My sister resting on the kitchen counter after a long day of travel--I told her she couldn't go to bed until we found something to eat!
Many years ago, my Aunt Mary Clare declared that when one is on vacation, everything is either FUN or FUNNY...everything. Well, last Thursday little Augustine and I packed up and caught a plane to Chicago to spend the weekend with my sister and my nephew who flew in from Colorado...and let's just say we had to remind ourselves of that very mantra many, many times.
Because, really, what is so fun or funny about one's child (audibly) pooping out his diaper and very visably up his back while on his mother's lap, trapped in the middle seat of a very crowded plane...while the seat belt sign is on (and any rebellious effort to sneak away to the bathroom is being blocked by the beverage cart--until said beverage cart attendee sees the situation and turns a blind eye so we can make our getaway)??
And is it more fun or funny when the rental car company gives you the wrong car--and despite your best efforts you cannot physically fit two carseats, two strollers, two pack-n-plays, two suitcases, two diaperbags, two precious babes, and two very tired moms into it? (Btw, what were we thinking?? I looked like a one woman circus pushing a stroller--a diaper bag shoved into the basket below and my little man mounted in his car seat above--with one hand, while dragging the rest of my loot--a pack-n-play balanced carefully on the top of my carry-on suitcase--with the other. That's right, folks, I did not check anything. I will defer this situation to the "funny" category because there was nothing "fun" about it!).
Or when your basics needs are not being met, is that fun...or funny? Not clean clothing, air conditioning, fluffy pillows kind of needs (although we actually bade well in those categories). We are talking Food and Sleep...two things that were much harder to come by on our trip. During our stay, my sister and I came to the conslusion that while she does not do well without sleep, I do not do well without food. You see, I left my house for the airport at around 2 pm, thankfully with hearty sandwich in hand. But, as you can imagine, the aforementioned luggage issues made it nearly impossible to get anything to eat for the rest of the day. By the time I met up with my sister, got the wrong...and then the right rental car, and drove to the condo it was after 10 pm. It was at that point that I realized 1) I had not eaten in 8 hours 2) There was little food in the condo 3) There was no way I was venturing out on my own to find food in Chicago at 10 pm. I settled for sharing a frozen dinner with my sister and digging into a pint of Ben and Jerry's that we found in the freezer. (Ice cream was also my breakfast the next morning...).
And as fun as walking a few miles to church in the bright sunshine could have been (IF we didn't get lost), it was much harder to find the fun (or funny) in walking back home from church in a torential downpour...without a blaknet to keep my little one--let alone myself (hello drowned rat)--dry.
And dear Aunt Mary Clare, please tell me what is so fun or funny about finally leaving the condo (to do something other than speed walk to the nearest place for carry-out food), only to get caught in bumper to bumper traffic, due to a road closure for the Gay & Lesbian Pride Parade...and to have to sit there and watch the remains of the parade pass by?
You know what, I bet Aunt Mary Clare couldn't tell me what was fun or funny about any of these things, but the fact remains:
they were indeed fun or funny...
...and for these particular examples, I'm going to go with "funny."
Not in the, "oh, this is funny so I am going to laugh" way, but in the "I have no idea why I am laughing uncontrollably right now but I am and I cannot stop" way. I kid you not, even during the most tense moments--and there were tense moments--all I could do was laugh...hysterically. I had absolutely no reason to laugh--or to even smile or think happy thoughts for that matter--but neither my sister or I could stop laughing.
And I thank God for that!
Laughter is the best medicine, and I got plenty of it during our trip to Chicago!
But alas, I would be remiss not to mention some of the "fun" moments:
- each and every moment of the boys playing together...priceless memories!
- taking little walks with our boys to get food...Starbucks was just around the corner :)
- discovering a fun pretzel shop and eating an incredible pretzel sandwich
- countless hours spent talking to my best friend in person
- giving the boys a bath together
- meeting up with my Aunt, Uncle, and cousins for real Chicago pizza--although I must say I was not prepared for what was to come when my Uncle ordered the "sausage patty" pizza: thick, cornbread crust topped with cheese, sauce, and a GIANT sausage patty covering the entire mass of the pizza. Let's just say I ate it with a fork!
- watching the US/Ghana World Cup game (but not the part where they lost)
- taking picture after picture of Augustine and Tavian