Monday, January 25, 2010

These Family Vacations Are For The Dogs, Literally

Last week we headed up to Flagstaff to have the much anticipated and drama producing "the dogs of the family need to meet" vacation in the snow. Mind you, a few members of Big D's family have yet to meet Bug and this would be Bug's first introduction to snow. But these facts were far down on the list in importance to the dogs of Big D's family romping in the snow together. As we pulled onto the highway, I felt that familiar little scratch in the back of my throat that undoubtedly signals a cold is coming on. And of course a cold was coming on. I was going on a vacation. I always get sick on vacations. I always get sick on family vacations. I always get sick on vacations with Big D's family. Of course. My body revolts against me. Or against Big D's family. So right when I need my strength the most to keep a happy face and zen out amidst the madness (oh the stories I so wish I could tell) I am usually drowning in phlegm or coughing up a lung or puking up my guts. Lovely. It is just lovely. So of course, I got a full blown cold the whole time we where in Flagstaff. My head was a freight train being attacked by a sledgehammer and yet I went sledding, visited the ruins, made dinner, cleaned the kitchen, and of course watched out for Bug. I wouldn't have wanted to disrupt the doggie lovefest with a severe cold or minor case of piggy flu.


And it reminded me of another Big D family trip. This was a few years before the birth of the Bug. We were living in Los Angeles and we were heading down to San Diego for a reunion with Big D's family to watch the Browns kick the Chargers asses. Hahaha. Though neither Big D nor any of his siblings ever lived in Cleveland, his father is from Ohio and so they all are devout Browns fans in honor of their father. I was raised in New England and am therefore, though not much of a football fan, a fan of the Patriots nonetheless. But the point is, I was going to this family reunion to show allegiance to my husband and his family. And of course, on the way down to San Diego I feel that scratch in the back of my throat. Does my body revolt against the very idea of these family reunions? Maybe. I think my body just revolts against me.


So I did my best to suck it up. I drugged myself up good and smiled through it. And then the day of the game came. It was so hot. Ridiculously hot. The hot that doesn't happen in San Diego. Blistering sun. No sea breeze. Just bright sun which feels like daggers in my eyes so I keep the dark shades on and keep my eyes closed beneath them. As we approach the stadium Big D notes that the Echo is out of gas. He notes it but does he stop for a refill. Oh hell no! Big D has got to get to that stadium and get his football on. The point is we have NO GAS IN THE CAR as we putter into the stadium. And the traffic is a long line of turtles waddling into the parking lot. And because we have no gas we HAVE NO AIR CONDITIONING. And the Echo is the size of a peanut with three big guys plus me squished into it. And I have jacked myself up on cold medicine and diet coke to try to make it through the day from hell and save my marriage. And I am not kidding when I say that. Big D takes his family's likes and dislikes very seriously. When we were first dating, I fell asleep while watching a movie called something like A Man in The Wilderness, a movie revered in Big D's family, and it almost cost us the relationship. I think Big D still has hurt feelings over that. They take these things VERY seriously.


So anyway, the car is hot and stuffy and puttering along and you guessed it, I start puking all over the car. But this doesn't detract from their enthusiasm. In fact, they are so pumped up for the game I am not sure if anyone notices I am BARFING ON THE FLOOR of the car. GOOD TIMES!! Once in the stadium a harsh reality is upon us. The sun is beating down on the Browns side of the stadium and I am quickly adding sun stroke to my current bout of consumption. I excuse myself and head to the bathroom to make friends with the toilet. Ah, puking in public bathrooms, now that is classy (and has happened more than I care to admit). As I am puking, I realize that I really need to find a place to lie down and get out of the sun. So I go wandering the inner bowels of the stadium and stumble upon the clinic. I tell them that I am sick and need to lay down. The nurses look at me like, "Sure bitch, you are just drunk and can't hold your liqueur". But they let me lay down for 10 minutes. They actually time it and kick me off the cot at ten minutes and tell me that I either have to leave or go home. Go home? Not an option. Because if I pull Big D and say I was kicked out of the game for being sick, I would be headed to divorce court. Wow, the kindness of these medical professionals really astounds me. I am feeling the love. So I wander back to my seat where someone in the family starts taking photos of us all having a good time. And it seems everyone is completely oblivious to the fact that I am on death's door at this point. I am actually made to smile for the camera and I somehow manage to do it without vomiting--now that photo would have been a keeper!


So I am sitting there trying to meditate, praying I make it through this. And I begin noticing that Browns fans are particularly gross. For example, the people in front of me have two wild child brats. These kids have giant mats of nappiness for hair and the dad has some sort of skin disease that he keeps itching on and it starts bleeding. They are eating massive amounts of food and I am not kidding but the kids apparently don't know how to chew because as they are piling nachos and hotdogs into their mouths it just come tumbling out in chunks all over themselves and the seats and the floor and the hair of the people in front of them. And I realize I need to get out of there fast. So I spend most of the game sitting on the concrete in the hallway trying not to die. As the game nears an end (the Browns losing of course) I wander around a little and find that there is a whole picnic area on the first floor with chairs and tables and benches and shade and I could have sat there the whole time. And I am really pissed off at that point because the evil medical people could have told me that this place existed if they had a shred of humanity.


And then the game finally ends. Big D's family is pissed off and hating on the Chargers and making up reasons why the Browns lost yet another game. We make our way back to the car but we can't leave yet because there is no gas in the car so we have to wait until the parking lot empties until we can leave. This takes over an hour, maybe two. At this point, I no longer think I am dying, I want to die. Take me lord, take me now! We finally get in the car. Hallelujah! And now we have to find a place to get gas which for some reason takes an unholy amount of time. To top it of we follow Big D's Brother back to the condo and his Bro gets lost. It takes hours to get home. When we finally get home, I have to take the dogs out to pee because the boys need to finish watching football on TV before they can be bothered with the bathroom needs of the dogs. Someone orders Subway. We eat. I go to bed. Yeah, family vacations rule.

20 comments:

Annika said...

Wow. I just--wow.

Existential Waitress said...

Wow is right. That is truly awful. I hope the Flagstff trip wasn't as bad as that. And I can see why your body revolts against these family reunions. The medical professionals at the stadium sound like the doctors covered under my insurance, meaning they're just full of kindness and good will. I hope to hear about this Flagstaff trip at some point...

Confessions From A Working Mom said...

Don't hate on the Browns there too much! As a Cleveland native, I can tell you that Browns fans are about as rabid and devout as they come... even if they don't find time for child-rearing or personal hygiene.

I get sick on vacations too-- basically any time I have more than just a standard two-day weekend off work. Case in point-- I had last Friday off, and was home sick on Monday (and am now at work sick today).

~Elizabeth
Confessions From A Working Mom

Jason said...

Best pitch for a sitcom - EVER!

Amie said...

Confessions of a working mom, you are right. Those Browns fans are some loyal dawgs. Jason, I am happy to know my misery made you laugh! EW, this is only the tip of the iceberg when it comes to Big D's family vacations. I serious;ly wish I could tell all. And Annika, when I think about it wow comes to mind as well. Like wow, Big D and I have almost made it to 10 years despite all this.

SPEAKING FROM THE CRIB said...

anytime dogs are involved there's going to be trouble. i knew it the second i read the title.

damn dogs

also am a cleveland browns fan

rough rough bow wow and woof woof

Brittany at Mommy Words said...

Man this sounds terrible and like a fabulous sitcom!!! I too would now love to hear about flagstaff! I too get sick on all vacations but totally have to suck it up for the annual hubby family reunion. I bitch and moan and then I suck it up. I feel for you!

Amy said...

W-O-W!!
I am weak just hearing of that awful incident!

My husband's family is a little neurotic about having to do EVERYTHING together. With 5 kids and their spouses and their kids you're talking about a butt-load of people and chaos!

I've survived 2 plane trips to South Bend, Indiana to watch Notre Dame games with these lunatics as well as a dozen (so far) beach trips.

Family vacations? SUCK ASS!!!!

BTW, thanks for the comment love on my blog! Love new people:)

Erin said...

Amie,

Thanks so much for visiting & commenting on my blog today! I came over to return the favor. I'm your newest follower!!

I can't believe all of this...I also can't believe the clinic at the stadium kicked you out after 10 minutes...so wrong! I'm glad you survived and you sound like a real trooper. I would've dragged my Hubs home!

Nancy@ifevolutionworks.com said...

Nothing like togetherness, huh? Too much time in a car together breeds insanity and nausea! :)

Nancy@ifevolutionworks.com said...

Nothing like togetherness, huh? Too much time in a car together breeds insanity and nausea! :)

Amanda said...

Oh my gosh.

This is why I don't watch football. It always leaves someone vomiting...

Theta Mom said...

OMG! How awful?!

Tracie said...

Ugh. I thought my family vacations were bad.

Alyssa said...

Speechless at this point...sitting here with my mouth opened. I can tell you this is a vacation you won't forget and over time it won't seem so bad!

Amie said...

Thanks all for your empathy. It's a lot more than I got from family members on this vacation. Alyssa, you are right that it becomes funny the longer it has been. But there are some things about the whole situation that have become even more disturbing to me over the years.

And this is only the tip of the iceberg of Big D family vacation stories.

MODG said...

is it ok for me to like opt out of family vacations all together when I'm a mom? No? Not ok? well I won't have dogs.

ZenMom said...

How awful! I'm so sorry you had to go through this. There's nothing worse than being sick and stuck in a stadium with 70 thousand of your closest friends.

And no one in DH's family did anything to help? Gotta love family vacations.

Organic Motherhood with Cool Whip said...

ROFL that is like the worst vacay story I have ever heard. I laughed so hard I almost cried while you barfed all over yourself and tried not to die. I'm sorry I am so mean, but it is true. Thanks for the entertainment. You are awesome.

Amie said...

Thanks Organic Motherhood with Cool Whip! I love that my stories can give people a laugh. I mean, if I have to go through this crapola, I am glad that I can at least use it as entertainment.