Saturday, March 13, 2010

hello from the flip side...FL

Where to start.....right now I am sitting at my grandmothers lap top, in her office surrounding by her stuff and photos of family thanking god I am here.
Two days ago, me n' my sister loaded up the car and left St. Louis around 6pm and began our 14 hr trip to Tampa FL to see my grandparents. This is the weekend for 'us' to celebrate our grandparents. (us - a combined unit of cousins; 6 of us are here and several others could not make it). My grandfather is in the local VA hospital refusing to eat. We knew we must come and celebrate his life while we can, plus we needed to see my grandmother.
Me n' my sister loaded up and took off only to realize a few things.
1) we had no idea where we were going. um, minor detail.
We got the address via a text from my aunt and attempted to type it into our nifty GPS system.
We hit the highway and still did not have an offical route to follow, because I typed the wrong state in the GPS. Well not technically the wrong state, I just did not change the state.
We laughed as we left town, god help us we thoughts.
We drove, and drove and drove.....until about midnight, into Kentucky.
We got a 25.00 seedy hotel room and attempted to sleep for 4 hours.
I put the chairs and table in front of the door, and even though there were double beds we slept n the same one. We giggled like school girls, like when we were younger sharing a room, she sang some stupid song that sent us over the edge of laughter then we attempted to get some sleep.
At 4 am the alarm went off, we got up pee'd then hopped in the car. Sort of like zombies, but zombies on a mission. We got up and started driving again. About this time our other 4 cousins were leaving STL too. At 4 am 6 of us were on the road.
We were buring up the highway. We practically survived on gum, cig, monster energy drinks and coffee. BTW those energy drinks will make your pee glow - just sayn'.
Weird.
We talked, laughed and sang songs at the top of our lungs. We sang everything from Janis Joplin, Black Crows, Pink to Pink Floydd. We terroized the highways a bit, dancing in our seats and making fun of some of the cars we passed. It was for all intensive purposes the best road trip I've taken yet.
We arrived at my grandmothers house only to realize that neither one of us ever called our grandmother to tell her WE were really coming. Then we realized that we weren't even sure IF we were at the right house. We sat in the drive way and laughed so hard we cried. Finally I got out, I totally had to pee, I was going in this house even if it was just to pee.
We walked up to the door and the door knocker had their name on it. YEAH!! We really were here.
My grandmother welcomed us with open arms. The rest of the crew was a good 4 hours behind us, so we opened some wine, got in the BIG bed w/ grandma and began to spend some time. We talked, laughed and cried. I am so glad to be here I could practically burst.
As my sister took a shower me and my grandmother shared a few moments. She told me that she was trying to get the record player from an realtive so she could play me 'Peter n' the Wolf'.
I immed went back to my childhood being in her downstairs living room dancing around the circle stone table while the opera Peter in the Wolf played in the back round. It brought me to tears. Her home feels like home, it is warm it is welcoming and I feel very relaxed.
the more miles we drove the better I felt, each worry and stress left me with each mile.
As I took a shower I know my sister also shared her moment of time with my grandmother. She has always made us each feel so special individually.
We drank 2 bottles of wine by the time everyone else arrived. And then it was one big hug and crying fest. It was for all intensive purposes 'lovely'.
We are all so similiar so strong and so FAMILY.
Today we went to the VA hospital to see my Grandfather, who is refusing to eat. We all walked in and he was surprised, he forgot we were coming. He was thrilled once he finally processed it all. We got approval to get him outside, so we sat in the sun and each of us took a turn sharing a small moment in time with him. Even if it was just for a moment, he got it, he remembered us and his eyes were shining.
As we sit here as a collective unit of grandkids we feel luv'd, welcomed and like family. A strong family. We do not feel disappoint for any of our actions or thoughts, we shared stories, laughs and a few tears. It is has been so nice to feel comfortable and supported for who I am, just me - faults, quirks and nonsense.
This trip with my sister will go down in the record books as a great trip, like a modern day Thelma n' Louise. God speed to us as we trek back early Monday morning. god speed.
In the mean time we have a to do list - thrift store, physic, tatoos and who know what else.
today was a beach day....beach, water, sea-shells and a sun set w/ my family. my heart is full today and I am totally lucky. Everyone should have a rock-starr family.

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