So, I was gone for 10 days. What did I miss? Yes, I have to ask. My phone is not smart. Some might even call it stupid, because the only thing my phone does is (gasp!) is make telephone calls. And occasionally receive them.
Anyway. We went on vacation! I worked like a crazy lady to finish my book, The Last Honest Lawyer, before we left, meaning that for five whole days, I was really and truly not working.
Except for that whole Mom thing. And the driving. Yes, I drove to New York with the family in tow. Thus, again, one of the downsides of being married to a man who's legally blind--on long car trips, I'm stuck behind that wheel. No naps for me! But not to worry. The Husband has a smart(ish) phone and read me my email for fun. And because we have a Prius, we entertained ourselves by feeling smug for getting 50.8 MPG on the drive out east.
The Kid was there, too--trapped in the backseat with nothing but 100 Legos, 20 books, 4 audio books, 6 movies, 4 coloring books and crayons, and 3 stuffed animals to keep him company. Poor Kid, he nearly died of boredom.
The first night was easy. We went to my in-laws' house near Decatur after work. They cooked us food and played with The Kid. We normally are at their house for a large family event, so it was nice to hang out on the small scale for a while. The next day, we got up and headed east. When we hit Indianapolis, The Kid excitedly announced that we were in New York! This became a reoccurring theme--no matter what metropolitan area we approached, it was New York. We stopped that night in Columbus. I had lived in Columbus for two years while earning my snooty Master's in Victorian Literature (snoot, snoot!), and my husband wanted to see where I'd lived.
It was the world's fastest tour of Columbus. We did a quick tour of the State House, went down to say 'hi' to the ducks I used to see every morning (well, maybe their duck grandkids--not sure how long ducks live, and it's been 10+ years since I graduated), stopped by the Topiary Garden where, if you stand in just the right place, all the shrubs have been trimmed and trained to look just like A Sunday Afternoon on the Island of the Grande Jatte by Georges Seraut (no, really--topiary garden!) and then we hit Schmidt's Sausage Haus, where The Kid had an epic meltdown--the kind of meltdown where all you can do is say, "Honey, can you sob quieter? You're bothering the other guests," to which the sob-ee replies, "NO! I CAN"T SOB ANY QUIETER!" But the arrival of pretzel nuggets, lemonade, and a guy playing an accordion saved the day.
The next day, we drove to Hershey, PA, land of chocolate and singing cows. I will say, the singing cows were cheesy--but they were PERFECT for The Kid, who loved the animatronic show so much that we rode the little Chocolate World ride twice. We also did a chocolate tasting--and are now certified chocolate tasters--and (of course) bought and ate chocolate.
The next day we drove to my cousins' house in New Jersey. I hadn't been to New Jersey since they got married a whopping 17 years ago. In case you hadn't noticed this, one of the key ways of knowing your getting old is to visit relatives and have a lovely young woman open the door and realize that you held that lovely young woman when she was 6 months old. That, my friends, is how you know you're getting old.
After visiting and feeling old, my cousin took us to the train. This is also known as being cheap: my wonderful relatives watched our car for the week and took us to the train. More money for mini Statue of Liberty figurines, really.
So we're on the train, and the conductor people kept mentioning Newark--"Next stop, Newark," and the like. And every single time, The Kid jumped up and down and got very, very excited because we were in New York! Which lead to a 'Who's on First' conversation: Conductor: Newark. The Kid: NEW YORK! Authorial Mom: No, Newark. The Kid: That's what I said--New York!! Authorial Mom: No, no, we're in Newark. The Kid: YIPPEE! We're in NEW YORK!
Seriously, this went on for some time. Lucky that Kid is cute, because other passengers were giggling instead of threatening us with bodily harm.
Finally, we make it to the real New York. But that's a whole 'nother ball of wax. Hopefully, by next week, I'll have located the cords for my camera (yes, my camera still requires cords. It also does not make phone calls. So shoot me.) So stay tuned for more thrilling travel adventures with the Authorial Mom!