[Yosemite 2008] staying close to family

I didn’t get to spend Thanksgiving with my family this year, and I miss them. This year has been a big one for missing my family.

Which is why I’m going to spend a moment fondly remembering times when I didn’t have an opportunity to miss them, namely because we were vacationing together and had zero personal space.

See this room below? The world’s tiniest hotel room? With maybe a full-sized bed? Would you believe that my mother, father, and I slept in this room together?

Where we stayed, night one.

It’s true. We did. No, we didn’t all fit in that bed – somehow a cot was rolled into the room and I slept on it against the far wall. It was absurd, and the hotel manager yelled at us about it the next day – even though we’d called months in advance and informed them that there would be three of us. This was only one night. We had much more spacious accommodations the rest of the week.

home sweet home

Check it out. I had a WHOLE BED to myself! We also had a small desk, which we converted to a kitchenette of sorts. Don’t tell the bears!

rugged

Our final few nights, up in the meadows, we slept in this tent. I sort of wish we’d been forced to sleep in one bed, because it was COLD up there! The tent had a wood-burning stove, but we were all too lazy to keep tending it during the night, so mornings were ROUGH. I think we would bully each other from our sleeping bags each morning, in hopes that someone would break down and restart the fire.

I’m so excited for next year’s trip!

countdown

Mom called on Monday and asked if I had anything scheduled for the last two weeks of July 2012. (I love that she plans this far in advance.)

ghosts of my parents

They’ve been visiting a National Park (or group of parks) every summer since they got rid of the kids. I call this Empty Nesting Done Right.

After much complaining that they only started doing fun things once I was gone, I was invited to join them in Yosemite way back in 2008.

Nobody was thrown off a mountain, which was our pre-determined measure of a successful trip.

shiny happy people

So, fair warning to Seattle, Washington and the surrounding areas – you have just under a year to prepare for our arrival!

the stuff of legend

I took a whirlwind trip to my hometown this past weekend…
-four days
-two baby showers
-a house often filled with parents, grandparents, brother, sister-in-law, two psycho dogs, and a cat with enough sense to hide from us most of the time
-five new mix CDs
-900 miles driven

And as often happens when we sit around with my grandparents, stories are remembered and retold. In this instance, Grampa – his name is Ab, and I’m going to call him that now, because it’s easier to type and incredibly endearing – was owning up to the number of things he forgets these days, and trying to remember how old I was that time I drove with them from Connecticut to Ohio (“You were three years old,” Gramma – Ann – tells me), and he was remembering how long that drive was, and how I sat upright in the backseat THE WHOLE DRIVE, looking out the window, asking questions, chatting about everything under the sun. And then, I offered to drive.

At this point, Ann always has to take over the story, because Ab doesn’t say the punchline with enough emphasis: “‘Grampaw,’ you said, at three-years-old, ‘Grampaw – is driving hard?’ You asked him if driving was hard, and then you offered to take over some of the driving for him. Isn’t that funny!?”

It’s interesting to me the stories told over and over again among family, that eventually become our own personal legend. This is one of mine.