[Here is my second installment of my Vacation Series of blog posts.  Day One can be found here.  And in case you’re trying to keep tabs, so far in the journey I have not met any of my 12 objectives.]

On The Road Again

We’re on the way to the coast, where we will spend a week with my side of the family. This is our summer “vacation”. I put it into quotes because my idea of a vacation doesn’t involve 9 hours in the car, driving in the Texas heat, with 3 small boys.

To make it an easier drive, we spent the night at the Hampton Inn last night – on points. That meant, we were in the room closest to the elevator with two queen beds that had an adjoining room that wasn’t ours. Instead, the room was occupied by someone who spoke in a really loud voice, when she wasn’t hacking like she was about to lose a lung. And the pool was right below our window, filled with people who had no regard for 10pm pool curfew.

Brad & I opted to share a bed rather than split up and each sleep with a kid. Been there, done that, still have the bruises. But we have a King bed at home, so between the smaller size bed and the giggling children, it was a rough night. At one point, Matthew sat up in bed and said “You don’t seriously expect anyone to sleep tonight, do you???”. Brad assured him that we did indeed expect them to go to sleep, even if it took all night. Turns out, it only took about an hour for them to settle down.  It took the rest of the night for Brad and I to figure out how to sleep on a Queen bed.  It wasn’t as if there wasn’t enough room for us in the bed – we could probably have fit another adult between us because we were both so worried about getting in each other’s space.  I kept waking up with my fingers laced together above my head and Brad admitted his arm kept falling asleep because it was hanging off the side of the bed.  We would have been better off on the floor, I think.

We got up this morning and had breakfast in the hotel. It was a pretty good spread, but we had only been up 10-20 minutes when we got downstairs. And you know what’s not a smart thing to do when you’re barely awake and haven’t had any coffee yet?  Make a waffle using a contraption that works nothing like your traditional waffle iron. But Peter was about to do it alone so I jumped in to help. We measured the batter to the line on the cup, then sprayed the griddle and poured on the batter. I closed the lid and the thing starts beeping. That’s when I noticed a timer. So I started reading the directions – which, in my defense – I hadn’t noticed until this point, but never got past step one because that’s when the Waffle Nazi showed up.

According to her nametag, she was the breakfast attendant, but she didn’t act like she intended to serve anybody. She came up behind me and started barking out orders “You have to flip it to start the timer!  Did you flip it yet?”. Well, yes I had tried that. Right before I opened the lid and started trying to scrape the waffle out in chunks. So she says “it’s not done yet!  It’s raw!  You can’t take it out yet!  And you didn’t put in enough batter!”. So I let her shove her way in front of me so she could flip the waffle maker over. Then she left, so I waited the full 2 minutes until the timer beeped, then tried again to remove the waffle. At this point, I figured I would just start over.

Unfortunately, the waffle was still stuck. So here she comes again, accusing me of opening it too soon. I told her that I waited until the timer beeped, but she just kept saying “You didn’t put in enough batter! You didn’t wait long enough! You have to turn it over to restart the timer!

Now I’ll be honest with you. I don’t ever assume I’m the smartest person in the room. But I do have a couple of college degrees that say I have some level of intelligence. So when a lady in a uniform starts berating me for not using the waffle maker the right way, and it is early and I haven’t slept much and I haven’t had my coffee yet, I get a little confrontational. So I did something totally out of character for me: I argued with her. I told her I HAD turned it over and I HAD measured out EXACTLY the right amount of batter and it wasn’t MY FAULT the stupid waffle was stuck in the waffle maker!

At some point, I realized she wasn’t listening to me at all. So I literally threw my hands up in the air in surrender and let her take over. Poor Peter was left waiting for his waffle alone, but even he quickly lost patience and walked away. After he had a full plate of food, she informed him (& me) that the first one was no good so she was making a second one for us. I just walked away, but Peter – bless his heart – said “I’ll take that first one!  It looks good to me!”. She was flustered but he just grabbed it and walked away. I couldn’t have been more proud of my boy in that moment when he took up for me against the Waffle Nazi.

So after breakfast, we loaded back into the car and headed out to drive the last 3 hours to the condos rented by my parents in the little coastal fishing town that time has not yet discovered. Neither has the internet or cell phone towers. Or pest control services. Or apparently deodorant and soap, but that’s a blog post for another day.

Here are a few pictures from days one and two:

Here’s Matthew’s version of “necessities” that he packed for our trip. BTW, the Icebreakers box was empty.

We had dinner at Olive Garden across from our hotel on Day One. It was the highlight of the day for all of us. Especially Peter (apparently!).

We still had a long way to go but Samuel insisted on wearing his goggles because, as he put it “They make me look cool”. If you say so…

Here’s a view of the condos where we stay. This is the backside. The frontside faces the water.