Exciting occurrences from the long ride home:
-Papa spilled coffee all over my book at the continental breakfast (which was not as good as the Hampton…). We caused quite a ruckus since the dining room was small and filled to capacity, and considering the fact that Papa and I are louder than most people on a regular basis, just imagine us while we’re spilling things all over the floor. Grammy wasn’t down yet because she has a special routine for her mornings, but when she got there Papa got a new cup of coffee:
Julie: Are you going to try again? He spilled his first cup.
Papa: That was supposed to be a secret.
Julie: Well, you didn’t tell me that!
Papa: It’s always a secret.
Julie: Look, Grammy, he spilled on my book.
Papa: Oh, that’s ok. People will just think you were reading in bed and spilled coffee on your book.
Julie: No, I’ll tell them what really happened.
Grammy: Papa has started making up stories. When he fell over the planter, he tried to get me to tell the doctor he ran into a door or something.
Papa: I don’t think I told you that.
Grammy: Oh, you did.
Papa: I don’t remember doing something like that.
-We went to Memphis and tried to go to Mud Island, but since it was Sunday, it was closed. Thus, we were 7 hours from home and hadn’t seen any tourist attractions, which is not okay, so we headed to Beale Street. After parking the car, we walked past the Orpheum Theatre, where there are lots of stars with famous names on them in the sidewalk. I told Papa to pick a star so I could take his picture, so he stood by Gregory Peck’s star and said: “I guess I’ll stand by Gregory Peck, even though I don’t like his daughter.” Meanwhile, Grammy was taking pictures of each of her favorite stars. Needless to say, it took us a while to walk past the Orpheum Theatre. We reached Beale Street and after 25 minutes of taking more pictures, commenting on the structure of each building, and looking into each store window we finally made it down one block. This is when Papa asked: “So, have we seen enough?” Grammy just gave him a look that said: Buck up because this is the only touristy thing we did all week. Turns out, the Oklahoma vs. University of North Carolina basketball game was in Memphis the day we were there, and all the excited OK and UNC fans made us wallow in supportive sorrow for our Tigers. Since I was wearing a MU fleece jacket, Grammy and I stood in the middle of Beale Street and cheered “Go Tigers!” Grammy also looked at every single t-shirt stand to see if they had Mizzou on any of them. They didn’t. So we left.
-We ate lunch at Ruby Tuesday’s, but it wasn’t very good. They did have a lot of broccoli, which, along with grilled cheese sandwiches, is my favorite food. Grammy and I ordered quiche* and Grammy was not impressed.
-We stopped at McDonald’s in Thayer, MO because it was about time for Papa’s daily ice cream cone.
-We stopped to get gas and when I went inside to go to the bathroom, there were six people in line and they were all buying alcohol. This is when I knew I was back in Missouri and away from the Land of Dry Counties.
*Side Note: Quiche is pronounced “kish” at Grammy and Papa’s house. I’m not sure why or where they got that, but every time they say it, I can’t help but chuckle. Papa also pronounces Bush, as in George Bush, “boosh” which is equally hilarious.
1) If Papa is driving, I will always have to remind him to turn his turn signal off every single time he uses it. Without fail. I’m going to have to get him a louder blinker.
2) Grammy sometimes drives in the middle of two lanes. She also seemed to be driving every time we were trying to decide where to eat a meal, which, because of Papa’s indecisiveness, quickly turned into a fight for life as Grammy swerved in and out of lanes and I sat in the back holding my breath and praying we make it to safety.
3) Grammy comments on things. Anything she sees. If we drive through a town, she’ll just start reading signs, like: “There’s a WalMart. Look, over here we have a Target, Red Lobster, Bass Pro. Look at that new bank they’re building, it’s a Wachovia! They’re building a lot of banks recently, I don’t know where they get the money, but there’s a Region’s Bank, too! We know about Region’s bank, don’t we Papa?” She never runs out of things to comment on; it is truly amazing. Mom says that Pap-Pap, Grammy’s dad, used to comment on everything, also. It must be genetic.
4) When choosing a hotel, the continental breakfast menu is the final deciding factor. Unfortunately, the menu doesn’t always reflect the quality of the food. Thus, after much deliberation, I have come to the conclusion that the Hampton Inn has the best continental breakfast. They also had an assortment of different types of pillows to choose from. And free internet. And a nice comforter on the bed. Gold star!
5) When all else fails and you can’t find anywhere to eat, there’s always a Cracker Barrel.
6) Once we eat at a certain restaurant or stay at a certain hotel, someone must inform the rest of the car when we pass another of the same restaurant/hotel. For example, once we ate at the Waffle House, Grammy and Papa pointed out every Waffle House from Rolla, MO to Panama City, FL. There are a lot of Waffle Houses.
7) I love going on vacation with my grandparents.
Since we have family all across the country, I have devised some future travel destination ideas. Papa says he's not going to go on another vacation for a while, but I've gotten pretty good at convincing him to do things.
Future Travel Destinations (from west to east):
1) Portland, Oregon. To visit Uncle David, Aunt Melissa and my cousins, Noah and Cooper.
2) Frisco. To visit Uncle Jeff, his vineyard, and his new barnhouse. (Even though I know pretty much everything there is to know about the construction of the barnhouse. Grammy took Aunt Dotty and me through every entry on his blog.)
3) Denver, Colorado. To visit Grammy's brother, Carl.
4) Mullins, West Virginia. To visit the rest of Papa's side of the family.
5) Providence, Rhode Island. To visit my brother, Andy.
Yeah, get excited. Papa won't know what hit him.