Happy Camper


So today my mother and stepfather met me and the oldest offspring at Ikea.

Mom and Mr. Wonderful (he really is wonderful!) recently bought a travel trailer of the sort that one hauls behind one’s gas-guzzling behemoth (in their case, a fairly newish Suburban).  When one arrives at the RV park, one hooks the trailer up to various amenities such as water, “drainage” of some kind, electricity, etc., and proceeds to camp in style without all the pesky hard ground  and hissing lanterns and cold nocturnal trips to whichever bush had been chosen.  Ah, cherished memories of youth…

They’re headed to a park on a lake east of here by several hours, to meet up with some friends and enjoy a local festival (rodeo, parade, etc).  Evidently they’ve lost their minds because they have decided to share this bucolic pastime with a seven-year-old girl.  Who, as of this morning at 8:00, was so giddy with delight that she made no sense whatsoever.

So we breakfasted on the $1.99 big breakfast (not half bad) and loaded up all of Delia’s junk into the behemoth.  Sentimental little thing that she is, she skipped gaily over to the car and jumped in, belted herself down, and fairly vibrated with eagerness to be gone, barely begrudging me a dismissive, perfunctory kiss and hug.

I’m only a little bit offended.

I know this is going to be a fantastic trip.  How I know this is that as we wandered up to the cafetorium at Ikea, fondling various merchandise along the way, Delia spied a small white rubber animal-shaped lamp that glows from within, of the sort one might use as a nightlight unless you are cheap and use ones from the dollar store like we do.  She admired it and Grandma sprang into action, insisting that she needed this lamp, SHE MUST HAVE IT OR SHE WILL NEVER BE HAPPY OR FULFILLED.  Thus we exited Ikea clutching a rubber lamp shaped like a fat little … something with ears.

To his credit, Mr. W. only rolled his eyes a little, and I think that was mostly at the thought of precious! driving! time! frittering! away!

I am informed via text that they were quite near the lake by 5pm, at which point one assumes the cell signal petered out.   No doubt Delia has convinced them that marshmallows are very commonly eaten at our house before bed, and Grandma will shortly be struggling to pronounce the names of the spells in Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban.

I wish I could have joined them, but she is having a grand adventure and some much-needed Grandma bonding time.

(I miss you, Monkey Face!)



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