I've learned two things in the last few days:
1) You never, ever stop being a parent and
2) Your children really do inherit a lot more from you than you might even think.
I should back up. See, Annalee got married this past June, you may have read my blogs about the hilarity we experienced on the wedding trip. But Skippy, through of series of events I have yet to decipher, did not get to the wedding. So, when Annalee her sister Dana planned a surprise B-day party for Hubby's sis Joanie, Annalee made it very clear that Skippy was to get his fanny to the party, or she would punch him.
Now you're caught up.
Skippy's plan was to drive, sleeping briefly in rest stops. We weren't too concerned, he'd done long driving trips before, so the 24 hours between him and the birthday party wasn't all that long.
He started the trek early-ish Friday morning with plenty of time to make it with stops along the way. He had his car loaded and Susan, his faithful GPS companion.
|Montana...Skippy gets there October 5|
|Arizona...Skippy got there |
That did not last long. A text from Hubby, who was in La Crosse to get his mother to take her to Joanie's b-day party in the Twin Cities (are you following this travelogue?) changed everything.
"Call me when you get this. Everyone is FINE."
Well we all know that just isn't true. When you get a phone call that starts out with "everyone is fine," your first response is always "WHAT HAPPENED?"
Oh, see, Hubby and Peaches went to the B-day party. I was a last minute scratch since I just can't travel that far right now. Between the blinding headaches, the achy leg, and the sore neck, sitting up in the car for more than a couple hours sounded like far too much torture. So I'm in Milwaukee, Hubby and Peaches are headed to Minneapolis, and Skippy...
Well, it's like this: Skippy was driving down a mountain in Montana, going well under the speed limit since it was snowing. A truck in front of him was going far more slowly, so he moved into the other lane on the interstate. In doing so, his vehicle hit a patch of ice, spun, clipped the truck (seriously, there are two vehicles on the road, it's 5 AM...3 AM local time...and he manages to make contact? Yes, he is his mother's child.) spun again, and wound up on the side of the road.
He very suddenly had a new respect for my accident in July. He also recalled an accident I had when he was in kindergarten...and yes, check the back blogs, it's there. He wasn't hurt...until he got out of the car and fell on another patch of ice and bruised his leg. His car, however, was another story.
Annalee was gearing up for a punch.
Hubby and I worked out a plan where Skippy would get on a Greyhound bus and get from Livingston to Minneapolis, sans vehicle. Hubby would contact a body shop in Livingston (there is one...but only one, we're told) and figure out what to do with the car.
20 hours is a very long time to be doing anything, but riding on a bus with no headphones for the iPod, and very little juice left in the phone, and no way to charge it since his charger was attached to the car, that seems like an eternity. I hope Skippy took notes, because a trip like that can start a literary career. (I should know...)
His texts along the way were great. He had five transfers through the night, but his first one was probably the worst since a young gent approached him and asked him to "hold something of value" for him.
Skippy's text to me: Everything's great except this drug dealer won't leave me alone.
Oh yeah, bus travel...it's romance and adventure.
Skippy and the rest of us made it through the night. Joanie's party went off just fine, I'm told. Annalee was ready to punch Skippy at the bus stop at 11 AM Sunday morning. I was surviving on gallons of coffee, prayer, and a lot of pacing. (Hey, I got my steps in!)
He arrived, on time, in Minneapolis, to much rejoicing and yes, Annalee did give him a punch. But the family spent some quality time at Mall of America (I still haven't been there...) They made there way home at a fairly relaxed pace...while I was sitting at home, waiting and waiting and waiting! Sure, I was happy he was okay, and yes I was glad they were having a good time. But moms, you'll all understand this: I needed to hug my boy!
He shared with us the high points of the trip, and the low points. I'm sure as the days go on, he'll share more stories from the road. He unpacked his bags, all the vital items he couldn't leave in Montana. He brought his lap top, the coffee mugs he'd purchased along the way, all his new shirts...
"I actually have another box, but I couldn't fit it with my stuff, so it's still in my car."
Other things he left with the car: The accident report sheet he's supposed to fill out for the state patrol...oh, and all his dirty laundry.
I pity the guy that has to open that car up once we decide what we're going to do with it. I can't imagine that a box of donuts, 14 days of dirty laundry, and a crate of semi non perishable foods are going to smell BETTER after sitting in a closed car.
Still...it's so great to have him home. This experience has taught me one thing: I'm not ready for my kids to leave the nest just yet.
Of course, check in with me in a week...the euphoria will probably be gone once I start tripping over Skippys' shoes in the living room again.