Why aren't we flying? Because getting there is half the fun. You know that.
~ Clark W. Griswold
What: Obligatory road trip during Will’s Spring Break to visit the in-laws, aka grandparents.
When: Seven glorious fun-filled days, starting either tomorrow, aka Sunday 3/30 (if I get my act together) or Monday 3/31.
Where: Florida to Atlanta to Knoxville, TN to Franklin NC to Florida.
How: By car, baby. By car.
Why: To provide a pre-emptive strike visit, heading off threats from boths set of in-laws to come here. Better us go to them than them come to us. Trust me.
I’m in the process of trying to figure out what a nuclear family of three will need for a seven day trip, on the road. Laundry’s turning, suitcases are open, lists are made. Frankly, right now, I’m more concerned about how we’re going to entertain ourselves than anything. It’s all about priorities, people...
I’m loading onto the iPod touch the following items:
Two episodes of Brothers & Sisters
Three episodes of Men In Trees
Picked up from iTunes
The season thus far of America’s Next Top Model
The season thus far of Eli Stone
The Darjeeling Limited
The Seven Year Itch
Ripped from my DVDs and converted to mp4s
My Favorite Year
Damn, I love technology.
Additionally, I have the following books in my travel duffel:
Fear & Loathing in Las Vegas by Hunter S. Thompson
Then We Came to the End by Joshua Ferris
Pictures at a Revolution: Five Movies and the Birth of the New Hollywood by Mark Harris
Deep Dish by Mary Kay Andrews
Plus two "work-books," so to speak:
Portable MFA in Creative Writing
Writing Motherhood: Tapping Into Your Creativity as a Mother and a Writer
And, I've got my ongoing needlepoint project, DVDs for Will (the car has a built in player. Can you say life saver?) and another iPod loaded with music for the car.
I'm totally not taking any chances with the boredom thing.
I’ve got lists going for just about everything -- Will’s clothes and food needs; my clothes; what NutriFoods I’m going to take with; etcetera, etcetera, etcetera. Despite all this, I just know I’m going to forget something -- I always do.
Fortunately, we’re staying with one set of folks -- the Atlanta in-laws, aka the mister’s father and stepmother. We’re in hotels everywhere else. Thank goodness. I do not like staying with people if I can help it -- I like my own space in a hotel where I can get away and be. Even when visiting people I like. I know that’s weird, but that’s just how it is.
I’m not sure what we’ll be doing on each of our stops -- nothing tremendously exciting. Many times we just sit around and “visit” which means making small talk. That’s OK. Although sometimes it can get a little tedious and dull. If I’m being perfectly honest.
It’s a lot to cram into a week -- but I’d rather go visit them then have them come visit us, frankly. Especially my mother-in-law in Knoxville, who is an interesting combination of fundamental, conservative Christianity and new age medicine. Yeah. Interesting doesn’t even begin to cover it. When she comes to visit us, we take serious steps to alter and adjust our lives in such a way as to not evoke any behavior that she finds offensive -- like having a beer. Yes, they’re drastic measures -- but it completely beats hearing her comments and criticism regarding the way we live our lives. It’s bad enough that she finds passive-aggressive fault with the medical care we’re sought and given Will, sending along articles about the evils of the medications he’s on and columns about alternative care.
I need to stop -- I can feel my blood pressure starting to rise already.
At the end of this whirlwind trip, we head to NC to visit our very, very good friends. A treat at the end of the tunnel. Thank goodness.
I’ve never had to process visits with both sets of in-laws so close together -- I feel like I need some flash cards on what I need to remember to say and to not say with each group. The joy of family. Fortunately, Will is always the star attraction on any visit, which is a very good thing. My stepmother-in-law in particular is devoted to him -- she couldn’t love him any more if they shared bloodlines. It’s wonderful to see them together.
So. Here we go. I’m hoping to have chances here and there to log on, check in and share an update or two. Just to have a bit of grounding and to let y’all know that I haven’t lost my mind.
Or ended up in jail.
A vacation frequently means that the family goes away for a rest, accompanied by a mother who sees that the others get it.
~ Marcelene Cox