17 December 2012

Let's Shower This Baby (ii)

6 December 2012

Our chariot.
We Arrived. The flight was extremely uneventful, other than making clear that I don't know how to use a neck pillow. I mostly slept until the wheels hit the ground. It's my favorite travel jolt. Tab & I looked at each other & said "we're here!" It was indeed quite exciting. 

It was great to be back, and to see how Ithaca is booming. I don't remember the last time I was there, but I think it was the year after I graduated. There may have been one other visit, but it's been at least eight years. 

Ithaca was just as gray as I remembered, and probably just as cold, thought it could technically have been warmer. It was 33 degrees and I was wearing leggings. So I should have been cold. We were also exhausted, and probably on the brink of tears. And Tab was getting sicker and sicker. 

Abby's house was the same, only painted and extra pretty.  We got to work combining our party planning lists, making an itinerary and rearranging furniture. Mr. & Mrs. Abby's Parents made dinner. I let my bag explode and took a too long shower. We couldn't go to sleep; we still had to get Abby. So we ate, caught up, and decompressed. Once we had our wits about us, Tab & I started to see the beauty of  retirement.

"What are you guys going to drink with dinner? Vodka? Rum? Margaritas?" - Mrs. Abby's Mom

I suppose that could seem normal. But to us - exhausted and travel weary - it seemed like the start of a spring break like rager. We probably would have been okay with water, but we settled on wine. Well most of us had wine. Abby's dad had a margarita, you know, from the margarita bucket in the freezer.  Duh.

Having wasted most of our shower shopping day in Newark Liberty International Airport, we did have errands to run at 9 that night. We took our list to Target, and got everything we couldn't get at Michael's. That still left us with two hours before it was time to get Abby.

We went to McDonald's.

Yes, we'd already had dinner. No, there is no good that can come from killing time under the golden arches. We started out with hot chocolate. We also had fries. And nuggets. And some sort of holiday pie resembling cake batter inside an airy pop tart. After sitting, drinking, snacking and judging the other guests, we still had an hour or so to go. The day would just not end.

The gates were down until the minute before people
arrived from the tarmac.
We moved our waiting party to the airport, where the only thing left to do was think of ways to mess with Abby. I may have been alone in that, but it passed the time. She had been pinging us all day, wanting to know what was happening. Even though she was the reason for the season, she was the only one in our quintet who had to spend the day alone. She wanted to feel as though she was part of the action. I understood that. I then used that understanding to tell her we were going to be 20 minutes late to pick her up from the airport. Sure, I was the mean one, but Tab hid behind the tree right alongside me. And Mrs. Abby's mom was off behind a tree and on a bench. Co-conspirators for life. It doesn't help that Abby is so gullible.

So there we were, hiding behind a giant Christmas tree, watching like creepers. The goal was to get the picture of Abby first seeing us. We spotted her and of course she went in the wrong direction. It made sense, she's a) pregnant and b) expecting a 20 minute wait. Of course she had to pee.

So there we were, giggling with the camera ready just outside the entrance to the ladies' room. We were so giddy, it took us a minute to realize Abby might not be the only person in the rest room. I didn't know what to do. I didn't want to risk missing the shot. I also didn't want to catch some stranger off guard by snapping a picture of her as she walked out of the restroom. I was starting to drop the camera when Abby appeared!

So there we were, reunited and complete in our unique three-party way. It's difficult to explain, but I wager it's fun to watch. We three are so different and so alike. If left alone, there is no limit to what we can accomplish. It's wonderfully comforting to feel a part of something that has so much potential.

It was finally time to shower this baby.