After much refection I STILL don’t understand why the crazy stuff happens to me when I am with the family and not my friends! I was busy tell you about my travels with Annie, TTG, Squid and Chatterbox here. To pick up where I left off, please continue…
As I was saying, I am a mom and thought of snacks. I packed apples and almonds, juice and pop. The girls were dying of starvation, and when I say dying – I mean cranky and we were going to kill them. So, TTG gave Squid an apple. Every now and then, TTG wishes she had a “traditional” family of her own. Annie and I tell her constantly she is “Living the Dream” No kids, no weird smells, no messes, no odd sounds – let’s face it – No body sounds, smells and fluids that are not your own IS THE DREAM! Meanwhile, Squid eats her apple and gives the core to TTG where I could sense her facial expression and heard an “Oh Lovely” in the classic family sarcastic tone. I reminded TTG that she is living the dream…
We drive around Northeast Calgary while Annie tries to recall her past life here. 2 hours later we find an Olive Garden! All you can eat bread sticks and salad! We get excited and I jump out to see about getting a table. The Hostess replies, it will be an Hour and a half. AN HOUR AND A HALF?!? FOR AN OLIVE GARDEN? I don’t think so sweetheart, so I run back out and tell the girls we need to keep looking. I remember spotting a 5Guys on the Highway at Airdrie and suggest we head there. So long Calgary, your shopping was great but we were starving so we high tailed it out of there! A while later we get to Airdrie. 5 Guys is on the left side of the double hwy. No left turn for us! We search in vain for the over pass….only to discover an underpass as we drive over it. *Note to Airdrie, signs are a good thing…just saying…
We take the next exit and double back, pull in and park. We spot a Nathans Famous – of Coney Island Fame – and I retell my mom’s opinion of Nathan’s hot dogs…so we continue back to 5 guys. We get to the window and peer inside, all the people who couldn’t get a table at the Olive Garden, came here. It looked like an hour wait. OH FOR CRYING OUT LOUD! I start to make my way to the empty – yet open – Nathan’s, when Chatterbox pipes up “There is the Dirty Bird, let’s eat there”. Fine – Swiss Chalet it is.
As we stroll over
The Dirty Bird Swiss Chalet, TTG claims she has NEVER eaten at Swiss Chalet. WHAT??? how do you live in the same family and never had to eat here? It is Gran’s favorite place! It is known for its chicken. Talk about lucky! Then she went on to tell another interesting fact. While traveling home from Edmonton, TTG went to Swiss Chalet at the Edmonton International Airport only to be told they were out of chicken. WHAT??? How is that even possible? It’s like going to Baskin Robbins and being told they are out of Ice Cream! So the one and only time TTG made the attempt to eat at the Dirty Bird and they were out of Chicken. Omen maybe?
TTG is the only one who ordered Chicken. Ribs, pot pie, and deep fried perogies were the entres of choice. Chatterbox was the one who chose poorly on the roulette wheel of food. Who orders deep fried anything and expects to feel great afterwards? I suppose I should have stepped in and suggested real food at this point. But I didn’t not know they were deep fried and I didn’t expect Chemo Perogies…should have know better, sorry Chatter box.
By the time we finished dinner, it was 8:ooPM – 4 hours AFTER we leave Chinook mall. We pile into the car where Chatterbox complains that it is too dark to read. Squid says it’s my fault for raising a reader. I should have raised a TV watcher than she would be happy with movies on the ipod. I tell them to suck it up and listen to music. Annie declares it’s time to fill the truck up due to mindless wandering around Calgary…we need to find an ESSO. Would any other station do? Nope…an ESSO please. So back on the HWY north to Edmonton, we pass a Petro Canada…no way – not if we don’t want Grandpa haunting us forever. Petro Canada is a political no no. How about Shell? Nope…Fast Gas? No thanks…Husky? NO! an Esso!! FINE! so we keep driving. The needle on the tank gets to the “Hey Dummy” line and Annie panics. So she demands, Text my man and ask him how far to Esso! WTF? He is not in the car, how is he to know? As soon as I finish texting, there are on the horizon is an Esso. The skies open up and the angels begin to sing. We won’t be hitch hiking after all! Thanks Universe!
We pull into the station, and TTG immediately begins the speculation game. Look at that gal, she put on her fancy pink sweatshirt for a night in rural Alberta! Her man has no shoes and is bare foot. Where do you think they are going? Why do you think that man is smiling? I think there is a hockey bag filled with bodies in the back of his car…CLICK went the locks. Hmmm this place is starting to get creepy. Then TTG asks, Whats a trip without creepy people? True…? Annie tries to get back into the car and we won’t let her in, who wants to risk creepy people joining her? Then we see she has NIBS! WOOHOO Nibs! She is in!
We munch on nibs and it adds to the bloated gross feeling from the Dirty Bird. TTG announces, no matter what I say or how much I beg, do not pass me anymore nibs. FINE! Be that Way! So we stuff them into the glove box. Soon we are on our way, headed North in the dark – no street lights on Alberta rural hwys – because we are tough red necks here! About 10 minutes into the trip we here…I need to go to the bathroom. ARE YOU FREAKING KIDDING ME??? You couldn’t go at ESSO? Annie says we are not stopping because A> she has turned into my dad and B> She doesn’t want to stop at the prison town at night. Fair enough..HOLD IT Chatterbox.
As we continue on in the dark, we start to hear gagging noises. Chatterbox, are you okay? Yes, comes the reply. Then the gagging gets more frequent. I yell to Squid to reach back and grab a bag, empty it and give it to Chatterbox. Full on Heaving ensues. Awesome… TTG and Squid join the gag fest. The smell is starting to get rank, so we crack open the windows only to learn we are driving in farm country. The manure smell is as bad. Now the dilema – which is better? Vomit or manure? The heaving stops and Chatterbox passes the bag to TTG – once again TTG YOU ARE LIVING THE DREAM!The bag starts to leak and the screaming begins! Quick grab another bag! TTG pulls all her clothes out of her bag and says WAIT! I need the receipts incase I want to return them!!! Finally the leaky bag is tucked safely into the the second bag. I surmise out loud to TTG “I bet that apple core is looking pretty awesome about now!” With all the panic and screaming, Annie finds a turn off to the rest stop. It is pitch black and not far from the prison. We pull over to the side of a grain field covered in stubble. We all jump out like we are covered in puke. They scream, shake and stand around while I get Chatterbox cleaned up and sorted. I take tissue from the clothing bags and wipe up messes. I would give my first born for a diaper bag filled with wet wipes about now. I spray the seats with “Sweat Pea” Hand sanitizer and we pile back in. TTG and Annie quickly lock the doors. At this point I discover two scary guys were hiding in the ditch and scrambled up the hill when we pulled up. We are in the middle of no-where, surrounded by farms and a prison is a couple of miles away. Yet there, are two guys in a ditch…hmmm either they are escaped convicts OR they are bottle collecting boy scouts. I’m pretty sure they were neither, but it’s not for me to speculate!
By this time it’s after 9:00PM. We are tired, smelly and really want to go home, yet we can’t seem to stop laughing. We see a dead moose on the side of the road and a totalled car on the other side. We share stories of past travels with duct tape and dad and granny and why she got the queen bed in Ireland while Annie and TTG got the table top. Eventually we stopped talking and began what we always do on every single family trip. We play silly songs a sing along, like this one:
My friend Oracle from DownUnder invited me to guest blog over on his site
It contunies the Adventures of Travel’s with Granny – if you are so inclinde to visit! Say hey for me, I love his adventures 🙂