Sunday, June 8, 2014

Does this blog make me look bitchy?

It will likely surprise no one that I can get a little hangry -- you know, when you get cranky because you're starving to death?

I got a little hangry today. Couple that with having to pee by the side of the road, and I might have been a little more than a little hangry.

Maybe I should start at the beginning.

We took Alison to sleep-away camp today. As is tradition, we were to have stopped for lunch on the way at The Cow Palace. I know it sounds weird, but they make a great salad there. Jeff and Ali have the ice cream the place is known for, but I was really looking forward to the salad.

So I have a light breakfast. I ignored my internal warning to bring a snack bag.  I usually have emergency food when we road trip because I know full well a rumbling stomach does not a happy Cheryl make.

But I could hold out for salad. Right?

Jeff was driving. I failed to notice anything navigationally amiss as I reminisced about past trips to camp, chatted with Alison and the like. At one point, Jeff asked Alison for his phone so he could check in on his GPS.

It crossed my mind that we shouldn't really need his GPS. It was, afterall, our fourth trip to the camp. And yes, that first year, I got the camp confused with a Flat Rock near Edinburgh, which is south on Interstate 65 rather than east toward Flat Rock River, but we hadn't made that mistake again.

At another point Jeff said something about being ahead of time but he wondered if we wanted to get there early so Alison could snag her bunk. We could skip the Cow Palace and stop when we picked her up at the end of the week. 
To my dismay, she agreed. 

"No worries," I thought. "Jeff and I will have a nice lunch on the way back."

Then, Jeff muttered something about this being our exit.

"That's not our exit," I said. "We're looking for a Love's truck stop."

It was then we discovered we were on Interstate 70.  We needed to be on Interstate 74. And it might have been at this point that I decided living in "The Crossroads of America" isn't really such a good thing. 

But I bit my lip. As just mentioned, I've made my travel mistakes before. So we exit and head off into the wilds of Indiana. Jeff stops at the lone truck stop/restaurant option. Ali gets tacos. 

While I WAS hungry, I decide I have a week of great dining ahead of me. I can wait for salad. I do want a soda though. 

And that was the second mistake of the trip. We don't get back on the Interstate, you see. There had been a big semi-tractor trailer accident over there that had stalled cars for miles. GPS would see us through the country roads.

Jeff spent the next 25 minutes loudly disparaging himself for his bonehead mistake. Rather than agree with him, I sipped on my drink. He informed Alison that he was so sorry she wasn't goign to be early and apologize for the 700th time for his wrong turn.

 "Well, now I know where I get my trouble with directions," she said.

It lightened the moment enough that Jeff stopped complaining so much. Instead, he started chewing his gum loudly. It was about here I realized I'd had too much to drink.

I asked for a bathroom break.  Field after field swooshed by. A tiny gas station that looked kind of like a double wide trailer loomed ahead. It didn't look promising. I grimaced and waved him on.

He kept chewing his gum loudly. I started counting, humming, crossing and re-crossing my legs.
I was holding on to the edge of my seat and tightening my core tighter than it's ever been, when I reminded him again that I needed a rest break and asked him, politely, to chew with his mouth closed.

He closed his lips, but not before he said, "You know, you said it yourself when you ordered that drink -- that you were going to regret it." 

From the back seat, "Yeah, Mom. You could have shared my water."

I hold my tongue. I text Amy, who was delivering Jenna and Drew, and was, as I expected, far more organized. I inform her we're late. If you can roll your eyes in text, she did it, but agreed to have Jenna snag a bed for Ali. And to take care of an issue of whether they were in the same cabin as Ali is a real teen and Jenna has a couple more weeks before she turns the magic 13. 

More grassy field. Spring hay bales. Cows. Horses. Miles and miles and miles of beautiful country side. I care for none of it. I give up, look over and say, "Pull over at the next two lane road."

Jeff gives me an incredulous look, checks his GPS for the 7 millionth time and says: "It's only a couple of miles until the next town. Can't you wait?"

I think my eyes were yellow. Or red. Either way, they were narrowed.

He pulled over.

"Uh. Dad. WHAT is she doing?"

"Honey, this will be a day to remember."

I grabbed the Taco Bell napkins and did what any good country girl would do. I looked both ways, left the door open and made sure my feet were out of the stream. Alison was ahast. Jeff was resigned. "I hope a car comes," I heard him tell her.

They talked about it all the way to camp, threatening that this would be a story that would live in infamy.

"I don't think either of you understand," I said. "I have no shame. Everybody pees."

So we get to camp. I'm still hungry, mind you, but I know there's a cookout. It's not "good-for-me-food" but I'm now past any semblance of caring about my Weight Watcher points for the day. We check in. We hope to find the Tokashes  We get Ali to her cabin where Jeff is annoyed that Alison can't find the medicine that we have to take to the main cabin for official dispensing.

As Jeff and Alison argue over where the inhalers are, the counselor asks me if Ali is hungry because other than the hotdog/burgers at the cook out, there's no food til dinner. I tell Ali to come with me, we're getting a dog.

"She CAN'T be hungry. She just had tacos!" Jeff exclaims. 

I didn't care if she needed foor, I was hungry, so I snap at him that we're going and make like a mare heading for the barn toward the grill.  As we approach, Alison says, "You know I'm kind of freaking out from you guys yelling at each other, right."

I was gobstruck. Yelling? She thought we were yelling. I was for sure yelling. In my head. But I thought I'd shown great restraint through the "I'm-on-the-wrong-interstate and pee-by-the-side-of-the-road" incidents.

And, she wasn't hungry anymore. She just wanted to find Jenna and get her bunk arranged.  I sighed and put my money way. "Go on," I said.

She ran off. Jeff was still in line.

After about six years of waiting, he finally emerged. We track down the girls, say our goodbyes and get hugs from Jenna and Alison both. Never did see Amy.  All was well at the camp when we left.

We had to stop for gas. No suprise there as we'd almost crossed the state line into Ohio. I remembered that the Love's truck stop had fruit as well as junk food. Once both the Mustang and I were fueled up, the day seemed brighter.

We're having dinner with the Jasheways tonight. I'm going to get on my bike soon so I can indulge in whatever culinary/libatious delight we find. 

I'm no longer hangry. I do have to pee again, though. 

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