Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Just got back from Vacation.

You know when you were a kid and the teachers wanted you to write about your summer vacation. Here is mine.

How I spent my Summer Vacation or as we like to call it A Week in Hell:

Tell you what when I first got there I thought about turning around and coming home. Our electricity at the place has gone wonky. The fridge blew up, and then the A/C was on its last leg. (It was in the 90's) bedding down the oldest boy had trouble breathing so best friend took him outside to cool off. As soon as they opened the door I heard a complaint about the sick odor coming from outside. The smell radiated into the trailer. Had to go out and make sure they stayed in the yard. They were like what’s that smell? Why are those cows going crazy? I couldn't stop grinning. There was a bear in the pond in the field across the road. That kind of freaked them out a bit. They decided they'd rather roast than be outside.

Next day we played all day and prayed things would be better when we came back in for lunch. It wasn’t. Still had some stuff to do so ran around and played and came home for dinner. Again nothing had changed. Went and drove 45 minutes to Wal Mart (this is the nearest store) and purchased a new A/C unit. Driving home I’m going rather slow.

Now I don’t drive the speed limit usually so for me to be going slow is a shock to the truckload. And Best friend is a person who has to be moving so she’s kind of bouncing her leg silently and finally asks why the need for crawling back.

“Deer” I simply answer.

Did not receive the typical “yes sweetheart” smartass reply I expected.Instead she says, “But it’s already after ten. Surely they aren’t out this late.”

“Trust me” I answer and continue crawling home.

As we round a bend three large does are standing by the road. They dart away.On the remaining drive we see according to one child 8 deer. According to the second it was more like 12 and my DD said nothing. We get in pull the old unit out and place in new unit.

Doesn’t work properly. The high cool refuses to run at all. Only the high fan runs. Say some words that probably shouldn’t have been used in front of children. Hope it’s a fuse thing.Tell kids to take a shower. They don’t want to because…did I forget to mention the rotten egg smell to the water? Go to bed and sweat miserably.

Next morning BF took a shower and filled the trailer with the smell of sulphur. By the time she and number one son had finished the smell was gone and the water clean and fresh. The rest of us took our turns.

Thought the problem was a fuse issue so Wal Mart here we come again. Came back replaced all the fuses. The first night all the lights at the back of the trailer had to be on for the A/C to run in the living room. So 5 of us sacked out there.

My arm is turning a purple red from the sunburn I received on the drive down so I really am dying. Drive to the liquor store for, surprisingly enough, ice. The next day we messed with the fuses some more.

Went ATVing, swimming and stopped at liquor store for, yet again, ice. Came back to find that the previous solution of all lights on wasn't working. We then had to shut everything off in back for the A/C unit to work.

Plugged in a fan to circulate the air; fan blew up.At this point there is a lot of whining and complaining. When the suggestion of sleeping outside was offered I immediately heard silence. They were afraid the bear might be back. Again I laughed.

After dark went for a nature drive and saw tons of deer, several coyotes, a raccoon and a small bear (this time we got to see one rather than just smell one.)

Next day more fooling with fuses more ATVing, some shooting then went on a two-hour ATV ride to a cave and natural spring that my great great grandfather had once owned. (The shell of his one room cabin is still there.) Took kids exploring in cave, (hit my head on the rock) more swimming, now all of my body is this purple red shade with the previous burn on the left arm really blistering.

Came back to the a/c not working at all. A lot of bitching and moaning by all of us at this point. Another nature drive to cool down and tire out the kids, this time no bears only a ton of deer and a rattlesnake.

Next day still more ATVing, almost hit a deer on my ATV. More swimming, more burning, more fighting with A/C then someone suggested a generator. My granddad and dad brought one down from the house by tractor and hooked it up. Sat in the cool air and everyone was happy. More ATVing let the kids watch how a farmer (my grandpa) bales hay. Took kids to see my grandpa's blue cow, more swimming. Saw huge black king snake, a blue crane, a baby brown snake. Another nature drive and came home to sing hallelujah that the a/c was still on. ate dinner, waited for it to get dark and took another nature drive.

Another day of ATVing and shooting and swimming followed by teaching the kids how to work a track hoe. Another nature drive. Another almost collision with a deer (in my truck this time rather than the ATV thank goodness)

Final day we went on one last ATV ride. Heard a sound that sent shivers down the spine of the whole group. For the first time it was something that scared them that didn’t make me laugh. We shut off all the ATV's and sat in silence while listening to the sounds. Hair stood on the back of my neck, I still wasn't laughing. On the breeze that carried the sound was a smell that again I couldn't place and again made me uneasy. I have been on this road for my entire life and never before had I heard or smelled the things coming from those woods. I decide to lighten the mood by sharing a story about a Big Foot creature that had been talked about in the woods and etc. The kids became frightened and we had to leave.

Came back to the A/C working and the mood was much more somber than when we left. Realized my story may not have been the best idea...try to lighten it up even more by making jokes. Teased her oldest boy who had been riding with me, “well next time we’ll just stay in the lead that way when Big Foot comes for lunch he’ll have your brother as the appetizer and you mom as a main course.” He wasn’t laughing. She laughed and said, “no way, it wouldn’t touch any one of the three of us. You’re the one with all the meat on the bones.” I grin and say, “geez, yet another down side to being fat…”

Relax in the a/c and start to itch as well as burn from the sun. Now have poison ivy blisters on my sun burn blisters.

Last nature drive, found tons of deer again, a raccoon another rattlesnake, came home was almost asleep when the two boys started screaming "MOM! MOM!" Best friend and I both shoot up from our beds and run in to find out the problem. They'd seen a mouse. Would've laughed if hadn’t been so tired. All night long listened to the youngest whine "mom, can I sleep with you?" got irritated. Said, "don’t worry its only a little mouse, it won't eat much."

I was referring to food in the pantry of course. The little one thought I meant the mouse wouldn't eat too much of him. This produced still more whining and crying and begging can I sleep with you.

Got up for the drive home. Stop to put in gas. After the gas I get in and put in the key and can’t start my truck. They key will not turn over. My dad is sitting waiting for me and I’m ready to scream. He comes over and asks what’s wrong. My best friend is in her seat mumbling something about God, ants and magnifying glasses. I try to start up again nothing. Dad pulls me out. He gets in. Takes my keys and pulls them out. Studies them then hands them back. “You can’t start a Chevy truck with a Dodge Spirit key” he says as he drops them in my hand. His head is shaking as he walks away. Best friend is laughing so hard there are tears streaming from her eyes.

About an hour out the littlest one puked in my truck. Joy of joys. Stop so he can get out and try it again. Kid feels better we drive on, stop for lunch. Child doesn't want to eat; tummy hurts. We all eat. Get on road, once more child whines about tummy. Throws up. Stop truck at Mammoth Springs Park. Take oldest boy and my DD out for a walk around and some pictures so best friend can tend to her littlest boy. Back on the road after an hour of touring and picture taking. Youngest child feels better. This is the signal for his big brother to cease being nice and the fighting commences. Best friend and I are growing angry.

She lets loose siren's shriek in the cab of the truck that resonates through the eardrums and out the window and down the highway.We have now progressed from everyone griping about being hot to freezing. Now I get hot when the temp climbs above 70 degrees. When it dips below 70 they all freeze. So here I am in a sleeveless tank and shorts while they are all bundled in blankets. I have no air on and the windows cracked as sweat pours from my body and pools in the seat.

After roasting for as long as I can bear I put the window down. This brings on a round of whining "I'm cold" and fight over the blanket commences. Finally arrive home some 6 hours later and unload them from my truck. Get in to drive back to my home and enjoy the silence that envelops the cab of the truck.

Come home to find Dh had rearranged the furniture, vacuumed, did all dishes, all laundry and cleaned out the fridge.

I'm planning on trying to find another way to leave town soon...

In all seriousness and honesty despite the many horrible things that happened, it could've been much worse. And I haven’t laughed as much in months as I did in the past 5 days. The kids were pretty well behaved (as well as you can expect a 10 and 11 year old to act) DD was an angel, helping with sunburn meds, not crabbing when I'm sure she wanted to, keeping the boys entertained while K and I relaxed. DD even surprised us by having lunch ready one afternoon when we came back from a ride she didn’t want to go on. However when BF immediately began listing thigs she was looking forward to doing next year I couldn't quite get my enthusiasm up to the right level. I'll give it a week.

I have also since found the sounds I heard, well pretty much, the sounds we heard. If you go to this website http://home.ptd.net/~williamz/deer_sounds.htm click on the "tending grunt" and the "breeding bellow" you will hear sounds very much like the ones we heard on that day. It may seem silly that those noises caused such hair raising but imagine yourself alone in the middle of the woods and hearing this for the very first time in your life and not knowing what it was. Think how you’d feel.

I should be getting pictures soon and I'll share them with you all at my blog http://donicacovey.blogspot.com Hope your summer vacations have all the good we enjoyed and none of the bad we suffered.

Huggles and I'll talk with you again soon!

1 comment:

Becka said...

Sounds like you had an AWESOME time, Donica! Woohoo! I need a vacation from my life as well. LOL

But for me, it would be a writing vacation, where I didn't have to worry about a damn thing except for the wide expanse of empty page on the screen in front of me.

Ah yes, the epitome of Heaven for a writer. No wonder we're all reclusive. LOL