We got up at 6:45, got dressed, and cleaned up the condo quickly. As usual, we had to wait for the family. My mom had bought groceries a few times (or knowing her, every day) during the week, since the condo had a full kitchen, and they were eating there a lot.
My mom and I had argued before the trip because she was panicking over what I would eat while I was there. She kept wanting to bring Gardenburgers and fruit and a bunch of other stuff she knew I liked. I think I told her 15 times: I’m on vacation. I’m not eating at the condo. I’ll bring protein powder and Tofurky Jurky and I’ll be fine. I almost freaked one night when I peeked in the freezer at the condo and saw a pack of Gardenburgers sitting there. Sigh.
Anyway, my mom had accumulated eight or ten full bags of groceries, which she was then packing up to bring over to Scott’s house. I swear to god, I am not joking about this. They won’t have to grocery shop for weeks.
By the time my dad checked out and we piled in our the sexy- and unsexymobiles, I was about to have an aneurysm. We had to drive to Scott’s, a good 20 miles away, then drop the cars off at the rental agency, then take the shuttle to the airport for our 10am flight. It was close to 8am. We would have gone on ahead, but I didn’t know how to get to Scott’s, and we all had to be together for check-in at the airport anyway. So I was stuck following my dad, who is apparently under federal mandate to drive 10 miles under the speed limit. We stuck to the right lane, behind semi trucks, buses, and probably an Amish buggy or two.
We finally got to Scott’s. Stephanie saw that my head was about to explode, and told me that the flight was actually at 11:50. I relaxed. We hung out for a while, unloaded bags and bags of food, then said goodbye to the Forgotten Ripleys and headed out. Back at Thrifty, I announced loudly that the guy who had helped us before was an asshole, and also that he had lied about being able to pay cash when I brought the car back. The women behind the counter looked kind of pinched and crabby. We shuttled to the airport, checked in, monorailed, and then got ourselves some coffee. To avoid confusing our order with that of the one other person in line, they wrote our names on our cups in a highly creative manner.
Tucked in a corner, we found a natural snacks store, staffed by the cutest little old lady from New York. Also, we saw a guy sporting a handlebar moustache that would put the Sexiest Man Alive to shame. I got stuck in the middle of a cheerleader convention in the bathroom, and had to battle my way out kung-fu style. It was ugly.
We boarded the plane and took our positions as official Exit Row Girls™. I thought about standing up and telling my fellow passengers not to worry, that in the event of a crash, I was prepared to lead them to safety. But I didn’t; I stuck to mimicking the flight attendants in the demonstration of the safety equipment. I think I want to create a new dance based on those movements.
We were tired and goofy and kept erupting into hysterics over stupid shit. When they announced they were serving everyone a hot cheeseburger (they said ‘hot cheeseburger’ at least four times), my mom started to panic about what I would eat again. I had a banana and Tofurky Jurky and some trail mix. I was far from starving. However, I saw her offering food over the back of the seat more than once. She worries, my mom.
I saw the Gulf of Mexico from above, and then the rest of the midwestern US was obscured in clouds, which was probably for the best. I peed twice at a comfortable cruising altitude of 35,000 feet. Heather and I devolved into children. We arm-wrestled. We did secret handshakes. She burped into my ear. I imitated the growly voice of the man behind us. I was laughing so hard I snorted, and my mom turned and gave us a disapproving look, unaccompanied by food for once. I finished crocheting my purse, and even made handles for it.
We arrived to 20-degree overcast weather in Minneapolis, but I was still glad to be home. La Florida was fun, but it’s way too hard to spend an entire week in one place, especially when it’s overrun with furries.