Friday morning I set sail for the wilds of Whitehouse, Ohio, for a week’s vacation with my buddies. That means tonight is Packing and Prep Night, which is always an ordeal. Good thing Pinky is at her place tonight, because on Pack and Prep Night, I’m not very much fun to be with as I run around doing the Gotta Go Dance.
I seek to leave very little to chance. Earlier this week I began preparing my packing and To-Do list. I live in a panic that I’m going to go somewhere and forget something. This is because if I don’t take steps like this, I ALWAYS forget something I mean to take.
I could probably just set up one master list and use it each time, because the items are almost always the same:
Camera: because why go anywhere if you can’t take pictures to use on the blog?
Cell phone and charger: The cell is easy to remember; the charger… not so much.
CD case: especially for this trip when I’ll be standing around my buddy’s garage… gotta have some tunes for the boom box.
Hats: we bald guys have to have our hats, and I need to have options. I’m bringing 4 on this trip, 1 Pens, 1 Pirates, 1 Steelers, and 1 Toledo Mudhens.
Checkbook: to divvy up the cost of providing the food and beer for our Communal 50th Birthday Bash.
Crossword puzzles: I have the ones from the last 2 Sundays. That should keep me occupied during some of the down-time when someone else is on the computer and it’s too early to start drinking.
Bicycle gloves: in case we need to do anything resembling manual labor, like moving boxes or furniture. I need to protect my hands because of that Delayed Pressure Urticaria stuff I have. (Hives.)
Steelers beer cozy: A) Bolsters my Steelers cred, B) marks my territory, C) hey, it’s freakin’ hot out!
Orioles bucket hat: I usually use it for fishing or hitting the pool. Keeps the sun off my skull and it doesn’t matter if it gets wet.
Pill assortment: God forbid I leave without my day-by-day assortment of vitamins and hive meds.
The usual assortment of shorts and tee shirts. I don’t know why I even write that shit down. I mean, what else am I going to put in my suitcase for a summer trip?
Then I have the To-Do list of things I have to make sure I take care of before I leave, like check in on-line, leave a trail of my common website links on my email to access later, stop newspaper and mail delivery, and water the plants.
And now to add to the list, I have to make sure I take care of you, my blog-reading friend. Last year, I blogged my vacation, practically in real time. I’m not sure if I’m going to be able to do that this year, so I’ve already set up several posts to run in my absence. (I hadn’t figured out how to do that when I took my last vacation.) And of course, I’m leaving this post here for you before I go.
Now tonight, I plan to lay in bed tossing and turning because I won’t be able to turn my brain off, worrying about over sleeping or traffic delays or car problems on the way to the airport. Not to mention our so highly effective Congress has allowed funding for the FAA to lapse. I don't know who's looking at all the little blips up in the tower, but I hope they got better sleep than I will.
I think I come by all this honestly, from watching my parents do their pre-trip dance over and over again. They had their rituals as well, although it was primarily limited to the morning of the trip. Dad’s job was to load the car at the crack of dawn and then pace around telling us all to hurry up, until we finally got herded into the car.
Meanwhile, Mom could be counted on to discover all kinds of things that absolutely HAD to be done before we left, like straightening up the greeting cards on the kitchen table or rearranging the knick-knacks. I was never sure why… I used to say, “Who are you straightening up for, the burglars? I knew the cat was going to knock everything around, anyway.
(By the way, Happy Birthday, Mom!)
So I do my Gotta Go Dance, to uphold our grand family tradition. I make my lists, pack my bags and hit the road early… usually leaving a suitcase behind.
Wish me luck! Like I said, I have some posts scheduled to run and I may put up some updates. I’ll definitely be checking email and comments.