Road Trip: Part I

The Parakeet, the Huz, and Little O put themselves and Alllll of their stuff into the Vibe a few weeks ago and went to Texas.
They were very excited to spend some time with the Huz’ family.  Little O didn’t know it yet, but this was going to be the most time he had ever spent in the car. EVER.
And since everyone knows that his favorite amount of time in the car is zero minutes, followed closely by no more than twenty minutes – both of his parents were anxious. Everyone also knows that anxiety is a super great thing for a baby.  It always chills them out.
The morning they were to leave, the Friday before Memorial Day, the Parakeet got up and logged on to balance a few spreadsheets for work. The idea was to leave around nine AM when O would be ready for his morning nap and rush hour would be over.  She balanced the accounts quickly and then started payroll. Huge, Boring error, but a few phone calls to work and everything seemed to be under control.
The Huz began loading all 203 pieces of their luggage and assorted NECESSITIES into the car while the Parakeet checked everything off a list and chased around their baby who wants to be a toddler.
(side note: somehow moby wrap did not make ‘the list’ and so it was not packed and that became super annoying a couple of times. ‘the list’ can not be absolute)
Because he is a spatial genius, the Huz got everything into the car and they somehow left by nine-thirty. Brilliant!
There was no traffic leaving Chicago. That sentence deserves repeating: There was no traffic leaving Chicago. The Huz and Parakeet have taken many a road trip during their six year tenure in Chicago and they have left at all times of day – ALWAYS traffic. Not this Holiday weekend. What? Anyway..
Little O fell asleep as they hoped before hitting the Loop – all was right in the world.
After about an hour, the Huz had to use the bathroom.  He pulled into a rest area. Little O woke up . He was sweet. They let him be. They got back onto the highway.  After about five minutes, he lost his mind. He screamed like crazy. The Parakeet climbed over her seat and into the back of the car. She could not find Little O’s mind – even though the Huz kept asking her to -so they pulled into a McDonald’s.  They ordered some lunch and Little O, very fittingly, ate his first babyfood from a jar.
Things seemed to be all right as long as the Parakeet sat in the back with Little O alternately introducing new toys, stroking his hair, singing silly songs, and playing peek-a-boo.  He would fall asleep for about forty minutes and then shift, feel the belts of his car seat and scream bloody murder not even opening his eyes. There was no consoling the anger that came from deep in his little nine-month soul. He wanted to sleep and these belts – these constraints! He had never known such HELL!
They looked for places to pull over, but it was southern Illinois. There were no places to pull  over. 
Around dinner time, the Parakeet decided to make a bottle in the back seat with eight ounces of her own saliva.  Totally kidding, but she would have if she didn’t have a water bottle.  She then put a bib on the babe and spoon-fed him in motion.  He was quiet. She would have fed him for three hours if that’s what he wanted.
Somewhere during this alternating sleep/huge fit situation, the Huz had his quote of the trip: Little O was very loud, the Parakeet was performing a three-ring circus act trying to calm him, and the Huz said in an exasperated yell, “Come on…All you have to do is lay there and sleep!” It was so ridiculous and inappropriate to laugh at that comment, that the Parakeet waited until they got to Texas to bring it up again. Then his whole family laughed about it.
They stopped for a delicious fried this and that buffet (healthy trip, huh?) with a salad bar just over the Arkansas border.  They let Little O climb all over the place, crawl, and charm the elderlies.  He seemed all right.  They got back in the car and just after 8PM when the Huz finally threw a sweater over his head, Little O fell asleep for what looked like “the night”.  They made a judgement call:  find a hotel and test his adaptability to sleeping in the pack’n play and finish this craziness in the morning OR get to Mimi and Pappy’s house just after 1AM. 
The Parakeet was indecisive, so the Huz called it – Soldier Forth!
They did.
In Silence.
The Parakeet eventually moved to the front seat, but any music or conversation seemed to wake the Demon. So, they rode through Arkansas and into Texas in the black night.
O stirred a few times and even cried out once or twice, but they found ignoring it fairly effective.  They pulled into the driveway of the Russells’ at 1:30 in the morning. 16 HRS after leaving their apartment.
Little O, of course, greeted everyone with smiles, laughed, crawled around, and basically entertained his grandparents until nearly three in the morning as if he were a perfect baby.


3 responses to “Road Trip: Part I

  1. runyanthree

    🙂 oh. my. gosh.

  2. “Come on…All you have to do is lay there and sleep!” I know you told us this when you were here but I laugh every time I read it. Our time together was just wonderful. Thanks again for taking the time and courage to travel so far to visit.

  3. oh the joys…(right?)

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