I took a road trip this past weekend. My brother, sister, daughter, and I went to visit my mom as a surprise for her 70th birthday.
Road trips with my family are
Then there is the timing of my 16 year old daughter's bladder. It never fails, we make a stop, I say "Rachael, do you have to use the bathroom?" She doesn't respond. I ask again. My sister yells her name, Rachael takes her ipod earphones out and says, "huh?" I repeat the question. She shakes her head, and puts her earphones back in. We all use the bathroom, pile back in the car, hit the road, and a half hour later, Rachael announces she has to pee. It's like she's 5 again, only minus the throwing up.
My brother and sister got their revenge though. Once, Rachael took off her ipod to see what CD we were listening to and requested a song. My brother and sister were happy to oblige her with a duet. She didn't take her earphones off much after that.
Once we got into California, my brother bought my sister and me each a lottery ticket. Being from Vegas, these were foreign to us. It should have been a simple concept - scratch them off and see if you win. But there's like 50 different kinds and you have to read them to figure out how to play. The exchange went something like this:
Me - "Where do we scratch?"
Bonnie - "It says you need 3 matches."
Me - "It says you have to mail it in if you win."
Bonnie - "What do we win?"
My brother - "Just scratch it and see!"
Me - "But where do you scratch?"
Bonnie - "Just scratch 3 spots."
Me - "It says you have to watch a television show to see if you win."
My brother - "You scratch off the whole thing - just scratch it already!"
Me - "Where do we scratch?"
Bonnie - "I see where to scratch. You scratch 3 spots like this." (she shows us her card with three scratch marks and meaningless parts of words beneath)
My brother - "No, DINGY, you scratch the whole card!"
Me - "How can you read that? You can't even tell what you scratched."
My brother - "YOU SCRATCH THE WHOLE THING!"
Me - "Oh, I see, you scratch the whole card. Oh....I didn't win."
Bonnie - "That's a waste of a dollar."
My brother snatches the cards and throws them out the window.
Bonnie - "Don't litter!"
When we got to my mom's, my brother said he needed a nap.
Have you ever noticed how slow time goes when you don't have anything you have to do? My mom and her husband are retired, and spend their days feeding the sparrows and rabbits that live in their yard, cooking, perusing the internet, gardening, and, well, whatever the heck they feel like. I soooo look forward to being retired. Whenever we visit them, it's like time stops. It's a delicious change from the rushed, crammed schedule I keep at home.
We filled our time playing the Monopoly card game. I was sorry I taught my sister how to play because she whipped me twice. It wasn't just that she beat me that was so annoying, but her accompanying gloating and poking my love handles. When my brother and daughter joined in the game though, the odds were evened and it was every sibling for him or her self.
Mom's "Red Hats" friends took her to lunch for her birthday. I'm not really sure what the Red Hats are or how it started, but from what I can tell, it's older women who get together to chit-chat, eat, drink, and have fun without caring whos watching. Kind of like teenage girls. My mom's little group are rebels who call themselves "Black and Bling." They're lovely, and funny, and love having their picture taken. Mom showed us about 50 snapshots that they took of themselves just at lunch. The best shots were the ones where they posed wearing the piercing rings that my sister had given my mom as a joke. You know, the fake rings you can put on your lip, or in your nose, or on your eyebrow, or if you are very adventerous, on your tongue?
Seeing your mom with a tongue ring is not for the faint of heart.
Soon it was Tuesday, and we had to head back home. We stopped for a restroom break and my brother decided he was hungry for lunch. While he waited for his food, us girls waited in the car. Never leave anti-smokers alone in the car with your cigarettes. Especially if the anti-smokers are your sisters. Bonnie pulled each of his cigarettes out of the pack and wrote inspiring little messages on them, then put them all neatly back. Yes, the food took that long. Now when my brother smokes a cigarette from the pack, he gets to read little nuggets such as, "Choke!", "Gasp!", and "No, No, No!" Ok, we could have been more creative, but we only had a few minutes.