IN THE CONVERTIBLE!!!
FOR FIVE DAYS!!!
To quote Macklemore, “This is fucking awesome.”
I left the house around 10AM on Thursday. I said goodbye to Sheepdog and the kids and got the hell out of Dodge. I packed way more than I needed, but mine was the only bag that had to fit in the limited trunk space. No worries. I turned on music that I liked and sang along at the top of my lungs. No one was there to criticize my singing. I didn’t even care that it had started to rain.
By the time I reached Charlotte, North Carolina, I was driving in a monsoon. Traffic slowed and the tires on the big rigs were throwing off water by the bucketful. Still, my enthusiasm could not be ebbed. I was heading to my favorite summertime place (The Beach!) to attend my 25th high school reunion (Go Spartans!) and I had nobody to answer to or for over the long weekend. Still singing!
I stopped for the night just outside of Washington, D.C., where I stayed with Braden’s dad and his fiancée. We had a great dinner and too much wine and talked about life and death and grieving and moving on. It was emotional and I was already tired from almost 11 hours of active driving. I slept like a baby that night.
I woke up to more rain on Friday morning, but it was a much easier (and shorter) drive to visit 3 Pops (my grandfather) at the NJ Veteran’s Home in Vineland, NJ. We went out for lunch and stopped at a roadside farmer’s market to stock up his room fridge (the man loves him some fresh fruit). It was a great visit and I was glad to see him, but I was even happier to finally arrive at my parents’ house around 4PM on Friday. It was still raining, and even though I hadn’t turned on the radio for hours (sometimes it is nice to get lost in my own thoughts), I was still singing out loud.
That night my dad treated us to a great homemade surf and turf dinner, complete with salad from a bag, Jersey corn, dessert, and too much wine. It was delicious and I didn’t have to plan or make it. My mom, along with Auntie Carol and Uncle Tom, were also there to provide lots of laughs and entertainment.
On Saturday I woke up to much nicer weather. I leisurely drank my coffee, then I did a grueling 2-hour workout in 100% humidity. By the time I was done it had clouded up a bit, so I decided to ditch the beach idea and just sit out on the point and read a book/ nap. Forgetting that these conditions can lead to the mother of all sunburns, I ended up with quite the lobster face for my reunion. I may be an official shoobie now, but at least I’m still singing.
The reunion was so much fun (more on that in a later post). We had a fantastic turnout, with the final count at more than a hundred classmates. I caught up with a bunch of people I haven’t seen since high school, as well as dear friends who I still see almost every summer. I was definitely feeling every single one of those 25 years as I stumbled into bed well past 2AM.
Today I am lying low and continuing to enjoy my long weekend break from real life with a husband and five kids. I might work out, or go to the beach, or I may do absolutely nothing. That is the beauty of these kinds of getaways… there is no one to please but me. And I’m actually looking forward to getting in the car tomorrow for the long drive back to Atlanta.
Just me and my music. Just me and my fun car. Just me and my thoughts. Just me and the road. Just Thelma, no Louise. Just perfect.
Although I might let Brad Pitt hop in with me if I found him along the side of the road. I’m just saying.
Wish me luck for tomorrow…