I've always looked forward to Labor Day weekend...for vacation reasons really. Every year (except last year, but that's another story) we drive to St. Joe, Michigan while my husband sails over. This happens on Friday. Then we spend Saturday together doing family stuff, and out to dinner that evening, usually with the crew (he sails on Can Can Duex). Then Sunday we drop him off at the boat so he can race to Michigan City, Indiana while we hit the beach (used to be shopping at the outlet mall before I had kids). Then we return home Sunday evening - dear hubby gave up sailing the last leg home (Monday) years ago.
Funny how I always "think" of this as a family vacation. Because every year (at almost every year) the same thing happens. I drag the kids across 3 states...just in time to force them into bed (very late because we lost an hour going over the time line). Then we get up on Saturday (used to be very early, whenever the boat got in, but that stopped when we started staying at a hotel you had to drive too...now I get up whenever I feel like it, no matter how early or late the boat gets in). So dear hubby calls just as I'm scrambling to get kids dressed and haul butt downstairs because breakfast is about to end (turns out I still had a half hour, the brochure in the room was wrong). So we eat and then head over to the boat. Of course, all the sailors are drunk by the time get there (in case you didn't know, the bar opens as soon as the boat is docked, no matter what time it is). So we hang out on the boat for awhile, because by this time I need a drink. After a couple of hours of the kids running up & down the boat and a few more drunken sailors either pass out or move on, we decide it's time to leave. Dear hubby needs a nap.
We return to the hotel, he takes a nap & the kids & I head off to WalMart. My 7 year old son has decided that he wants to spend all of his birthday money on an Ipod. Of course, he doesn't have THAT much money, so he's settled for an MP3 player. So we buy that, some shoes for the beach (forgot to pack some), this & that, etc. Turns out we had to go to 2 stores to find the shoes (crocs) and we all got a pair (love those end of the season sales). Then we return to the hotel to see if Daddy's awake yet.
While we let Daddy sleep some more, I copy High School Musical 1 & 2 over to the MP3 player (which The Boy has affectionately "named" Empy). The Girl colors in her new coloring book (also bought at WalMart) and I sneak in a few chapters of Midnight Mass (F Paul Wilson - the library didn't have the Harbingers in yet).
Finally, we wake Daddy up because it's time to go to the crew party @ Captain Clem's hotel room (it's now 4:30 ET). So much for that family time at the pool or the beach today! We get to the party late, snack on this & that, and then it's time for dinner. Of course, none of the crew have kids anymore so no one volunteers to go out with us...so it's just family tonight. We go to a brewpub-type place that we went to last year. The kids are fighting (or is that playing) under the table and dear hubby & I look like we're just having a blast. I try to make conversation...always resorts to work related stuff. Neither of us are interested...I mention that maybe one of these years I come alone & leave the kids at home. Finally dinner arrives - they screwed up my order. I change my order and ultimately the waiter doesn't charge me for my dinner (gave him a nice tip for that).
We head back to the hotel room - by now it's bed time & the kids are wired. I try to read a few more chapters of my book...but to no avail. We turn out the lights and go to bed (before 10 PM, whatever happened to apre-sail parties?).
Next morning - we're scrambling out the door after breakfast so we can get Daddy to the boat in time...we get there with time to spare as the railroad bridge closes for a train (that translates into a half hour of waiting). I tell My Man we're outa here - no reason for us to stand in the wet grass by the side of boats since they're rafted out 4 boats & everyone's busy getting ready for the race. So the kids & I head back to the hotel to pack up for the beach. I squeeze in the end of the book before we leave (didn't want to take a hardcover to the beach). Then I remember we forgot to buy beach toys at WalMart yesterday, so we go to Walgreens on our way out of town. I ask some locals about where to find a nice beach (don't want to back track to St. Joe) and we finally find one about half hour away (but in the direction we want to go). We spend the next few hours in the sun & sand (forgot my bathing suit, but didn't want to get wet anyway). We get to watch the fleet on the horizon as they s-l-o-w-l-y make their way to Indiana.
After hours at the beach (and me wishing I'd wore a suit because I was HOT), I decide it's time to go. I take the back roads, in hopes that a nap will happen in my backseat...it does, and we arrive in Michigan City around 4 pm. I call dear husband and find out that they still have not found wind and that they'll be lucky to finish the race before the cut-off time (8pm). You've got to be kidding me! If only I could go shopping! But I'm not about to drag these two kids to the outlet mall! Fortunately, one of the crew lives near us so I decide to forgo the rest of this "family" vacation and leave to go home. Dear hubby will get a ride home and I'm outa here!
I get home in time to give baths, dinner and slump into my lazyboy in front of the t.v. Durn it, I wish I had a new F Paul Wilson novel to read...
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