My phone autocorrects “sounds great” to “spuds great” and I usually don’t figure out that it has happened until much later. So now I’m thinking I’ll just try to make it a thing. “Hey Amelia, want to meet for lunch?” “Spuds great!” It’ll probably catch on.
Do you know what doesn’t spuds great to anyone, ever? A stomach bug during a vacation weekend. Which is exactly what happened to me. And then Tony, but with more dramatic results. “Dramatic” and “stomach bug” are two things that should never go together, yet often do.
First, we drove to Ilwaco. It’s like Tony’s an escaped convict or something – he hasn’t seen the sun in months, he hasn’t driven farther than Bellingham in months, and, the world outside is strange and new to him. He hasn’t had to put up with all three children and the dog in a car since the last road trip in October (that’s not so much the exhilarating feeling of escaping from prison as it is begging to go back to prison because the real world is just too horrible for words), and the extremity of annoyance on a road trip with three kids and a dog is astounding to those unused to it.
This guy is happiest when we’re not moving.
He’s especially happy if we’re not moving AND he’s driving the not-moving car.
I feel comfortable in saying that I am a veteran road-tripper-with-children. They have to pee at inopportune times (middle of rush-hour traffic in Seattle, for instance, when you’re totally gridlocked and even if you weren’t, getting off the freeway is no guarantee of an easy gas-station bathroom). They are always hungry for some sort of snack that is not in the car and that you probably wouldn’t have purchased/brought for the ride anyway (candy! watermelon! scrambled eggs!). They are too hot, too cold, too loud, or bored. In short, they are terrible traveling companions. And when they do get out of the car, they go bonkers. Tony, who is bewildered by sunlight and people doing things other than taxes during daylight hours, just sort of blinks wonderingly at the world when we stop. Charles and Jamie start to wrestle because, hey, we made it all the way to Tacoma, we’d been on the road for two hours, and they were afraid they were never going to be able to use their legs again ever.
The cure for this craziness is chocolate milk, administered, if not intravenously, then with a straw. Unless you are me and you outlaw straws in chocolate milk because of the mess. Then, the only cure is a Happy Meal Toy (Transformers right now, total win).
Also, the family rule: everyone goes to the bathroom every time we stop. Everyone. Every time.
The first weekend in May is always Loyalty Days on the Long Beach Peninsula, and the boys start things off with a kiddie parade. When Charles was four years old, he won a trophy for his bike entry. This year, Jamie won the trophy. (Please excuse the lack of bike helmets – it was a special occasion and they were going about two miles per hour.)
Jamie won because he was cute. Charles nearly gave me a heart attack because he is a daredevil. I didn’t get a photo of him standing on the crossbar of his bike, but he rode it around that way throughout the parade.
Getting ready to stand like an
Freddie thinks hats are bullshit
The next day, the big boys got to ride in a fire truck, and Charles got to work the horn. I can’t stress what how big of a deal this was.
By then, however, I was snuggled into the the couch, fighting fever and chills, and never straying far from the bathroom. Tony and my parents took the kids to the big parade, but afterward I still didn’t feel well enough to endure a long car ride with three kids and a dog, so Tony decided to borrow my parents’ car and drive home with Charles. I would follow with the smaller children and a parent the next day – my mom or dad would retrieve their car and drive back home. Not ideal, but I was too sick to argue at all.
He should have opted for snuggle time, too
I was also too sick to question Tony about how he felt, which was apparently something along the lines of “not too great.” After he vomited in a Taco Time in Olympia, he chose to turn back to Ilwaco. We all came home yesterday, having each missed a day of work and school.
Cruisin’ kid doesn’t care about school
Now we’re all messed up. There were no leftovers for me to take for lunch today. It was sunny all weekend and now it is rainy. Up is down, down is up. Cats and dogs living together. It’s crazy. And no one knows what day it is, seriously. Charles asked me this morning if it was Friday, which, dude, you haven’t been to school yet this week, how could it be Friday? And having felt like shit (far too literally, if you ask me) this weekend, I’m wishing it were Friday already, too. Friday spuds great, man.