Sunday, July 27, 2008
Today is my Middle Sister's birthday. She turns 59 today. Oh, all right, she's younger than that. I guess it doesn't do me any good to say she's older than her true age because that would only make me that much older. Or something like that.
Last year at this time was my Middle Sister's 40th birthday. To make it a special occasion for her, my entire family flew to Georgia to help her celebrate.
Do any of you know what it is like to travel with parents who never go anywhere? How about a mother who has a mortal fear of flying, an absolute inability to leave home for extended periods of time, and an overall distrust of modern technology (including cell phones, answering machines and clothes dryers)? When I told her that we all should visit Middle Sister for her 40th birthday and that I would pay for their airfare, you've never heard more excuses fly from her mouth about why that would never do.
See if you can select which statements below were offered as legitimate reasons why she could not fly to her daughter's 40th birthday party:
1. I can't go because my goose needs me and will die if I'm not here to take care of it. *
2. Nobody knows how to water my flowers except me. There's no possible way I can go and leave those plants to die.
3. Cat food is on sale this week, and if I go to Georgia I will miss the sale.
4. Your father has plucked my last nerve. Why don't y'all take him to Georgia and let me stay here to take care of the animals and plants?
5. I just drove to see your Middle Sister ten years ago. Do I have to go all the way back there again so soon?
6. The ducks will never make it if I am not here.**
7. Nobody except me knows how to feed these cats. Simba gets the special urinary tract health formula and cannot eat the cheap stuff that Pumpkin eats. The Barn Cat needs a special plate brought to him and placed on the second to the last step of the staircase leading to the top floor of the barn - if you put it anywhere else he'll never find it. Cheetah needs an antibiotic pill every day at exactly 9:02 a.m. and Leo gets lobster served on a silver platter every night at not one second later than 6:00 p.m. Danger the Dog gets a nightly turn down service with a mint and a rose left on his satin sheets and pillow. Joleen the Dog is bathed by hand every night and then gets a manicure. If none of these things happen as described, life will cease to exist as we know it. Why don't y'all understand I can't go to Georgia??
* Did you know it's far better to stuff a goose into a dog house and block it in each and every night than it is to simply let the goose roam free inside its pen? Yep, it's true. Predators like raccoons and foxes will get the goose if you don't take these drastic measures. And only my mother knows the routine.
** Did you know it's better to zip ducks up in a tent at night (inside their pen, and with an air vent) rather than allow them to roam free because of predators? Did you know that a predator capable of devouring a live duck more than likely can make its way through a nylon tent? Can anyone explain this fact to my mother? I'll pay you good money. Thank you.
In spite of ALL of the above excuses, my parents did fly to Georgia. Xanax was involved. And a whole lot of eating at Red Lobster. And much, much stress. And confusion. And many trips by them to the free popcorn in the hotel lobby every afternoon. And an absolute obsession with the fact that the hotel gave away free breakfast every day. And them getting lost in the Mall of the Americas. And more stress. Then more Xanax (to clarify it was for my mother, although others among us surely could have used some). Then a bumpy plane ride home.
And a firm conviction never to travel with my parents via airplane again.
Happy Birthday, Middle Sis, and thank you so much for not having another birthday party that would require your parents' attendance.
Please tell me your wedding will be in Mathews.