Tuesday, November 29, 2005

Thanksgiving in the Steel City, Take 2

Let me start out by saying I wrote this post yesterday and fucking lost it because of a troubling error with the copy/paste function. The error being I am a dumb ass and I hit control v instead of control c when I was trying to save the post to a word document. The net effect was that the entire post got pasted over with a report I was writing for work about trace metal content in some drug. Very interesting. Anyway, on with the show.

There are a great many things that make traveling to the Pittsburgh area to see family really fucking annoying. Right out of the gate you have the drive: 300 miles due west on the PA turnpike. Do any of you realize how boring central Pennsylvania really is? There are only so many variations on pig shit before they all start to smell the same. We had a small reprieve during the drive there because we stopped off in Harrisburg to see my Uncle Rob, who is awesome and going to be the baby's god-daddy, and my grandparents, who were visiting him. An added bonus to this visit was that my grandparents informed us that they wanted to buy us the baby's crib and they were going to have it shipped to us instead of giving it to us at the shower and making us lug it across the state. Unfortunately our good luck ended there. There was traffic and snow the remainder of the drive to my parent's house. Now we usually start any visit in western PA at my parents house because they live closer to us by about 30 miles, and at that point we will do just about anything to get out of the car. Things are usually low key at their house, which is nice after a 5 hour drive. However, my parents house has 1 major flaw that is impossible to ignore: the guest bed. Until recently, the guest bed at their house was the full bed I slept on when I was 3 (yes 3) years old. The mattress was in such distress, I don't even think it could be considered a true mattress but more of a sleeping palate that a homeless person would say 'well, this is ok, I guess' about. Luckily, they were recently given a queen size bed from another relative which was gently used, and in comparison virtually brand new! The blessing of the new bed was pretty much nullified, however, by the fact that the sheets my parents put on this bed had to be about 80 thread count. I try really hard not to be snobby about things like this, because my mother thinks I am 'highfalutin' but Christ on the cross, woman! Is 200 thread count too much to ask for? I felt like I was sleeping on a brown paper bag. Oh and on their bed, they have 400 thread count sheets, so it's not like they don't know. Other than the bed, things at my parents' house were lovely. My family tends to congregate in one place, so we didn't have to do any additional driving and we got to see nearly everyone I'm related to on my mother's side of the family. This concluded the first portion of our trip.

Friday afternoon we set off for my mother-in-law's house. On the way over we met up with sister-in-law Allison and her new boyfriend, who appeared to be high about, oh, 100% of the time, to see the latest Harry Potter movie. So far, so good! MIL's house is usually a lively place. She always plans an elaborate dinner spread for us, which is normally served 2 to 3 hours after the appointed time, but since we're all aware of this habit, it's not a big deal. We got an additional bonus in that MIL got a new bed for us as well, and this one was a king sized with nice linens and a down comforter! Friday night was uneventful. Saturday morning was really the highlight of the trip. Dr. SOB's grandmother lives on the north side of Pittsburgh, and we try and get up to see her whenever we can. This was her first holiday since her husband passed away, and since we had 4 days instead of just a weekend, we went up for breakfast on Saturday morning. Now for those of you who have never heard of Grandmother B (or GB, as my friends like to call her) please understand that we love and respect this woman as our elder, and we mean no harm to her reputation. That said, GB is the most ridiculous woman in the universe! She is vulgar and rude, has delusions of grandeur and, in general, is wildly inappropriate. She relishes in making people uncomfortable. And she makes for some great stories! She lives with her youngest daughter in a house in which nothing has ever been thrown away, ever! Empty plastic containers, newspapers, embroidery thread, Christmas cards from 1978, you name it, she's got it. She has more of a moustache than Dr. SOB could grow after a week. We get there and visit for about 15 minutes before we get ready to go out for breakfast. Dr. SOB goes to warm up the car, and while he is outside, GB proceeds to stand up and completely undress in front of me in the living room. When she asked her daughter to get her a clean pair of 'gutchies' I ran for the dining room! A minute later, I looked out the front window and saw Dr. SOB staring in horror as his grandmother changed her underwear in full view of him and the entire neighborhood! The horror...the horror. After breakfast, we visited with some other relatives and then returned to MIL's. We got some awesome Chinese presents from cousin Hadley, got up Sunday and drove home. The drive home was long and traffic-y.


All in all, not a bad trip. If you know us, you know that there have been worse! Now we just have to gear up to do it all again in 3 weeks for the shower!

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1 comment:

allison said...

just so u know neither greg or me were high. when i stopped dating druggie of the year i stopped doing that stuff. i know that greg has a certain surfer boy tone about him, but that doesnt mean he was stoned. i really wouldnt care but this was his first time meeting my family and it was important to him to make a good impression.