Holiday Recap

December 29, 2009 at 2:12 pm (Uncategorized)

Aaaaaand I’m back.  I hope you haven’t been too despondent out there without my frequent postings and if you have…well, the internet is a big place and you should have been able to occupy your time elsewhere.  Today’s post will probably be a lengthy one, as it involves a recap of my Christmas vacation, so hopefully it can make up for some of the withdrawal I’m sure you’ve been dealing with.  Or maybe it’ll help you kill ten minutes.  Either way, let’s get started!

The adventure home started with (and ended with) the megabus.

The megabus is a bus that runs between many Midwestern cities and it frequently travels between downtown Chicago and downtown Indianapolis.  It’s convenient when I go to see my mom (although it would be more convenient if it still went to Louisville – take note, megabus people) and it usually runs on time.  Usually.  Wednesday night though, it was about a half hour late picking up from Union Station.  Not a big deal, unless you’re waiting on a street corner with tons of luggage in a lovely wintery mix of rain and snow.  So that was awesome, though I eventually made it home sweet home.  As an interesting sidenote, I no longer have a bed in the house I grew up in.  My sister does, because why shouldn’t she?  My sister also actually has my old bed, which is currently used as a spare in her apartment.  So when I go home I sleep in my sister’s room, and on Christmas Eve when we’re both there I sleep on the couch.  My room has exercise equipment in it, because I am replaceable with an ab machine.

My first real full day at home was Christmas Eve, and I woke up early to get my hair cut at the salon my cousin owns.  When I arrived, my cousin was looking frantic and she had the front door wide open.  Somehow a bird had gotten itself inside the building and in the ceiling, above the insulation and lights.  It was running around, chirping and pooping all over the light fixtures.  My cousin was not a happy camper but there wasn’t much we could do to deal with that, so we let it be.  After my haircut, I went to the sink to wash my hands and when I turned on the faucet I realized that the spray nozzle was activated, not the actual faucet.  So I was sprayed directly in my face.  It was something I couldn’t have planned better if I had tried and I wish I had a video of it because I’m sure it looked like something from a sitcom.

My cousin was on her cell phone and she had to hang up she was laughing so hard.  After we cleaned up the mess I made, she went to straighten my hair and picked up the straightener hot end first.  In my opinion, this was karma biting her in the ass for laughing at my water disaster.  I felt pretty bad though because it’s hard for a hairdresser to do her job when she has a huge burn on her hand, so I gave her an extra tip.  In my mind that makes up for her stupidity and discomfort.

After the hijinks at the salon, my day was spent eating and shopping with a dear old friend of mine.  Then I went on home to anxiously count down the hours until the annual Midnight Mass.  Right.  If you know me, you know that I don’t frequent churches that often anymore (although I was the very first altar girl in my church) and over this trip home I used up probably 75% of my churchgoing time for the year.  Jesus, Mary and Joseph, two masses in four days is a lot for ANYONE.  Anyway, as I was killing time at home before midnight I decided to go visit my elderly neighbor, who has always been like a third grandmother to me.  Her husband (who was like a third grandpa) passed away while I was in college but this tough old broad still maintains her home on the hill in the country.  She’s a lovely old woman who enjoys buying my sister and I fabulously tacky jewelry from TV as holiday and birthday presents.  This year was no exception and I received a matching faux gold earring and necklace set complete with huge fake diamonds.  As I was sitting there chatting with her, her junior-high aged great-grandson came out and sat with us.  Now, this old lady has pretty much raised her grandchildren and great-grandchildren because, unfortunately, the people who should be raising them are lacking on the common sense spectrum.  The grandson in question spends weekends with her and the weeks with his mother, who is addicted to WOW and rarely leaves her computer.  She’s a great role model.  Anyway this kid had a knife he was playing with while talking to us, and then he began inspecting a bb gun.  He lamented about the lack of things to do everywhere and then started talking about how awesome those shows about military weapons are.  His great grandma had to tell him twice to quit swinging around the knife before he hurt someone.  I was beyond uncomfortable, but how do you try to talk about healthy pastimes for young boys to some kid you barely know?  I asked him about sports but he grunted and rolled his eyes so I don’t think he’ll be playing varsity anytime soon.

After being thoroughly creeped out by the young kid next door, I returned home to help mom save her sanity by finishing up the wrapping and cleaning up our mess of a living room.  Before I knew it, it was time for the annual tradition of drinking wine with my aunt and uncle before going to mass.  I find the whole church spectacle easier to tolerate after a glass or two, and this year was no exception.  Let me tell you about a little something called The Losey Show.

The Losey’s are a family at my church.  I usually refrain from using specific names on this here blog, but I’m not going to be so careful with this story.  Dr. Losey (who has a doctorate in who knows what) is the patriarch, lead singer and guitarist of a little band that he put together.  They sing at mass once a week and also during the Midnight Christmas mass.  Lucky us.  Dr. Losey and his wife, along with three or four other souls, literally perform during these masses.  You would think they were singing at Madison Square Garden instead of a small parish in southern Indiana.  Dr. Losey has put together an entire book full of songs he’s written (and it’s called, appropriately enough, the Losey Songbook).  He likes to say things like, “Turn to page 54 of the Losey Songbook” and “Verse one – women only!  Verse two – just the guys!”  He pumps his fist and swings his hips, closing his eyes to the adoring crowd that only he can see.  The songs aren’t even original, as a friend of mine’s mom noticed that many of them are just oldies tunes rewritten with Jesus-centric lyrics.  The whole thing wouldn’t be so entertaining if it wasn’t so painfully obvious that everyone in the church thinks these guys are jokes.  My grandfather and I have shared many an eye roll over the band, but this year my sister and I nearly lost our shit.  It wasn’t even anything specific, just the fact that the intro song took 10 minutes for them to wrap up, that set us off.  I literally counted 20 ‘amens’ in a row before they finally shut up, and that was just one verse of the first song of the night.  I accidentally caught eyes with my sister and I could tell she was having a hard time not laughing.  That made me laugh.  Before I knew it, I was furiously avoiding eye contact with her because we were both shaking with silent chuckles.  I literally had to think about the starving children in Africa to calm myself down.  Mom was not pleased, but even she knows how ridiculous The Losey Show can be.  Somehow, we got through the mass without being thrown out for having a case of the giggles.  It was a Christmas miracle.

The rest of my time home flew by in a random mixture of family, decorations, trying to see my sister’s new apartment only to realize we were locked out, cookies, grandparents bickering, friends, gifts, small children asking me if my boyfriend just broke up with me and wine.  Glorious wine.  There was a really bad cover band from a dive bar in there someplace, but I’ve spent enough time today making fun of people in the musical profession so I’ll kindly omit that story.  All in all,  I really do consider myself lucky to have the amazing people in my life that I do and I’m thankful I was able to spend so much time with so many of them.  As far as gifts, I’m now the proud owner of new grown up work clothes and the entire series of Frasier on DVD (thanks Sissy!).  You may think Frasier is lame and if you subscribe to that opinion I feel quite sorry for you, because it’s one of the few shows I can watch anytime, anywhere.  I just love those kooky psychiatrists.  In an ironic twist, I was given Season 2 by the guy I’m dating right before I left for home (he noticed I had Seasons 1 and 3 so he thought he’d fill in the gap).  I was very excited, until I opened the entire series Christmas night.  Then I almost wet myself.  So if anyone needs or wants Seasons 1-3 let me know, otherwise I’ll have to try to navigate that thing called eBay.  In all honesty, I think I made out like a bandit this year.  Shh, don’t tell Santa I wasn’t all that good…

Oh, and the megabus, which nicely bookends any trip home?  It was an hour late picking up in Indy on Sunday night.  The fantastic customer service people weren’t able to tell me why it was late, when it was coming, why I hadn’t received the promised text message about delays or when and if I would receive such a text if the entire thing decided to never show up.  They received a few kind words from me before I calmly disconnected the call.  I guess that’s what I get for relying on public transportation.  No matter, I made it down and back safely and that’s all that really matters.  There are also over 360 days before I have to endure the Losey Show once again, so it’s like Christmas all year long.

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