— 9:51 a.m.
Xmas 2008 Part 1
Don’t get tired when you’re on the road.
So over the Xmas holiday – hold on! Why is it that “X” is substituted for “Christ” anyways? Does this mean that “X”-rated films are actually “Christ”-rated and acceptable to be viewed by Xtians? Just a thought.
As I was saying, over the Xmas holiday (which you have to capitalize or spell check busts you for it) The Girl and I took an early flight to Vegas so that we could visit my family. Well, some of them. My sister, Michele, her husband Dag, and their insomniac 2-year old, Katie, drove in from California. My grandmother, who is now 92, was also there and though not in failing health, was recently put into a convalescent hospital, but only for physical therapy since she started falling down a lot.
The hospital is nice, as those things go, and she goes through 2 hours of PT every day so that she can get strong enough to get some independence back. She was using a walker until recently, but was then relegated to a wheelchair. The problem with that is that she isn’t strong enough to maneuver herself around outside of the chair to take care of things like getting dressed, bathing, and going to the bathroom. She has a positive outlook about it, and is very hopeful that she is going home, but we’ll see. The problem with that is that she can’t afford a full-time, live-in caretaker, and she can’t live alone anymore either. She’s in good health, but her right and both her ankles are pretty much fucked.
As I mentioned, The Girl and I took an ass-crack of dawn flight (7am), got our rental car, and drove to Kingman without incident. We got to the parents' house at 11:30am, and the California contingent arrived just a bit later. In very short order, we were all rocking bowls of Dad’s chili and fresh salsa that they had spent all morning preparing. Awesome. There is nothing in the world like Dad’s chili. After a few hours we went to visit Grandma and check into the “hotel”.
We had booked a room at the Rodeway Inn, which my sister, Liz, warned me about several times. “Are you SURE you want to stay there?” Well, WTF? Michele and Dag already had their reservations, and a room is a room, right? Well, you DO remember the Budget Host Inn, right? I don’t know what it is about an Inn, but “inn” must be a hospitality industry codeword for “brokedick”. Dag says that it’s short for “inoperable”.
After visiting with Grandma and delivering her some Enstrom’s Toffee direct from Colorado, Katie was ready for a nap (BWAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!) and was waking up the old people with shrill chirrups and hoots that I’m quite sure reached into the ultrasonic. So Michele asked me again where we were staying and we drove round and round, up and down Andy DeVine, counting on Michele’s Navigation System ExtraExtraordinaire, to guide us. We finally found the place after going first to the Travelodge, which Michele had programmed first, then pulling over, consulting the reservation and looking at the physical address. I’m quite sure now why Michele’s BMW SUV refused to show her where the Rodeway Inn was.
After we found it, offset behind another hotel and on the other side of the freeway from where we had thought, we checked in and the Middle-Easterner, Sam, said that he had turned on the heat for us. Nice, we thought, since there was a baby and all that. We had adjoining rooms too, and it was really cold that day. We got into the room and immediately noticed that there was no hair drier. The Girl had asked if she should pack one, to which I had replied: “where have we stayed in the last X years that hasn’t had a hair drier?” Answer? The Rodeway Skid.
The room was not warm when we entered, but in all fairness the heat was not turned up all the way and it was on low. I cranked it and cranked it. The air that came out was...well let’s put it this way... I’m not sure just who ‘luke’ is, but apparently it was as warm as him. The optimist in me told me that it had all day to heat up, as it was early. We hung out for a while, laughed at the place most especially at the toilet tank cover, which sits there like Wimpy’s top hat, then went back to Mom and Dad’s house.
We drove back there uneventfully, and this time I refrained from doing the E-brake turn on the corner before Mom and Dad’s house, which I had done in the morning upon our arrival. You see, the car that we rented was a Subaru Legacy, and the E-brake turn is part of the training course at the rental car pick up. The Girl was shocked but secretly delighted when I had done this turn in the morning, and will never see that 125° corner the same way again.
A couple of hours later we got a call from Michele saying that Katie would not take a nap and we needed to eat dinner now! We had fresh cocktails to finish, of course, so we said we’d meet them at Pizza Butt in about 25 minutes. It ended up being 40, but whatever. We got there taking the back roads and side streets through the seedy underbelly of Kingman, and I’m sure that though we saved a few lights, it took at least 5 minutes longer than it needed to. Like this explanation.
Pizza Slut was actually really good, complete with extra sauce and cheese-stuffed crust, which I had never had before because I generally don’t care for over-cheesed pizza. It was rly rly god damned good. We went back to Mom and Dad’s, since we’d driven down with them, and everyone else went back to Skid Rodeway.
We didn’t stay at the folks for long, since we wanted to visit with Michele and Dag too, besides it was close to the folks' bedtime, so we got in our blue Subaru (comin’ right at you) and headed down Stockton Hill Road towards the freeway. It’s 8 miles to the freeway from my parents house, and the cops were everywhere! Even with as windy as it was, you could smell the doughnuts. Almost to the freeway, I was in the left lane musing about how today’s Tom Sawyer get’s high on me, and was briefly aware that there was something in the road when suddenly there was a bump and I knew that I had runover something.
That something was still under me as we skied down the lane. “What the fuck did I hit?” I yelled. The Girl wasn’t sure, because she didn’t get the phantom glimpse of the thing that I’d gotten. We halted, scrapingly, still in the left lane, and she punched the hazard light button that she had noticed the day before. Good work. Rush played on, uncaringly.
I opened the door and immediately smelled burnt rubber. God dammit. I looked under the front of the car and didn’t see anything. WTF? So I moved back under my door and looked under it to find out that I had run over, and furthermore I was HIGH CENTERED on…
…To be Continued