or dirt road, if he can find it--to get where he's going.

Which means that a trip that you or I could do in a half-day takes him and my mother almost two days.

Granted, I guess all the crap they hauled here really bit into their ability to get above 45 MPH.

When my parents arrive, it is not possible to exaggerate the level of excitement that vibrates off my screaming kids. The dog barks, pictures rattle on the walls, the very foundation thrums and cracks.

And the rituals begin.

Ritual #1: The Unloading

We have to do the unloading dance. For my son, this involves doing laps around the vehicle. The Brownie stands in place and does a cute little boogie.

unloading dance

Then, there is the opening of Every Door

Unloading 1

Then we root through all the items in the car like it's a yard sale, only on wheels and everything's free.


Later, because it makes Grandma and Papa happy, we wash all the chocolate and dirt off of faces and put our Easter outfits on and pose for three quick pictures, of which only one will turn out halfway decent.


Then it's on to the next ritual, which I am just too drag-ass tired to relate right now.

As I type, my mom is telling the kids a bedtime story (right now she's at the part where a desperate Young Daddy finds the zipper on his footed pajamas stuck, and my son screams, in a voice mixed with hiccups because he's been laughing so hard, "Then Young Daddy POOPED DOWN HIS LEG!! TELL IT GRANDMA!!!"). My dad is asleep on the sofa, his belly distended and gurgling (Her Lovely Self wastes no time stuffing him with food and praise. She has big plans for the guest room come 8 AM tomorrow, methinks).

If you happen to be out tonight and look in a certain direction, you may see a bright glow on the horizon. That would be my home, every window burning with a special light and warmth, all generated by the simple blissful moment that only comes from having the full complement of my family under one roof. I am so happy and lucky to be at the center of that blissful moment that I can't even write about it anymore. So I won't.

Not for another 24 hours anyway...

From Somewhere on the Masthead

Man, your kids have it good. Don't get me wrong. I love my Grandma, but she would usually by me some sort of gay ass sweater that I was too embarrased to wear to school.

She usually just sends me $20 for Christmas and my birthday now. I'm alright with that. I wish she would've picked up on that earlier.

You just jogged my memory on Christmas at Grandma's. I'll have to post about that sometime soon.

Thanks for posting pictures. Are we ever going to see you in the background ever? You could have a Hitchcock movie persona going on.
That's a great feeling. Happy Easter.
Does every child look forward to seeing his or her grandparents like that? I don't recall that kind of excitement in my youth. About anything.
Poor Young Daddy, he's never going to live that down. Cute kids!
My grandmother only takes back roads! She even once made me take the back roads when she was a passenger in my own car. We were going to a movie, and she insisted we leave an hour before the show.

"But Grandma," I insisted, "It only takes 15 minutes to get to the theatre. We'll be really early if we leave now." Logic and Grandma don't mesh well.

Well, it turned out that she was right, because when you go the way she likes to go, you make it to the theatre just in time to catch the opening credits.

Anyway, great story. You have a lovely family.
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