Sunday, March 15, 2009

Bienvenido a Miami!

Back in my last semester of undergrad, back when I was lying awake at night trying to decide which of the three grad schools I'd been accepted to was the one I was going to end up at, one of my professors told me that if I decided to go to Miami, she was going to make a CD for me that had one song on it over and over and over and over. This was the song:

I've been playing that song quite a bit lately. As of Tuesday morning I'll be in Miami, where it is going to be 84 degrees, and I am going to be doing an awful lot of the following things:

  1. Beaching
  2. Reading
  3. Tanning
  4. Eating
  5. Drinking

This is my first "real" spring break trip ever--and by "real," I mean a trip that does not have a final destination of Buffalo, New York, which is muddy, snowy, and unpredictable in the spring.

And interestingly enough my first "real"--and now by "real" I mean "tropical and beachy"--spring break is going to be spent with my mother and my brother. Not your typical spring break companions, right?

Of course, this trip started out as a half joke on a day I was driving back from Portland. It was snowing. It was two degrees. It was gray. My part of the ocean was not frothy, lush, or sparkling. It was frozen, crusty, and dull. I was thinking about Mexico and how I wished I was going back.

And because the Pink Torpedoes had already scheduled our spring break vacation--this one in April, when the other girls have their spring breaks--and because that vacation is going to land us in D.C. where we plan to completely nerd out under the cherry blossoms for four days and because D.C. is not known for being balmy or tropical in early April, I called my mother and said, "Wouldn't it be nice if we could get on a plane and go to some all-inclusive place in Jamaica or Puerto Rico or something? We could have a girls' week."

And you know what she said? She said. "It would be nice. So let's go."

A few days later she called me back and asked--hypothetically, hypothetically--what I would think about a vacation that involved her, her boyfriend, her boyfriend's possibly-gay black belt son, my brother, and my brother's girlfriend?

I told her the thought of it made me want to put a knife through my eye. And it wasn't because I didn't enjoy those people (some in small doses); instead, it was because I wanted my vacation to be about one thing: relaxation. I wanted sand and sun and a stack of books. I did not want to worry about pleasing antsy children, picky eaters, and the eighteen year old girl who was dating my brother and had absolutely no problem with coming over to my mother's house and leaving her birth control packet out on the counter with her keys, where everyone could see it.

I like this girl. I do. But there's just something about the two of them together that is a little bawdy, a smidge inappropriate--like the time they came crashing into my mother's house and my brother was having a panic attack about his girlfriend not having skipped one of her pills and what was going to happen because of it. He and his girlfriend then talked to my mother about what would happen if the girlfriend took two pills to catch up on the missed dose--and my mother had to answer these questions without vomiting and without combusting at the thought of the two of them getting busy, wedged into the small space of the bunk bed Adam sometimes shares with the possibly-gay black belt son.

Having to deal with my brother oh-so-subtly sneaking off to the room I would inevitably end up sharing with him and his girlfriend so that he could then have his disgusting way with the girlfriend didn't paint a picture of restoration. None of that seemed particularly restful.

So I told my mother the thought of a vacation involving that combination of people made me very, very nervous, but that if we had to bring my brother, that would be about all I could handle. Plus, I reasoned, wouldn't it be nice to have a little family-only vacation? It would be bonding time.

And that's what I'm getting. Family-only vacation. Bonding time. Four days in Miami with my mother, with my brother. One room. One bathroom.

I can't say exactly how it's going to go, but I am excited for warm weather and bright beach and everything I'll see along the way. Let's just cross my fingers that I can somehow hold off on telling my brother that if he doesn't shut up I am going to kill him at least until we've made it to our layover.

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