Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Seven Days, Six States, Four Dogs, Three Friends, Two Cats, One Baby, One Sister, One Lake

I took all of last week off from work to GO ON VACATION! My friends were
shocked and also thrilled that I took an actual vacation. Other than international trips, no one could remember me ever taking a week off just for the hell of it. It was so freakin ' refreshing! Relaxing. Comfy. I understand that people take time off from work regularly, whether to travel or relax at home. Now I understand why!

We drove through a couple of states to the Lake of the Ozarks in
Missouri and hung at a friend's parent's lake house. It was chilly but still warmer and SO MUCH LESS WINDY that here at home that it was pleasant to be out and about. We went boating and I got up the nerve to ride the wave runner -- in my winter coat and hat.Hee ! I can be such a chicken/dumb shit/pain in the ass/mental case, though. I get nervous about something, anything -- in this case taking the wave runner out by myself and looking like a fool/ending up in the COLD water -- and then I freak myself out over absolutely nothing. For once, though, I noticed the totally absurd string of irrationalities flying through my brain and decided that the voice in my head simply wasn't telling the truth. That I did not need to believe that voice, just because it sounded frantic and concerned. It was just being manipulative and mean. So I told that voice to shut the fuck up and climbed on the wave runner. And it was fun. I even managed to hit the gas on the thing TWICE, but otherwise, puttered around the lake at an idle the rest of the time. (I can't swim, so there was at least one rational concern in the back of my mind.) It took me three drive-bys to work up the nerve to aim the machine at someone else's dock and driving it onto the lift. It just didn't feel natural to aim a water craft at land and metal and wood, you know? In the evenings when it wasn't raining we hung out in the hot tub until we were shriveled to half our normal size. The other evenings were spent eating barbecue and bullshitting around a fire. I didn't think about work or read anything for my thesis, but worked on word puzzles to pass the time. I completed this puzzle from Shauna, too. A. didn't work on school stuff, and it was absolutely DIVINE to not worry about a thing for a few days.

The dogs loved! LOVED! LOVED! Missouri. So many smells! Belle stuck her face three inches deep into all of the rotting leaves and sniffed and snorted until her little heart nearly burst from joy. Buster napped in the stench. They had to get the stink of the bath I gave them before we left off of them. Stupid dogs. I love them!

Then we drove to another state to cuddle with Delightful Little M. again! Oh, he is so precious, you guys. (Both he and T. are doing well, though T. wants some sleep pretty desperately. R., the papa bear, is still relatively well-rested for the time being. This will all change when T. goes back to work, I am sure.

I always thought people were absolutely FULL OF SHIT when they said baloney like, "Oh, they grow up so fast!" and "I wish they never grew up." Whatever! Quit blowing pink elephants and bunnies and unicorns up my ass, is what I want to say to those people. If I find myself becoming a mother (Oh, GOD) I am positive I will be counting down the damn minutes to the monkey's 18th birhday. Erg.


I found myself feeling very concerned that Delightful Little M. would be all grown up by the time we arrived. Unreasonably and inconsolably concerned. Then I saw him, and he is still tiny but not as tiny as he was three weeks ago. No! I found myself,
saying out loud to anyone who would listen, "Oh, I wish he wasn't growing so quickly! Wouldn't it be lovely if he could stay this small for a little while longer!!? I hope he stays a little boy forever!"


The next day, A. and I headed a couple of hours east to yet another to to see Black Sheeped and her cute hubby, The Lumberjack. Her two giant dogs and our two stupid dogs ordered and re-ordered their pack for a day straight, with obnoxious amounts of sniffing and a few growls on the part of my inconsiderate dogs. I think Buster and Monk would have fallen totally head-over-tails in love if Belle hadn't been so goddamn jealous. Monk and Cab were so, so generous and opened their home and their play time to my dogs and my dogs were a bit snooty. Stupid dogs. Monk is the sweetest damn dog in the whole world. His silky ears are to die for. And Cab is a GIGANTIC PUPPY, with an open heart just ready to love and play. So sweet! BlackSheeped posted a bunch of pictures here. I'll post a couple later.

It was so, so good to see Black Sheeped . I know she is upset that her hairdresser didn't give her the cut she'd asked for, but her hair is still absolutely darling and so goddamn cute on her. She has irises starting to come up in her flowerbed. Her house is comfy and welcoming and sweet.

I feel an comfortable connection with her, and I wish we could have spent many more hours chatting and laughing. I am going to suggest that we ditch the men the next time I visit so we can have some quality girlfriend time. (And there will be lots of visits! She is SO CLOSE to where my sister, T. and Delightful Little M. live!)

She showed me her studio, and it is such a good place. The bright yellow floor is awesome in the fullest sense of the word, and she seems happy with how the room is organized. It is really inspiring to see her dedication and enthusiasm for her work. She is so funny and kind and smart. Jeez. She has her hands on some great resources that I can't wait to see incorporated into some pieces in the future.

I regret that we didn't spend more time together when she lived here. But I am so glad we've kept in good touch.

It was a great trip.


  1. what a fantastic vacation! i'm so glad you guys were able to ditch all the work and school for a week - too often that crap follows us around even when we try to take a break. what a lovely time :-)

  2. Welcome back! This sounds amazing. My favourite kind of trip is of the "roaming the coutryside visiting friends" variety.

  3. What a FABULOUS trip. I am so impressed with you for getting on that wave runner even though you can't swim and all the voices in your head were telling you no. You are brave.

  4. YAY! I'm so glad that you took an actual vacation. Sounds like you had a terrific time---puppies and a cute baby (who belongs to others) and a lake house---perfect!

    So when are you coming to Madison? ;-)

  5. Good for you for getting the irrationally frightened voice in your head to shut up! This is one of my lifelong (and daily) goals. I so wish I were one of those Brave People who are all, "Roller coasters! Bungee jumping! Water skiing! Fun!" Instead of me, who thinks, "Falling from great heights! Breaking my back!Drowning and/or getting hacked at by a boat propeller!"
    Also, you sound exactly like MY sisters in regard to your nephew. My middle sister especially is very career oriented right now (and doing well; I'm very proud of her) and she adores my kids, but always marvels at HOW she can adore them, when most kids frighten the shit out of her.

  6. Loved this...what a great vacation. I also love hearing about HOW you overcome your anxieties, because, thank-you, road map! I'm currently looking at a possible move and I am a total basket case about it--I didn't quite realize how much until I found myself avidly researching "how to make an international relocation" and had to remind myself gently that we're actually just moving one hour away.

    So, if you ever have handy tips on how to combat relocation anxieties, please post! Please!

  7. That does sound fun and relaxing. You are a braver woman than I in that I usually stand on the banks and look like a dork while everyone else is off zooming around in the water. It's good to have you back.

  8. Stupid Blogger - eating my comment before I can post it!

    It sounds like you had a wonderful time. You should take vacations more often!

  9. Aw, this made me feel warm and fuzzy. I'm so glad we had a dog party. :)

  10. Glad you were able to just get away from everything for a week. It really sounds fantastic!


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