Saturday, August 9, 2008


I'm not much on details. Details pain me and cause me to sweat profusely. They befuddle, perplex and bewilder me.

To mask this Detail Disability of mine, whenever I am asked a question that requires precision or exactness or numbers, my most-used expression besides, "We have yet another infestation," is "Close enough." For example:

Chesapeake Bay Family: "How many bedrooms does the vacation home have?"
Chesapeake Bay Woman: "Lots."
Chesapeake Bay Family: "Will there be enough room?"
Chesapeake Bay Woman: "Close enough."

I was in charge of securing last week's (and last year's and the year before that and every other vacation ever taken, not that I'm bitter or keeping track) vacation home, and it was too painful to sit down and figure out how many people were coming and how many bedrooms we needed. So I randomly--or perhaps intuitively? that sounds better-- picked a number: 4.

Here's how I figured it: I'd get one bedroom, Chesapeake Bay Kids would get another room, Chesapeake Bay parents would get another one, and Sisters could share a room, so four bedrooms should have been enough. Or something like that. Close enough.

Somewhere along the way, Little Sister invited someone. Then Middle Sister asked if she could bring someone. Being the easy-going, happy-go-lucky, non-attention-to-detail person I am, I said, "Sure."

Middle Sister (whose friend ended up not coming) was the last Chesapeake Bay family member to arrive at the beach house after driving 10 solid hours . She dragged her stuff up several flights of stairs and asked where she was sleeping. Only then, at that very moment, did I realize the place for her to sleep was Nowhere.

As if to seek revenge, she threatened to sleep in the room with me every single night. Every night, I'd have to keep one eye on her and one on my bedroom, because that girl can fall asleep in less than a second, plus she's seven feet tall so I would never be able to move her. Or roll her off the bed. Or drag her out of my room and down the steps into someone else's room, for example.

One night she slid in under my radar. One minute she was vertical and singing Brick House very badly, the next minute I blinked and all 7 feet of her was horizontal under my covers, in my bed, in my room. There was absolutely nothing I could do.

In revolt I slept outside on the deck in a lawn chair. I awoke at 2:00 a.m. to a thunderstorm and many bug bites. I still have some on my face.

Somehow, as usual, the insects won this particular battle.

And did Middle Sister spend the entire night in my bedroom? No. She got up in the middle of the night and wormed her way into someone else's room. Naturally she did not tell me this, and after being eaten alive by mosquitoes and practically struck by lightning sleeping outside, I moved to the living room couch unaware that my very comfortable bed was now empty.

The next morning I asked why she moved and why she didn't come get me and why, why, why. I don't remember her answers because I was too exhausted from sleeping half the night outside of a beach house that contained 4 bedrooms and 42 Chesapeake Bay Squabbling Family Members, or at least 5 or 6 squabbling family members. Or was it 8 or 9?

Whatever. Close enough.


Grandma J said...

Hysterical!! You must know by now, that the one who does all the work also takes all the blame. Several flights of stairs? Did the CBF have a penthouse suite in a high-rise?
I hate bugs...especially the ones that bite. ON THE FACE.
More, I want more CBW vacation episodes.

cats said...

This sounds like my family so much. A couple of years ago my brother invited us to Nagshead with him. He rented a cabin. His 3 children were coming with spouses or significant others, and his wife's 4 children, their spouses, their children and grandchildren. It equalled about 30 people in a 4 bedroom cabin with no air-conditioning. He told me my family of 3 could grab a sofa or some floor space. My husband said that doesn't sound like a vacation. It sounds like torture and a lot of commotion. We decided not to attend. I know you will cherish this vacation for the rest of your life. It was great that you all could get together for a week.

Chesapeake Bay Woman said...

gj - Oh, rest assured I've been blamed. The bug bites on my face attest to that. These beach houses are very tall and usually have the bedrooms on the first floor and the living space on the top floor. I've not been in one that didn't have a minimum of 400 steps to climb up from the ground level. Some even have elevators, but those homes are usually for people who earn more than Bill Gates. My mother says she's got some vacation stories to tell, so hopefully later this evening I'll get one of hers up for Monday, since I'm back to the paying job tomorrow with no internet access. Once again.

Cats - Holy cow, now I don't feel so bad. No a/c in an overstuffed cabin? I don't even want to know the bathroom logistics. No way. And yes, we did create many wonderful memories and took lots of pictures that hopefully will never find their way onto the internet. Brick House used to be a favorite song of it makes me cringe.

Have a great Sunday everyone.

Keeper Of All Things said...

You gotta love Family!!!!.....Right?!!!

"Mean Mom" said...

Love your stories. Glad that you're back home...I'll have to visit you soon. I'll bring you a Mean Mom T-shirt. :)


Mental P Mama said...

Oh this is good! Maybe she was passive aggressively getting back at you for all that bossing around you did to her when you were kids;)

Anonymous said...

OMG, honey - you gotta count beds and bedrooms! I was in charge this year and it was a close call what with all 82 of our children running around... but it turned out, we had unspoken-for sofa space so you could've shipped some of the Ches. Bay Family up our way.

If I had ended up sleeping outside on a deck chair? I'd have been SALTY. GAH!

Bear Naked said...

Welcome back CBW and family.
We really missed you and can't wait to hear more of your stories about this year's family vacation.


We need documented proof that you and the whole CBW family were really on vacation and not nestled all snuggly in your own beds for the past week.
You owe us!!

Bear((( )))

bobbie said...

I love this post! I remember many a vacation....

tj said... girl you're killing me here on so many levels! lol... Did this sleeping arrangement go on all week like that? Certainly the 'sistahs' did a little lawn chair duty too, no? ;o)

...All in all, it sounds like a good time was had by all! Your family really should have your own television show! It would be a hit! lol...

...Enjoy your evening! "Hello" CBFamily! :o)


Chesapeake Bay Woman said...

Goodness gracious. Thanks to a lightning storm to end all lightning storms and the electricity going out my comment answering/responding to KOAT through TJ was wiped out. The nerve of Mother Nature.

Here we go again:

KOAT: We do have to love family, but it sometimes is tough love, as in it's tough to love them.

MeanMom: Middle Sister probably would prefer it if you handed me a Mean Sister t-shirt. Even though I'm not. Really.

MPM - Exactly. But not so much passively as aggressively getting me back...

SINAFF - The final insult was I discovered that TWO sofas had pull-out beds in them. I discovered this the day we were leaving....

BN - Thanks so much. Soup can verify that we were there but it is still up for debate whether we were vacationing....

Bobbie - You should write about your vacation memories. Vacations produce not only great memories, but great stories, especially when you're able to pull points of view from other people who were with you.

tj - That "sleeping arrangement" only occurred the next to the last night, although Middle Sister threatened to poach several nights earlier. Oh, and that tv show? You and my mother are on the same wave length. She mentioned something about our family being good fodder for a tv show. I'd like to narrow that down a bit further and say that my parents might make good fodder for a TV show and I'd be just fine moving to another country and pretending I don't know who they are.

Oh, all right, I wouldn't do that. I love them.

Stay tuned - My mother has a brief pre-vacation write-up that I'll post tomorrow morning before I trot off to The Paying Job.

Have a great evening, everyone. - cbw

Anonymous said...


Details? We don't need no stinkin' details!

foolery said...

I'm blind with exhaustion and stupid with lack of sleep because I'm watching ALL of the Olympic coverage every night because I'm a moron.

So I have nothing intelligent to add here, but I loved it. Good night.