Wednesday, December 10, 2014

What will I write about today?

I don't know and I still haven't figured it out yet. I gotta pull something out of my ass.

This is the season I do not do very well and it goes back to the Vietnam war and a trip I made to Florida to deliver a car for a neighbor. It was  Christmas Eve and Day '68.

The car had been delivered and I was at the airport and got socked in. I believe it was Orlando. Then they bussed us to Tampa where I met a GI headed home for Christmas. He had just arrived from Vietnam and was kind of a mess.

I swapped flights with him for 2 reasons. One was I wanted to see him get home and the other is that I wanted to arrive home after the family left for Grandma's for the usual Christmas disaster.

I am the oldest of the generation and all the cousins are younger. Truth be known, I was generally a monster sized Irish Catholic zoo and something to be avoided if possible.

While we waited at Tampa airport the GI and I rounded up a bunch of people and started caroling people at the various gates and then the ticket counters. It was pretty good, really. It was one of those rare times people were not angry over something they could not control, namely the weather. 

We were socked in and that was the way it was. It seemed the mood of the crowd was pretty good. Suddenly the weather lifted and the GI had his plane called and disappeared. The PA announced my later flight was a go and I left 30 minutes later.

My plan to miss the family zoo was foiled, though.

When we landed at Logan I knew the family hadn't left yet so instead of calling home I opted to hitch-hike.  (Try hitch-hiking out of Logan today!) I hadn't been on the road five minutes when fate intervened.  

One of my mother's friends had picked up her husband at the airport and spotted me and drove me straight to the door. I was spotted getting out of the car as Mom and my brother and sisters were loading up. I didn't even have time to hit the woods and hide.

When I pointed out I hadn't had any sleep in almost 48 hours, Mom started in on how I just HAD to go and then Dad came out. He took one look at me and told me I looked like hell and to hit the rack.

Mom argued and Dad gave Ma a terse look and said that when we got to Grandmas I was going to hit the rack the instant we arrived. 

"But..." protested Mom.

"But nothing" Dad shot back. "He's been awake for two damned days!"

When we got to Grandmas I simply went in the door, charged upstairs, grabbed a bed and zonked out.

It wasn't long until one of the little cousins woke me and I shoved him and told him to beat it. He started crying.

Dad was infuriated. He had told all of them to stay away from me but knew he had to do something. He went upstairs and started cussin up a storm and punching his palm and making it sound like a fist fight out of a John Wayne movie. It sounded like I was getting a real beating and when an uncle came up to intervene he was told loudly to butt out even as my dad was looking at him and whispered that it was OK.

My uncle went downstairs and calmly said I was putting up a pretty good fight and all my aunts were horrified.

Dad then came down calmly and sat down while I went back to sleep. It was hard to get to sleep because I was laughing but I zonked out.

A few hours later I was awakened and came down to dinner and the aunts looked at me expecting to find me battered and wondered why I wasn't.

At least dad had made the day survivable. He always seemed to know what to do.

I have hated Christmas ever since then.

To find out why the blog is pink just cut and paste this: NO ANIMALS WERE HARMED IN THE WRITING OF TODAY'S ESSAY

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