Sunday, March 29, 2009

travel from heck

I am writing this in a dark hotel room a 5am on a Sunday morning. A bad smelling hotel room that looks out over a shell gas station somewhere near an Atlanta airport that I don't want to be at. It was one of those days.

Initially the travel was okay. We sadly checked out of our hotel room after a pleasant week of vacation. I returned the rental car, and had a minor freak-out after they charged me more than they said they would.

Got on the plane, made it to Atlanta on time. We had two hours to make our connection. But there were thunderstorms. And planes, lots and lots and lots of planes. Because of the storms we were forced to circle Atlanta for half an hour. Finally we landed.

Once landed, our gate was not empty and they had no where to deplane us. We spend another half an hour in the airport on the tarmac.

Once we finally got off the plane. We had the two immigration lines to go through. We were going to miss our fight but no one cared, it seemed like everyone was missing flights. The flight departing Atlanta and leaving for Dulles was leaving on time.

Once we finally made it through customs we could go and wait in another line, at the Delta desk. They kept mumbling and told us that they would give us a voucher. At first to the Ramada, but it was full so they 'upgraded' us to a voucher to the Wellesley Inn, which was 'much nicer'. The Ramada must have been a real cesspool.

We go out to the get a shuttle to our new crappy hotel room. Of course there are a million people waiting for shuttles. I find some strange man with a van who says he will take us and a few other random strangers to the hotel for 5$ each. The strangers are dropped off at the MicroTel, and it looks clean and new. I eagerly await our upgraded room at the Westin.

We get dropped off at the Westin. Unfortunately the voucher is for the Wellesley and its on the other side of the airport. I am too cheap to pay the difference and so we cab it across the Atlanta Airport again, this time landing at the Wellsley.

There is a Disco in the Lobby. People in shiny shirts and dresses are milling around. I ask for a room. I ask if the room will be quiet, and the man behind the desk cracks a smile and says "It will be unless you make some noise!" Its around 1am and we have to be at the airport at 6:15am, so we ask for a wake up call around 5:45, it calls us at 4:15am, and here I am.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

goin on a vacation!

Well, its that time of year again and Kathleen and I are going someplace warm on vacation (yeah!) and we're not bringing the kids with us (double yeah!). The grandmothers are descending upon our house to watch the children. I think every year the kids get a little bit easier to watch, and as a result the liquor consumption goes up. But I can only guess, and really, will not look a gift horse in the mouth.

PJ ASSISTS ME IN MY SELF ESTEEM

Tonight we had cub scouts. I have bringing Sam, who is really enthusiastic about being a cub scout next year, and always wants to go. This contrasts with PJ, who likes Cub Scouts in theory, but in practice is a perennial curmudgeon about actually getting dressed and going out the door.

So every Thursday I take Sam, who is not a Cub Scout, but can't get out the door fast enough, and PJ, who is a Cub Scout but claims he would rather not be, to a meeting. Once there, all is well, the kids have fun, and we manage to lose one or two pieces of Cub Scout clothing in the space of an hour.

Back at home, we have our snack, and its time for bed. PJ is looking at me making a smoothie for myself. I am putting in fresh grapefruit, strawberries, yogurt, all good stuff.

"Dad, are you still on a low carb diet?"

I take some honey and squeee it into the blender. "No, I'm not dieting right now, why?"

"Well, I just think that if you have a ton of weight its okay." He doesn't say 'ton of weight to lose', so I'm not sure what that means exactly.

"What do you mean, PJ, do you think I don't need to lose weight?"

He pauses thoughtfully. My seven year old is speaking to me in the cadence of a psychiatrist. "I just think, that if you weight a lot, well, I don't have a problem with that."

"Thanks PJ," and I don't know what else to say, so I just end it with "now go to bed." I guess he thinks I'm fat but loves me anyway, and just wanted me to know it in a kind and loving way. I gotta admit, he did cheer me up.

Friday, March 13, 2009

PJ Sings "We are the world"


DSCF1100
Originally uploaded by peteshaw
Well, not really, but it was his class musical, and he was part of the Mexican group. Its a bit blurry, but you can see him right there in the middle.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Monday, March 09, 2009

Digging up Sod

Another big skip. Sometimes it feels like this blog is an obligation, something to check off of my to-do list. And weeks go by when I don't write anything. And so much happens.

They say that as you get older the days fly by faster and its true. I remember when summer vacation seemed to last forever, and now the summer goes by in a heartbeat.

Sam is starting to sound out words and read short sentences now. He doesn't think he can read but he really can. He's getting big. All or children our kids now. We need to start thinking about packing them all into the family truckster and driving cross-country to wally world.

I worked all day in the garden yesterday, pulling up sod to make room for Kathleen's new, expanded, garden. Kathleen is very into vegetables. I also cleaned out the composter. Our first foray into composting was a failure, the stuff we put out into it just rotted and became incredibly bad-smelling. This only endeared us more with our neighbors.

The weather has been stop and go lately. Typical Virginia weather, it can not decide weather it is the spring or the winter. On last Monday school was canceled with eight inches of snow. By Saturday it was in the seventies and beautiful outside, and by Sunday I was digging up the lawn to make room for Kathleen's farmlet.