I am woefully behind on this weekend recap. Blame my insane schedule; by Saturday, I will have reviewed 4 plays this week. It’s actually for the best – since I’m on vacation at the end of the month, I’m getting all my work in early this month, so I’ll still have my happy extra paycheck to look forward to (and I’ll still have gotten to see some excellent theater.) But it does mean last week and this week are a little…well, crazy. To put it nicely. However, next week I get to relax a little, pack for vacation, and do some serious catching up on life. (And then when I’m on vacation, I plan on sleeping for a billion hours to catch up on all the sleep I’ve missed lately. What, you can do that, right? Bank up on sleep? That’s totally a thing, isn’t it?)
Anyway, let’s recap my weekend of adventure. That’ll be all the fun, won’t it? It totally was a weekend of adventure, too. The best kind of weekend.
I had to work on Saturday. THAT wasn’t the adventure. It never is. But working has to happen, of course. So, work work work. Which was busy, busy, busy. Too many people were calling us on Saturday. I got out early, though, because MOM WAS COMING!
Now, Mom was worried, because she’d never driven to my place by herself before. Or even to Albany by herself before. She’s of course come here before, but either with my dad driving, or with one of her coworkers (she works for a company that has a branch here, so has had to come here before for work things.) She borrowed Dad’s GPS and used it all week to make sure she understood how it worked and was SO NERVOUS it would trick her into driving off the highway or into a lake (I assured her that probably wouldn’t happen but she was unconvinced.) She was supposed to be waiting at my place for me when I got home from work, so I was a little nervous when I got home, she wouldn’t be there and I’d have a final gurgling phone call from the bottom of the lake that nefarious GPS had sucked Mom into.
NO! SHE WAS WAITING WHEN I GOT HOME!
The GPS didn’t drive her into a lake! She made it all by herself!
This made Mom feel very empowered and strong, and that made me very happy for her. I like when people do something by themselves that they didn’t think they could. It makes them all powerful and glowy.
(Yes, I know I’ve lived here for almost 11 years and she’s never visited me alone. She hates driving long distances by herself, and if she and Dad come for an overnight visit, they stay in a hotel because Dad hates cat hair. This is a true thing. He comes over and he looks at the couch and says, “LOOK. AT. ALL. THAT. CAT. HAIR.” and is very disgusted. Poor Dumbcat. He doesn’t mean to be sheddy.)
First, Mom and I had dinner plans. Mom didn’t want anything weird or fancy, because she doesn’t like weird and fancy things. And I didn’t want to bring her to Olive Garden. (I’m not hating on Olive Garden. I just wanted our weekend adventure to be Albany-centric, and a chain restaurant didn’t fit the bill.) So friend A. said, “Bring her to Ralph’s!” and I was all, “No. What is Ralph’s.” And he was all “MY FAVORITE RESTAURANT EVER!” and I looked it up and it was a nice basic Italian place and that fit the Mom-bill nicely and I asked him if I had to make reservations and he said “Nah,” but I was worried because it was the 4th of July weekend and might be busy, so I called them anyway and they were kind of confused by me. “A reservation? Um. Yeah, I guess we could do that? Your name? How many people? 5:00? Yeah, we’ll get you a VIP table. *snicker*” So that was a little off-putting. But friend A. said it was his FAVORITE RESTAURANT EVER! so that was a very strong recommendation.
So off to the restaurant we went! And when we got there, there was a huge line! And people walked out all huffy because there was a 20 minute wait! BUT NOT ME AND MOM! Because we were VIPs, baby! (No, seriously, there was a little card on the table that said VIP and everything. It was super-fancy and Mom was all impressed.) The restaurant was not all that fancy, but it was VERY delicious. Mom doesn’t like red sauce so she had chicken with white sauce and pasta and a glass of wine (“but not more than one, or I will embarrass you on our adventure!” she said, and I had to wonder if she’d ever spent any significant time with me at all) and vegetables and salad (they give you a LOT of food at this place) and I had scallops and seasoned fries (good seasoned fries are one of my weaknesses) and the BEST clam chowder and coleslaw that was only meh. And then the waitress decided she forgot bread and brought us the HUGEST basket of bread and that just made us laugh because we had so much food the table was about to collapse. And other than the coleslaw and Mom’s broccoli (which she couldn’t cut and she was trying REALLY HARD) it was SO GOOD. I was stuffed with scallops. Scallops are one of the best things to be stuffed with. This may or may not be a euphemism, and may or may not be slightly scandalous. Your choice.
Then it was time to go to the thee-ay-tah! This was outdoor theater. I am not a fan of outdoor theater for the following reasons:
This is also why I am not a fan of camping or hiking or, well, outdoor things. Period. I’m very much an indoor person.
However, when your paper says, “review the outdoor theater!” you go. Because it is the best job ever. I’d review a play in a portapottie if they asked me to.
So we went to the park, where the play was. When I entered the park, I drove a safe speed because of children running around in said park. And also I was looking for a parking spot. A black PT Cruiser got right on my tail, which I hate. There’s no reason to be that close to someone. Not even ever. I continued driving carefully (but not even all that slowly) and looking for a spot. EVIL BLACK PT CRUISER GOT EVEN CLOSER TO ME. And then HONKED.
So I did what I almost always do in those situations, and I screamed, “Are you fucking KIDDING me?” and flipped him off through the back window as I pulled into a spot. (And he promptly squealed around me and drove about 50 mph in the park. Hope you didn’t kill any old people or children, asshole!)
With my mom sitting in the passenger seat. My very religious mother, who doesn’t even like me to say the word “shit” and has sure as hellfire-and-eternal-damnation never heard me drop the f-bomb.
I apologized profusely. She said, very quietly, “thank you.” But in a way that meant “all the breath has been knocked out of my body by what you just did.” Also, she brought it up like 47 times over the time she was there. “And then remember the time you said that super-naughty thing when that impatient man honked at you? Because I DO.”
So we went to the play. Now, just so you know, we are in the midst of a heat wave, with the highest, nastiest humidity, and every few hours we get a terrible thunderstorm so we’re always in danger of flooding (and sometimes do – half of the road to work was flooded yesterday morning.) It is terrible and exhausting and I’ve had a constant headache for a week and I’m cranky as hell and wondering when I moved to the rainforest. So, YAY THEATER OUTDOORS.
There was a snack stand where I immediately bought and guzzled a 20-ounce bottle of water. I find it telling I didn’t even have to go to the bathroom that badly afterward. I WAS SWEATING IT ALL OUT. I immediately went back up and got ANOTHER bottle of water, because, well, it was 90°. NINETY DEGREES. In the OUTDOORS.
(Also, the snack stand had a big sign on it that said “SNANCKS.” What’s a snanck?)
Mom was super-impressed that I went up to the box office and said my name and they had tickets for me that I didn’t even have to PAY for, AND the artistic director of the whole theater came over and introduced himself (not as impressed when I said, “Mom, you know that’s the job I was doing at my theater for the last 3 years, right? It’s not so fancy. Also, of course they’re nice. They’re trying to get a good review.”)
The show was good, and a lot of fun (I was a little worried Mom was going to hate it – it was Spamalot, and Mom doesn’t like sketch comedy or things that are foolish – but she liked it very much, and it made her laugh, and she was very impressed with how professional it all was) but I felt TERRIBLE for the actors. Those heavy costumes! That heat! ALL! THAT! DANCING!
Also, side note, Dad’s biggest fear in the theater (I think we’ve discussed this before) is that an actor will come off the stage and grab him and force him to get onstage against his will. At one point in the show, an actor comes off the stage, picks someone out of the audience sitting in a certain seat, and brings them up on stage. Mom leaned over. “Your father would HATE this!” she giggled gleefully.
Then it was home for us, and review-writing for me, and bedtime for Mom. It was also misbehavior time for Dumbcat.
The minute Mom curled up on the couch, Dumbcat used her as a trampoline and jumped with his whole weight on her spleen. “He is heavy and SHARP!” she gasped. But she also laughed because she loves her grandcat.
She said he would be fine and I went to my room to write the review so the laptop and the light didn’t bother her.
After about an hour, there was a HUGE CRASH in the living room. I quietly snuck out. “DUMBCAT!” I hissed. “WHAT ARE YOU DOING?”
“He’s apparently breaking the whole house,” Mom said in a very sleepy sleepvoice.
What? Not me! I am GUDCAT! I am GRAECFULL and leape around LOTZ, Momme!
I looked all over and couldn’t find him, even in his pots and pans cupboard, but then he appeared from under the couch and we had a merry chase all over the living room and dining room area until I captured him and said “Naughty naughty loud cat!” and brought him back to my room and trapped him in there with a big box fan in the doorway.
He was SO EXCITED. Bed with Mom! ON THE BED WITH MOM! So he headbutted me merrily for a very long time and then fell asleep purring. I was up until very late writing and then emailing people I had been neglecting (sorry if those emails were incomprehensible, people) and then when I left the room to get ready for bed, I trapped Dumbcat in there with the fan so he wouldn’t run amuck in the living room and wake Mom up again.
Well! That didn’t sit well with him. MOM MOM WHERE’D YOU GO, MOM? So he apparently pawed at the box fan with his mitten-paw and managed to knock it over until it made a very loud noise like “wheeeeeeee!” and he LEAPT on it with his big old paws and was FREE! and I was all “Good grief, Dumbcat” but it was too late to go find him because I’m not at all stealthy so I decided Mom would have to deal with loud old Dumbcat on her own.
Then I woke up in the middle of the night with Dumbcat curled up to me. How he got BACK over the fan without knocking it over? Will remain a mystery. (Leaping, I assume, but he’s about as graceful as an airborne frog, so I’m still stumped.)
Then the next day, Mom got up very early to worship the Lord (she found the church all by herself! Look at her little empowered self go!) and I grumped around on not enough sleep. When she got home, she was all, “How do I get nails like your nails?”
I had fancy nails because I had those Sally Hansen nail sticker thingies on. They’re my favorite because you get to stick them on and they last for like a week and you don’t have to wait for them to dry and there’s no mess. So I was like, “Here! I have a billion boxes of these things. Pick out your favorite, we’ll play beauty shop.”
Mom has always wanted a daughter. I think I saw a tear in her eye.
She wanted boring nails (“No glitter. No skulls. WHY DO YOU HAVE SKULL NAILS? You are so weird”) so we did pearly nails with butterflies on them. I showed her how to stick them on and how to make them pretty and she was all, “THIS IS TOO HARD WITH ONE HAND!” so I ended up doing most of them for her and then I didn’t like that design anyway so I gave her a whole box of the same design to take home with her so she could do her nails all pretty when she got home. She was all “Look at my pretty nails!!!” and that made me laugh.
Then we went to The Nephew’s party, and I’ve already talked about that a little. He was adorable and wonderful and perfect. He always is. And now he is four! Aw, the best age! (I’m biased. They’re all the best age with him.)
And then Mom went home. She made it home in record time because I think she is a little speed demon like her daughter. And we didn’t fight once! And we had many good talks about things going on and she gave me good advice because she knows me very well! And it was a very nice weekend and now she wants to come back when we have more time and we will have more adventures because she knows how to get here ALL BY HERSELF!
Whew, weekend wrapup. Off to bed. Very sleepy. Happy…um…what day is this. Thursday? HAPPIEST OF THURSDAYS! More adventures await us soon!