Monday, May 15, 2006

Vacation musings

On the last day of my trip, I got in trouble and received the 'silent treatment' from my father. I had planned to go to the zoo or the aquarium with my sister and brother. I know what you're saying already, 'what kind of loser goes to the zoo or the aquarium for the highlight of their vacation?' Especially because this zoo is the world's most horrible, politically incorrect zoo. Monkey cages are tiny and splattered with feces; they throw things at you because they are (rightfully) mad at the world. A huge lion lays lethargically in a cage exactly like the old fashioned one on the side of the Barnum and Bailey Animal Crackers box. Underneath the cage is a crappy sign that says 'Simba.' Indeed, last year we tried to report the zoo but nothing came of it. But it would be fun. The three of us never get a chance to go anywhere together, but when we do, it tends to be very carefree and leisurly. My sister ended up not being able to go because her friend saw a sign for free skin care consultations at Sephora. This opportunity clearly superseded the zoo or the aquarium.
My parents, noticing the time gap left between 'The Ellen Degeneris Show' and 'American Idol' later that evening, volunteered to go with my brother and I instead. Now don't get me wrong, I like doing things with my parents, but it's a totaly different vibe than taking a leisurly drive to observe some wildlife.
My parents got to it with the same zeal and authority as a couple of camp counselors, minus the T-shirts and the whistles. My father got busy plotting out the physics of available time verses possible ground cover and activities. Mom got to work on the hospitality element. By the time she mentioned the dreaded cooler, I was tired out. The cooler, THE harbinger of useless, endless errands. Luncheon meats would have to be bought, ice packs cooled.
Mom: "If we lunch on the beach after, we'll bring the tent, otherwise sand will get in your food. You don't want sand to get in your food. We need that tent for your brother. He's already red and I don't think he should be getting anymore sun."
Me: "We're not going camping, we just want to go for a drive. Just forget it." I was already thinking about the trip there, sitting in the back seat with my brother, getting windblown from the front window rolled down all the way, bobbing and weaving the ashes flicked carelessly out the driver's seat window. When I pointed out that the whole day was turning into a rigamarole, my dad got in a huff. He acted hurt, and thy gave up on the whole idea.
The wierd thing is that this doesn't happen when you have a boyfriend, this type of automatic regression. He's usually there with you, or as much of it was in my case, the idea of him is there at least. The last year we were together, he was supposed to take a trip down there with me for a week long vacation. He kept putting off buying the plane ticket. I kept hasseling him, and waiting to buy my ticket. Finally he said I should just buy it, he had to wait a little longer and would just pay the extra money, and if he wanted to cut the trip short, well, I could just go to the airport and they would switch it around to accomadate us. I wasn't too sure. THEN he said he wanted to drive down there. He seemed really excited about it, and kept talking about visiting my parents, and then driving around and doing our own thing, maybe going to some little B and B, and what not. But I was so uneasy, like I KNEW somehow this trip wasn't going to happen. I just knew part of him wasn't into it. Then, his mom got sick. I still believe that part is true, maybe I'm a shmuck. Some condition that required hospitalization and included possible transfusions. So of course, I was horrified, and couldn't say anything. I offered to stay with him, but he said to go, she might need surgery, but the condition wan't life threatening or anything. Bought the ex mom a card and went to my parents. Now, ex didn't really get along with his mom, but still. Halfway into my trip, when I askd him how his mom was, he told me blankly he never got around to visiting her over the weekend. When I got back from the vacation, I found out he never bothered to visit her at all. I was stunned, but what was I supposed to say? If I got pissed at him, I would also basically be accusing him of being a bad son, and what if something did then happen to the mom?

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