Wednesday, July 28, 2004

Cue the Banjos!

Guess where I'm going this weekend? On a FLOAT trip! I couldn't be more stoked. I haven't done one of these in probably 8 or 10 years, and they really are fun! Nothing like winding down a lazy river in the warm sunshine, in the middle of nowhere. The area we'll be floating in is definitely remote hillbilly country, though. Salt of the earth, y'know. This time we're floating in a raft vs. a canoe. It's got to be more comfortable than those hard, wicked canoe seats.

Also, and there really wasn't a choice, we decided to bring our daughter along. She's four, and we think she'll like it. (think, hope, pray, whatever...) She's used to being around water & loves to get wet. She MAY get bored though. What I perceive as "natural beauty" might just be a continuous patch of weeds to her. We'll try to make it fun. What she's most excited for is the CAMP OUT. Ever since we told her about it, she won't shut up about the camp out. What I envision with the campout is a giant lack of quality sleep. I have visions of popping a Tylenol PM around 9 pm or so every night. The only problem with that is if for some reasons I'm kept awake in spite of the Tylenol, I'll REALLY wish I were dead. I'm sure I'll catch a little nappy on the way home, regardless.

One of my girlfriends and I got a wild hair during a trip to Costco, and split the cost of a 10-person tent. So we're providing the condo for everyone! There are about 10 people total going, and we'll have six in our tent. Nice & cozy.

I'll report back on the trip if there's anything report-worthy, such as roving hill-people or giant river dwelling critters. Hmmmm, sometimes uneventful is good too....

Thursday, July 22, 2004

Ah, the Sunshine State...

Back from Florida in one piece.  Did I mention I was going there?  Well, I did.  Mainly to see my grandmother, who is laid up in a re-hab "hospital" (I use that term loosely) after breaking her hip.  She's in her late 80's and not really doing well.  I brought my daughter since my husband already had plans to go out of town. 

My daughter did great.  My elderly grandmother just marveled watching her meticulously color inside the lines of her coloring book.  This kid literally colored for an hour, uninterrupted.  I mean, I was ready to pick up and scoot at the first signs of cranky-kid.  Never happened.  Sometimes they can surprise you I guess. 

I tried to make the trip as much fun as possible while spending time hanging out in a smelly nursing home/hospital.  Props to the facility, though.  They really did a great job  with decor to make the nursing home part of the building bright and cheery....not dank & depressing as you sometimes get with these places.  My grandfather is a resident of that wing in the building.  My daughter was her usual "shy-around-new-people" self, but did a really good job of being nice to the old people and not terrified as some kids can get...although she did ask last night why my grandmother was old.  I innocently replied "Well, honey, we all get old."  That response was met with real tears and the declaration "I DON'T WANNA GET OLD!!"  Amen, sister.

We wrapped up the trip with a 3/4 day trip to Disney World.  Let me say that age 4 is the perfect minimum age for that kind of place.  We had a great time!  We got there around 10:30 a.m.   It did rain all day, but that was an unusual god-send!  Instead of being unbearable and stifling (as Florida often is in July) it was damp & cool.  We got sprinkled on, but never soaked.  Just perfect. 

Let me say BIG props to the Disney folks for one attraction that happens once each day:  the Parade.  If it weren't for the parade, I might have had to listen to day on end of "I didn't get to see Sleeping Beauty...I didn't get to see Cinderella!"  But NO!  The parade has EVERYTHING!  Smart, those Disney people.  That allowed us to just hit the high points at the park, enjoy lunch with Winnie the Pooh and friends (they had a buffet that was KILLER!), and leave at a reasonable time.  We had to get up at 5:30 a.m. the next morning to catch our plane, so we left Disney around 5:30 p.m., had a nice dinner and went to bed early.

The trip was more or less a success.  It certainly is depressing watching your loved ones get old, but at least they do still have supportive relatives nearby to help ease the transition.  Feeling lazy this morning, I passed up on my daily trip to the fountain of youth:  my gym.  Tommorrow is another day.

Sunday, July 11, 2004


Interesting study in human nature this weekend, I had. I trekked several hours to a lake with a group of my girlfriends. It's one of those lakes that has the area where tons of boats converge together, tie-up and everyone gets really, really drunk & stupid. Funny thing was, I wasn't feelin' it. I really didn't drink very much, so I pretty much witnessed all of this debauchery sober. Wow. Sober & dry. With all of the stuff that happens in that lake water, you can bet your sweet ass I wasn't dipping myself into it! One guy told a story of a time he cut his leg pretty badly while IN the water & decided to go get it stitched up. There were about 12 people ahead of him in the ER waiting room, but the check-in nurse asked him where in the lake he had been. When he mentioned the particular party area, she whisked him immediately in front of all of those waiting, where he promptly got stitches to go along with the TWELVE shots they said he'd be needing. That tell ya anything? Ewwwww. You can't even IMAGINE what goes on in that water.

So anyway...I saw it all: nudity of varying degrees, drunkenness of all degrees and lots of people doing things that would not be well-accepted by their spouses and families.

So what is it about the mix of sun, water, alcohol, hormones that makes people completely forget themselves? Or is this just the real "them" lurking below the surface waiting for an opportunity to rear it's ugly head? Most of my crew conduct themselves reasonably well...but some still get sucked into the evil mix to SOME degree. This is not my first bar-be-que, but it is the first one where the drinks weren't going down so well, so maybe it's just my un-fogged perspective this time around.

Well, I guess everyone has to look at themselves in their own mirror..and we're all grown adults. I just find it to be quite interesting. But I'm not really here to judge...just to point and laugh.

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