We get the joneses fairly regularly where we feel the need to travel. Ages ago, pre-parenting, we used to hop planes and go all sorts of wild places. Because we could. Once upon a time I took a job just because they offered me free air travel anywhere, any time. Every Friday we'd pack a bag and take it to the office. I'd call my husband around 4:30 and say, "This weekend let's go mountainous!" or "How about fabulous Chinese in San Fran's Chinatown for dinner tonight?"
Living in the northeast was great because so many fantastic places were so close, either by car or train. The high speed train was awesome. We could hit NYC enough that we got to know neighborhoods, and had their subway system as memorized as our own. Even Canada wasn't exempt, especially when I had to commute to work in Toronto.
Later my husband worked abroad and we commuted between Europe and the US---well, he commuted. I took a lot of vacation time.
Now of course...it's a different life. But we still get that travel bug.
We both definitely believed that it is a Very Good Thing to get out of the house, way out, overnight out, every now and again. Improves perspective, brings about relaxation. Of course, usually by the time we unwind it's about time to go home, and of course the kids don't allow much relaxation time.
But on this trip, we had a babysitter. And a grandmother.
This meant Freedom.
One night my husband and I got all fancy and went to a chi chi place in our after 5 wear, ate overpriced food, and soaked up tony ambience.
It would have been the best night ever if only I hadn't been (a) sick as a dog, which lead to (b) a quick exit to the ladies' where I heaved and breathed through my mouth trying not to hurl, and (c) practically fainted outside the restaurant, whereupon I did regain consciousness and full nausea but lost control of it.
Nice. I'm really classy that way. And wow, the photos from that night? Well, my husband looks great. I look like a deflated blow-up doll someone propped against the wall. Let's leave it at that.
(And no, we did not even have a drop of alcohol. Only water.)
On the upside, I did not end up breaking the diet. (I know, what a reach, big stretch, LOL.) And, while on that note, I'd like to say:
That's right, you heard me: I am within two pounds of my target weight. Why, that's a margin of error it's so close. And let me tell you: I feel so much better.
On the other upside, I recovered enough a couple of days later to carry on with the planned good times, which included visiting a movie set and snapping so many photos of the kids in a variety of, "OMG, that is SO GORGEOUS! Quick kids, run get in front of that so I can take your picture!" settings that now if my voice even approaches that tone or I so much as mention camera they run screaming.
I'll share some of the largesse. I'm generous that way, even if I didn't take you with me on my trip to the chi chi resort (not that---after my description of my behavior---you'd have wanted to be there with me, LOL).
We sure learned a lot about movie magic, like wow, it is even more fake than I realized. And this after having worked on a TV show for a year!
Oh I ought to mention: it rained the whole time so we didn't actually get to see the movie being filmed and all the equipment was in rain mode, but we made the best of it.
But because I am a Cruel and Vicious Mother, I did force my children to Pose for Photos, an event akin to medieval torture from my kids' POV. However with ample bargaining, threatening, pleading, and bribing, plus superhero lightning speed, I did catch a couple of cute moments:
After some internal dispute, I did not put up the series of photos in which they begin by giving each other the hairy eyeball and end by shoving one another down. My kids are so glad to have a sister. That's real love---who else can you shove down and then run off and play with two seconds later?
copyright 2007 all text and images by Julie Pippert