On the way home from Cape Cod, we stopped to visit friends in the Garden State, so I pushed my boobs, like, way up high and we went to the Jersey Shore. AND I SAW SNOOKI! Not really. But all those people look alike, you know?
After two days in Joisey, we embarked on the final leg of our journey yesterday morning at 5 am, scheduled to take approximately 14 hours if we went the speed limit. We did not go the speed limit. Husband traveled nearly at the speed of light, and yet we still managed to spend an extra 3.5 hours trapped in the Landfill. And by trapped, I mean stuck inside a moving vehicle with the same four human beings, two of whom I did not like at all by 5:03 am. At the first rest stop, I threatened to call the police on the Pterodactyl, whose fingernails now contain a nice sample of my DNA. After I calmed him down and bought him an egg sandwich, the Tyrant ran away in her pajamas and staged herself behind a round table so that we could not catch her without looking guilty of kidnapping.
Back in the car, the Pterodactyl and the Tyrant screamed for hours over who called who stupid first. I called the Tyrant a pain in the ass, which made everybody mad at me until she kicked me, and then everybody was mad at her. The Diva was perfect the whole time, except when she insisted she would only eat the NEW kind of Cheetos which come in long coiled curl shapes. She will need major therapy to deal with the ancillary screaming she has had to endure. And by the way, I ate Cheetos yesterday as though they were the only known cure for slovenly ennui. The Motorized Landfill’s new accessory is neon orange dust and empty 5-hour energy bottles.
A friend had loaned us a bagful of videos for the kids to watch on the road trip, but we never got past the first one. We watched The Wizard of Oz at least 37 times. Boy, Judy Garland’s voice never gets old, does it? Okay, it sort of does. BUT! Hot Firefighter Husband and I noticed that The Wizard of Oz is responsible for an impressive number of pithy phrases that have secured a spot in our lexicon. And many of them are sayings that reflect life! I’ve used a few to relay some vacation advice for you. As usual, remember that I’m an expert on absolutely nothing and cannot be trusted to disseminate useful or trustworthy information.
Dorothy: I’ve a feeling we’re not in Kansas anymore!
Obviously this occurs when you voluntarily or involuntarily leave your home surroundings. If your children are overly attached to their home surroundings, make sure they bring something along for comfort, like a favorite stuffed animal or Cheetos.
WARNING: THIS COULD END BADLY! For example – and it pains me to write this – Teddy has been lost. I’m holding out hope that it’s hiding someplace in New Jersey, although based on its current smell, it has probably been devoured by carrion birds. My poor Tyrant.
Munchkins: Ding dong! The witch is dead.
Metaphorically, the witch in our family died as soon as she entered vacation mode, which happened with a delicious rum and tonic, my new favorite cocktail. That’s right. I’m the witch. You might be one, too. Look for the following symptoms: calling one or more of your kids a “little shit,” jaw pain from scowling, constipation.
Scarecrow: Some people without brains do an awful lot of talking, don’t they?
At one of our rest stops, a strange-looking vagrant approached us and said, in one breath, “My wife and I adopted three kids. We got twin boys coming home soon. Altogether we got 12. She’s got a day care in our home. Holds 24 kids. Brings in some money. We don’t charge much. She enjoys it. She loves kids.” Then he shuffled off to fight the aliens.
Wizard: PAY NO ATTENTION TO THE MAN BEHIND THE CURTAIN!
The person in charge of most of the vacation planning will not be consulted when changes to the vacation plan occur. Case in point: Hey, I know! Let’s take a side trip to New York City and spend our whole vacation budget on a 10X10 hotel room and the ToysRUs store! No, I’m not sure we should– Wow, there’s the Empire State Building!
Glinda the Good Witch: You’ve always had the power to go back to Kansas.
Duh. But who wants to go to Kansas? It’s instructive, however, to understand that we always have the power to return to our homes, whether that home is a place to sleep or a place in our hearts. I left Cape Cod convinced I wanted to buy some property and build a small eco green modular house with solar panels. I still want to do that. But it’s nonetheless nice to be home – in the daily rhythm of love and frustration and work that makes us a family.
Tin Woodsman: To Oz!
We’re home. So let’s go! On to the next great adventure, which may or may not include adopting a 5-year-old deaf Great Dane named Veruca. What?